Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.
Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha…and the secrets of her heart.
Whoa. Just whoa. I can't begin to give a good enough excuse as to why I've been putting this one off for so long. It's been almost a year since I first received an ARC of S&B and even then I was truly thrilled and excited for this book. I mean, it's an epic fantasy with darkness and powerful people and creatures! What's not to desire?!
From the beginning, you are thrown into a world unlike any other, with a foreign landscape, a Russian-like language, and an awesome map to guide you. The story starts out with a bang when our main character, Alina, is traveling through the Shadow Fold and ends up saving her entire group from Volcra, flying monsters, when an internal power she has comes to light.
The story begins with a bang and continues at a fast pace until the end that I found myself stopping at nothing to finish it. I tore through it easily and dying for Siege and Storm.
Also, ladies beware. This book has some hot dudes in it. From the Darkling to Mal, you are sure to find your hot, steaming cup of hunk here. So if you are looking for something with A+ world-building and storytelling or sexy dudes that'll make you fan yourself, don't miss this book!
I also recommend Defiance by CJ Redwine, Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes, and Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi.
-Reviewed by Jeremy