Friday Favorites: Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo

Friday Favorites is a weekly meme hosted here, that spotlights a favorite author, book, series, publisher, cover, blog, etc. Basically whatever bookish thing that you love, recommend, and want to tell others about. Just pick one and link up to my post each Friday to share. You can use the graphic I used above, the other one here, or your own.

I've been dying to post this review since I finished Ruin and Rising last week! This series started off well and got even better in Siege and Storm, but this one, this one blew me away! It definitely deserves its place as a Friday Favorite.

Ruin and Rising (The Grisha, #3)Ruin and Rising
(The Grisha #3)
by Leigh Bardugo
YA Fantasy
June 17th 2014 by Henry Holt and Co.

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.

My Review

Where do I even start? Ruin and Rising was just AMAZING! I loved the prologue and how it set up the story. I loved getting reacquainted with Alina and Mel. I was right there with them cheering them on and hoping that somehow they would come out ahead, or maybe even just alive and The Darkling would be defeated. I felt like it was too much to hope for and I wasn't sure how the author would handle it all. I would have been disappointed if things were too easy or wrapped up all nice and sweet. I wasn't disappointed.

Let me just talk about these characters. Finally, Alina has come into her own. YES!!! Loved her! I loved that she is still consistent with her past and real with her insecurities, but she has learned so much and come a long way. I loved Mel the most in this third book. He redeemed himself for me in so many ways. Then there was Nikolai. Do you know I felt like cheering when he came on the scene? Yes, I love that guy! (*clears throat* Leigh - I could totally handle another series with him. I don't know that I'm ready to let him go. Just saying. (; ) The Darkling. He was definitely manipulative and seductive, as always, but he really showed his true colors this time around. I do still feel bad for him. I think it's probably pity actually, especially after reading his story at the end of my edition. He got so far off track and somebody had to do something about it. Then there were a slue of secondary characters and their amazing stories. I loved them all and the roles they played.

The story. Man, oh, man, oh man. I couldn't believe some of the things that happened. I was shocked, but it was done so well and I really commend the author for letting these characters really have it. No one was left unscathed. No one. Not on either side. It all worked and it felt authentic. In a war like this would anyone not be affected or would bad things not happen? No. What made it all worth it? The humor. The love. The sweet moments. The fight for the good of the country and for these people against this darkness. The ending was so bittersweet, but I have to say that it was also a perfect ending.

In case you couldn't tell, I highly recommend Ruin and Rising and the entire Grisha Series. It's perfect for Fantasy and Paranormal fans, young adult and adult, and definitely worth the read.

Content: There is some violence and some suggestive content. There is also one fade-to-black scene, but tastefully done.

Source: Purchased

About the Author

Leigh Bardugo is the author of the New York Times bestsellers Shadow and Bone and Siege and Storm. She was born in Jerusalem, grew up in Los Angeles, and graduated from Yale University, and has worked in advertising, journalism, and most recently, makeup and special effects. These days, she’s lives and writes in Hollywood where she can occasionally be heard singing with her band.

Do you have a favorite to share this week?


  1. I haven't read the first two books so I skimmed your review, but obviously I need to get started in this series pronto.

  2. Great review! Still need to read this last one! Can't wait. <3


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