Monday, February 12, 2018

Caraval by Stephanie Garber

by Stephanie Garber
407 pages
Published by Flatiron Books

Plot: Scarlett Dragna has never left the tiny island where she and her 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 faraway, 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. Nevertheless she becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic. And whether Caraval is real or not, Scarlett must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over or a dangerous domino effect of consequences will be set off, and her beloved sister will disappear forever.

Welcome, welcome to Caraval…beware of getting swept too far away.  (2018,

Review:  I finally got my hands on a copy of Caraval!  I've seen this book everywhere and the cover is just gorgeous.  Garber really shines in her debut filled with intrigue, suspense, mystery, magic and romance!  Scarlett and Tella are two sisters invited to Caraval, a magical show where you can either watch or participate in the game to win a prize.  This year, the prize is a wish.  Scarlett is the older and more practical sister.  She has dreamed of going to Caraval for years.  But, unfortunately her invitation has come too late.  She is going to be married to a man her father has not allowed her to meet, but will set up the family with power and money.  Scarlett is determined to marry the Count, even if it's only to get her and Tella away from their abusive father.  But, Tella has other plans and decides to leave for Caraval with the help of a mysterious sailor, Julian. Desperate to bring her sister back, Scarlett goes after her only to end up taken to Caraval against her will.  When Tella goes missing, Scarlett has no choice but to enter the game of Caraval and win the wish in order to bring her sister home.  But Caraval is not your ordinary game and the consequences of wrong choices are very real, even deadly.  

Full of magical dresses, cryptic entertainers, confusing riddles, and terrifying tunnels, Caraval is nothing that Scarlett expects.  She also doesn't expect Julian, the same mysterious sailor who took her to Caraval, to be her only hope of finding her sister.  But the more time she spends with Julian, the more she questions her arranged marriage and the man she is fated to marry.  But Caraval doesn't last forever, and as time runs do Scarlett's chances of saving her sister and herself.

Loved Caraval and can't wait until book two: Legendary (coming out May 29, 2018)Recommended for ages 14 and up!

Rating: 5 Hearts!


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