Title: Six of Crows
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Series: it’s part of the Grisha novels
Who’s it for? Older teens (unflinching violence)
What’s it about?
Criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker has been offered wealth beyond his wildest dreams. But to claim it, he’ll have to pull off a seemingly impossible heist:
Break into the notorious Ice Court (a military stronghold that has never been breached)
Retreive a hostage (who could unleash magical havoc on the world)
Survive long enough to collect his rewards (and spend it)
[Blurb taken from the book]
What’s good about it? It’s a fantasy heist story, what’s not to love?! Think Ocean’s 11 style but with magic and you’re not far wrong, although this is an entirely more brutal and violent story than Ocean’s 11. Let’s put it this way, there is a moment where Kaz is after some information and what follows his questioning… is deeply unpleasant.
It’s a very rich read – it’s densely packed with language, history and backstory. This feels like a real world with consequences and reason and movement of other lives beyond what we’re given access to. It’s not overwhelming though, more intriguing by what is and isn’t shown.
The characters are all brilliant in their own way. They each have their own motives and desires with conflict with each other in believable ways, but it can be interesting at times to work out who’s doing what.
I LOVED THE RELATIONSHIPS!! Yes, that deserves to be in caps. This book contained what may be one of my favourite lines ever about a character’s feelings towards another: ‘She knew it was the best he could offer. It wasn’t enough.’ YES!! She didn’t have to put aside her own wants and needs for the sake of being with someone who actually couldn’t offer her all she wanted. That she didn’t have to give up everything in the hope of fixing him. I loved that. LOVED IT.
What’s bad about it? There’s so many characters I couldn’t always tell who was speaking. This may be my issue more than the book’s – I read quite fast so more than once managed to skip the chapter heading which said who was speaking and so it would take me a page or two to realise that the viewpoint had switched. So I’d have to go back and reread a section.
The verdict? Six of Crows is brilliant. At 491 pages it’s not a short read, but it is a very good one. Plus, having not read the Grisha novels this book is set in, I can happily say you don’t need to have read them to read and enjoy this one.
There’s a great cast of characters with quite distinctive motives and desires – the only times I got any of them muddled was when the viewpoint switched between them and I hadn’t registered the chapter heading (must learn to read slower).
I loved, loved, LOVED how all the relationships were handled in the book – romantic or otherwise. Some kept me guessing and some delighted me all the way simply for not being a standard romantic relationship in which the girl gives up everything to be with the boy (and sometimes vice-versa).
OH MY THE ENDING THOUGH!!!! According to Goodreads the sequel isn’t due out until September 2016 and this displeases me greatly. Heads up, you will need to read the sequel. So if you can’t wait to find out what happens, maybe put this one on your August reading list.
All in all though, a cracking, engaging read.