Series: Caraval #1
Published by Flatiron Books on January 31, 2017
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy
Format: Print, Hardcover
Buy on Amazon
Whatever you've heard about Caraval, it doesn't compare to the reality. It's more than just a game or a performance. It's the closest you'll ever find to magic in this world . . .
Welcome, welcome to Caraval―Stephanie Garber’s sweeping tale of two sisters who escape their ruthless father when they enter the dangerous intrigue of a legendary game.
Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the far-away, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.
But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.
Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nevertheless becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.
I’ve been looking forward to this book for many months. The cover and description just screamed that this was a book I needed to read, and it wasn’t wrong. I borrowed this book from my public library and now I need to buy a copy. I loved it. Onto the review!
Overall I give this one a 5 out of 5. It was everything I wanted it to be and more.
I definitely think that it is a book to be read as opposed to listening to the audiobook. The reason I say this is because of the neat little letters throughout the book. Letters play a big part of this book from beginning to end, and the book has them on their own pages with pretty borders and fonts. It’s aesthetically pleasing and makes the book more enjoyable, at least in my opinion.
I was hooked by the characters from the very beginning. I love the name Scarlett and Donatella (aka Tella) is such a cool name to have as well. This pair of sisters was really interesting to read about. They reminded me of Scarlett and Rosie from Jackson Pearce’s first fairytale retelling Sisters Red. I see a resemblance in the protective nature of both of the Scarlett sisters. They would do anything for their sister. I loved Sisters Red, so I was very happy when this parallel came to mind. I also really enjoyed the other characters in this book. I found Legend to be absolutely fascinating and I hope to learn more about him in the next book.
The story really draws in the reader. There are tons of twists and turns throughout this book. When you think you’ve figured it out, Garber pulls another string and you’ll be left stunned. I could barely stand to put the book down. It was tantalizing and incredible. The plot is like no other. It was mysterious, magical, and manic at times.
I couldn’t rave enough about this book. The ending will leave you eager for more details on the next book. Sadly, right now there are no more details. Just know that there will be a second book. We don’t know when exactly, but yay for duologies!
If you like mystery, magic, and mayhem, definitely give this book a go. You won’t be disappointed. I wasn’t.