Book Review of The Six of Crows

Josslyn Brandon, Staff Writer

Warning: the following content will contain spoilers for the Six of Crows

The Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo follows the story of six teenagers living in the Barrel of Ketterdam. Kaz Brekker; the leader of the Dregs and a very skilled thief. Inej Gafa; a skilled spy, known as the Wraith. Jesper Fahey; a skilled sharpshooter who can’t seem to walk away from danger. Nina Zenik; a Heartrender a long way from home. Mathias Helver; a soldier waiting for his chance at revenge. Wylan Van Eck; a runaway with no home to go back to. 

Short Summary:

Kaz Brekker, the seventeen-year-old leader of the Dregs, is offered an impossible job by a man named Jan Van Eck with the promise of thirty million Kruger. He assembles a six-person team including himself, Inej Gafa, Jesper Fahey, Nina Zenik, Wylan Van Eck, and Matthias Helver. Before boarding the ship to the Ice Court in Fjerda, they were ambushed. Inej got stabbed and was close to losing her life. They got to Fjerda and made a plan to break into the Ice Court, it was complicated and risky, but overall successful. There were many mishaps on the way, but Eventually, Nina found the location of the person they were supposed to take back with them to Kerch. The problem however was the scientist, Bo Yol-Bayur, was long dead. In his place however was his son, Kuwei. They had little choice but to bring him back with them. As it turns out Jan Van Eck lied to them, but Kaz anticipated this and keeps Kuwei from him. However, this plan got Inej taken and held as ransom, leaving Kaz no other choice but to ask his brother’s killer for help. 


The theme of The Six of Crows is justice and teamwork. Justice is an important theme in the book and is presented in the way Kaz seeks revenge on Pekka Rollins for the death of his brother, Jordie. Nina wants to seek justice on Fjerda for its prejudice and treatment towards Grisha. Matthias wants revenge on Nina for getting him branded as a slaver the year prior. Inej wants to bring slavers to justice because of the awfulness and how it has deeply affected her own past. Wylan later finds that he no longer fears his father, and instead wants justice brought to him for what he has done to both him and his mother. Justice and revenge is a pattern that ties into all of the crow’s lives and has made them into the characters we see in the pages. Teamwork is another important theme in the novel that we can see through all of the characters’ relationships with each other; both as a whole and individually. The six of them have a complicated sort of dynamic that slowly becomes a family of sorts. Kaz often finds himself leaning on Inej as a sort of safety net, as in the trusts her completely and relies on her in a way. Jesper and Wylan are two very different people at the start of the book, but it is easily seen how well they work together; even if they are reluctant to admit it. Nina and Matthias put on this act of hating each other until the two of them find common ground, they become a very powerful force together; much like the other pairs.

Magic System:

Some people are born with a special ability that usually manifests at a young age. A Grisha’s ability is described as a small science, and in Ravka they make up the second army. There are three orders of Grisha, Corporalki; the order of the living and dead, Eatheralki; the order of the summoners, and Materialki; the order of the fabrikators. Nina is a Corporalki and a member of Ravka’s second army. Jesper is an untrained Materialki, who got his zowa (Grisha) abilities from his mother. Grisha are very powerful if trained, even more so under the influence of a jurda parem; a drug that causes great addiction and later death.