Tuesday, 12 February 2019

King Of Scars - Review

Book Review:
Title: King Of Scars
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Publisher: Orion Children's Book

“Nikolai had been told hope was dangerous, had been warned of it many times. But he’d never believed that. Hope was the wind that came from nowhere to fill your sails and carry you home.”

Nikolai Lantsov has always had a gift for the impossible. No one knows what he endured in his country’s bloody civil war—and he intends to keep it that way. Now, as enemies gather at his weakened borders, the young king must find a way to refill Ravka’s coffers, forge new alliances, and stop a rising threat to the once-great Grisha Army.
   Yet with every day a dark magic within him grows stronger, threatening to destroy all he has built. With the help of a young monk and a legendary Grisha Squaller, Nikolai will journey to the places in Ravka where the deepest magic survives to vanquish the terrible legacy inside him. He will risk everything to save his country and himself. But some secrets aren’t meant to stay buried—and some wounds aren’t meant to heal. 

The book that everyone has been so eagerly anticipated is finally out and available to devour! And oh, it is so bloody fantastic!!

I mean, I didn't expect any less from the Queen herself, Miss Leigh Bardguo, but it's honestly just the greatest feeling to have one of your most anticipated releases meet your expectations and not end in disappointment.

Let me first start with what (pleasantly) surprised me about this book: Zoya Nazyalensky. In the Grisha Trilogy I didn’t really care much for Zoya. She was an okay character, but I was too invested in Alina, The Darkling, Nikolai, etc. to really pay attention to her. Well, in King of Scars I paid attention, and boy did I fall in love with her! Her attitude, her strength, her story, it was all so captivating. Zoya is a frigging bad-ass! She could literally stab me, and I would thank her.
Honestly, any of the main characters could stab me and I would thank them. They’re all so distinct but I love them all the same (okay, maybe I love Nikolai a little bit more than Nina and Zoya, but still.)

Nikolai is still as charismatic and witty as he was in the original trilogy, but we also see a new darker/troubled side to him. My poor King. But truthfully, even in the more serious scenes in this book he manages to bring some lightheartedness and makes everyone feel at ease. He's just a little ray of sassy sunshine.

Nina is still dealing with her grief while completing a mission Nikolai has set for her. Nina's chapters were the definitely hardest for me to read, because I could really feel her grief and the pain she was going through - I just wanted to give her the biggest hug! But of course, Nina being Nina, she still managed to slay the game while dealing with this turmoil. I did miss seeing her with Ketterdam gang, but she's found some new acquaintances who I guess aren't all that bad.

Most of the OG Grisha characters are back, like Genya, Tamar and David and we also get a few new faces - They're not quite squad goals like the Dregs (I don't think anyone will ever be,) however I really enjoyed their interactions and their contribution to the story. (It's really hard to explain things without spoiling anything ahhhhh!!)

The only slight issue I had with this book was the pacing. The first half of this book did feel a little slow, it felt like not much was happening and I was just waiting for some more intense, action-packed scenes.
It did pick up in the 2nd half though and that was ONE THRILLING RIDE, I just wished it balanced out a bit more. Although saying that, I'm not going to let that affect my rating because when I think about the book in it's entirety, there was not one moment I hated. Leigh's writing is phenomenal as always. Her character's are lovable and intriguing. And she has the ability to keep you on the edge of your seat, quietly screaming into your book asking what the hell is happening (basically me during the entire 2nd part of the book!) Expect lots of revelations!

Like with every new Leigh Bardugo book, I am left aching for more. 2020 is too far away. How am I expected to wait a whole year before seeing how the end of King Of Scars continues to play out? How?!

Overall, Leigh Bardugo has delivered another incredible book that will leave you shook, and I can't wait to see how she continues with the story. I can already tell we've got one big storm coming and I am excited as hell!

5 Stars

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