Books have a way of finding you when you need them (more on that when I finish Throne of Glass). Caraval found me exactly when I needed it. There’s no point in reviewing this book. I just can’t. And if you at all follow me on Twitter or Goodreads— you saw first hand my reactions. (Included here for laughs)
Let’s start with the beginning, that’s a good place, right? So, those letters! How can something be so cute and so terribly sad at the same time?! Most of my notes at this point are OMG, AWWW, NO!, and WHERE’S TELLA!!!!
Then I hit “sassy little Legend” and nearly died laughing at the temperamental magic gown. And in that moment, I decided: NO MORE NOTES. I was going to read and enjoy myself like I hadn’t in a very long time!
I gush about the colors, the description, sassy bastard Legend, and terribly adorable Julian… but honestly, there are no notes, because I had no idea how to form a sentence.
Here’s a breakdown of the pages that DO have notes:
Page 81: So yup, if you follow me on Twitter- you know I just gave up on taking notes. What review? What blog? I’m just along for the ride! It’s only a game, right?
Page 121: This book!!! Like… What are words?! I’m speechless! And on that note- good night!
Page 142: WHAT IS THIS BOOK! I’m drunk off these descriptions! Sweet colors above! This is what magic feels like! Translation: Can Stephanie just STOP BEING SO DAMN PERFECT! Like… what is this place!
Page 217: “NOOOOOO!!!!!!! I can’t have guessed it. Nonononononononono” Shortly after that remark: Okay, I can handle this, he’s not Legend! Phew.
Page 232: I never want to leave this book! Ever! And like… What?! What just happened! Omg!!! But alas, the clock has struck sunup (or midnight if you’ve seen my Cinderella-esque tweets)
Page 269: like AHHHHHH Good twist! I didn’t think of that!
Page 310: NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO – something bad is about to go down.
Page 330: In reference to last note: that was worse than I thought. Like AAAAAAHHHHHHHHHH (scream face)
Page 340: OMG!!!!!
Page 364: WHAT????!!!!!! I mean I had a feeling but— WHAT?!
Page 386: AWWWWW( like cute aw) unbreakable bonds *tears.
Page 393: What did I tell ya!
Page 400: I feel like the world around me is so dull and boring now that I’ve finish Caraval…
The End: AHHHHHHHHHH!!!! Just that. That’s all.
Okay, so what is it about Caraval that made me do that? Everything. From innovative descriptions and magical storytelling, to the OMG I CANNOT BELIEVE WHAT JUST HAPPENED!
Why? Because the tapestry of words. The images and voice and color and magic. I have no problem believe such a thing or place exists, ONLY because the characters believe it too. That’s why magic is hard to write. What makes it believable? Stephanie Garber has done what few do, left me speechless about a book. I feel it’s so far and few between that really throw me through a loop, but Caraval holds a very special place on my shelf because it is magical. It’s only a game… Don’t get swept away… but I fell into this story and dedicated my heart and soul to it.
All this being said: I did have a friend that said they would rather throw the book across the room than read those descriptions, so it definitely is a special cup of tea. I’m just happy it was my cup of tea. This will be the book to beat this year (alongside Throne of Glass). Everything will be compared against how Caraval made me feel, how it made me dizzy with beautiful storytelling and descriptions that I couldn’t tear myself away from.
And that’s my reaction. Heartfelt and in awe. Sorry I can’t be more articulate, but that is what this book has done for me. Go read it, and enjoy the ride.
PS. I got to meet her!