Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo is the second installment in the Six of Crows duology featuring six unlikeable characters who are trying to pull of what seems to be the most impossible heist.
“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 left crippled by the kidnapping of a valuable team member, 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 magic in the Grisha world.“
What I really love about this series is that it doesn’t focus on love as the drive for the characters. As least not in the head-over-heels/I-need-someone-in-my-life, romantic way. The friendships between all of the characters lead them to watch over each other through the crazy stunts they attempt to pull off.
Not to say that there aren’t any ‘SHIPs in this duology.. because there are. It just doesn’t dominate the storyline like most YA novels.
If you absolutely hate cliffhangers, this may be a beautifully annoying book to pick up. Because right when the action gets freakishly intense, the chapter ends. There were so many times where I wanted to shake the book so it would give me the answers right NOW. But with each cliffhanger comes ANOTHER intense chapter. This series is told in many points-of-view, and each character is a completely different scenario for the book. I enjoyed reading the diverse personalities between them.
Just like in my Six of Crows review, I absolutely loved the setting and vibe of the whole Russian mob scene. The first chapter really shows the casino, gambling, mob-controlled world that is the Grishaverse.
The pace felt a little slower than Book 1, but that could have been because it took me two weeks to complete Crooked Kingdom. I think I may have hit a reading slump in this book.
Overall, I really enjoyed it. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars. I loved the world; the characters were different from each other but they fit together in the story, and the ending was very satisfactory with a hint of tears.
I recommend this series as a whole if you love reading well-developed fantasy worlds with complementary characters, a really fun heist, and if you are looking for a quick series without having to read 3+ books. I highly recommend this one!
Published: 27 September 2016
Publisher: Orion Children’s Books
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
How I Read It: Hardcover
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