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.
A couple of months ago, I decided to try out the book called Shadow and Bone, that author Lauren DeStefano kept talking about on twitter. It was one of the best decisions I made this year, because I completely fell in love with the Grisha trilogy, with Ravka and Alina and Mal and even the Darkling. I read the first two books as quick as I could, but when I received Ruin and Rising I hesitated. Because a lot of people had given it one or two star ratings, and because it was the last book in the series. I really wanted to read it, but I also didn’t. But when I finally did, I fell in love with the series even more.
Like the previous book, this one has some nice action in the first couple of chapters that got me really excited, and it has some other battles throughout the entire book, which I loved, because I am a person of action. I can’t really say which of the battle scenes were my favourite, because they were all amazing and thrilling.
There weren’t really any new characters in this book, apart from the Soldat Sol but not a lot of them were actually called by name so I didn’t really remember any of them until the end. Then there was Baghra’s servant boy who was called Misha (which made me laugh out loud, because I imagined an eight year old Misha Collins after this, and look I even used a gif of him to express my feelings on this book!), who I loved a lot because he was adorable. Of course there were all the old characters, including Genya, David, Tamar, Tolya and Zoya. I have to say, I got used to Zoya a bit more in this story, and I actually started liking her a bit. There was one particular scene where Alina was feeling awful because of something she’d seen, and there were Genya, Nadia, Zoya and Tamar looking after her and trying to make her feel better. I loved them even more after that.
“Please tell me you plan to dress up as a volcra and jump out of a cake.”
As for the romance, there was still a bit of a love quartet going on, which I still didn’t really enjoy. I still ship Alina and Mal a lot and I was really rooting for them throughout this book, even though they’ve had some rough times in the second book.
The writing was, as usual, amazing and I just wanted to keep on reading and reading, until the last couple of chapters, which kind of took me a whole day to read. I didn’t want it to end, and I didn’t want it to end badly, so I just read really slowly and put the book down at least five times in an hour so I could watch some TV or check the internet. But that was just me being extremely nervous.
I have to say, I am very happy with the way the book and the series ended, it did give me a lot of emotions and I kept on shouting ‘no’ and ‘omg’ in the last couple of chapters, but I loved it, and I think Leigh made the right choices. Some things really surprised me, and other didn’t really, but it was just really really good. Yes.
In the end, I loved Ruin and Rising a lot, and I am so glad I decided to follow Lauren DeStefano’s advice and pick up the first book. If you love books about magic (although it’s not really magic) set in a world similar to Russia, you should definitely check out the Grisha trilogy!