Crooked Kingdom (Spoiler-Free)

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Last month I finished Leigh Bardugo’s Six of Crows Duology, with the second and final book, Crooked Kingdom. Read on for my spoiler-free thoughts! (Note: the official Crooked Kingdom overview is included in this review and therefore has some Six of Crows spoilers, so if you haven’t read SoC, tread carefully)

Genre
YA Fantasy

Intended Audience
Young adults and adults alike, also anyone who enjoys a good fantasy read (and also heists)

Overview (from Barnes & Noble)
Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and badly weakened, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city’s dark and twisting streets – a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of the Grisha world.

Setting
The Grisha universe, mainly Ketterdam, which has an old school New York-type vibe.

Characters
The main crew from SoC is back and I love each of them even more this time around. We also find out more about each character. And if you’re not familiar with SoC, think of them as an Ocean’s Eleven-sort, except they’re in their teens. That’s the simplest explanation I can provide at the moment.

What I Liked
The transparency – we could see more of the logic behind all the scheming this time around, whereas in Six of Crows, I felt like the solutions were kind of pulled out of a magic hat.

Alternating character perspectives! One of my main complaints for Six of Crows was that Wylan’s perspective was missing. Problem solved! Crooked Kingdom gives readers the story from everyone’s perspectives, Wylan included.

The characters themselves! Bardugo’s writing style (and awesome plot and imagination in general) really give life to each character. As with most books, it’s sad to say goodbye to this crew now that the series/duology has ended.

I also liked that we got to see more of Ketterdam as well as more of each culture and society.

What I Liked A Little Less
ThatOnePartOMG! If you’ve already read this, then you most likely know what I’m talking about. But if you haven’t that’s okay. …You’ll see soon enough. Ominous? I think yes. Anyway, for the most part, I felt like everything in this book happened for a reason, except for this one part. It was one of those “Wait…did you just…why did you…what the f-“. I’m clearly still not over it. Just- Nope, can’t.

As much as I appreciated the writing, the story felt bogged down by some of the details and backstories at certain points, so much so that I found myself skimming over paragraphs and being okay with it – which is near unheard of for me. For the most part, these details were essential in depicting character development and explaining motives, but in some areas I felt like the story could’ve done without the extra bit of info.

Score
Overall, I was satisfied with the ending of this series and I miss the characters already. I’m giving CK 4/5 stars.