Author: Leigh Bardugo
Plot and Themes: 5/5
Cheers Factor: 5/5
Pairing: Old Fashioned
This is a Kaz Brekker drink if I’ve ever seen one. It’s serious, hardcore and perfect for a gangster like Kaz to hold in one hand with a weapon in the other.
1 ½ oz whiskey
1 teaspoon of simple syrup from raw sugar
A few dashes of water
2 dashes Aromatic bitters
1 ice ball
-Add simple syrup, dash of water and bitters to glass and combine by stirring
-Add ice ball to glass
-Rub orange peel on rim of glass
-Pour whiskey into glass
-Pinch orange peel over drink
-Garnish with fresh orange peel
“‘That’s what he wants, not what he needs,’ Kaz said. ‘Leverage is all about knowing the difference.’”
Take a Shot: There is a mysterious drug circling around that is intensifying Grisha power and then subsequently killing them. Kaz Brekker is hired to break the scientist who created the jurda parem and he compiles a ragtag team of his friends and accomplices in order to get the job done Ocean’s Eleven style.
“The life you live, the hat you feel - it’s poison. I can drink it no longer.”
I love Ketterdam! It’s super cool and grungy and an intriguing place to be. Bonus points because the book has a map. I also love all of the different locations we get to see. I do love the Ice Court as well; it's a very fun journey our characters take to fun and exciting locations.
I love the multiple perspectives from all of our motley crew. It’s really a great way to read an ensemble novel and Bardugo does an amazing job of weaving the different perspectives together. I love how Nina is depicted as being a curvier woman and that is never compromised and it also isn’t demonized as well. The diversity of backgrounds of the characters is also amazing too. We get to see a lot of them grow and become Also shameless plug for Kaz and Wylan. They are my two favorite characters and I love them.
Plot and Themes
The Ocean’s series with George Clooney and Brad Pitt have been some of my favorite movies for a very long time. Additionally, I love the show Peaky Blinders and this book is a perfect mix of that. The heist aspect of the novel is truly so well written that the action just keeps you guessing all the time.
This book made me fall in love with the Grishaverse and was truly a turning point in my love of Leigh Bardugo after finishing Shadow and Bone. It’s a great book for lovers of ensemble books with high stakes and great action.
Reasons to Raise a Glass: STRONG. FEMALE. CHARACTERS., fast paced, good action, high stakes
Too Strong: I wish it wasn’t YA so they could curse (like it would be so good)
Click read more for more of my thoughts and spoilers! You have been warned spoilers are after the read more.
“I will have you without armor, Kaz Brekker. Or I will not have you at all.”
I love the crows. I love them so much. They are truly incredible and the way the ensemble is written is lovely. I love the depth given to each of them. Kaz is truly such a dark and twisty character that you can’t help but fall for the dark brooding boy who had to use his dead brother's body as a floatation device to save his own life. Or Inej’s trauma over being trafficked away from her family. Or Wylan’s abusive father. It’s truly just a great perfectly broken cast of characters.
The relationships we see develop in the characters is also amazing. Inej loves Kaz despite him trying to not show it and her getting hurt before they board the ship when he loses it. I also love Wylan and Jesper for their banter that becomes more than that. I even love Nina and Matthias’ enemies to lovers to enemies to lovers deal.
I think the best part is the care with which each twist and turn happened and the way that at every turn something realistically goes wrong from Kaz passing out in the prisoner van to Inej nearly dying in the hot chute and melting her shoes. It’s those little details that make it so realistically wonderful despite the aspects of magic and it being a fantasy reality.
“I’ve been made to protect you. Only in death will I be kept from this oath.”
Each book here at Cheers&Chapters is rated based off of certain categories that are genre specific, however every book will get a Cheers Factor. The Cheers Factor is how much we wanted to raise our glass while reading it. So get your glasses ready and cheers!