Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom

When I read a series, I usually stay stuck in that universe for a while. It helps if there are a lot of books based on the same universe. When I finished Shadow and Bones series, it was natural for me to pick up Six of Crows next. And I am so glad I did that.

I loved Shadow and Bones. I really did. Loved the books. Loved the show even more. But the Six of Crow books – OMG they are so much more entertaining. Now I know why Netflix introduced Six of Crows characters so early in the show.

Six of Crows are by far the best YA-Fantasy-Heist book I have ever read. I know many people compare it to the Mistborn books. But they are very different.

The pace of the book is very fast, and I love how POV keeps changing. There is a part at the end of the first book of the Duology where a period of like 90 mins is described again and again from different POVs. I have never come across such flawless execution. The repeated descriptions keep us focused on what the author is trying to show us. But the fun begins when we find out what the author was keeping hidden. I mean in any good heist story it’s important to keep some secrets and reveal them only at the right time.

Since this series happens after the incidents of Shadow and Bones, the background is not explained unnecessarily. So, it makes it important for a reader to either read Shadow and Bones series before reading this or just accept some facts and not worry about getting details of every single reference.

While I loved these books, they are not without their own set of flaws.

First of all, the biggest thing that bothered me was the age of the main characters. In the book, they are 16-17 age range. I do not have a problem with protagonists being so young. But I do have a problem when they are claimed to be an expert in something they have just started doing. Slight of hands, fighting, being a spy, are all skills that are developed over time. But the characters are shown to be an expert. It’s like those stories where the protagonist is given a weapon for the first time and by the next scene, they are an expert in that. If they were shown a little older that would have given them a little more time to practice and enhance their skills and made the ages more believable.

I am going to talk about the other thing that bothered me and that’s a spoiler. So, if you do not want any spoilers, please do not read further. I will do my best to not spoil too much of the story and hence I am not going to use any names. But still, I apologise in advance.

The death of a major character is a big thing. If the death happens at the right place in the story, it contributes a lot to the plot and character development. But the death in the Crooked Kingdom happens at a point where it seems forced. Like this death was required for the plot of the remaining books, so it had to happen here. It feels out of place and leaves the readers wondering why did this happen here. It was not an emotional travesty for me, but rather an annoyance. I understand that this death was important for the next book. But it ruined the ending of this series for me.

So, after all the good, the bad and the ugly, who would like this book?

Young fantasy lovers would love this book. It’s a good book for heist lovers too. But most importantly those who read Shadow and Bones and hated that series must read Six of Crows. Every flaw of Shadow and Bones has been removed. So, naturally, those who loved Shadow and Bones would love this series.

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