Six of Crows: Review
"We are all someone's monster."
Six characters. Five perspectives. Three(?) relationships.
So. Many. Secrets.
Let me start first by clarifying what I mean by "relationships". The whole group consists of complicated alliances that I would not stretch as far as to call them friendships, and the glimpses of romance are not wasted on angst - so relieving to not bother with the common love triangle theme. Really, it's barely romance, as one pair can't decide if they're going to kill each other, another is only tentative at best by the end, and the most uncertain, precarious pair...it's a tightrope they're on, and the balance is shaky. *wink* And it's such a small factor in the writing; the brief moments we're given cracks in the hard, calculating shells of each character surface naturally and do not feel forced or over indulgent.
I loved the way this story was written from multiple perspectives. We start out knowing only the reputations of each of the characters, much of which is determined through the eyes of their companions. The mystery surrounding each of them is perfectly developed, and as we move forward we're given insight to each of their thoughts and flashbacks to learn their pasts and how they came to be tied together in this dangerous crew.
While most of the book is supposed to be about Kaz and his crew pulling off the impossible heist of breaking into the world's most secure prison - the Ice Court - and escaping with a man responsible for unleashing a deadly drug, it didn't feel like this was a major factor until the last quarter. I found myself thinking several times while reading, "Oh, right, this is about a prison break."
Yes, they're on this journey for most of the book, but I was so enveloped in the character development and learning chapter after chapter more about each of them that I kept being surprised when I remembered the whole point of the plot. And Leigh Bardugo gives us just the right amount of information at the just the right pace...I was left guessing with much of the crew the entire time, wondering what else Kaz had in his not-so-little bag of tricks.
My biggest peeve I can't shake - Inej's ending. (view spoiler on Goodreads)
The writing is fantastic, the characters are all perfectly broken, and the world is gritty and realistic. Another 2016 sequel I'll be anxiously awaiting...come on, September!