Published by Orion Children's Books on September 27th 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Amazon | Book Depository | Publisher | Angus & Robertson
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Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off the most daring heist imaginable.But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they're fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and badly weakened, they're low on resources, allies and hope.While a war rages on the city's streets, the team's fragile loyalties are stretched to breaking point. Kaz and his crew will have to make sure they're on the winning side... no matter what the cost.
This review does not contain spoilers for Crooked Kingdom (but does for Six of Crows).
I’m the worst at writing reviews for books I absolutely LOVED, they just end up being a fangirling mess, so here we go again.
Crooked Kingdom is the best book I’ve read this year, if not ever. I delved into it after my Six of Crows re-read which was the best decision ever because of that cliffhanger and everything was still fresh in my mind.
Leigh Bardugo is a freaking genius guys. This wonderfully expansive world of the Grisha was again brought to life so vividly through the pages, with its Grisha classes, the different characteristics of each race and country, their language, mannerisms and customs. Whilst Six of Crows had the crew travelling across terrain, more of Ketterdam was brought to life in this one. I loved how each area of Ketterdam had it’s own personality, from the mysterious Council of Tides, to the impenetrable Hellgate, to the opulent Van Eck Mansion and of course, The Barrel housing the city’s criminals and no-gooders. The map at the front really brings to life this amazing world.
While Crooked Kingdom doesn’t have the same impossible heist story as the first book, it’s filled with drama, intrigue and action as Kaz Brekker plots to get his fortune – and just revenge – from Van Eck, while keeping Pekka Rollins at the forefront of his mind. If there’s anyone that you never, ever want to cross, it’s Kaz. He’s absolutely ruthless, cold-hearted and goes for the jugular and seeing him lay down his plans throughout the book was magnificent. Kaz is like a genius mastermind that sees everything unfolding in his head with the rest of us mere human beings witnessing his greatness. Yet somewhere, in that cruel, cold heart there’s a glimmer of hope for him and Inej. Kaz Brekker has my heart, guys. Can you tell?
As the infamous Wraith who can climb on thin air and with supreme dagger and thieving skills, Inej meets her match in this book in a stunning display of strength. Her struggle between whether she should stick with the Dregs (and Kaz) or whether she should pursue her pirate plundering dreams was at the forefront of her mind in this book.
“What is wrong with him?” – Nina
“Same thing that’s always wrong with him. He’s Kaz Brekker.” – Jesper
Much of the book is focused on revealing Jesper’s past and finding out his roots and where he came from, along with more character development for the sweet, rougish Wyland. As they both kind of faded into the background in Six of Crows, I loved hearing more about the pair of them and just how far they have come, suffering together. Although Jesper gets himself into quite a lot of mischief, gambling and not being able to say no to risk, his happy demeanour and unwavering loyalty just makes me warm and fuzzy. Things would be so much heavier with Jesper around.
Wyland’s complicated background with his father hurt my heart. Although he’s illiterate, Wyland’s bombs, chemical manipulation and pure intellect alone has saved the crew so much. The fact that his father can’t give him the time of the day is both cruel and really shows the weight of his personality. Wyland and Jesper were so cute in this book guys, I want to wrap them up in a furry blanket to hold them together forever.
She was the Queen of Mourning, and in its depths, she would never drown.
I don’t want to just talk about ships, because this book has a LOT of them literally and figuratively. But Nina and Matthias were so, so cute this time around and I’m glad they were able to experience some semblance of happiness. Nina is like a freaking Warrior QUEEN that just gets more badass even though she’s coming down from a heavy dose of jurda parem. I loved all the scenes at Ravka seeing her meet her Grisha idols where she belongs and I feel like there’s so much more to hear from her yet. Matthias is also like a big wolf puppy whose heart has literally been melted and is finally letting his softer side come out – all because of Nina. Gosh, I just LOVE ALL OF THESE PEOPLE. SO MUCH.
It’s not often that a book has me absolutely SCREAMING at it and bursting into tears but Crooked Kingdom has done it guys. It’s absolutely broken me and I don’t think my heart will ever be the same. Crooked Kingdom was just…incredibly satisfying and A FREAKING AWESOME READ. So if you haven’t picked this up yet guys, what are you waiting for?
Rating: 5 out of 5
I may or may not have stroked/stared at the cover for more than a few times instead of reading. The gold lettering is even more beautiful in person.
Thanks Hachette Australia for sending me a review copy!