“Welcome, welcome to Caraval! The grandest show on land or by sea. Inside you’ll experience more wonders than most people see in a lifetime. You can sip magic from a cup and buy dreams in a bottle. But before you fully enter into our world, you must remember it’s all a game.”
Caraval by Stephanie Garber
Star rating: ★★★★ ☆ 4/5 stars
Format: library hardcover
Summary: Scarlett has always dreamed of going to the magical Caraval her grandmother would tell her stories of. She’d given up the hope of getting to go herself as her wedding approaches when tickets arrive. She’s torn about attending but the decision is made for her and now she must play the game of Caraval in order to rescue her sister.
Review: I had a lot of fun reading this book. I liked the characters and the setting a lot. There is a lot of magic and plot twists. I heard it was supposed to be about a circus but I didn’t really get a circus feeling from any of the book. I’m not as big a circus fan as some people that I know so who knows.
I liked the romance between Scarlett and Julian. I have a thing for ships that start out antagonistic with the guy calling the girl a nickname and never her real name. It’s probably one of the stupidest tropes that I love but what are you going to do?
I liked how both Donatella and Scarlett were fighting in their own ways to free themselves from the abuse and tyranny of their father. Although I know why Donatella couldn’t tell Scarlett her plans I wished she would have. I didn’t like the fake deaths, I sort of could tell they weren’t permanent. It seemed a little too easy. If her wish worked at the time it would have been one thing but for it to not work and then Donatella turns up like “oh yeah it worked”. It was a bit anticlimactic but I still liked the book overall.
I think my favorite thing was that Scarlett saw the colors of her emotions. It was really interesting and I wish it was explored more, because that doesn’t seem like a normal thing. I wonder if she has magic powers or if it’s connected to her grandma. I don’t know but I’d love to see it take a larger role in the second book.
Recommendation: This is a really fun fantasy book, I think if you like that genre that you would like this book.