Remember, it’s only a game…
Scarlett Dragna has never left the tiny island where she and her 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 faraway, 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. Nevertheless she becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic. And whether Caraval is real or not, Scarlett must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over or a dangerous domino effect of consequences will be set off, and her beloved sister will disappear forever.
Welcome, welcome to Caraval…beware of getting swept too far away.
Every person has the power to change their fate if they are brave enough to fight for what they desire more than anything.
Caraval promised to be a magical and mysterious tale that pushes past the boundaries of reality. I anticipated it to be Alice in Wonderland meets The Hunger Games. Surprisingly, it didn’t deliver. The characters were one-dimensional and flat, the world-building was nearly nonexistent and some plot points weren’t entirely clear. But besides this, the story was intriguing enough for me to want to continue the series.
I was expecting to like Scarlett more but even by the end of it, I was totally indifferent to her character. She somehow had zero character development. If you took her from the end of the book and compared her to the early chapters, you would never know the difference.