My rating: 4 of 5 stars
The best part of this book was not falling in the sequel syndrome. Almost every second book I have read in any trilogy feels like the book is just getting us ready for the grand finale of the series. But in S&S the story progressed quite a lot. And a really awesome new character, Nikolai aka Strumhound was introduced. Who has the best humor eva’.
The plot progressed neatly, it was even faster than the first book. Which had spent more time getting us settled in the world.
I liked the way Bardugo played with power dynamics too. Alina’s feelings and character growth was interesting to see. And realistic too because after spending life being the girl hiding in shadows she had finally gotten the chance to at least pretend in taking the reins of her life. Her struggles with understanding leadership and radiating confidence and power, they were just the best.
Mal felt quite annoying it this book, although I had loved him in the first one. But again rightly so. He had always lived a life as Alina’s protector, and now she was the only one with enough power to protect him. So he was justified, but annoying nonetheless.
The only catch was, this book had too little Darkling. Although he is kind of my fav character of this series, which makes me a horrible person…I know. But he is so awesome.
And that ending though, it was so gripping-ly satisfying whilst leaving us wanting more. And the way the true gruesome nature of Darkling was shown…it was the best.
Highly recommend checking this series out, if you are into lighter on rosy prose and more into action kind of book reader.