Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…
A convict with a thirst for revenge.
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past.
A spy known as the Wraith.
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.
Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist. Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.
This was probably my favorite read last year, and the re-read was just as enjoyable. I loved all the little tells that became evident this round since I knew all of their backstories this time.
All the hype about this book is absolutely true! I’d be hard pressed to find something that I didn’t like or that didn’t work in this book. I’m also going to go ahead and say I liked it even more than the Grisha Series, though I really enjoyed those books, and I think I will be rereading them soon (I’ve still yet to do that . . .).
I loved every character in Kaz’s crew. They were all so different, skilled in different things, and yet united through the common goal of a huge cash haul and the potential freedoms the money would buy them. However, via the amazingly rich and detailed back-stories that Bardugo weaves into the story, we also see that they all have ulterior motives and that they are all more than thugs and criminals.
I have to say though, Kaz’s back story was my favorite. It explained so much about him and the person who he is in the Barrel. I can’t wait to see how he continues his growth. And that’s another thing that was done so well, the character growth! Each character changed a little throughout the story, but it was in little moments, it was gradual, and it was so believable. None of their core values ever changed, they found ways to accept others views, to open themselves to vulnerability, and to explore their own persons.
The fact that this was told from five main POVs (I keep seeing people saying there were 6, one from each crew member, but Wylan didn’t have his own, unless they all got different books than I did. . .), with a unique one for the first and last chapter, gave this the potential to be overwhelming. Each voice was so distinct though that I was never confused who I was reading. Furthermore, with so many moving parts, having different characters in different places to explain things was really helpful. I think it also made it a lot more fun with the twists and reveals because while we are with this character, those over there are doing their own scheming and whatnot.
Overall, I loved this story. It’s pace, it’s main goal, it’s use of characters who would normally not be seen as heroes, and it’s three budding ships. The story-telling was top-notch, the writing was distinctive and easy to follow while still being witty and smart. I cannot wait to continue this series.