Book Review – Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo

Book Review – Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
Book Review – Ruin and Rising by Leigh BardugoRuin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
Series: The Grisha Trilogy #3
Published by Henry Holt and Company, Holt Books for Young Readers, Macmillan
Publication date: June 17, 2014
Genres: Fantasy, Romance, Young Adult
Length: 11 hrs
433 pages
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased

The capital has fallen.

The Darkling rules Ravka from his shadow throne.

Now the nation's fate rests with a broken Sun Summoner, a disgraced tracker, and the shattered remnants of a once-great magical army.

Deep in an ancient network of tunnels and caverns, a weakened Alina must submit to the dubious protection of the Apparat and the zealots who worship her as a Saint. Yet her plans lie elsewhere, with the hunt for the elusive firebird and the hope that an outlaw prince still survives.

Alina will have to forge new alliances and put aside old rivalries as she and Mal race to find the last of Morozova's amplifiers. But as she begins to unravel the Darkling's secrets, she reveals a past that will forever alter her understanding of the bond they share and the power she wields. The firebird is the one thing that stands between Ravka and destruction—and claiming it could cost Alina the very future she’s fighting for.


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Book Review:

“Maybe love was a superstition, a prayer we said to keep the truth of loneliness at bay. I tilted my head back. The stars looked like they were close together, when really they were millions of miles apart. In the end, maybe love just meant longing for something impossibly bright and forever out of reach.”

Wow!! I LOVED the conclusion of Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha Trilogy! This trilogy was absolutely fantastic. I cared about the characters, every single one of them, even the villains. Ruin and Rising

What I loved about the series as a whole was that the author never lost sight of the bigger picture. The whole series builds to a fight between good and evil, dark and light, a incessant battle for power. It would have been really easy to have focused on the romance aspect of the book but that didn’t happen. The focus on the battle between the Darkling and Sun Summoner really propelled the series forward, especially this final book.

Alina’s character development over the course of the series was brilliant. It kind of reminded me of the way Karen Marie Moning built MacKayla Lane’s character like a freaking boss. In Shadow and Bone, Alina was a meek mapmaker who lacked confidence, who pined over her best friend and soldier. She never thought she was worthy. After she discovered her gifts brimming underneath her skin, she was forced to go through so much, and in turn she came into her own. She blossomed and commanded an army, made friends with warriors, and won the hearts of many. But only one person had her heart.

The romance in this series is very understated but quite lovely at the same time. Leigh Bardugo had an opportunity to take the romance in to triangle territory (and even square territory) but she didn’t. She stayed true to the characters in this one.

“You were meant for more than me, and I’ll die fighting to give it to you. but please don’t ask me to pretend it’s easy.”

There was one clear villain in the series, a love interest, and a strong leader with great comedic timing. Admittedly, I grew a little tired of Mal’s incessant desire to put aside his feelings for Alina in order for her to take the crown. But I understood why he was that way (that didn’t mean I had to like it though *stomps foot*).

After a long and very apparent absence from my heart, the Darkling came back with a vengance in Ruin and Rising. Holy Saints, he’s a vicious thing.

“You live in a single moment. I live in a thousand.”

The utterly seductive Darkling I loved in Shadow and Bone is no longer. He’s killing things with no craps given, manipulating people like it’s his job, and just being generally creepy. He’s one of my favorite villains because even though he’s bad, there are still cracks in his veneer of good. He allows himself to be vulnerable (or maybe he’s just playing Alina), where you see the young innocent boy he once was.

This is one of those series with wonderful secondary characters. David and Genya’s adorable relationship and quiet devotion. Sturmhond’s Grisha, Tamar and Tolya, were fierce warriors, yet knew when to be funny. And who can forget Oncat and Harshaw, the Inferni who loved his tabby cat so much. I really enjoyed them all, even Zoya with her prissiness stuck-up attitude.

The ending melted my heart and left me with a big smile on my face. Though it was a little bittersweet, I was still incredibly happy and I don’t think I could have asked for a better ending than this. Thank you, Leigh Bardugo.

5 stars

Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo | Reading Books Like a Boss

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