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 in Six of Crows…
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.
Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.
Six of Crows is a stand-alone novel based in the same universe as Leigh Bardugo’s Grisha Trilogy: Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, and Ruin and Rising. It is also supposed to be the beginning of a new trilogy, though I’m not seeing a series title yet anywhere reliable, so there’s a bit of mystery still to be had!
The first thing I’d like to talk about with this novel is the way it looks. The black pages, the crow artwork for each chapter, and the section separators were just absolutely stunning, and would definitely have helped me pick this up off the shelf, if I hadn’t heard of it before and specifically gone to the library to get it.Call me shallow, but I’m a sucker for great cover art, and that’s always been one of Bardugo’s books’ strengths. I mean, look at these!
I forgot to take actual photos of the book when I had it, but I love the art for these books. Art aside, I really enjoyed Six of Crows.
It really worked as a stand-alone novel, which is difficult to do with as intricate of a story as Bardugo wrote for the Grisha Trilogy. While knowledge of the different countries and the powers of the different types of Grisha might be helpful, as well as mentioning minor characters from the original trilogy, I fully believe that you could easily read this novel on its own and figure it out. Bardugo worked the small but important details into the story, showing us the distinct differences in each character’s world view.
I particularly loved the characters. Every character had their own motivations, which I won’t spoil for you here. Nina and Inej were my girls, and I just want to cuddle Wylan. I’m really glad for the character development in Matthias. I’m glad that he was able to work through a lot of his issues, although I felt that maybe it should have taken him a little while longer to get over a lifetime of trained hatred of Grisha. There is an itty bitty bit of romance, but not that couldn’t easily be ignored.
Kaz’s character was almost entirely unlikable to me, and he was the only character that I still feel like I don’t understand how his brain works. However, he was an awesome character, and I like that he still doesn’t make sense. I really appreciate Bardugo’s work to make sure that we could still be surprised, despite all of the planning and scheming. That’s really difficult to do with as many moving parts as this heist had to it. I loved that Bardugo was able to write his limp and hand injuries into the story without them being the definition of his character. They simply were a part of him, as they should be.
I really recommend reading Six of Crows in one go, or as close to it as possible, because everything about this book is wildly complicated. I’ve heard from others that they find the first section of the book drawn out and boring, but it’s really, really important to understand everything that goes on in the beginning in order to keep up with what’s going on when it actually goes down. It also makes it more exciting when you know what’s going wrong and what their contingency plans were. However, the book is pretty long and pretty complicated at 465 pages in the hardback version.
Since it is also the beginning of a series on its own, I think this book did a great job setting us up to be able to follow the rest of the characters throughout wherever there journey takes them next. I hope all of them gain some common sense that keeps them away from very complicated heists, but since that is very unlikely for this group of hooligans, I will only say this.
“No mourners, no funerals.”
If you enjoyed the Grisha Trilogy, I definitely think you’ll enjoy this novel. I really enjoyed this book, and I really look forward to the next one. Because of the somewhat drawn out beginning and the length of this book, I’m giving it a rating of four out of five stars.
If you’ve read it, do you agree or disagree with me? Do you think I missed something important here? Talk to me about it in the comments!