|Date(s):||Grisha Trilogy; 2012-2014|
Shadow and Bone (Show); 2021-
|Country of Origin:||USA|
|External Links:||Grishaverse Site|
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The Grishaverse is the umbrella fandom based on a number of books written by Leigh Bardugo. It includes The Grisha Trilogy, the Six of Crows Duology, and the King of Scars Duology set in the same universe. They are young adult Speculative Fiction/Fantasy novels. The world and books are notable for their intense worldbuilding, magic system, and magic users.
Leigh Bardugo, has called her blend of Eastern influence and Steampunk inspiration "Tsarpunk." 
The verse was adapted into a tv series by Netflix (season 1 released in April 2021.)
The Grishaverse spans a number of book series, listed below in chronological order.
- Six of Crows (2015)
- Crooked Kingdom (2016)
- King of Scars (2019)
- Rule of Wolves (2021)
Short stories set in the Grishaverse:
- The Witch of Duva (2012)
- The Too-Clever Fox (2013)
- Little Knife (2014)
- The Demon in the Wood: A Darkling Prequel Story (2015)
- Ayama and the Thorn Wood (2017)
- The Soldier Prince (2017)
- When Water Sang Fire (2017)
In January 2019, Netflix ordered an eight-episode series based on the Grisha Trilogy and Six of Crows duology, set to premiere in April 2021. The name of the show is Shadow and Bone, like the first book in the Grisha Trilogy. The show covered the events of the first Grisha Trilogy book, and also integrated most of the characters from the Six of Crows duology in a parallel, original sub-plot, which introduced new interactions between characters who do not meet in the books canon, or only at a much later date.
The show was renewed for a second season in June 2021.
The Grisha Trilogy
Six of Crows Duology
The Grisha Trilogy takes place primarily in Ravka, a fantasized Russia.
Ketterdam, a fantasy Amsterdam , is the original setting of Six of Crows.
Other fantasy countries include Fjerda, derivative of northern countries of Sweden, Norway, and Finland; Shu Han, an amalgam of a couple continental Asian cultures, but heavily inspired by China. The Wandering Isle, which evokes Ireland, and Novyi Zem (a 'New World' which is reminiscent of a Wild West-style frontier territory) play a less central role.
Possibly because of Leigh Bardugo's own activity on her Tumblr, the Grishaverse fandom thrives on the site. There are many communities that post daily, host fanevents, and are extremely active. Fanart and fanedits are incredibly popular, and there seems to be a more active artist community than author community.
Six of Crows was notably more well-received than the Grisha Trilogy, and SoC content makes up the most of the fandom's activity. While general consensus is that the characterization and romance in the Grisha Trilogy were lacking, the Six of Crows Duology is praised for its diverse cast, explicit queer representation, descriptions of characters dealing with trauma, and plot twists. There is controversy regarding the love triangle between Alina, the Darkling, and Mal, over their individual characterization, and generally over whether the Grisha Trilogy is worth reading.
Six of Crows has been featured on Fandometrics multiple times, and was on the 2018, 2017, and 2016 Top Books lists. In 2018 both books in the duology made it to the top of the list - the only series to be listed by individual book rather than as a series, making Leigh Bardugo the only author listed twice.
Netflix Show Reception
Upon Netflix announcing that the series would combine The Grisha Triology and Six of Crows, some fans voiced concerns with the creative choice, especially when it became clear from the promotional material and casting announcements that fan favourites Nikolai Lantsov and Wylan van Eck would not be present in the first season.
The release of the Netflix show prompted a renewal of interest in the fandom, attracting new fans and prompting fans of one of the book series to take interest in the other ones. Some fans wrote exclusively about the tv show canon, which differs in some aspects from the book canon.
Fanworks production ticked up notably: as of 27/08/2021, the Grisha Trilogy AO3 tag had 2939 works, 1700 of which had been posted between April and August 2021. The Six of Crows AO3 tag had 3371 works, about 1800 of which were posted after the show's release. (There is considerable overlap between both tags.)
