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Instant New York Times bestseller
#1 IndieNext Pick
Entertainment Weekly Must List (Grade: A-)
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." --Ren#65533;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 Circus , Stardust , and The Hunger Games. " -- SLJ
Stephanie Garber loves Disneyland because it's the one place on earth where she feels as if the fantastical stories she loves to write about could actually come to life. When she's not writing young adult fantasy, she teaches creative writing at a private college in northern California, where she's known for turning assignments into games and taking students on field trips that involve book signings. Caraval is her first novel for young adults. She would love to hear from you on social media.
Publisher's Weekly Review
At the start of Garber's magnificent debut novel, the mysterious Master Legend invites sisters Scarlett and Donatella Dragna to attend Caraval-a magical multiday event that is part spectacle, part treasure hunt. Although their tyrannical father has threatened death if they leave home without his permission, Tella strikes a deal with a roguish sailor named Julian for transport to Legend's private island-a plan that essentially involves kidnapping the conflicted Scarlett, who is weeks away from marrying a man she's never met. Upon arrival, Tella is taken, and it's revealed that she is the subject of this year's hunt. Scarlett and Julian join forces to find her, but in a game in which secrets are currency and appearances deceive, Scarlett has no way of knowing whether she's a Caraval player or Master Legend's pawn. Intriguing characters, an imaginative setting, and evocative writing combine to create a spellbinding tale of love, loss, sacrifice, and hope. While the search for Tella drives the narrative, Scarlett's quest for self-empowerment is equally captivating. Scarlett and Julian's chemistry intoxicates, and Garber's tantalizing conclusion will leave readers hungry for a sequel. Ages 13-up. Agent: Jenny Bent, Bent Agency. (Jan.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
New York Review of Books Review
"Caraval" is "The Night Circus" Jr., with a dash of "Alice in Wonderland" and a sprinkle of "Fantasy Island." There are wish-growing seeds, drinkable gold, bowler hats covered in taxidermy crows, and gowns "the color of late-night laughter, early-morning sunshine, and waves crashing around ankles." It's the Elantine Dynasty, and Scarlett Dragna gets an invitation to Caraval, a magic carnival run by Legend, a top-hatted ringmaster. Julian, a sailor with impressive abs, whisks Scarlett and her sister off to Legend's private isle, where the games are more sinister than Scarlett imagined. For most of the book, neither Scarlett nor the reader knows what's real and what isn't. Can players die? How tightly does Legend's magic bind his performers? As a result, there's no sense of urgency, and the pleonastic prose got me woozy: Scarlett's "smoky-ginger prickle of discomfort"; Julian's kisses that taste "like midnight and wind." But Garber's way with fashion made me swoon: a magical dress shifts on Scarlett's body in accordance with her moods. If blood and madness, "shameless curves and immoral promises" entice you, well, come to the cabaret.