My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Les Misérables meets Six of Crows in this page-turning adventure as a young thief finds herself going head to head with leaders of Paris’s criminal underground in the wake of the French Revolution.
In the violent urban jungle of an alternate 1828 Paris, the French Revolution has failed and the city is divided between merciless royalty and nine underworld criminal guilds, known as the Court of Miracles. Eponine (Nina) Thénardier is a talented cat burglar and member of the Thieves Guild. Nina’s life is midnight robberies, avoiding her father’s fists, and watching over her naïve adopted sister, Cosette (Ettie). When Ettie attracts the eye of the Tiger–the ruthless lord of the Guild of Flesh–Nina is caught in a desperate race to keep the younger girl safe. Her vow takes her from the city’s dark underbelly to the glittering court of Louis XVII. And it also forces Nina to make a terrible choice–protect Ettie and set off a brutal war between the guilds, or forever lose her sister to the Tiger.
Thank you NetGalley and Knopf Book for my ARC. All opinions are my own.
“This is how it started;
with a sister weeping in her bed;
a child so terrified she sold herself to a thief;
a girl so lovely, the world went to war to possess her”
I was sold on this book when I saw Les Miserables retelling and for fans of Six of Crows.
The Court of Miracles is a beautiful, fast-paced, betrayal-packed, plot twisted tale where I honestly couldn’t choose which character I loved more. Imagine if the French Revolution hadn’t occurred and the royal family still stood in 19th century France. Now imagine a network of guilds ranging from thieves to beggars that all have a purpose in the underground Court of Miracles.
The Court of Miracles consists of thieves, assassins, and beggars, and even a guild of letters that serves as basically the accountants of the Court of Miracles. But there’s also a darker guild, the Court of Dreamers, led by a man called the Tiger who drugs young girls and runs a greedy brothel. The development of these 5 guilds was incredible. Though the guild of thieves takes primary place, we get a small sight into the locations of the guilds’ and how their people within the guild act. These guilds are more complex, complete with a leader, their second-in-command, and sub levels within their guild. All guilds recognize their own turf, and a well-known rule that you don’t trespass on each other’s territory, let alone speak against another guild. It so happens that our main character, Nina, manages to break both of these rules. All to save a sister.
Nina’s sister was sold by their father to the Court of Dreams when Nina was very young. Nina, helped by Femi, the messenger of the Court of Thieves, finds sanctuary in the Court of Thieves and the cats of the guild. Here, she finds a new family. But she also vows to herself to take down the Tiger, lord of the Court of Dreams, and get her sister back. But saving her sister from the horrors of the Court of Dreams proves much harder than she thought. Over the course of several years, Nina works amongst the cats of the thieves guild, toeing the rules of entering other guilds’ homes and speaking to their lords, forging a bond with an assassin, a prince, and Ettie-the rare light that has caught the eye of the Tiger too. But a new revolution is brewing, and Nina has not only involved herself with the leader of the revolution, but also several guilds.
“You must make your enemies your allies.
And if you can’t do that, then destroy them.
Them, and all who follow them,
so that fear doesn’t come for you when you sleep.”
This book is thick with deception, intriguing characters, plot twists, and 19th century French revolutions. I absolutely fell in love with Nina and how her mind works. Reminiscent of a certain leader of the Dregs 😉 I loved the tiny bit of romance that was added without taking the spotlight. It was about friendships, familiar bonds that stretch farther than blood, and really weighted the ideas of laws (or lack thereof) and checks on guild leaders that work to their own agenda. I could not put this book down! Just when I thought the book would end one way, Kester Grant proves me wrong! I cannot wait for the sequel!
Have you added this book to your TBR? Do you have any favorite classics or have you read Les Miserables?
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