King of Scars (Nikolai Duology #1) By Leigh Bardugo [Review]

King of Scars (Nikolai Duology, #1)

RELEASE DATE: January 29th 2019
Leigh Bardugo
Young-Adult,   Fantasy,  Magic, Adventure .
PUBLISHER: Orion Children’s Books

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.



MY REV (Copy)

“Most of us can hide our greatest hurts and longings. It’s how we survive each day. We pretend the pain isn’t there, that we are made of scars instead of wounds.”

King Of Scars is one of my most anticipated books of 2019. I’ve been waiting for this book since forever. I’m a huge fan of Grisha Trilogy and I was very much looking forward to Nikolai Lantsov’s story since I’ve first heard about it. He’s my second favorite Character besides Darkling and Alina so I had very high expectations for King Of Scars. So did it meet my full expectations, honestly no but I still had fun reading this book and loved the twist at the end. It’s so good to be back in the world of Ravka after three years. If you haven’t read Shadow and bone trilogy and Six Of Crows then you need to get to them first before jumping into this book because it contains major spoilers for those two series.

“It’s not exciting if nothing can go wrong.”

The story continues three years after  the events in ruin and rising, the country is still in crisis and now they’re on the verge of a new civil War which could destroy them. King Nikolai is trying to restore the former glory of Ravka but not many people is willing to follow a young King. He might’ve survived the war, but he’s still battling the darkness that is starting to grow stronger with each day. On the other hand, Nina Zenik is on a secret mission on Fjerda to help emigrant grishas who’re confused about their powers. When threats keeps arising on the borders of Ravka, Nikolai needs to acquire as many allies as possible before the war breaks out but first he needs vanquish the monster inside him. So, with the help a young monk and a grisha squaller, Nikolai travels to the horrors of their past which holds all of their answers.

“One could plot violent espionage and still hope for dessert.”

Although this was Nikolai Lantsov’s book, it also highlights Nina Zenik, and Zoya. I really enjoyed all of these characters but If I had to be honest I enjoyed Nikolai and Zoya’s POV more than Nina Zenik. It doesn’t mean that I didn’t liked her. She’s still an amazing character and her grisha power was totally awesome. Nikolai was pretty fun and enjoyable character but behind his witty personality he hides his troubles, loneliness, and sadness. I have so many feels for this guy. Zoya is a tough girl with beautiful looks and cold personality. She’s the commander of the second army and man she was totally kickass. I loved her character despite her hard edged personality. Nina is mourning for her loss and feels envious of other people’s happiness. I really felt sad for her and I enjoyed her inner conversations with Matthias. Her recklass acts and ranting has annoyed me a little bit but I still can’t help but like her. Coming to the supporting characters, I  liked Isaak(A Grisha Soldier), Hanne(A Fjerdan), Tolya & Tamar(the twin grishas), Genya, David Kostyk(A skilled Fabrikator) and finally Yuri (a young monk who worships Darkling).

“Progress is a river. It cannot be called back once it leaps its banks.”

The  plot was great but I wasn’t expecting this to be a slow ride. I found the first half pretty slow especially Nina’s chapters. I enjoyed Nikolav and Zoya’s chapters more than Nina’s even though she played a major role in this book. I can’t wait to see her back in Ravka joining Nikolai and Zoya. Nikolai and Zoya, and Nina were on different paths so this mostly felt like reading two stories in one book. There is no actual romance in this book but there’s a high possibility of Nik and Zoya happening in the next book. They’re total opposites but perfect for each other. I absolutely loved the banters between them and I’m totally shipping them! There’s a lot of unpredictable twists and turns in this book, and let’s talk about that last twist which f***ing made my jaw drop to the floor. OMG!!! Is that freaking thing really happened? I’m still in shock! It might leave some people very unhappy, but as for me, I’m over the moon freaking out with happiness. I wish I could tell you guys about it, but it’s a huge spoiler. The author’s writing was captivating and addicting, as always. The book was told in multiple POV’s shifting between different characters.  The world building was fantastic. Leigh never fails to impress me when it comes to setting magical worlds and creating morally grey characters.

“When the gods give you another look at the world, best enjoy it.”

Overall, It was a great read! Although I’m not fully satisfied with some aspects, I wasn’t really disappointed and I’m super excited for the next book. It’s definitely going to be  one of my highly anticipated reads of 2020.

