So let me tell you the story of how I came into possession of the Crooked Kingdom book by Leigh Bardugo. Sit down, dear children, and listen to my tale.
Prologue: The Bookstagram Feed
It’s not as if I haven’t heard of the Crooked Kingdom book before. I even blogged about it in my most anticipated September 2016 YA book releases. But what really pushed me to go out and get it were the millions of bookstagram posts featuring this book. Crooked Kingdom plus flowers. Crooked Kingdom plus bookmarks. Crooked Kingdom plus cats. You name it, bookstagram had it.
I thought, “Wow, this book sure is a really huge deal. I wonder why…”
Curious, I went out a day before payday to search the bookshelves of Kinokuniya, intending only to browse the YA section…
Act 1: The Crooked Kingdom book
And then I saw Crooked Kingdom on the featured shelves, and I picked it up. I gasped. The simplicity of the dark yellow background with pitch black illustrations enamored me. The beautiful photos in my bookstagram feed flashed before my eyes.
I read the summary. Crooked Kingdom is the second book in the Six of Crows series by Leigh Bardugo, and promises me tales of what happens after Kaz’s heist in Six of Crows. They’ve been double-crossed, it says, and they’re back to fighting for their lives. Powerful forces are closing down on Ketterdam because of the drug, jurda parem, and new enemies will emerge to test Kaz and his team. Meanwhile, a war is brewing…
I’ll stop there, the book says. But if you take me home, I will tell you everything.
Before I knew it, I had taken the beautiful book into my loving arms. And I told myself, “It’s not as if you didn’t plan on buying it anyway.”
>> Buy the Crooked Kingdom Book Now <<
Act 2: Wait. There’s a prequel to this, right…?
I realized then that I haven’t read Six of Crows yet, so it would be, you know, weird to read Crooked Kingdom before that. And what do you know? Six of Crows was just right beside the Crooked Kingdom book, enticing me witih its black, red, and grey cover. My color combo weakness. I was hooked; I wanted to know more.
Six of Crows is set in Ketterdam, a fictional world that’s part of the Grisha series, also by Leigh Bardugo. Except that instead of being set in a fictional Russia, it takes place in a fictional Netherlands, a unique setting for a YA book. It also promises me a tale of criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker and his gang trying to pull off the biggest and most deadly heist of their lives. The beginning of it all.
A fantasy heist story with an intriguing cast of characters? “Sign me up!” I screamed as I yanked it off the shelves, salivating.
>>Read my Review of Six of Crows <<
Act 3: The final battle, the final choice
I had a dillemma then. Should I just leave with two books, or was there room for a third?
“No!” my wallet protested. “Goddammit, Chiqui. Don’t do it!”
“Okay, calm down oh my god,” I told my wallet, as passersby threw me some shade and hurried their steps. “I’m just going to go browse…”
My wallet’s screams and warnings fell on deaf ears, because wallets can’t talk, much less shout or scream, obviously. I looked through the books and came across Nevernight by Jay Kristoff.
Being a sucker for the white, black, and red color combo, I picked it up and skimmed the first page…
“Be advised now that the pages in your hands speak of a girl who was to murder as maestros are to music. Who did to happy ever afters what a sawblade does to skin.”
Before I knew it, I was walking towards the cashier with all three books in hand, a pleased grin on my face. Nothing else mattered now, nothing except me and my books and my plans for a bookstagram photoshoot the next day. The wallet had been defeated.
The books had won.
>> Buy Nevernight Now <<
Epilogue: My wallet is in tears but hey I have new shinies
As I tucked my credit card back in my wallet, I felt a sense of elation. Contrary to what Mr. Wallet had made me believe, there was none of the guilt and remorse that accompanied a splurge. Perhaps it was because I was relatively restrained and promptly ignored the urge to toss in the four The Raven Boys books into my haul. Perhaps it was because I still hadn’t gone over my book and entertainment budget. (That wallet, what a liar!)
Or perhaps it was the anticipation of a book photoshoot so that I can finally return to Instagram and show the bookstagram world that, “Hey, look at me, posting a photo of the Crooked Kingdom book on my feed. I am no longer an outcast. I am one of you now.”
If you got this far, LOL thanks so much for reading and putting up with my insanity! I’ll be reviewing these books as I finish them so please subscribe to my mailing list if you want updates–the form is on the top bar! Or send me an email if you’re having problems and I’ll add you in myself. Thanks!
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Have you read these books? If so, what do you think about them? If not, which book appeals to you most? Let me know in the comments!