Waiting on Wednesday: Caraval


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights highly anticipated upcoming releases.

So what am I itching to get my hands on?

The answer is Caraval, an upcoming debut by Stephanie Garber.


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.

I know, I know, you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover… but goodness, this cover! If the story is even half as captivating as the cover design, it’ll be a gem.

Fantasy is my favorite YA sub-genre and always has been. By all accounts, Caraval is as whimsical as YA fantasies come. I’m psyched for this mixture of intrigue and romance, and very curious about what this game has in store for readers and characters alike.

The quotes that I’ve seen used to illustrate the writing style are phenomenal, too:

“It was the kind of night where she could smell the moon, thick candle wax dancing with the salty sent of the ocean, full and glowing.”

Caraval, quoted in a review by Ashley at Fictional Living

Atmospheric is my very favorite word to describe a novel, and I believe Caraval is going to be exactly that.

Look for this upcoming release in stores on January 31, from Flatiron Books.


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