Review: Caraval

Caraval Caraval by Stephanie Garber
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Scarlett has been protecting her sister, Tella, from their father's rages since Mother left. As Scarlett’s marriage approaches, she writes one last time to Legend, hoping for tickets to Caravel, a show/game where the audience participates. Amazingly, he finally answers and sends tickets for Scarlett, Tella, and Scarlett’s fiancĂ©. Scarlett’s protective nature kicks in, and she second guesses herself (something that happens frequently) so Tella has to trick Scarlett into actually going. Once there Scarlett discovers her sister is part of this year’s game and must be found in order to win the prize—a wish granted. The game is five nights long and filled with adventure, betrayal, romance and danger.

I must admit, I got frustrated with Scarlett’s stubbornness. Her loyalty to Tella is amazing, but her fear of change, and desire for safety, above all else, made me want to scream. I get that she thinks Tella is in danger, and she is, but it wouldn’t hurt to see the world around her and appreciate it. It takes forever for her to realize that Tella would want that for her. Color plays an important part in the game clues. Fortunately Scarlett sees color in great detail, even emotions seem to come in color for her. This attention to detail helps her to figure out the clues in the game.

Since this is a series starter there are still many unanswered questions at the end. Quite a few of which were just put in place in the last few chapters. Goodreads says it is a duology; let’s hope that is right. I’ll be buying this one for school. I can think of several who will want it. I have seen comparisons to The Night Circus in other reviews, but I feel like that is a stretch. The setting could be considered somewhat similar, but not the characters or writing style.

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