Thursday, June 3, 2021

Book Review: Siege and Storm (Grisha, #2) by Leigh Bardugo

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BOOK review
Started on: 11 May 2021
Finished on: 25 May 2021
 
 
Title: Siege and Storm (Grisha, #2)
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Publisher: Henry Holt & Co
Pages: 435 pages / 401 pages (e-book)
Year of Publication: 2013
Price: Rp 159,000 (https://www.periplus.com/)

Rating: 4.5/5
*for those who haven't read the first book, this review may contain spoiler.
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"We are alike," he said, "as no one else is, as no one else will ever be."
After escaping from the Darkling and the Fold, Alina tried to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land. It's definitely not easy to start a new life while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. At the same time, the Darkling has emerged from the Fold with a terrifying new power and a dangerous plan. With the help of a notorious privateer, Alina was able to return to the country she left behind, determined to gather forces to fight against the Darkling. However, as Alina's power grows, she slips deeper into the Darkling's game of forbidden magic—making those closest to her become distant.
"Whatever I was becoming, there was no turning back."
"You cannot violate the rules of this world without a price. Those amplifiers were never meant to be. No Grisha should have such power. Already you are changing. Seek the third, use it, and you will lose yourself completely, piece by piece."
Things are starting to get more interesting now that we're in the second book of this trilogy. I definitely enjoyed this book a little bit more than Shadow and Bone because I've fully understood the world, the magic system, and also the conflict of the story. The story continued after the events that happened at the end of the first book, but of course it didn't take long for the Darkling to catch up to them once again after Mal and Alina escaped the Fold. And I just realized that the book covers for this trilogy focuses on the three amplifiers. The first book focuses on Morozova's Stag, and this second one focuses on Rusalye—a sea whip. Yet again, the Darkling threatened Mal (who's an incredible tracker) to find the sea whip for him when they're aboard Sturmhond's ship. I'm not going to spoil too much of what happens after that, but it gets pretty action-packed and thrilling to read. The ending part of this book also involved a lot of action—so I'm glad the second book is not as slow-paced as the first one and the story is starting to pick up.
"I'm telling you that if you want to be a leader, it's time you started thinking and acting like one."
"The less you say, the more weight your words will carry.
Don't argue. Never deign to deny. Meet insults with laughter."
I'd have to say, the best thing about Siege and Storm is Nikolai Lantsov. I wrote in my review for Shadow and Bone that I don't really find any of the characters interesting—the Darkling is the most interesting one out of all, but still not my favorite. Now I can officially say that I've found my favorite character from this series: Nikolai. His dialogue is always charming, fascinating, and full of intrigue. He is a leader who is respected, not feared like the Darkling. He has a good sense of humor which always managed to make me smirk or smile throughout this book. Each one of Nikolai's actions are well-calculated and strategic, with a specific intention in mind. At first I was quite skeptical whether Nikolai is a protagonist or an antagonist, but in the end I just can't help but love his character because he's very amusing and entertaining to read (compared to all of the other characters that I find rather bland). I especially love the moments when Nikolai voiced out my frustration about Mal and Alina regarding their jealousy and insecurity about one another. It felt so refreshing to read that and it's like my feelings are being acknowledged by him 🤣.

And since we're already talking about it, I will now discuss my thoughts about Alina Starkov's character. Firstly, I have to point out that her childish behaviors (when she's jealous) totally annoyed me 😅. Considering the context of the story, she should not be prioritizing that because there are a lot more important and urgent things at hand. However, aside from that, her character kind of evolves a little bit when she managed to put on the second amplifier—which makes her more powerful than before. I think Alina is showing signs that she's slowly becoming power-hungry and has a strong urge to obtain the third amplifier. At least that part of her is fascinating to read and I am looking forward to see what kind of person she will end up becoming.
"Weakness is a guise. Wear it when they need to know you're human, but never when you feel it."
"I'm ambitious, Alina. I'm driven. But I hope... I hope I still know the difference between right and wrong."
As I am about to dive into the third book, I realized that some of the characters from the first book that didn't appear much in Siege and Storm might play a bigger role in the final book. So I'm really excited to finally see how Leigh Bardugo is going to wrap up this series. Overall, I personally think this book is slightly better compared to the first one in terms of plot and character development. I am certainly more invested in the story at this point and am eager to find out if the Darkling will finally be defeated or not. And I'm also hoping that we'll get to see more of Nikolai's character in the final book as well 🥰.

by.stefaniesugia♥ .
 

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