Can You Read Six Of Crows Before Shadow And Bone?

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You may just be standing at Barnes & Noble, looking at the Leigh Bardugo section, and asking yourself the question, “should I read Shadow and Bone before Six of Crows?”. Well, I’ve got the answer to that question!

So, can you read Six of Crows before Shadow and Bone? It is not recommended to read Six of Crows before Shadow and Bone. The former series has some minor spoilers for the latter, so it’s a good idea to start off your Grishaverse reading with Shadow and Bone.

I recently read both the Six of Crows duology and the Shadow and Bone trilogy, and I’m full of mixed feelings! So, let’s dive into everything Grishaverse, from the Darkling to Leigh Bardugo’s obsession with waffles.

Will Reading Six of Crows Spoil Shadow and Bone?

There will be some minor spoilers if you read Six of Crows before finishing Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, and Ruin and Rising.

The events in Six of Crows and the members of the Dregs take place after the Ravkan Civil War. This book is set on the island of Kerch in the city Ketterdam, whereas the events in Shadow and Bone take place on the other side of the True Sea in Ravka.

Kaz and the other Crows do cross the True Sea and travel to Fjerda, but they do not cross into Ravka. 

Okay! The next section will contain spoilers!

The main thing that I’m gonna be spoiling is the fate of Alina (but also not exactly).

In Ruin and Rising, Alina saves the day but ultimately loses her powers. She and Nikolai fake her death so that her and Mal can live a life away from the public eye.

In Six of Crows, Inej often refers to Alina as Sankta Alina; one of her knives is even named after her! She references the death of Alina, and I was very confused because I read Six of Crows before reading Ruin and Rising. 

In Crooked Kingdom, there is a large amount of character crossover. Nikolai Lantsov (disguised as Sturmhond), Genya Safin, and Zoya Nazyalensky are all in Ketterdam and work with the Crows in the auction of Kuwei Yul-Bo.

Having read the Shadow and Bone series before Crooked Kingdom, it’s much more exciting to see the return of these characters rather than being introduced to them for the first time.

Overall, you CAN read the Six of Crows series first, but the easter eggs just won’t hit the same.

What Order Should I Read Shadow and Bone and Six of Crows?

I think the best order to read The Grishaverse books in is in order of publication, which is as follows: 

  1. Shadow and Bone
  2. Siege and Storm 
  3. Ruin and Rising
  4. Six of Crows 
  5. Crooked Kingdom
  6. King of Scars 
  7. Rule of Wolves

You should read the Six of Crows duology before you read King of Scars. There are some pretty major spoilers of events (and maybe even some deaths). All of these are pretty large parts of the plot. 

I personally read the books in a very bizarre order! I started with Shadow and Bone and loved it. I was so excited to get into the next book!

However, when I read Siege and Storm, I became a bit of a hater (Mal is the WORST…sorry not sorry). After finishing this book, I decided I didn’t want to continue with the Shadow and Bone trilogy.

I ending up picking up Six of Crows after watching the Netflix series. I loved the characters (okay I loved Kaz), and I am a sucker for the misfit gang of friends trope.

Now I know what you’re thinking: the Netflix series is NOTHING like the book Six of Crows!

After reading the book, I agree! However, it got me into the book so you can’t completely knock the streaming series.

I LOVED Six of Crows, and I could go on forever about what a fun read it is (and I will later in this post), but I was confused about how the Shadow and Bone trilogy ended, so I decided to pick up Ruin and Rising next.

After finishing Ruin and Rising, I then read Crooked Kingdom. I would not recommend reading the books in this order, but it happened how it happened so there ya go.

I am very excited to read King of Scars (which follows Nikolai), but I am waiting to start it till the second book in the series, Rule of Wolves, is released on paperback. The series just needs to match on my shelf! You bookish babes get me 😉 

Which is Better: Six of Crows or Shadow and Bone?

This is a difficult question to definitively answer, due to it being completely subjective! Personally, I greatly prefer Six of Crows.

The rest of this section will contain major spoilers for the Six of Crows series and the Shadow and Bone series!

Okay first off, I dislike Mal with a burning passion. I also find Alina to be kind of a whiny baby. So far, not loving the main characters, let alone the OTP of the series. This made it difficult for me to really connect with the book.

Six of Crows, on the other hand, was the complete opposite for me! I adored all the Crows, and Kaz is one of my favorite characters I read all year.

The slow burn between Kaz and Inej was also so fun, and I was truly dying for them to be together by the end of the first book.

When they finally hold hands (AND KAZ HAS NO GLOVES ON) at the end of Crooked Kingdom, I literally screamed. The enemies-to-lovers between Mathias and Nina is also so intriguing! Fantasy series just really do enemies-to-lovers so well *chef’s kiss*.

For me, I can almost always pass on the childhood-friends-to-lovers trope, which is the main romance in the Shadow and Bone series.

In Shadow and Bone, one of my favorite characters was the Darkling, and he didn’t really have an interesting arc after the initial book, also.

I was really hoping for a Rhysand situation, and the Darkling had such cool powers and a mysterious past that I was just hoping for more from the character. However, I ended up being a bit disappointed with the series overall.

The one character I really did like from the Shadow and Bone series is Nikolai, which makes me very excited to read a series all about him! I’ll make sure to keep you all updated on how I like The King of Scars series. 

Six of Crows also has so many fun tropes and characters!

I love the heist and how throughout the book Kaz is always one step ahead of the characters (but also the reader)! It’s so exciting to find out just how they are going to be getting out of each sticky situation the Crows find themselves in.

It reminded me a lot of Queen of Shadows, with big reveal after big reveal.

I love to read books like that because I just cannot put them down! When I was reading Six of Crows, I was up many late nights because it was just so good!

I think that all in all, I’m a Kaz fan girl just like the rest of the Six of Crows fandom. Waiting for Kaz POVs really kept me turning page after page.

I think my one complaint about Six of Crows is that I wish the characters were a bit older. I guess it just wasn’t very believable that they were sixteen. In my mind, I just read them as about twenty and felt quite fine about it. 

I hope you all enjoy reading the Grishaverse books! If you’ve already read them, I want to know your favorite characters/scenes!

I also want to know if you noticed the bizarre amount of times the Crows eat waffles???

I personally will find any excuse to talk about Kaz Brekker, and I am okay with that. Happy reading!


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