The second and final installment in the Six of Crows duology, Crooked Kingdom continues the adventures of Kaz Brekker and his crew – only this time their enemy is their home city of Ketterdam.
After Wylan’s father, Jan Van Eck, double crosses the crew and kidnaps Inej, he gives Kaz one week to bring Kuwei Yul-Bo in exchange for Inej. After breaking Kuwei out of the Ice Fortress in Fjerda, Kaz is not inclined to turn him over – especially since Kuwei holds the secret to jurda parem, the drug that enhances a Grisha’s power but which addiction is unavoidable. But retrieving Inej isn’t the only thing the crew must do: they must also reclaim the thirty million kruge Van Eck promised them for the Ice Fortress job. But how to do it?
Kaz, of course, has his plans. And more plans. Although events don’t always go according to Kaz’s plans, he has others on the sidelines. But did Kaz’s plans involve Van Eck allying himself with Pekka Collins, the man who Kaz has sworn revenge on? Do his plans involve delegations from Ravka, Fjerda, Shu, and Kaelish coming to Ketterdam? Do his plans include a hired assassin sent after his Wraith? Do his plans take into account the sudden appearance of Jesper’s father? And do his plans including knowing that his own boss, Per Haskell, would turn on him?
But Kaz Brekker isn’t called Dirtyhands for nothing. He plans on getting his thirty million kruge one way or another. The question simply becomes: how much will Ketterdam have to endure until Kaz gets his Wraith, his money, and his revenge?
Whoa…Crooked Kingdom was a ride! I had felt Six of Crows started a bit slow – understandably since it was setting up the crew. But it’s sequel assumes the reader is well familiar with Kaz and his band and starts off with the action. Ketterdam is the setting; it is both home for the crew but also dangerous as well since all their enemies are in one city. You never knew what exactly would happen next.
And I loved every heart pounding minute of it!
I am thoroughly convinced that Leigh Bardugo modeled Kaz after herself. How else is she able to spin such extraordinary stories without giving any clues as to what is really happening away. I loved it. So much so that I immediately bought her Grisha Trilogy to continue the story (or actually read what happened before).
My rating: 5/5