Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Caraval: A Review #Tuesdaybookblog #giveaway

Whatever you've 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 . . .
Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved 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 far-away, 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. But she nevertheless becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.
Welcome, welcome to Caraval . . . beware of getting swept too far away.

The Hunger Games meets The Night Circus. Grade: A-.” —EW
“Spellbinding.” US Weekly
“Magnificent.” Publishers Weekly, starred review
“I lost myself in this world.” —Sabaa Tahir, author of An Ember in the Ashes
“Beautifully written.” —RenĂ©e Ahdieh, author of The Wrath and the Dawn
“Shimmers with magic.” —Marie Rutkoski, author of The Winner’s Curse
“Darkly enchanting.” —Kiersten White, author of And I Darken
“Decadent.” —Roshani Chokshi, author of The Star-Touched Queen
“Like stepping into a living dream.” —Stacey Lee, author of Outrun the Moon
“Destined to capture imaginations.” —Kirkus Reviews
Ideal for fans of The Night CircusStardust, and The Hunger Games.” SLJ

                        Kory's Thoughts

So I gave this one a 4 out of 5 stars. I did enjoy the story. It was one of the books where you think about it during the day while you're struggling to focus on other tasks, and when you finally get a chance to go read it, you're excited to do so. I was mostly really into the budding relationship between Scarlett and someone (no spoilers!) and I liked the mystery/game elements.

So why not a 5-star? Because there is a part close to the end/right around the climax, that just becomes a hot mess. I'm going to give the writer the benefit of the doubt and say I *think* this was intentional because Caraval is supposed to be an experience tinged with madness, but mostly I was just confused, so it dimmed some of my excitement and overall enjoyment of what should have been the most intense part of the book. This confusing episode is followed by an info dump that is meant to clarify everything--and then it wraps up with an ending that leaves me feeling (also probably on purpose) exactly how Scarlet felt: unsure...but hopeful. 

But I like how the book resolved and was happy with it overall and would recommend it to fans of YA books with fantasy elements.

Did You Know?

I'm currently hosting an Amazon giveaway for Shadows in the Water. If you haven't already, enter the giveaway here. Even "losers" will get a prize.


  1. I Lost Thanks for the chance :) Why do I get a prize or How LOL

    1. Hi Linda! Sorry you didn't win. It should have prompted you to subscribe to my newsletter, which gives you two download codes for free books when you sign up. Here's the direct link: https://www.korymshrum.com/subscribe

    2. Great Thanks and to let you know I don't believe it did Just said about the free sample but I might be wrong Sorry I didn't pay attention enough but I don't remember seeing that