I read Caraval for the ReadThemAllThon as my Marsh Badge (Paranormal/Supernatural Book). This is my version of a review for the book, as I don’t intend to write a full review until it’s closer to the release date.
Disclaimer: I was provided with an ARC of this book by Hodderscape.
Previously, on pre-release thoughts, we talked about Nevernight. Today, we’ll be talking about all things Caraval, even though it isn’t technically out until January 2017. Guys, you have a lot to be excited for when 2017 comes around!
Caraval by Stephanie Garber will released January 31st (US) and January 26th (UK).
Two sisters bound by love and a father they fear escape their tiny, secluded island for the wondrous performance of Caraval, where the audience plays along in a mysterious and magical game of determining what’s real and what’s fantasy. And where only one sister might be brave enough to win the ultimate prize of ‘an impossible wish’…
Scarlett Dragna has never left the tiny isle of Trisda, pining from afar for the wonder of Caraval, a once-a-year week-long performance where the audience participates in the show.
Caraval is Magic. Mystery. Adventure. And for lonely Scarlett, it represents freedom, an escape from her abusive father and from her own dark past.
I found this fast-paced book highly entertaining, find my detailed thoughts on what you can look forward to in Caraval below… Remember, it’s only a game.
1. Beautiful Book Design
This book is seriously pretty, both inside and outside. First, check out the cover reveals: US Edition // UK Edition. If that isn’t enough to convince you, check out the interior art of the book. I could not stop taking photos during the first 24 hours of our acquaintance:
2. Magic and Mayhem
While I often find books with circus settings a bit stifling because of the confined world, Caraval possess wonders that no simple marquee could contain. There is a carousel of roses, dresses with minds of their own, men and women with a dozen faces, and more surprises than you can shake a stick at. The pace never lets up, making this a compelling and suspenseful read.
3. Sisters Are Doing It For Themselves
The central relationship that drives the plot forward is not a romance (although there’s plenty of that), but the relationship between Scarlett and Tella. I love that this remains true until the very end of the novel, and I adore that these ladies are excellent foils to one another. Also, if you have that song stuck in your head now, know that I am #notsorry.
4. Gorgeous Imageries
Stephanie Garber writes beautifully, able to alternate between the enchanting description of Caraval, to quiet and more introspective moments with ease. There are so many scenes in this book that I would love to experience in person, which, to me, is sign of a great fantasy.
Alas, I do have some reservations about Caraval. They did not hinder my enjoyment of this book majorly, but I wanted to be upfront about it with you guys, despite my excitement for its release.
1. The Climax
A lot of Caraval is centred on a mystery, which is why the book was so page-turning. However, the climax of the book required several leaps of logic and the wonder of deus ex machina, robbing the conclusion of impact.
That being said, the very end of the book and what it hints at for book 2? I am 120% here for that.
2. The Romance
Now, this is a personal preference – as I’ve heard a lot of people adored the romance. Personally, I felt the main lead lacked chemistry with all of the leading men in this novel, and I much preferred reading about her and Tella.
Overall, I would say that Caraval is well worth checking out and deserving of the immense hype surrounding it. Will you be getting Caraval next January? Let me know!