This book blew me off my seat! It was incredible, fun, gripping and so interesting magically! I loved it!
The size of the picture is so big but because I love this book I kept it in!
This book is about the greatest heist I have ever read and my other obsession apart from YA is crime so this was beyond what I expected. It follows this gang of teenagers through the planning to the end of the success or failure of the heist. It is set in the magical land of the Grisha world which you may know from her first books which were the Grisha Trilogy. The idea of the heist is that this new drug Juda Parem which is effecting the Grisha (people with magical powers) and Bo Yul Bahyur holds the key to the creation of the drug but can the gang spring him out of the Ice Court Palace?
The plot of this book kept me engaged to the last page and beyond as this is a duology there will be more. It is so hard to pick a favourite scene so I have narrowed it down to two. The first scene I really loved was the scene at the docks where they are just ambushed by the Fjerdian soldiers and Nina comes to the rescue by becoming this epic hero! You just feel like going GO NINA! Luckily I was in my room at the time I was reading it so I could shout it! Another reason why I loved this scene was that it was a test of Nina and Matthias’ relationship because I think at that point it’s like a titanic moment.
The other scene I loved was the moment on the boat between Kaz and Inej where there is this suggestion of romance. It was like this amazingly passionate moment where you were like will they or won’t they kiss I was sitting on the edge of my seat going PLEASE KISS! Such beautiful writing.
The world building in this series has been built by her previous trilogy because it is set in the same world of Grisha. However, I have not read the trilogy but she still puts enough world building for you to be intrigued and not feel confused. So you can read the duology before the trilogy. So the world of Grisha is epic and intricate and made so you could write a million stories about it from every angle. So basically Grisha are magical beings with different abilities depending on their speciality they have different names for example Nina is a Heartrender. There are different lands the Grisha people are mostly from Ravka and then there is Ketterdam and Fjerdian I love that she made every land very relatable to our world through the different lands attitudes.
Duologies are becoming more popular which is for me as a reviewer really good cause when I am reading a series that are longer than a trilogy I always have to do rereads cause my memory fades so annoying. In another sense it opens up to more spin offs like the one I am talking about which is awesome not only for fans but also authors. This is due to the fact like Harry Potter there is always a want for more but it is not necessarily the direction the authors wants. So I think the duology gives the writer that freedom for the writer in the world they have created. Six of Crows is a great example of this scenairo.
The use of different perspectives from nearly all the characters in the book gives you more of a connection to the characters. In Six of Crows you don’t get Wylan’s perspective but Leigh says we get more of Wylan story in Crooked Kingdoms. It’s not only a connection to the characters but also for me with perspectives you feel as if the character in the room explaining their story to you. That feeling is so special because you know the author has created a world you can delve into and leave reality.
Finally I wanted to discuss the themes she explores as they are quite dark for instance; trafficking, gangs, innocence of childhood and minorities. It just jammed packed with big topical themes that are hugely relevant to today’s society. I think these are issues that need to be discussed between young adults to make sure that we do something about these issues to in some cases stop these issues. This book acheives discussing these issues in a way that YA readers can understand and make them discuss and think about these issues. The main theme I really liked was the lack of innocence. So most of the characters are suggested to be in their late teens but as you’ll see throughout the book they are acting like adults. I think this is very true of children who are born in these times from the 1990s onwards. The reason is that ideas, war, circumstances and technology have in a way made it more difficult to flow through life easily and to get to that point in life where there is a sense of achievement in life. Leigh represented that lack of innocence beautifully and I think today kids are learning to grow up at earlier age.
Overall, this book not only filled my idea of the perfect fantasy heist but also made me contemplate so many issues within society and the way we look at people. It is perfect for all fantasy and YA fans I think. It gripped me on every page and left me wanting more. It is a book that will be in my top 10 for the rest of my life. Beautifully written book that really touched me definitely a must read series of the year!
As usual, comment below and let me know what type of Grisha you would like to be?