This series is a must-read. I'm telling you this now so that if you haven't read Shadow and Bone, you can do that before Siege and Storm comes out in June. Seriously, these books will appeal to readers who like fantasy, fairy tales, suspense, folklore, romance, action -- it's all in here.Alina has changed a lot as Siege and Storm begins. She's wracked with guilt as she remembers the part she played in the Darkling's plan. Mal's perfectly happy in their "normal" life, but not using her power makes Alina feel weak and diminished. But as Alina and Mal try to lie low, disaster strikes and they find themselves prisoners on the ship of a privateer, a guy named Sturmhond. I think new books in a series should always introduce new characters, and Sturmhond is a fantastic one. He's gruff and mercenary, willing to sell his soul to the highest bidder. Love, love, love him. We also meet the dynamic duo of Tolya and Tamar, a tough-as-nails pair of fraternal twins.Alina learns that she can use more than one amplifier, news that come with another encounter with our favorite hot Bad Boy .... the Darkling. He's such a fantastic character, sinister and yet so compelling. Alina doesn't really feel that she can trust him, and yet he's the only person who really understands the nature of her power. After their encounter, she begins to think she sees him everywhere, something she hides from Mal. In another interesting twist, Alina has become famous after the events in Shadow and Bone and has to learn to deal with other people's ideas about her, ideas that will confuse her, pressure her, and confound her. As others begin to look to her for leadership, she'll have to overcome both her lack of self-confidence and her guilt. She'll have to learn to trust those who betrayed her -- and get others to trust her.When Alina finds her copy of Lives of the Saints, she also discover a clue that will lead her on a new quest, a way to possibly increase her power. To my complete delight, this also incorporates a well-known Slavic folk tale. Plus, there are some hints that we'll learn more about Alina's parentage. I'm so excited to see how this pans out. I can't wait for the third book!