Recommend it?
Image result for yes gif

I highly recommend this to all the YA fantasy lovers! It’s a spin-off series so I strongly suggest   you to at least check out Shadow and Bones trilogy to get familiar with the world, the characters, and the backstory.

If you don’t have time to re-read the whole Grisha series then I would recommend you guys to check out the detailed summaries of the books in which really helped me a lot.
The Grisha Trilogy Reread

[4/5 Stars]

So, What do you think of this book? Have you read Shadow And Bone Trilogy? Do you Plan to read it?
Please feel free to comment below!

See You In The Next Post and Have a Great Day! 🙂Signature

22 thoughts on “King of Scars (Nikolai Duology #1) By Leigh Bardugo [Review]

  1. Shalini April 11, 2019 / 1:39 am

    I plan to read all the books by this author. I was to get it at end of Jan. I fell ill so used the book money for meds. Hence the books are pushed for later. Great review♥️

    Liked by 1 person

  2. anovelglimpse April 11, 2019 / 9:22 pm

    Great review! You answered the questions I had about this one! I have read Six of Crows Duology, but not her other series. I guess I need to read that one before I jump into this.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Beware Of The Reader April 12, 2019 / 12:33 am

    I had read your review on IG already Raven! Thanks for the tip on by the way! I’ve only read her first series and it went downhill like 4,5 stars to 3 stars for the last one. I know everyone is smitten with her books and she is a talented author so maybe I’ll try her Six of Crow and see if it works for me before trying King of Scars! Wonderful review!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Raven @ Dreamy Addictions April 12, 2019 / 12:53 am

      Shadow and Bone was a hit or miss for some people but Six of Crows is everyone’s favorite so I really hope it works out for you too! Thank you! 😊


  4. The Candid Cover April 12, 2019 / 3:23 am

    I am so happy that you found this to be mostly enjoyable! I am so excited to start reading it one of these days. I hope that the next one is amazing, too. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. stephaniesbookreviews April 12, 2019 / 4:26 am

    I’m glad you enjoyed this, even if it didn’t live up to your expectations. I love Nikolai so much, but I really never liked Zoya and Nina was one of my least favorite Dregs, so that was part of the reason I decided to put this one off a little longer. I will probably wait until close to the next book comes out so I don’t have to wait too long after the ending in this one!


    • Raven @ Dreamy Addictions April 18, 2019 / 7:21 am

      Nikolai is a pretty likeable character but I can’t say the same for Nina and Zoya! They’re both hard edged and cold. Oh, that’s a great idea because the wait is already killing me. I can’t wait for the next book to come out! I hope you enjoy this book when you finally get around to it! 😊

      Liked by 1 person

  6. ariellereads April 13, 2019 / 8:05 pm

    Glad you liked it, Raven!! I definitely agree about if you have time to reread the original Grisha series first. I did read a few different summaries but then afterwards decided to actually reread Shadow and Bone and picked up on so many things I had forgotten lol.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Raven @ Dreamy Addictions April 18, 2019 / 7:25 am

      Thank you, Arielle! I forgot about a lot of things but the long summaries did help me refresh everything. I hope you enjoyed the book! I’m super excited for the next book! That ending had left me speechless!


  7. Jen April 14, 2019 / 9:02 pm

    I still need to read Shadow and Bone and Six of Crows, before I dive into this book. I’m a little behind lol. But I’m so glad you enjoyed the continuation of this story and now I’m even more excited to meet Nikolai!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. theorangutanlibrarian April 15, 2019 / 3:41 am

    This is definitely one of my most anticipated books of the year- it’s quite shocking I’ve had it since publication day and still haven’t read it yet. Really glad it didn’t disappoint and that Bardugo’s world building was impressive as ever. Awesome review!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Raven @ Dreamy Addictions April 18, 2019 / 7:28 am

      Thank you! This book was little slow but still entertaining! I hope you enjoy it when you finally get around to it! 😊


  9. Dani @ Perspective of a Writer May 29, 2019 / 2:40 am

    WOW Raven you really did enjoy this. I’ve read so many who were disappointed in it. Would you suggest picking up this series with this book? Would it be too confusing? ❤️


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s