Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

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Six of Crows bk 2. Indigo, 2016. ISBN 9781780622309
(Age: 14+) Highly recommended. Fantasy. Goodreads Choice Award Nominee for Young Adult Fantasy and Science Fiction (2016). The stunning sequel to Six of crows, see Kaz Brekker and his crew fighting for their lives. They have been double-crossed and Kaz is determined to have his revenge. In a series of daring heists, they are fighting for their lives and Kaz needs every bit of his cunning and intelligence to find out about the deadly drug known as jurda parem and to bring some peace to his team.
Once again the world building in Crooked Kingdom is outstanding. The city of Ketterdam is brought to life, with its canals, warehouses, merchants and people making a fabulous background to the adventures of the six young people.
The daring exploits of the crew keep the reader totally engrossed as they break into houses, fool dangerous people and fight off their foes. The action is breathtaking but so is the characterisation. Each chapter is told by one of the six characters and it is done so well that the reader has no problem following such a large group of main characters as well as a plethora of minor ones.
The characteristics of each person are richly elaborated, with details of each person's background and reason for being in Ketterdam gradually evolving as their story is told. Kaz of course is central to the story and Bardugo leaves us very satisfied with how he evolves. Of course with such a large cast and with so much danger to contend with, there are some casualties on the way and lots of surprising twists as well.
This is an excellent sequel to Six of crows and I look forward to reading anything else that Leigh Bardugo writes in the future.
Pat Pledger