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Review: Caraval by Stephanie Garber

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What can I say that hasn’t been said already about Caraval? Gush, I truly don’t know if I can even put my feelings into words, even after listening/ reading to this book a while ago. However, I will try my best, I can positively tell you that I 99.99% truly, immensely and wholeheartedly enjoyed Caraval. However, the other 000.1% was a bit irritating.

“Every person has the power to change their fate if they are brave enough to fight for what they desire more than anything.”

Many of you already know or read that Caraval is a story about two sisters, Scarlett and Donatell (Tella) that are trying for the better word, “improve” their current lives, away from their awful father. In doing so, they escape their home and head to the magical festival, even if it just for a short moment at the Caraval. What was simply to be a quick visit, soon turned into a frantic searcher for Donatell (Tella).

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“She imagined loving him would feel like falling in love with darkness, frightening and consuming yet utterly beautiful when the stars came out.”

I was constantly surprised the entire way through the whole story. The world building was magical and fascinating, I loved all the insane events with the hidden hints with all the mysterious tricks. The whole story was full of extensive turns and magnificent twists, it was simply marvelous after I switch from audiobook to reading. Why did I switch from audio to reading you may ask? well

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“Hope is a powerful thing. Some say it’s a different breed of magic altogether. Elusive, difficult to hold on to. But not much is needed.”

As I said above I truly did enjoy Caraval 99.99% of the time, the 000.1% was a bit bothersome which I will explain. No fault of the author at all, I know its the way the story was meant to be. However, the audiobook narrator for Scarleton, prevented me from 100% enjoying this story. At some point, It was so irritating that I had to stop the audiobook and read the rest of the way through. I just couldn’t take her overreacting and literally huff and puffing throughout the whole time I listened. Every few sentences there it was! Goodness, it was bad. Some books are just better read than listened to.

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“No one is truly honest,” Nigel answered. “Even if we don’t lie to others, we often lie to ourselves. And the word good means different things to different people.”

In the end, I did immensely and wholeheartedly love, Caraval. I would have given it 5 stars if I had just read it on my own. Sometimes your imagination is way better than someone else’s. So if you haven’t read Caraval yet, do so. Don’t think that I didn’t love it because I truly did and can’t wait for Legendary.  Just, pass on the audiobook on this one and you’ll be fine.

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“Whatever you’ve heard about Caraval, it doesn’t compare to the reality. It’s more than just a game or performance. It’s the closest you’ll ever find yourself magic in this world.”

15 thoughts on “Review: Caraval by Stephanie Garber

  1. I cannot do any SFF in audio. The stories tend to be more complex, but I totally understand a narrator impacting your experience. I loved this book. It was a totally magical adventure. I read it back in 2016, and am eagerly awaiting the sequel right there with you.


    1. It was an amazing magical adventure! I’m so glad that I stopped the audiobook early on. I’m so glad it didn’t impact my love for it because I did truly enjoy it. I can’t wait for the sequel, it’s one of my most anticipated reads of 2018!😍


  2. Great review and OMG I think that audio would have done my head in, especially since I had a few mixed feelings about the overall story anyway. I am excited for the sequel though because one of my complaints about Caraval was that it didn’t have enough of Tella.


    1. I think the audiobook would have done you in for sure! It wasn’t the best narrator. I’m just happy I stopped and was able to enjoy the story afterward. I’m sorry you didn’t quick enjoy it, I hope you will enjoy the sequel as its based on Tella. 😁


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