review + discussion: crooked kingdom by leigh bardugo

27840861Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
Series: Six of Crows
Published September 20th 2016 by Henry Holt and Company
Genre: fantasy, young adult

links: Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

rating: ★★★★★


When you can’t beat the odds, change the game.

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.

advise: you might want to read the grisha trilogy first. it made reading crooked kingdom a better read for me. also, spoilers for six of crows

It’s not unsurprising that another author has shattered my heart into tinier pieces than it already is. Leigh Bardugo’s writing is so incredibly easy to read and addictive. She can write unforgettable and powerful scene so Processed with VSCO with hb1 presetexpressively. I love her. Whenever I thought I needed a break from Crooked Kingdom, something else happens and as a result, I get pulled back into the story. It’s a cycle, but I welcomed it with open arms.

The action scenes in Crooked Kingdom were fantastic. I couldn’t help but tense up whenever my beloved characters start fighting. Some parts of the plot got me quite confused since there was so many things happening at once so I had to reread sentences to get me back on track. I love how a few details were deliberately missed out so as to build suspense. The twists and turns in the plot made reading so much fun.

Leigh Bardugo can multitask so well. Not only does she has to deal with advancing the plot, she also has to weave six characters’ backstories and emotions with such intricacy. In achieving character development for all six main characters, Leigh Bardugo became one of my most admired authors in the YA genre.

Nina and Matthias were so cute, especially after that put down their past in Six of Crows, they were ready to cuddle up right from the start. Their relationship was so endearing, I want to protect them forever.

Scene stealers in Crooked Kingdom are Wylan and Jesper, not that I don’t love the rest so much already. We can finally read from Wylan’s perspective which was refreshing. He’s the closest to his age as compared to the others. More like a teenager and less like a criminal. Jesper’s character arc was Processed with VSCO with hb1 presetmore completed in Crooked Kingdom and I love that beneath his happy-go-lucky personality, there’s more substance.

Found myself chuckling so frequently throughout the book. The crew can be hilarious when they want to. Kaz is an exceptional criminal mastermind, it’s insane how much foresight he has. Inej’s loyal and has remarkable talents.

I went to my ice cream stash once I’ve finished Crooked Kingdom. Felt so disorientated after everything ended. I just wanted more. Leigh Bardugo does hit you in the mark when you least expected.

That’s about it for the nonspoiler section. Don’t want to believe that that’s all for the Grishaverse. Wasn’t expecting myself to be attached to these hell bringers, but I love them.



nina and matthias were so cute!! them snuggling beside each other on the sofa was endearing. matthias was following nina around worrying that she’ll break like fine china.  also, nina seducing matthias was everything. their relationship was the only one that actually progressed till they got together while everyone is struggling with their problems.

should i talk about what happened to matthias at the end now? my heart’s not ready yet, maybe later.

kaz is a magician and pays attention to the little details. he plans so much without anybody knowing?! when it was revealed at the end that kaz took and switched van eck’s will, not only from the safe in van eck’s mansion but also from smeet’s office where they visited straight from the start, I WAS FLABBERGASTED and AMAZED. WHAT IS WITH THIS BOY. he’s incredible, that’s what. i was so shocked and surprised and in awe with kaz brekker, he’s the man. he knows what he’s doing, plans far ahead than everyone else.

you think i’m done talking about kaz? NO I WILL NEVER BE.

now, HE BOUGHT INEJ A SHIP AND GOT HER A CREW AND PAID OFF HER INDENTURE. never have i expected kaz to be so sweet when all i’ve been reading is him scheming and threatening people. and how can i not talk about kaz bringing inej’s parents to ketterdam. I AM SWOONING MY FRIENDS. he’s a man of few words but his actions are speaking for him. also, THEY HAD SKINSHIP. like kaz didn’t wear his gloves when he touched inej’s hand even if it’s for 5 seconds.

“Come with me,” she said. “Come meet them.”
Kaz nodded as if steeling himself, flexed his fingers once more.
“Wait,” he said. The burn of his voice was rougher than usual. “Is my tie straight?”

^ got me swooning

what got me quite miffed was the incessant back and forth between kaz and inej.
inej: i’m just an investment, nothing more, i’m easily replacable
kaz: yeah.. investment..
me: OH MY -UGH *internal screaming*

ZOYA AND STURMHOND AND GENYA. OMGGGGG!! i miss them so much. zoya is still catty and sarcastic. strumhond, as awesome as ever, i loved that kaz can sense there’s something wrong with strumhond. the references of genya, and the amazing innovations she had done ever since the end of the grisha trilogy.

when it was revealed that jesper’s mother taught him how to shoot and aim, i was literally so happy. his mother played such a significant role with him, his daily life was so mundane and unlike the jesper we know now.

THAT FAKE WYLAN AND JESPER KISS! oh my fffffu. i was reading this part late at night but i screamed out loud. the moment i had been waiting for wasn’t even REAL. WTFUDGE.. what a whirlwind of emotions when i got to that scene. FREAKING KUWEI, U SUCK.

this scene below when jesper, wylan and colm were running away got me chuckling.

“If I live, I’ll buy you waffles.”
“You don’t have enough money to buy her waffles,” Wylan grumbled.

now the part where i’m utterly devastated and broken. the ending was painful and agonizing. had a premonition that not all the six will survive till the end. i was so preoccupied with everything that i didn’t had the time to predict if a death was impending.

matthias.. POOR MATTHIAS. the brooding yellow tulip. nina’s love. i’m so uspet, have been ever since i completed the book a couple weeks ago. why…. the part where he came into the place and placed a kiss on nina, but he was bleeding everywhere, and the grisha can’t bring him back. nobody can. my heart hurts. i cried into my pillow, sobbed my eyes out. then they had to send him off in that boat, and those flowers, and nina. can you hear my heart breaking again?

that’s the end of my review! i can’t help but love these deliquents, can’t help but enjoy every moment of the book, can’t help but admire leigh bardugo’s mastery in making my toes curl in suspense and anticipation.



my aesthetic for crooked kingdom


“I,” she said, planting a hand on her hip, “am a delicate flower.”
“You aren’t a flower, you’re every blossom in the wood blooming at once. You are a tidal wave. You’re a stampede. You are overwhelming.”

i miss matthias and nina.



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