Popular ships in The Grisha Triology fandom are:
- Darklina (alt. Alarkling) - Alina Starkov/The Darkling
- Malina - Malyen Oretsev/Alina Starkov
- Nikolina - Alina Starkov/Nikolai Lantsov
- Zoyalai - Nikolai Lantsov/Zoya Nazyalensky
The main Six of Crows ships follow the book's canon relationships:
Darklina vs Malina
Throughout The Grisha Triology Alina Starkov has three potential love interests (Mal, The Darkling and Nikolai). This has lead to the fandom being very divided as to who the best candidate is. Primarily the conflicts have existed between the fans who enjoy shipping Alina with either Mal or the Darkling. This means that both Mal and The Darkling get a lot of heat in the fandom, as well as have fans fiercly defending them.
Fans of Malina often argue that Darklina is problematic because of The Darkling's actions as the books' villain. Fans of Darklina, on the other hand, argue that Mal does not respect or treat Alina well.
Why is there so much Mal hate in the Grisha fandom? I really don't understand. People worship the Darkling, but hate Mal. They say Mal acted like an ass in S&S, but nobody thinks it was ass-ish for the Darkling to expand the fold over that entire village in S&B?
Leigh Bardugo's books have been the subject of Readalongs and Challenges on Booktube.
Booktuber withcindy has created numerous videos about the books of the Grishaverse. Including reviews of Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom, a concept trailer for Six of Crows, a reading vlog of Shadow and Bone, and a video where she messaged people on Tinder only using quotes by The Darkling.
Other popular Booktubers and their videos about the books include:
- itsdivya's video i finally read a good young adult book about Six of Crows.
Author Support of Fandom
Leigh Bardugo is on Tumblr, and she often reblogs fanart of her characters, fanedits, and fanmixes. She also has a pinterest board where she posts inspiration, fanart, and canon artwork from the novels. She has attended many conventions, and has been a regular guest at the NYC BookCon since 2017.
Archives and Communities
- Six of Crows AO3 tag
- The Grisha Trilogy AO3 tag. This tag is synonymous with the "Grishaverse -- All Media Types" tag.
- Shadow & Bone (TV) AO3 tag
- Six of Crows Tumblr tag
- Grishaverse Tumblr tag
- Star a War, 2014-2020. A Darkling/Alina, Mal/Alina, Nikolai/Alina series.
-  An Ace Up the Sleeve by LivesInTheStars January, 2016 (Jesper/Wylan)
- Whithout a Mouth I Can Swear Your Name by tothewillofthepeople, 2017. Jesper/Wylan, Kaz/Inej Hogwarts AU.
- Out of Time by destinies, 2020. A 100k Darklina forced marriage AU
- Dealing with Our Demons by ravenyenn19: an epic Kaz/Inej WIP which started posting in 2020, with 475k+, 114+ chapters, 270k hits and 5700+ comments as of 08/2021 (Kaz/Inej)
- Little Faith by vuas, Matthias/Nina, 2021
- Stories About Crows by marycontraire, Kaz/Inej, Jesper/Wylan, a series containing 19 connected stories and 76k words, posted over the summer of 2021.
- Walls by DarbyDoo22, 2021 (Ivan/Fedyor).
- scared rituals (podfic) by Ashling & flowersforgraves (Kaz/Inej, 8 minutes, 2021)
- (Podfic) Paint a thank-you on my palm by greedy_dancer (Kaz/Inej, 21 minutes, 2021)
- Help a Friend Out (PODFIC) by Opalsong (Kaz/Jesper, 5 minutes, 2021)
- "Good to have you back." written & read by dreaminghour (Ivan/Fedyor, 2021).
- Morgana0anagrom's portraits of the Grishaverse characters have been used for the Grishaverse Wiki.
- PhantomRin has made several well received fanart pieces.
- Fine by lucife56, a collection of 40 pieces of fanart depicting Darklina as well as other Grishaverse characters, often inspired by fics.
- "Tsarpunk" on Bardugo's site
- Shadow and Bone on Bardugo's Site
- Siege and Storm on Bardugo's Site
- Ruin and Rising on Bardugo's Site
- "Netflix Orders Shadow And Bone Series Based On Leigh Bardugo's Grishaverse Novels From Eric Heisserer & Shawn Levy".
- lbardugo Leigh Bardugo's Tumblr
- [2018 Top Books]
- [2017 Top Books]
- LBardugo Leigh Bardugo's Pinterest Board
- Bardugo's Bio BookCon site