NO MOURNERS. NO FUNERALS.
Today we’re discussing the first book in the Six of Crows Duology by Leigh Bardugo. Fear not, my bookworms, there will be no spoilers in this blog post. I’m making a different one with all the spoilery feels! It’ll be released sometime soon – if you’d like to see it, you can make sure you get it by subscribing to my blog 🙂
My rating is 5 stars, without a doubt.
You can see the blurb here, but I’m going to explain everything so you don’t have to take the time. I’m that nice (plus I really like talking about this book).
DIVERSITY. EPICNESS. FEELS.
Let’s start by talking about Ketterdam, the fictional city the book is based on. It’s the perfect, most brilliant setting! It’s a coastal city, and its main activity is trade. It has so many different districts, but they’re not hard to remember at all! The Barrel, East Stave and West Stave, the University District, the Government District… I just feel like I can see each of these places in my head as I type their names. Leigh Bardugo is so incredibly talented! She’s one of my favorite authors after just two books, and I’m very excited to read more of her writing.
As it says on the Goodreads page for this book, Kaz Brekker, our lovely protagonist, is a gifted thief who knows Ketterdam inside and out. He’s grown up in the Barrel – the bad part of town – and he’s learned to survive in it all on his own. As we unlock his back story he becomes more and more of an interesting person, even if in the first few chapters we already get a taste of just how good a character he is.
He gets offered an impossible job, but if he were to accomplish it, he would become very wealthy! So he puts together a team of six dangerous outcasts, some of the worst people the Barrel has to offer.
“A gambler, a convict, a wayward son, a lost Grisha, a Suli girl who had become a killer, a boy from the Barrel who had become something worse.”
We have Inej Ghafa, also known as the Wraith, a spy with a complicated past trying to keep a clean conscience. She’s very spiritual and her relationship with Kaz was interesting because of its complexity. The scars they both bear make it difficult for them.
Jesper Fahey is our talented sharpshooter. He is absolutely hilarious and yes, really cute, but as the book progresses, we start to see that he’s as damaged as the rest of the crew.
Nina Zenik, a Grisha Heartrender; Grisha are human-like creatures with gifts, and Nina’s is controlling the human body. She’s in Ketterdam trying to right a wrong, but it might prove harder than she thought.
Nina’s business in Ketterdam is named Matthias Helvar. He’s a drüskelle, which means witch hunter – his people consider the eradication of Grisha their sacred duty to their god, Djel. You might already see how his relationship with Nina will be complicated. And her being Grisha is not the only reason why he should hate her: she got him locked up in prison.
Finally and to close off the crew we have Wylan, a demolition expert (sort of). His past is unclear, but one thing’s for certain: he’s the son of one of the richest merchants in town thus he’s pretty important if the crew wants to make sure their mission succeeds.
Our six characters face an impossible heist along with many other challenges – and the biggest is not killing one another.
As soon as I heard of this, I knew it was going to become one of my favorite books, plus, the praise everyone was giving it excited me. Still, it surpassed every expectation I had. I don’t really cry easily, but this one made me blubber like a baby. I cried much more during Crooked Kingdom, though.
But it’s not a sad book! Most of the dialogues are hilarious – because they are all so sassy. Kaz is definitely not the sassmaster of this book, but he had his moments. I laughed out loud at this gem.
“Well, who can guess at the motives of thieves?
“Not me, certainly.”
And this other one, after he had asked Inej for a new hat not-so-politely, had me smiling like a dummy, and we didn’t even know them much yet!
“Please, my darling Inej, treasure of my heart, won’t you do me the honor of acquiring me a new hat?”
But I’m not going to spam you with all the quotes I loved… It’d take too long! In my booktalk I’ll include lots of them, though.
The best thing about Six of Crows is that you never get bored. There’s just so much going on, and the author crafted the story so well you don’t even notice you’ve read 400+ pages.
So just… read this book, okay? Then we can talk about it.