I found this book on Instagram before it was published. It is what we call cover love. Sparkling cover with magic title “Caraval” has stolen my heart. As I wrote before I study English and this book has became my fourth book in English language. Speaking about author’s style of writing it is good enough not only to understand but also to imagine the characters, and situations, and their little world.
Whatever you’re heard about Caraval, it doesn’t compare to the reality. It’s more than just a game or a performance. It’s the closest you’ll ever find to magic in this world.
Caraval by Stephanie Garber
The bad thing is that I haven’t found what I expected. There is no magic. If you look closer at all the events and rules of Caraval you will see that during five days and nights Scarlett doesn’t face with any kind of magic in the common for the fantasy books meaning. I prefer magic to mind games. Or the magic like it was in “Now You See Me” the movie.
The plot could be better. There are a lot of places where Stephanie could add some twists, some unexpected events. Everything starting with running from the island to the boring end with “Oh my God, you’re alive!” isn’t a surprise.
Sisters’ relationships. When Donatella disappears what does Scarlett do? She complains all the time and thinks about Julian, then about Dante, the about Julian again… oh, wait, where is her sister? And sometimes she remembers her fiancé. There is one idea throughout all the book – Scarlett is tired of being the oldest sister and all she actually wants is to get rid of her island family. And she is really scared to take her own decisions. Is she a poor girl or she just hasn’t got enough courage? To author’s mind Scarlett is a coward that’s why Tella makes a deal to save them.
But if we look at Scarlett before the end of Caraval we’ll see a lot of little events where Scarlett wasn’t a coward. That time when she ducked into the dungeon (more than two times) and when she argued with Julian, and when she fought against her fiancé are examples of her courage, aren’t they?
About Julian and Scarlett. Seriously, how could anybody say that Julian is a book boyfriend? Maybe someone believes author’s words that he is handsome, and brave, and really takes care of Scarlett, but in my opinion he is a bad worker who does his work badly and he is a bad actor whose behavior each day was different. I am not surprised that “the Master of Caraval” kills him.
Back to Scarlett. She thinks that Julian uses her for his “sacred mission” but she doesn’t realize that her behavior is no less selfish than his. Their relationship doesn’t look like something that can growth into love.
In relationship between Scarlett and Dante you can find more sincere emotions and words. I prefer to get to know more about Dante to read boring Julian’s life story.
This question which is left to be answered is what the deal between Tella and Legend?
My greatest disappointment is a lie. Everything around the Caraval is a lie. And the book is too, The lie was about the magic, about the reason Scarlett and Tella were invited to the Caraval, about those guys Julian and Dante, even about Legend “the Mater”. I was devastated when I finished the book. You know that ugly feeling when you don’t receive what you were promised but also when you are tricked and swamped with lies, and false facts, and unfair clues. Even these little details, the clues to find Scarlett’s sister, are stolen from readers. I feel as if I am the watcher and actually paid for a boring bad game where actors forget their roles.
2 of 5 stars only because it is easy to read.