THIS REVIEW CONTAINS SPOILERS. IF YOU HAVE NOT READ CARAVAL AND DO NOT WISH TO BE SPOILED, CHECK OUT MY SPOILER FREE REVIEW HERE!
Like I said in my review… I have not been this frustrated with a book since reading Glass Sword. The characters were so one dimensional, they may as well not have existed. Scarlett was so stupid and self-righteous, I wanted to punch her in the face. I hate her. I hate her. And the other characters, I just don’t care about. at all.
Her dad was so… boring. As an antagonist. He may as well have been some sort of machine that punched people at convenient points in the story. I got nothing from him. He was just… a lame villain. And Legend was an even lamer villain. He was so boring, I just didn’t care. I didn’t care about his motives, I didn’t care if he was good or bad. And his backstory was so… predictable and flimsy and not well explained at all. I still have no idea how he got his powers or what exactly happened that he became Legend. His motives are still largely unexplained. I didn’t find the whole story with Scarlett’s grandmother compelling at all. It was just such a stupid, flimsy motive for a villain. Who wasn’t even really a villain after all? I don’t know. Meh.
The so called ‘super strong’ sisterly bond between Tella and Scarlett… I didn’t see it at all. Tella was selfish and spoiled and really didn’t seem to care too much about her sister. And neither did Scarlett, really, despite the fact that we are told time and time again how she would do anything for her sister. I didn’t buy it. Even the thing at the beginning where they blame each other so that their father wouldn’t punish the other… I didn’t really buy it. Especially that Tella then immediately had her sister drugged and kidnapped? What? What? That was when I was first like… whaaat?
And then, the insta love. UGH! Julian literally drugged her and abducted her and all she thinks about is how hot he is as soon as she wakes up? What the hell, Scarlett? At that point, I still had hopes. I knew I was going to hate the romance, but I thought I still had the magical performance to look forward to and I wasn’t really reading for the romance anyway. Boy was I wrong.
There was no magical performance. It was like this lame scavenger hunt on a conveniently magical island. It wasn’t convincing at all. Over and over, we keep being told how important it is that Scarlett finds Tella before everyone else, but… we don’t really see this “everyone else”. There is literally one scene where there is any sense of competition at all. Where we even really see the other competitors.
And the way that Scarlett figures out clues… is just so unbelievable. She is so dumb. Yet somehow, she always has this incredible insight into what Legend wants and what his clues mean. It’s completely unbelievable. And also, the way she deduces some things from thin air like she’s freaking Sherlock Holmes is so unrealistic. Things like “He looked away in a way that made me realise he was still hiding something from me about his relationship with his mother.” or something. That’s not an actual quote, but you know what I mean? There is no way that anyone could surmise so much from so little. Particularly not someone as stupid as Scarlett.
Scarlett’s self-righteousness and the whole “I’m engaged, this isn’t proper.” made me roll my eyes so much I feared they might remain that way. Especially when half her time was spent concentrating on how hot the guys around her were. Like bitch, you’re a hypocrite! And you are nowhere near as “good” and innocent as you try to seem.
The writing tried too hard. The way things were described, was so weird. It tried to be poetic. But it wasn’t. Like Scarlett’s ability to “see” emotions as colours. I thought that was some magical ability or something… but nope. It was just something used in an attempt to make the writing poetic. And it wasn’t, it was just weird. Things like “She glimpsed a flash a mustard apprehension as she stepped into the room.” Again, not an actual quote, but that’s how it sounded. Or things like “The rose was red like passion and anger and blood.” It’s just so bad. It made me uncomfortable.
The whole ending with Julian being Legend’s brother and Tella’s deal and the cliffhanger and all the implied things about their mother and all that… I just could not care less. I was so bored, I had to skim the last 150 pages. I just could not give a crap.
I have so may other problems with it. But it makes me tired just thinking about them. It was just bad. It was very, very bad and I am really disappointed. It had no redeeming quality whatsoever. At least the cover is pretty.
13 thoughts on “Caraval by Stephanie Garber – RANT”