Break into the notorious Ice Court
(a military stronghold that has never been breached)
Retrieve a hostage
(who could unleash magical havoc on the world)
Survive long enough to collect his reward
(and spend it)
Kaz needs a crew desperate enough to take on this suicide mission and dangerous enough to get the job done - and he knows exactly who: six of the deadliest outcasts the city has to offer. Together, they just might be unstoppable - if they don't kill each other first (Via Goodreads.com).
Release Date: September 29th, 2015
Rating: 4.5/5 Stars
After pulling off a seemingly impossible heist in the notorious Ice Court, criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker feels unstoppable. But life is about to take a dangerous turn—and with friends who are among the deadliest outcasts in Ketterdam city, Kaz is going to need more than luck to survive in this unforgiving underworld (Via Goodreads.com).
Release Date: September 27th, 2016
Rating: 4/5 Stars
In 2013, I started the Grisha trilogy and devoured Shadow and Bone and Siege and Storm, the only books out in the trilogy at the time. By the time Ruin and Rising, the third and final book in the trilogy, was released the following year, I had forgotten most of the content from the first two books and I never made the effort to reread the novels and finish the trilogy. I still have not finished the Grisha trilogy, but I hope to one day finish it.
I have been hearing relentless hype surrounding the Six of Crows duology, as well as the Grisha trilogy, for years. The teen book club at my local library decided to read Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom for two of our summer meetings this year. Overall, I enjoyed the duology. I fell in love with the characters and the plots of Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom were mind-blowing and deeply developed; however, I was disappointed with the openness of the end and the lack of character development. The Six of Crows duology is worth the read, but I was somewhat disappointed.
As a whole, I preferred Six of Crows to Crooked Kingdom. While Six of Crows ends with Inej taken, the end felt more final that the ending of Crooked Kingdom. Understandably, Leigh is more than likely keeping the end open because she can expand on these characters in the future; however, too much was left open. Crooked Kingdom created new relationships and delved deeper into them; however, the readers were forced to leave so soon. Both novels are rather lengthy, but I would have loved to see them longer. The plot is perfectly executed and unbelievably layered, but I would have loved to see Wylan and Jesper and Kaz and Inej continue their relationships instead of being locked out right when it started. I also would have liked to know if Nina reached Fjerda safely or at least how she was holding up on the boat. I would have preferred more closure.
Six of Crows also developed the characters and their relationships to a point that I was okay leaving them at. However, the development of each character was extremely skewed throughout both of the novels. While Kaz is technically the main character of the duology, the novels unfairly focused on his development and past. Inej is also developed fairly well, but everyone else has their past randomly included and they are not balanced in any way. Obviously some characters have more traumatizing pasts than others, but I wish that each character was given equal time. Jesper and Wylan felt like strangers to me during Six of Crows, and they still do in a way, but they randomly got a decent amount of screen-time in Crooked Kingdom. I love Kaz and Inej the most, but I feel like that was purposeful because none of the other characters were flushed out as much as they were. I love these characters, but I feel as though there is so much I do not know about them. I understand that six characters, excluding Kuwei who is treated like a background character, is a lot to develop, but I wish a little more effort was put into them.
While Matthias' death did hurt my heart slightly, I did not feel that because of him, I felt that because I was concerned for Nina. Along with Matthias, Nina is not one of my favorite characters of the duology, but their development was so interconnected that if you hurt one, you hurt both of them. It was tragic what happened to him, but hopefully Nina can continue forward and hopefully carry out Matthias' wish. I must admit, I hoped that if any of the crew died, it was either Matthias or Nina, but Matthias' final chapter did break my heart.
The plot of Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom make up for all the faults that I had with the end and the character development. Leigh is an absolute genius and schemer, I would never want to have her against me. She created so many tiny holes, that no one can see without a microscope, and closed them or zipped through them. She went in directions no one would expect. I could not image having half-decent characters, let alone the characters she created, and also creating such an elaborate plot. It was a thrilling and nail-biting journey that had me flipping the pages even if I was afraid to.