February 20th 2018 by Tor Books
Once in a while a book comes along that reminds you that good things come in small packages. At a surprising 200 pages, this book not only defied my expectations, but blew me away.
I haven’t, in a long time, read a book so short but so full of action and history and heartbreak and just….everything neatly packaged up in this gorgeous cover. This tale focuses on Heloise, a sixteen-year-old girl, who is none too impressed with the oppressive world around her. The Order, who seeks out to rid the world of wizards, seems to do more evil than the thing they hunt and none of this gets by our protagonist.
What I absolutely loved:
1. Heloise and all of her raw honest glory. She is fearless when she needs to be and loyal to the ones she loves. She is confused by her own budding sexuality and fairly certain that married life is not for her. At sixteen, she knows what she wants for herself and she isn’t afraid to show it.
2. The world building. This is my first time reading anything by Myke Cole so I went in with blind faith. It rewarded me handsomely. Though some aspects were familiar, they were not unpleasant and those things that were fresh, really worked for me.
What I found a bit jarring:
1. The length. I seriously wanted more and felt as though the ending was a bit rushed.
2. Heloise’s voice seemed to go in and out of being too young or too old for her age.
This is to be part of a series, a trilogy I hear. I began to question if maybe Myke wrote the book with too high of a word count and was forced to split the stories, thus why this book is a mere 200 pages. Don’t get me wrong, I flew through it and mostly loved every moment, but I am anxious to see where this goes. I cannot wait for the next one.
“Because the way the world treats teenage girls – as sluts, as objects, as bitches – is not okay. It’s the exact opposite of okay.”
Thank you to Netgalley for the arc!!
**This review will be spoiler free.**
Continuing right after the events of Caraval, we find ourselves in the POV of Tella, Scarlett’s sister. We learn of a certain debt that she owes and BAM, we’re back into the world of Caraval. This time, she is after Legend himself. She needs his real name and identity and she’d do most anything to get it.
Tella is a determined character, just like her sister. She’s also more complex as we read on. She has secrets just as everybody in Caraval does.
As much as I love Stephanie’s writing, I felt as though this one lost a little bit of the magic and intrigue. What I loved about the first book was the magical feel of the game itself. This one lacked that. Though it did make up for it in a sense with some pretty smoking male characters.
WHY AM ATTRACTED TO THE OBVIOUS BAD GUY????
What I also loved how I couldn’t trust anyone, not even Scarlett herself. Not after the first book. you can’t fool me, Garber!!!
Anyhow, some things were predictable if you listened closely and some things you could guess. Even though I did, the ending was still very much surprising. Basically, like the first, this was a fun ride.
WHAT I LIKED:
WHAT I DID NOT LIKE
Lack of magic
Still, A very awesome book. I cannot wait for the third.