Oh my stars, guys, where do I even begin?
I fell in love with Six of Crows when I read it back in July. Yes, I waited a bit to read it but I’d heard nothing but amazing things. It was a hyped book and it was brilliant. Unlike any book I’ve read before, taking me back into the familiar world I left in the Grisha trilogy.
Crooked Kingdom was one of my most anticipated books for September. Knowing Six of Crows was only a duology was hard to swallow but Bardugo’s writing matured greatly from the Grisha trilogy and I was pleased see that.
But this review isn’t about the Grisha trilogy or Six of Crows, it’s about Crooked Kingdom and the fact that I cried. Seriously. Not many books make me cry but this one did.
Title: Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows #2)
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co.
Release date: September 27, 2016
Length: 546 pages (hardcover)
Genre: Young adult, fantasy
Synopsis: (from Goodreads) “Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and badly weakened, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city’s dark and twisting streets―a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of the Grisha world.”
My rating: 4.5/5 stars
What am I going to do with my life now? *cries*
This book was fantastic. Absolutely fantastic! If you thought you loved Kaz and his crew in SoC, you’ll love them even more in CK!
Seriously. I think that was me the entire time I read this book. Haha! It never fails!
This band of misfits are incredibly loyal to each other, and they look out for one another above all else. Even Kaz. Although he would probably want you to think otherwise. 😉 This book picks up just a few days after SoC ends. I won’t spoil any of that for you.
“You don’t look like a monster.”
“I’ll tell you a secret… The really bad monsters never look like monsters.”
There is so much going on in this book. I love the multiple PoVs, the new characters, the familiar old characters (including one of our favorites from the Grisha trilogy), and most of all the heists! Someone got the better of Kaz and his crew and they’re all ready to get back and save Ketterdam and the Grisha from jurda parem. I did find it interesting that this book–this series really–has been about saving the Grisha.
Some of the reasons I didn’t give this book a full 5 stars was: 1) Kaz and 2) no closure. I get it, Kaz is brilliant, but I wanted to see him vulnerable. Truthfully, we didn’t get that in SoC and we barely get it in CK. There’s a smidgen but that’s just what it was: so small. I also didn’t think here was much closure. We get it with some characters but not with all and I’m all about the closure. The ending, to me, left it open for something more… Whether it be novellas or just another series in this amazing world, I’d be for all of that. XD
Bardugo brings life and heart to her characters and she does it through backstory. Sure, we know about the Dregs in SoC but we know and come to love them all the more in CK. Also, the world building continues to be incredible. Yes, if you’ve read the Grisha trilogy, you already know some things but Bardugo reintroduces and deepens out knowledge of the entire universe together, especially Ketterdam. (I mean, have you seen those maps?! <3)
This story was also heartbreaking. Incredibly heartbreaking. If you know who my two favorite characters are, THIS BOOK DESTROYED ME. I’m still trying to understand the point of it but… Alas, I don’t think I want to admit that it almost had to happen in order to push certain characters towards in their development.
So in case you missed it:
NINA AND MATTHIAS FEELS.
Anyways, here’s some of my favorite quotes in no particular order:
“Stop gawking like you’ve never seen a girl in a dress before, Matthias.”
“I wasn’t gawking,” Matthias said with as much dignity as he could muster. But for Djel’s sake, what was he supposed to look at when Nina had irises tucked between … everything.
“Be quiet, Brekker,” Nina said. “I like it when he gawks.”
“I would have come for you. And if I couldn’t walk, I’d crawl to you, and no matter how broken we were, we’d fight our way out together-knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that’s what we do. We never stop fighting.”
“I am grateful you’re alive”, he said. “I am grateful that you’re beside me. I am grateful that you’re eating.”
She rested her head on his shoulder.
“You’re better that waffles, Matthias Helvar.”
A small smile curled the Fjerdan’s lips.
“Let’s not say things we don’t mean, my love.”
“Have any of you wondered what I did with all the cash Pekka Rollins gave us?”
“Guns?” asked Jesper.
“Ships?” queried Inej.
“Bombs?” suggested Wylan.
“Political bribes?” offered Nina. They all looked at Matthias. “This is where you tell us how awful we are,” she whispered.
“Meeting you was a disaster.”
She raised a brow. “Thank you.”
Djel, he was terrible at this. He stumbled on, trying to make her understand. “But I am grateful for that disaster. I needed a catastrophe to shake me from the life I knew. You were an earthquake, a landslide.”
“I,” she said, planting a hand on her hip, “am a delicate flower.”
“You aren’t a flower, you’re every blossom in the wood blooming at once. You are a tidal wave. You’re a stampede. You are overwhelming.”
I’m sad to see this series come to an end though. I look forward to whatever else Bardugo writes. It was an honor to meet her a couple weeks ago! I’ll blog about that later…