“This isn’t a job for trained soldiers and spies. It’s a job for thugs and thieves.”
Authors: Leigh Bardugo
Published on September 29th 2015 by Henry Holt and Company
Rating – 5/5
On a whole, this book was a fantastic read despite its minor flaws. The premise of this story truly did captivate me since it was unlike anything I have ever read. I have to say that the beginning of the book was slightly slow, but it could be because I was still trying to understand the world, which is quite rich and intricate. We have different locations and different races/religion/languages and I am quite thankful we had a map in this book or I would have been lost. Another issue was that I ended up caring for some characters over others, however, these were minor flaws which I overlooked since this was still a great read.Whats interesting is that the second half of the book is such an adrenaline rush where things keep escalating and escalating to the point where I was like
In terms of the setting, this novel takes place in the Grishaverse where Bardugo had created her original trilogy of Shadow and Bone. She incorporates a bit of historical fiction in it as well since it is based in Russia. The main setting is in Ketterdam where we first meet the Dregs (Kaz’s crew). She also refers to the Barrel, which is the slums of the city and it’s not particularly the best place to grow up in. It’s definitely a darker YA novel, enough to make you go “Damn, we live in such a messed up world.”
One of the most interesting points of the story is that the plot is so different from other YA novels. Basically, Six of Crows is about a group of six criminals/outcasts who assemble together to perform an “impossible” heist in which in return they would receive tremendous amounts of wealth. Kaz, the leader of the group known as the Dregs, puts together the team to embark on this quest. Even though members are not in best terms with one another, they do go through a lot of character development and learn to work together to overcome multiple obstacles which are thrown at them. The storytelling is done through flashbacks (similar to LOST/OUAT style) in which we learn more about the characters while simultaneously not losing focus of the progress of the story. All in all, Bardugo has crafted a fantastic story with great characters, action, romance, surprising twists and turns but also a bit of deeper subtext which I appreciated.
Kaz – Kaz Brekker is one of the most notorious criminals in Ketterdam and he does have the past to prove it. He is very tough, bold, strong and sometimes a smartass but that’s typically why all readers enjoy his character. But as we read more about his past and where he came from, we understand why he does what he does and what made his become like that. In the end, you can’t help but admire his character. Yes, I will admit there were moments he had me like
Inej – Inej is probably my second favorite character after Kaz. She is such strong as a female character but also has a few morals which she lives by, that Kaz sometimes teases her for. Her role in the group is a spy since she is hardly heard or seen by anyone and for this reason; she is nicknamed “The Wraith.” Out of all the characters, I feel that Inej was the one who truly appreciated everyone she was working with and therefore became sort of the glue/binder of the group. I approve!
Nina – Like Inej, Nina is a very strong female character but she is also the Grisha of the group, or more specifically, a Heartender, who has the ability to damage a person’s internal organs. For this reason, they are considered very valuable Grishas especially as soldiers. Even though she has strong abilities as a Grisha, she is also quite compassionate and a bit flirtatious. Another aspect I liked is that the two female leads were not pinned against each other. Instead, they were good friends. Most YA books tend to place women against one another but I appreciated that this one did not.
Matthias – Matthias is an interesting character since he has gone through a lot of pain and turmoil as Kaz had. He grows from being a cynical man to a strong comrade.
Jesper – Jesper might be my third favorite character since he brings so much comic relief throughout the story. I will admit there were a few times where I burst out laughing with his silly dialogues/antics like
Like all other characters within this novel, he is flawed. For one thing, he does have a gambling addiction which caused him to grow broke and that is the main reason why he joined the Dregs to complete this mission. His interactions with Kaz are quite amusing and it did bring a smile to my face. Nevertheless, he is a brave sharpshooter who found his place within the group and would follow them anywhere.
Wayne Van Dyke – Wayne is the last member to join the group and not much is known about until the second half of the book. Like the others, he does not have the best past but he discovers his talents while working with the Dregs.
What did you guys think of this book? Share your thoughts below!