This post contains two books that made me absolutely foam at the mouth in the best way possible.
The first is Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. Guys. GUYS. I loved her Grisha Trilogy, and I really didn’t know it was possible to admire and love anything more than I loved those. This book blew those out of the water. This was me while reading:
“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.” —Indiebound
So, think about every point you can judge a book by. Characters, plot, setting, narrator’s voice, world-building, etc. In this book, it’s all incredible. This book is a crazy, exciting, suspenseful ride from start to finish. The Grisha world is one of my favorite fantasy worlds, and I’m so satisfied with this extension of the original trilogy. Kaz is a strange, badass enigma–he’s young, brilliant, tough, terrifying, and deep in a way that his crew does not expect. And of course, he’s responsible for possibly my favorite phrase in all of YA:
Kaz isn’t the only great character. Most of them grab you and hold on. They’re engaging, talented, tortured, and they have a great rapport together that makes you want to be a part of their gang of thieves. This novel is a fantastic, suspenseful adventure. You know those movies that make you want to jump up and go do something badass? This book made me feel like that. I really think you should read it. And if you haven’t read The Grisha Trilogy, you can read this without reading that first, but I really think you should read the trilogy first.
“Bernadette Fox is notorious. To her Microsoft-guru husband, she’s a fearlessly opinionated partner; to fellow private-school mothers in Seattle, she’s a disgrace; to design mavens, she’s a revolutionary architect, and to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, simply, Mom.
Then Bernadette disappears. It began when Bee aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette’s intensifying allergy to Seattle–and people in general–has made her so agoraphobic that a virtual assistant in India now runs her most basic errands. A trip to the end of the earth is problematic.
To find her mother, Bee compiles email messages, official documents, secret correspondence–creating a compulsively readable and touching novel about misplaced genius and a mother and daughter’s role in an absurd world.”—Indiebound
This novel carried me into the new year and it made for a very auspicious start to the reading year. Usually, when there’s a novel that takes off with such wild popularity, I’m immediately skeptical. Despite the hype surrounding this one, I was really quite pleasantly surprised by how much I liked this book.
Perhaps the most important thing is that it is hilarious. It takes a lot for books to make me laugh (unless the author isn’t trying to be funny–usually I laugh at moments that might not be intended to be funny), but this one had me embarrassing myself in all sorts of public places with snorts and guffaws and really, really loud, braying of laughter.
The main characters is an adorable, intelligent, and tenacious teenager whose mother holds some interesting secrets, which her daughter attempts to unravel throughout the novel. In addition to being told from the point of view of the girl, the novel is also composed of emails, journal entries, articles, and other various documents that make a complete picture of the events past and present. Also, part of this book takes place in Antarctica. I LOVE that. Who goes to Antarctica? Cool people, that’s who. Get it? 😉
Though the novel is quirky, cute, and amusing, there are deeper themes lying just beneath its surface, and those are what I truly feel make this novel resonate with its readers. If you want to know what those are, you’ll have to read it yourself.
I highly recommend both of these reads. If you’re curious about either one, give in to your temptation. They’re both worth it.