Book Review: Legendary by Stephanie Garber

Reviewed by Heather C

Title: Legendary
Author: Stephanie Garber
Series: Caraval #2
Heroine: Donatella Dragna
Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
Length: 416 pages
Publisher: Flatiron Books
Release Date: May 29, 2018
Available at: Amazon
Add it to your shelf: Goodreads

Blurb: 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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Review:

What does it mean to be the hero?  What does it mean to be the villain?

Legendary begins the day after Caraval ends.  Tella, Scarlett’s younger sister, has made a deal with her mysterious “friend” that in order to save her mother, she must bring him Legend’s true name.  And to find out Legend’s true name, Tella must win the next Caraval.

Pro:  Another magical world…that feels completely different from the last Caraval.  More mysterious characters, some old, some new…some with completely new identities.

Con:  Nothing felt real.  Maybe that is the point, but I never felt the sense of urgency like I did when reading Caraval.  With Scarlett, I always felt either she or Julian were in constant danger.  With Tella, clearly she was in danger, but it didn’t fill like it was real danger, even when it was.

Pro:  I enjoyed the theme of hero versus villain.  Not the physical struggle between the hero and the villain, but the internal struggle one has when on one side they are the hero, but on the other side they are just as easily the villain.

Con:  I still don’t know who was the hero and who was the villain.  Maybe that is the point, but I’m still bothered by that.

Pro: Dante.  Enough said.

Con:  Tella.  She feels so young and immature and annoying.  Maybe that is the point because she is younger than Scarlett, but I just didn’t connect with her like I did her older sister.  Plus, I loved Julian and Scarlett together.  Dante and Tella together just feels forced.

Pro:  Legend’s true identity is finally revealed…sort of…

Con:  The ending.  I feel like so many questions were left unanswered.  Maybe that is the point, but I hate when a book doesn’t or barely closes the story arc.

Does Legendary finish the series?  Clearly not, but for some reason I thought this was a duology.  Both Tella and Scarlett’s story have been left open ended and I’m not sure I’m liking the direction it appears Scarlett’s is going to take.

My biggest question now: “Whose POV will we get next?”

And then I have to worry:  “Are both girls going to be stuck in love triangles?”

I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I did the first book, but I think it’s worth giving a try if you loved Caraval.  I will definitely give the next book in this series a chance.

Overall Impression: It Was Good

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in return for a fair and honest review.*

Categories: 3 Star Ratings, Book Review, Heather C's Reviews, M/F, Published in 2018 | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

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