These books were one of the last ones I read towards the end of 2021, King of Scars and Rule of Wolves by Leigh Bardugo. set in the Grisha verse, like the other books by the same author that I absolutely love!
I have tried to talk about this in a spoiler free way, so if you’re hoping to read them, or looking forward to the Netflix series, then you should be safe to read this.
A rubbish summary
These books follow the aftermath of The Shadow Bone series and The Six of crows duology, the story follows Nina’s journey now that she has come back to her homeland, as well as Nikolai and Zoya, as well as many other favourites from the series that came before (trying to be non-specific about who because that does involve spoilers). The rumours about Nikolai being a bastard threaten his throne, all while Ravka is trying to hold back incursions from Fjerda and the Shu at their borders. There is another threat sweeping across all the countries, land is being lost to areas just like the fold that divided Ravka in two. Nina chooses to return to Fjerda as a spy, to save Grisha and smuggle them to safety in Ravka but, after spending too long with the Crows she finds it harder and harder to obey orders, so when the opportunity presents itself to get inside Yard Bruhm’s household (the fearsome commander of the Fjerdan army), she takes it. Nikolai and Zoya try to keep Ravka from descending into war again, all while they try to unravel the legacy of the Darkling’s magic on Ravka and the Grisha.
Ah, I loved it! Although, I will say that for Leigh Bardugo, this ending was suspiciously happy and I don’t trust it. If you’ve read the books that came before, you will not regret reading these! There were some mutterings online (specifically booktok) that this was vanity publishing for the fans and the story wasn’t meant to carry on but that’s absolute nonsense. These books tie up a lot of loose ends from the prior series’, as well as giving characters such as Zoya some interesting depth and roundness that we didn’t have before but the seeds for which were definitely planted earlier. You see so many favourite faces and get to continue the stories of characters I loved from the previous books (specifically, we visit the Crows for a bit!). I will say, it’s unlikely these books will make a lot of sense if you haven’t read the ones that came before, or at least, some of the emotional depth will be missing.
As I’m trying to keep these reviews short and sweet now, that’s all I’m going to say!
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The 24th book I consumed this year was the audio book Black Sunshine by Karina Halle