Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Caraval is one of the most anticipated books for 2017 and I’m so glad I got a copy so early!

Scarlett and Tella are forbidden to leave the small island that they live on with their ruthless father.  When she was little, Scarlett dreamed of Caraval coming to their island, where the audience takes part in the performance.  Their father arranges a marriage for Scarlett with a man she has never met.  A mysterious sailor comes and whisks the two girls away for a five night escapade, where Tella is the prize.

Scarlett starts out following all the rules, because if she doesn’t her father would beat up on the person she loves the most, Tella.  After their invitation to Caraval arrives we stumble across a sailor who has a thing for Tella.  Scarlett tells her sister that Caraval is performing on a close island in a couple days.  However, Scarlett is supposed to meet her fiance in a week.  Scarlett determines that they will not be able to go to the show with enough time to make it back to meet her fiance.

Scarlett starts out as a character who abides by the rules that are set to stay out of any unnecessary trouble.  However during the five days she is in Caraval she learns she needs to break a few rules to get the prize.  She grows more confident in herself and in her own opinions.  The character development was very well thought out and portrayed as the book progressed.  Scarlett breaks out of her shell.  She goes from slightly timid and shy to strong, demanding, and determined.

Julian, the sailor, is a mass of mystery.  Throughout the book he disappears many times and leaves Scarlett on her own.  He claims he’s been through the game before and is looking for revenge against Legend, the caraval master.  He definitely gives off the definition of mysterious.  Garber defines him as tall, tan, and handsome.  But really, who describes their characters as pale and ugly, other than Stephanie Meyers.

Julian and Scarlett’s relationship remains pretty rocky throughout most of the book.  Most of the time, you can tell there is something between them but neither of them want to admit to such feelings.

We don’t see much of Tella throughout the book because she is the prize.  But she comes off at first as very coy.  At the end of the book it is revealed how manipulative AND coy she is.

The plot left very few loose ends, except for the cliff hanger at the end.  All off the plot twists made sense and they were well thought out.  The clues that were left for the character to figure out were not easily predicted.

  • 5/5
  • Very well written
  • Read it!
  • Interesting plot and characters.



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