King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

King of Scars (King of Scars Duology, #1) (Grishaverse, #6)

by Leigh Bardugo

The perfect gift for Leigh Bardugo fans, with a beautiful foiled cover. The much-anticipated first book in a brand-new duology by New York Times bestselling author, Leigh Bardugo.

Face your demons . . . or feed them.

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.

Reviewed by ladygrey on

4 of 5 stars


I didn’t think it was possible to get me to like Zoya, but she did it. And I have to say it’s a little bit Harry Potter/horcruxy and I’m not sure what I think about that. Except that I’m sure it will be interesting and exciting in the next book.

I do like Ravka better than Ketterdam and so this book was...oddly comforting... interesting.... fun. But, I mean, with Nikolai how can it not be? It’s every bit as amusing and witty as I could hope for.

REREAD: There are parts, much like Crooked Kingdom, where I just wanted it to move faster; to get to the action. Through a lot of the first and second act. I liked Nina’s story better the second time around, after it really git going. But it was slow going in the beginning too. Having just read the Crows book, I’d liked what she learned from Kaz and carried into this story. And I liked Nikolai and Zoya, their banter and their moments, and just Nikolai. But that’s the slow rolling story that I would have liked to trim or fast forward in a few places. 

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Reading updates

  • Started reading
  • 9 February, 2019: Finished reading
  • 9 February, 2019: Reviewed
  • 24 April, 2021: Started reading
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  • 24 April, 2021: Finished reading
  • 9 February, 2019: Reviewed