Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

Siege and StormSiege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
Series: The Grisha Trilogy #2
Published by: Henry Holt and Co. on June 4, 2013
Genre: Adventure, Fantasy
Pages: 435
Buy on AmazonBook Details
Rating: ★★★

Darkness never dies.

Hunted across the True Sea, haunted by the lives she took on the Fold, Alina must try to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land. She finds starting new is not easy while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. She canโ€™t outrun her past or her destiny for long.

The Darkling has emerged from the Shadow Fold with a terrifying new power and a dangerous plan that will test the very boundaries of the natural world. With the help of a notorious privateer, Alina returns to the country she abandoned, determined to fight the forces gathering against Ravka. But as her power grows, Alina slips deeper into the Darklingโ€™s game of forbidden magic, and farther away from Mal. Somehow, she will have to choose between her country, her power, and the love she always thought would guide her—or risk losing everything to the oncoming storm.

My feelings for Siege and Storm are so conflicting. I certainly enjoyed parts of the book, but I think Siege and Storm suffers from Second Book Syndrome a little bit.

The biggest problems in Siege and Storm are the relationship issues. I thought Mal was such a sweet guy and I loved seeing him with Alina. But their relationship really starts to crumble in Siege and Storm and of course there’s a love triangle to sort out too… This was the single biggest thing that pulled the book down for me. Every time Alina and Mal fought or bickered, I just rolled my eyes and sighed with annoyance. I could actually feel myself losing patience with them in real life. I was so sick of their fighting and their lack of communication. Alina keeps some pretty big things hidden from Mal that puts a strain on their whole relationship. I was pissed at her for not opening up to him and just annoyed at the whole situation.

“You wanted to wear the second amplifier. You have it. You want to go to Os Alta? Fine, we’ll go. You say you need the firebird. I’ll find a way to get it for you. But when all this is over, Alina, I wonder if you’ll still want me.”
Mal, Siege and Storm

On top of that, there are a few other problems: there aren’t that many “reminders” in the book and it was hard to keep up with what was happening and remember all the events from book one (especially because of the crazy names), and there wasn’t a whole lot of action. Most of the book was about preparing for war, but the fact that it focused so much on preparation made it feel like the second book in a series. It didn’t feel that monumental. It was all just a big build up for what’s going to happen in book 3.

Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

Now, all that being said, I didn’t hate Siege and Storm. I enjoyed bits of it. Although I hated the love triangle, Sturmhond was an interesting character. He was funny, interesting, and kept me entertained. I liked reading about some of the politics and palace life. Watching the two princes indirectly fight over the throne was pretty amusing!

Overall I was disappointed by Siege and Storm. I didn’t hate it, but I didn’t love it either. The relationship problems just exhausted me to the point where I was ready to be finished with the book. If it weren’t for that, I think I would have enjoyed Siege and Storm significantly more.

The Verdict


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    1. Maybe you should still give it a try! A few people really loved Siege and Storm, maybe even more than the first book.

  1. Aww, well, that’s a shame. After hearing so many postitive reviews about it, though, it’s nice to see your refreshing opinion.

    I hate it when girls hide problems from the love interest, which usually happens in the second book. I mean, have they never heard that honesty is the best policy, especially in relationships?

    Shannelle (The Tracery of Ink) recently posted: Operation Backup
    1. Exactly!!! Why are girls in books so incapable of being open and honest? What’s the point of even hiding it? If you insist on keeping secrets, you don’t deserve a relationship!

  2. I started this book a few weeks ago and put it down after about 100 pages. I think it’s because I’m not in the mood for high fantasy right now, and I want to make sure I’m in the mood for it. The biggest thing that stood out to me so far, was the serious, subtle changes I was noticing in Alina. A little scary, I must say!

  3. I hear you loud and clear! I ended up giving the book 4 stars, but it was definitely less exciting than the first book. I was also really frustrated with Alina+Mal. I pretty much hate it when the MCs don’t open up to their BFFs and share the stuff that’s tormenting them. It was the same issue I had with Eleanor & Park. Argh!

    Kelley (Another Novel Read) recently posted: A Goodbye Letter to the Wheel of Time
    1. I hate that too! It really frustrates me when the relationship ends in a great place in book 1, then suddenly all these problems crop up in book 2. It drives me nuts and it happens in loads of books! Don’t make me fall for a relationship and then yank it out from under me!

  4. For me, I liked the first book, but didn’t love it (for different reasons), so I don’t have any great expectations for the second book. I haven’t gotten to it yet, but I will end of reading it because the cover is so gorgeous haha.

    1. You should read it anyway! I loved the first book, and some people really loved this book too. So maybe you will. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Ahh noo I skimmed your review because I want to read this one soon, but I’ve been seeing it get a lot of mixed reviews, from people who loved the first book. I’m mainly worried about the fact that the terminology will be hard to grasp, since it’s pretty much been a a year since I last read Shadow and Bone, and I remember how impossible it was to finally get used to the vocabulary. I’m sorry you didn’t like this one as much as you wanted, but fantastic review, Ashley! ๐Ÿ™‚ (From what I read of it lol I’m positive that as a whole it was amazing, though)

    Eileen @ ***Singing and Reading in the Rain*** recently posted: Tuney Tuesday: When I Was Your Man by Bruno Mars
  6. I disliked the lack of communication between Alina and Mal too. While I could understand the pent up pressure and frustration both characters had, I really felt they should have opened up to each other more. I honestly didn’t mind the slow build up of the book. The politics and world building was enough to keep my interest and I had Sturmhond to keep me entertained ๐Ÿ˜€

    Jessylyn @ Book Over Flowers recently posted: #BookChat [1] | That First Sentence in a Book
    1. Yeah Sturmhond was such an interesting character! I couldn’t quite figure him out for the longest time. Turns out he’s a pretty cool guy though!

  7. OMG ME TOO re: Alina. I wanted to shake her. Here she has Mal, a GREAT (also: NOT EVIL) guy who adores her, and she won’t open up to him and tell him what’s going on or TRUST him. Yeah, he made some mistakes in S&S too, but EVERYONE is hating on him and giving Alina a pass, in their reviews. And I’m all NO YOU GUYS WAIT. I freaking love Mal, so granted, that probably colors my perception some. But it KILLS me to see people swooning over the Darkling (who is a bad, really bad guy, kids) and hating on Mal.

    *sobs in the corner*

    Okay, so yeah I definitely can see where you’re coming from, Ashley. There weren’t too many slow moments for me that I thought were actually boring, but the pacing was a bit jerky at times with all the things, then nothing. I hope we both love R&R!


    1. YES!! I LOVE MAL TOO!! I know The Darkling has the whole “bad boy” thing going on, but he’s freaking creepy! Mal is so sweet and adores Alina! ARRRGHGHGH!!

      Awesome that we agree! *high five*

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