Author: Stephanie Garber
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Publication Date: January 31, 2017
Page Count: 416
My rating: 4 stars
About the book:
The acclaimed New York Times bestseller! Welcome, welcome to Caraval—Stephanie Garber’s sweeping tale of the unbreakable bond between two sisters. It’s the closest you’ll ever find to magic in this world…
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.
Welcome, welcome to Caraval . . . beware of getting swept too far away.
Caraval by Stephanie Garber is the first book of the young adult fantasy series by the same name. The book has a bit of a historical feel to the world and a whole lot of magic to keep a reader guessing.
As the book begins readers find that Scarlett has been obsessed with Caravel for years through reading numerous letters she had written to the Caravel master. Over the years Scarlett has wanted nothing more than to see the show on her tiny island but as she got older she gave up the dream for the promise of a marriage in her future.
However, just as Scarlett gives up the dream of Caravel the master finally replies to her letters and invites her to come see the show. The downside of this is it’s happening immediately so Scarlett is unsure but her sister, Tella, will not let her pass this by and whisks Scarlett off to an adventure she never could have imagined when the become part of the show.
Caravel is one of those fantasy reads that for lack of a better term is really just plain weird in a good way. Not quite what I was expecting but that’s not really a bad thing in this case as I wasn’t really expecting to be guessing what was real and what wasn’t with all of what surrounds the story. The story could get a little slow in places but overall was an interesting mix of magic, romance, and mystery in the fantasy world.
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