Legendary by Stephanie GarberCaraval #2
Published on May 29, 2018 by Flatiron Books
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Stephanie Garber’s limitless imagination takes flight once more in the colorful, mesmerizing, and immersive sequel to the bestselling breakout debut Caraval
A heart to protect. A debt to repay. A game to win.
After being swept up in the magical world of Caraval, Donatella Dragna has finally escaped her father and saved her sister Scarlett from a disastrous arranged marriage. The girls should be celebrating, but Tella isn’t yet free. She made a desperate bargain with a mysterious criminal, and what Tella owes him no one has ever been able to deliver: Caraval Master Legend’s true name.
The only chance of uncovering Legend’s identity is to win Caraval, so Tella throws herself into the legendary competition once more—and into the path of the murderous heir to the throne, a doomed love story, and a web of secrets…including her sister's. Caraval has always demanded bravery, cunning, and sacrifice. But now the game is asking for more. If Tella can’t fulfill her bargain and deliver Legend’s name, she’ll lose everything she cares about—maybe even her life. But if she wins, Legend and Caraval will be destroyed forever.
Welcome, welcome to Caraval...the games have only just begun.
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This book was provided by the publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Much like my review of Caraval, it’s difficult to contain my thoughts on Legendary in a single review. This is the kind of book that makes me want to throw a copy at everyone I know because the pain of getting hit by a book wouldn’t be as painful as reading the ending of this book. My heart goes out to Tella. Talk. About. A. Cliffhanger.
But I could spend this entire review lamenting over the ending so backtracking to the book as a whole, Legendary is pure magic. ALL THE FEELS I had from Caraval returned but not in the way I expected. To be honest, I wasn’t sure how I felt about reading from Tella’s point of view. We meet her in Caraval but it’s her sister, Scarlett, who steals the show so I never really developed any interest in Tella’s tale. And then I read Legendary and I can’t believe I ever considered not reading the sequel (it was the briefest of moments, I promise).
The strength of sisterhood and family came forward once more. Even though Tella and Scarlett were together again, there was a good deal of tension and I felt like the sisters had both gained and lost something during the last Caraval. This time, they’re in a new city and secret lurk in the shadows. Foreshadowing for the third and final book, Finale? I mean, I hope so!
I liked that Tella doubted everything. As someone who does the same, I immediately connected with her, a connection that only grew stronger the more I read. Tella has that air of uncertainty and combined with the illusions of Caraval, constantly questioning what is and isn’t real, she made for an intriguing point-of-view character.
Tella made this story magical. Plain and simple. If she hadn’t been doubting herself — her choices, the game, her feelings — then I wouldn’t have started doubting. And I needed to doubt as the reader. That’s the beauty of these books. Garber sets the scene but the characters lead (and mislead). Combine the mystery with deadly stakes and Legendary stole the show.
I think I actually liked this book more than Caraval, if that’s even possible. Here, there are lives on the line, hearts stopping (literally), powerful and elusive Fates walking the earth. . . there’s magic. There’s love. There’s excitement. There’s tragedy.
Without that underlying light, the smallest of chances that things will work out, the magic makes no impact. But Garber packed Legendary full of hope. . .
. . . and then smashed a wrecking ball through my heart.
Just. That ending. Did the Prince of Hearts curse me too? Because I think my heart stopped a bit. And that’s not even all of it because WE LEARN LEGEND’S IDENTITY.
I had a guess. There’s a moment in the book where you start thinking and I’m both glad and upset that my guess was right because it made the ending that much more heartbreaking.
BUT. . . but. . . there’s another book. Told from the point-of-view of both Scarlett and Tella, from what I’ve heard. So hopefully we get some answers.
In the meantime, go read Caraval. Grab a copy of Legendary and read it too. And then happily suffer with me while we wait for Finale!