Can I just start by saying: Dear God, yes! Leigh Bardugo is one of those authors with whom I would like to be friends. She is brilliant. She writes deep, real characters in stunning environments with MAGICS and PLOT TWISTS and ROMANCE. If you haven't read Shadow and Bone, go do that then come back and read this review of its sequel.
Why I Read It: The Darkling. Enough said. Okay I like Alina, too. And Mal (though not as much as the Darkling..or at least, not after the first book), and Genya. And all of it.
ZOMG YES! Well. Let me just say--I may have read it for the Darkling, but I've jumped ship. I'm all about some Nikolai. Fine, I'll stop swooning and actually talk about the book and not my unhealthy crushes on fictional characters.
As far as sequels go, I think Leigh did an excellent job with this story. I was curious to see where she would go, how it would be a new story, what would become of Alina as she grew in her power. Siege and Storm did not disappoint. We had new stakes, new characters, new adventures. We had the resurgence of old characters, too. I don't want to say too much that would give away anything from the first book, so I'll leave it at that.
Hmmm I'm curious to see where this goes next. I need answers to some specific questions about the fates of certain characters. I'd like to see some redemption. I want to know more about the Apparat. Is he good? Is he bad? Is he just really senile? Why didn't he smell as much like tombs this time around?
Kthxbai In case you were wondering (if you remember my review of Shadow and Bone), I did get over my issue with the K's and let myself enjoy them this time around. Five chiweenies to Leigh Bardugo!