I thoroughly enjoyed Shadow and Bone when I read it on vacation in May, and was excited that I would get to read the second and third books of the trilogy so soon. And thankfully, I was not disappointed.
– Sturmhond *highlight for spoilers*/Nikolai and his humor and his personality and basically everything about him.
– The pacing in Siege and Storm was amazing! It started with a bang and never let me go.
– The plot was always thickening, the stakes always raising… basically, Bargdugo is excellent at crafting a riveting story.
– The FEELS.
– The ending was absolutely perfect. To remain vague… Part of what happened, I had wanted since the first book but didn’t think was possible, a couple parts I wanted since the first book and thought them possible and were glad they happened, and the rest I couldn’t have dreamed of. It was all just great, exactly what it needed to be… not perfectly happy, but happy with a cost and a perfectly satisfying conclusion for the reader.
I did have a few small problems, however…
– The pacing of the first half of Ruin and Rising was slow and weird for me. The whole first part with the Apparet and being underground just old quick for me and I was ready to move on.
– For some reason, I started to like Alina and Mal’s relationship a little less with each book. *highlight for spoilers* I was still rooting for them overall, but I don’t know, it just became less appealing. While reading, I almost wondered what it would be like if Alina did start to like Nikolai, even though I didn’t want her to flake out on Mal either. I know, it’s so complicated. But I am happy they did end up together at last. By the way, I don’t understand anyone who is Team Darkling. He’s so evil, why do you love him?! But I digress…
– Even though these books did give me feels, I still felt slightly distanced from the characters (which I mentioned in my review of Shadow and Bone) for reasons I can’t really express. I think I just never really connected with any of them fully. I find the storytelling and the world of The Grisha Trilogy its strong suits, and while I liked the characters, they’re a bit weaker in comparison to the overall story or in comparison to the characters of, oh let’s say The Hunger Games, where I was completely emotionally invested in virtually all its characters. I wanted that with these books, and never got it. But to be clear, I did care about Alina, Mal, and some of the others and their well-being, it just wasn’t quite to the extent that I fully hope for.
The amazingness of this trilogy really outweighs my complaints though, and I would highly recommend this series to anyone thinking about checking it out. Each book gets 4.5 stars from me.
These books were also extremely quotable! I shared many quotes from them on my Tumblr if you’re interested in checking them out.
Content advisory: Mild language, violence, and a somewhat fade-to-black, very discreetly, not-at-all-graphically written sex scene.
Also, check out these reviews that I enjoyed and are a more eloquently written than this one:
Are you a fan of The Grisha Trilogy? What are your thoughts on the series as a whole? Or have you started and not finished (then what are you waiting for?!)?