Friday, June 20, 2014

Ruin and Rising: Review


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.


Ruin and Rising is truly a fitting name of the conclusion. Of course, it'd be a huge spoiler to explain it if you have't read Siege and Storm. I admire this story so much because it stays true to the dark elements and atmosphere, which is why I first fall in love with Shadow and Bone. It never fails to amaze me. That is saying something because there are a lot of times where there's a part, however tiny it is, will not be good enough to catch my attention. This book has me from the very start and I love every second of it.

He did not see the moment the girl ceased to bear her weakness as a burden and began to wear it as a guise.

Alina is a very different character in the book. In the previous two books we can clear see the struggles of her trying to get used to her Sun Summoner powers, fighting for balance between her power and the Darkling's power, and whether she will live up to Ravkan's expectation of her. After the ruination, though. Something about her changes. She's extremely determined to make things right, which is admirable because I'm getting a little tired of her struggles. Her cleverness is showing in this book because it seems like she knows what to do and what to say when she's under siege (again). This is quite an impressive turn.

I know things about power that you can barely guess at.

Ruin and Rising is also a huge book for the Darkling. Of course, the whole trilogy is about the struggle of light and darkness, good and wicked between the Darkling and Alina. However we get to know a lot more thing about him. His past and his own name. That's big because I'm always curious about his complexity (being so human yet so brutal at the same time), even though sometimes I resent him for being so cruel. However, I would like to dig more about his past because he's such an interesting character that his story can't just end in an ordinary place. 

We also get to see a lot of Mal and Alina in Ruin and Rising. To be honest, I have doubts between their relationship in Shadow and Bone and Siege and Storm because they have a distance that seems unbreakable. In this book though, their relationship changes and become more intimate. There are a lot of really emotional scenes between the two of them which I absolutely adore. It's like I can never get enough of the two of them being cute in the book. 

I am not ruined. I am ruination.

As for the book itself, I can't talk about it much because I can't without spilling out spoilers. However, there will be a huge unexpected turn of events that I can't even begin to imagine coming. Actually, I have absolutely no idea how the trilogy will end because everything seems so uncertain at the end of Siege and Storm. I'm extremely pleased at how things turned out in the end. And I'm sure many readers will too. It's an enthralling conclusion of a great series based on Russian folk tales.

Rating: 9.5/10

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