Caraval Book Review

Book Name: Caraval

Author: Stephanie Garber

Genre: Fantasy, YA

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Publication Date: January 31, 2017

Ratings: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

“Welcome, Welcome to Caraval! We want you to get swept away, but be careful of being swept too far away…”

That’s exactly what happened to me. I got swept too far away in the world of Caraval with no ways of getting back, only to patiently wait for the next book – which, luckily for me came out in a few months.

You can read the official excerpt from Goodreads.

Caraval is a story of two sisters, cautious Scarlett and reckless Donatella, both trying their best to save the other from their strict and abusive father. Their ways of getting each other to safety is exactly what gets them caught in a world full of magic, lies and mystery.

Scarlett, the older of the two, has always been fascinated by the notorious Grand Master Legend and his infamous shows of Caraval. Imagining this little world through her nana’s stories, Scarlett grew up longing to be able to see this world with her own eyes. Unfortunately, entrance to this magnificent show is by invitation only. In order to get an invitation, Scarlett wrote letters to Master Legend for years with no reply. She seeks refuge in the Count, her betrothed, arranged by her father to protect her and Tella.

But everything changes when she receives the long awaited invitation to Caraval just weeks before her wedding. Tella, urges her to leave for Caraval and experience the mystical world with the help of a rogue sailor, Julian, who helps them get to the island where the show is being performed.

The story takes a turn when on reaching Caraval, Tella mysteriously disappears and Scarlett finds herself stuck in the game questioning magic and reality. Her main aim – to win Caraval and find her sister.

Meanwhile, Scarlett’s relationship with Julian blooms and a number of secrets are let out of the bag, which leads us to the shocking revelation that Tella has bargained a deal with The Legend, so that she can protect Scarlett from the Count and their Father.


In a world where fairy tales comes to life, magic is at its peak, things do not seem normal, people are hard to trust, visions of the future are hard to escape, Scarlett and Tella make tough decisions only out of pure love for the other.

Stephanie has creatively created a world of magic that sucks you right in with perfect sense of being the one playing the game and cleverly planned cliff-hangers that will keep you glued to your seat until you finish the book.

Not only do you question Scarlett’s motives, you also feel the need to hate her at some points. But while her character is trying to break free of the passive, cautious nature and make sense of the chaos around her, she does true by her sister and becomes a hero only to realise that she was the one being saved all along. Tella, on the other hand, a nifty actor, watches from the side lines and makes life-threatening choices which shows a great difference in the sisters’ personalities and the character growth both get by the end of the book.

Although I’ve said a lot already, I will give no more teasers. I really loved this book and will definitely recommend for those who love a little magic mystery. Find out more about the sequel in my next book review!

Read more about Stephanie Garber

All the Love, R.

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