“Making Improvements” (Siege and Storm)

Siege and Storm
The cover to Siege and Storm, from 2013

After the quite disappointing novel Shadow and Bone (which I only read because my sister said it was a good book), I made myself a slightly breakable promise that I would attempt to read Siege and Storm, the sequel. Though, I do make a habit of finishing books, so in all seriousness, I most likely was going to finish the book anyway. Anyway, I was promised a much better book, so I had no idea what to expect when I hit the first page of Siege and Storm.

Alina, the stereotypical young heroine who just seems to get out of everything, not by her own skill, but by the skill of others, is not having a very good time. Found and taken captive by one of the three loves of her life, (no, not that one. No, still not that one, but getting warmer. Yeah, that’s it! The evil one!) expected to save an unpronounceable kingdom of Ravka while utilizing practically no skill at all, and watching all of the characters around her increase in total awesomeness, while she stays practically the same.

This book hit it’s stride when I realized that three of the characters, Sturmhond, (later referred to as Nikolai) Toyla, and Tamar, were actually pretty much Mal, Jayne, and Zoe, from Firefly. Then I figured out that Mal (the actual Mal from the actual novel) fights Grisha in his downtime, and pretty much always wins, and then his character was just that much more of a bad#ss. Alina was pretty much the only central character in the novel who didn’t get a serious upgrade in coolness, but, really I was kind of okay with that.

There was much less of Botkin in this installment, but instead we get Sergei, who just made me think of Ferengi.

Ferengi
Not typically the kind of guy you want to be associated with…

I know that I said the last book was bad, and it was, but the first half of this book was better, and even *gasp* slightly engaging. The second half was what really got it all the points. This second half was soooo good, that I have to raise the entire book a full five points just for it. I was doing the epic music thing in my head, and then the Darkling came back and he was cool again, in his own evil way, and then those weird beast things killed everyone, and then there was a flying ship, and then everyone was awesome, and then it left it a cliff hanger, and then there was a giant sea monster, and then… Alright, I’m done. Let’s just say the second half was that good.

Alright, when does Ruin and Rising come out? June 6th!? I can’t wait that long! 8 out of 10.

Siege and Storm (The Grisha Trilogy #2)

By Leigh Bardugo

432 Pages

Published June 4th, 2013

8 out of 10 (The Fortress of Helixity), 4.20 out of 5 (Goodreads)

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