Six of Crows: Book One
Written by Leigh Bardugo
Young Adult, Fantasy, Magic
Published September 29th 2015 by Henry Holt and Company
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Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can't pull it off alone...Located in the slums of Ketterdam is a crew notorious for crime. At the forefront of said crew is Kaz Brekker, dubbed Dirtyhands for his willingness to do just about anything for the right price. Behind him is Inje, otherwise know as the Wraith for her skill of being stealthy and efficient with her knives. Nina, the magical Grisha who can both kill and heal. Waylan, the son of a rich merch who knows how to make things go boom. Jesper, the sharpshooter and gamble addict. Lastly, Matthias - a Grisha hunter and the muscle. This band of criminals must join forces to pull off an impossible heist.
A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can't walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.Kaz's crew are the only ones who might stand between the world and destruction—if they don't kill each other first.
A deadly drug has been created that enhances Gisha's powers. Were it to fall into the wrong hands, the world would surely be thrown into chaos and ruin. In order to stop that from happening they must go to the source. A scientist is being held within the Ice Court, and is the only man who knows the chemistry behind the drug. Kaz is offered thirty million to break this scientist out and return him to Ketterdam. In order to do so, he must form a crew that will be able to do the impossible. Their journey takes them across the sea down a perilous road which is riddled with treachery, greed and betrayal.
I'll be 100% honest. I had a love hate relationship with this book. It took me forever - and I mean forever to get into it. I was so ready to DNF it because I was so frustrated with the pace. It took me up until 83% of the book to understand why so many people have raved about this book - even then I don't entirely understand the hype surrounding it. Nonetheless, I'm happy I kept with it because the second half of the story got really crazy and exciting and I loved seeing the plot take off.
Bad bits first. This book felt long as fuck. I don't know if it was the writing, or if I just wasn't feeling the characters at first but damn it was like swimming in mud. Probably because I hated the first 37% of this book (yes I kept checking my progress because I felt like I was crawling). I understand this may just be me - it very well may be. I wouldn't doubt it, I'm not all that into really slow builds. Good thing is that I adjusted, I sucked it up and plowed on forth.
The plotting was extraordinary. Wow, it was so good. I was swung left and right. I love nothing more than when little puzzle plot pieces start falling into place. I got a lot of that throughout the stretch of the book. This was definitely the highpoint of the book for me. I'm convinced that Leigh is one of the best plotters I've come across in the YA genre, even though this is the only book I've read of hers.
Six of Crows is very telly and little showy. You are constantly getting info dumps and mini-flashbacks to the characters past. There are six characters, five of which get POV's (I forget, does Waylan get one? I don't remember) and if you know me, I'm not huge on anymore than three POV's. I have a small and tired brain and hate the flip flopping. But thankfully the more interesting characters got more chapters than the lesser characters. I think that was this books saving grace for me.
When it comes down to the characters I was only really into Kaz and Inje. Kaz is such a complex, mysterious and heart wrenching character. I rooted for him every step of the way and cheered when he won and booed when he failed. I was really invested in seeing how his persona would evolve from the first page to the last. I really look forward to seeing how Leigh molds him in book two. As for Inje - she was quiet and all around intriguing, not to mention she kicks some serious ass. I loved the depth behind both these characters and didn't mind their background stories. I also ship the hell out of them.
That's not to say I didn't enjoy the other four. I liked seeing the interactions betwixt Nina and Matthias - their banter actually brought a lot of life to the story. And I appreciated their interesting history with one another but I wasn't attached at all. Jesper and Waylan were just necessary tools for the mission - I didn't really care for either of these two. I know, I'm probably terrible but they can't all be winners. I do have faith that these guys will get a bigger spotlight in book two, so maybe I'll love them then!
I loved the world, the plot and the magic that Leigh Bardugo so passionately invested a lot of time into creating. While I wasn't a huge fan of all the profiling of the characters, she put a lot of thought into who she needed them to be for the story. I'll be the first to admit that I'm a black sheep when it comes to this book (its average on GR is 4.41). I wasn't gaga about it - I loved some parts, hated others but in the end I'm happy I gave in and read Six of Crows. I honestly can't wait for the sequel. The cliffhanger will probably have already killed me come fall.
Kynndra is currently browsing tumblr and getting ready for bed.