Fall in Love with a Criminal: Crooked Kingdom, reviewed

crooked-kingdom-book-jacketCrooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo is the second and last book in the author’s Six of Crows duology. This series takes place in the the world of the Grisha, which is also where Leigh Bardugo’s older series, The Grisha trilogy, is set.

The Six of Crows story tells the story of six criminal outcasts in the city of Kerch who agree to kidnap an important political prisoner in exchange for more money than they could ever hope for. Everything backfires when the man who promised them the money betrays them and kidnaps a member of their gang. Our favorite teenage felons must now get revenge and take what was promised to them, because who would believe the word of a bunch of outlaws over the promise of a rich merchant? The Dregs, as they are called, will have to revisit their separate pasts along the way. Will they all survive? Maybe.

I’m not really sure how I heard about this series but I fell in love with Six of Crows last year. I was struck by the originality of the plot, a story about criminals in a fictional world that was beautifully written, and countries that had their own cultures, language, and way of life. The perspective from which these books are written was also a big reason why I decided to read Six of Crows. Leigh Bardugo said that “a big part of this story is what happens to people who aren’t kings and queens and chosen ones”, and I felt like that was a nice change from a lot of other young adult books. Even though this is a story about horrible people who do horrible things, you will fall in love with all the characters, and believe they are at least making decisions for the right reasons. Believe it or not this is also a hilarious book. It doesn’t hurt that the covers of these two books are gorgeous, and the edges of the first book are completely black and the edges of the second are red. This series is easily in my top 3 favorite YA series!

Don't miss the Grisha trilogy too, which includes Shadow and BoneSiege and Storm, and Ruin and Rising.

-Mariam, (Dusen)Berry Blogger and member of the River Teen Advisory Board