Title: Six of Crows
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Synopsis: Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…
A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.
Kaz’s crew are the only ones who might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.
“Kaz leaned back. “What’s the easiest way to steal a man’s wallet?”
“Knife to the throat?” asked Inej.
“Gun to the back?” said Jesper.
“Poison in his cup?” suggested Nina.
“You’re all horrible,” said Matthias.”
I was worried going into this one! Because I knew it was a continuation of the world in the Grisha trilogy, and my feelings for the Grisha trilogy can be summed up as “eh”. But Six of Crows is not the Grisha trilogy. It is much better.
So, the hype surrounding this book has been off the charts huge, which is kind of why I waited to read it, because for one, what if it was horrible, and for two, what if I love so much that I need the sequel immediately and uh oh, the sequel doesn’t come out for months?
It’s the second one. totally the second one.
Basically I want to scream the epicness of this book to the skies, and part of the reason I want to do that is because of the characters. The fantastic, flawed, amazing characters.
There’s Kaz, the leader of the gang, the mastermind, tortured, and utterly cutthroat.
There’s Inej, the spy, the Wraith, and a spider, the best in Ketterdam. She hears and sees everything and reports it back to Kaz.
There’s Jesper, the surprisingly easy-going and dorky sharpshooter.
There’s Nina, the Grisha Heartrender, who’s sassy and flirty and could make your eyeballs explode with a flick of her fingers.
There’s Matthias, who hates everyone and everything and was forced to come along and would love to be anywhere else.
And there’s Wylan, the runaway heir, the child of the man who hires this crew to do the heist. He likes to explode things.
MY COLDHEARTED BABY KILLER CHARACTERS WHOM I ADORE. They all have dark sides, but they all have that squishy inside, too. They all do what it takes to survive. And they’re not exactly friends, they don’t exactly trust each other, but they work together and they’re part of the same gang so they look out for each other.
In fact, the weakest part of the story is the heist; it’s falls second place to the fantastic characters and amazing worldbuilding.
And the worldbuilding…the worldbuilding was ON POINT. Unlike the Grisha trilogy, which was set in a fantasy Russia, this was set in a fantasy Netherlands, and a very rough part of the fantasy Netherlands. It takes place, for the most part, in Ketterdam, a seaside city overrun with gangs and thieves, criminals and con artists, bars run by ruthless crime lords and brothels by cruel madames. It’s not a safe place to live, and violence is unavoidable. However, instead of there being blood splattered across the pages, it’s something that’s more hinted at.
And the way the magic was used was fantastic. It was strangely subtle, in a way I didn’t expect, what with Alina throwing around sunbeams throughout Shadow and Bone. I thought it would be a much more in your face type thing, and it was…and yet it wasn’t. I can’t really explain it, but it melded seamlessly into the world.
And you don’t need to read the Grisha trilogy to read this book, either. You’d probably have a little but more of an understanding of the orders of the Grisha and the second army and all that, but you could also dive right in to Six of Crows if you want too (and you should).
So yes, now I get it why everyone loves this novel. Can I have Crooked Kingdom now, please?
So I am back from a week long hiatus, and I am exhausted. I have spent the last week helping a cousin prepare for her wedding, maneuvering around stressed-out family members, and attending way to many parties that I didn’t really want to attend. But I am home now, and I am going to sleep for 10000000 years.