ARC REVIEW: Legendary by Stephanie Garber // i’m in love?? maybe just a little

legendaryTitle: Legendary (Caraval #2)

Author: Stephanie Garber

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

Format: ARC

Page Count: 512

Release Date: May 29, 2018



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.



I received an ARC of this book from the publisher via Goodreads giveaway in exchange for an honest review. This in no way effects my overall rating of this book.

if you haven’t read caraval, don’t worry, i won’t be talking caraval spoilers in this review




*takes a deep breath*

Before I start this review, you should go read my review of Caraval. Trust me, it’ll make this review 100,000,000x better. If you’re too lazy to read my review, to sum my thoughts up, I was disappointed and not impressed by the hype at all.

But here I am now, ready to hype you the hell up because Legendary was SPECTACULAR and BRILLIANT and MESMERIZING and just plain AMAZING.

Don’t get me wrong, I still despised Caraval, but maybe a bit less now since I adore Legendary so much. Funny how instead of second book syndrome, this series goes the opposite way and suffers from first book syndrome.

i don’t watch this show but i love this xD

Let’s talk about Tella. Caraval had us following Scarlett’s perspective but in Legendary, we readers were put in the mind of Tella as we followed her journey. To be completely honest, I hated Tella in the first book. She seemed full of herself and bratty and I just didn’t like her at all. But throughout this book I got to love her character quite a bit.

The other characters, however… I mean. They felt quite three-dimensional but also I felt like I knew what everyone was up to?? And I feel like that shouldn’t have been happening?? I knew who would end up being a friend and who would end up being a foe and that kinda took a bit of the magic away from the story for me.


Not to mention the romance… okay. So this one annoyed me a bit less than in the first book. But it still annoyed me nonetheless. Especially because of something… that I will not say because this is a spoiler-free zone!

“This is why love was so dangerous. Love turned the world into a garden, so beguiling it was easy to forget that rose petals were as ephemeral as feelings, eventually they would wilt and die.”

Haha wow, so I started throwing shade at the book after praising it. I guess that’s the kind of thing I do around here. Really, I did enjoy this book while I was reading it. It’s definitely not perfect, but it was a big improvement from the first book.

One thing that improved a lot was the writing. In the first book, Garber’s writing was so flowery and I just wanted to rip my hair out. I like flowery, I can handle some flowery-ness, but it was overkill. I think Garber realized her mistake and decided to turn her flowery switch down a bit because the writing was a lot more bearable.

She still uses a lot of food adjectives to describe scents and such but I guess it makes Caraval more atmospheric for the readers so I can’t complain too much about that. In truth, Garber’s writing works in it’s own way because I can picture the magical Caraval game so vividly in my head it feels like I’ve physically been there.


Throughout the book, Tella is trying to rescue her mother, battle these historical almost-god-like creatures called the Fates, and try to figure out if Caraval is just a game, or if it’s real this time around. It made me anxious and holding onto the edge of my seat in anticipation.

“Once a future is foretold, that future becomes a living thing and it will fight very hard to bring itself about.”

Also, Legend was revealed. But… it felt fake? I mean, it also felt pretty final and conclusive, but I was a bit… underwhelmed with who Legend ended up being. Maybe it’s because I guessed who it was from the beginning of the book and I was right so it felt like everything was a bit too easy to guess?

There were a few surprises throughout the book, but the ‘big reveal’ at the end made me feel wholeheartedly disappointed.

The sister’s relationship was better this book. They got more interactions and even though a lot of them had to do with them telling lies to each other – or, well, not telling the entire truth – I appreciated the way their sisterly bond was shown since I felt like it was nonexistent in the first book.


My Rating: 4.5 Stars

This was overall a very magical, thrilling sequel! Whether you liked the first book or not, there’s a chance that you might enjoy the sequel more like I did. You’ll constantly be asking questions and making up different theories. Stephanie Garber did good this time around.

Purchase This Book:

Amazon | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository

Have you read Caraval or Legendary? What are your thoughts on them? Let me know!

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20 thoughts on “ARC REVIEW: Legendary by Stephanie Garber // i’m in love?? maybe just a little

  1. WHOA. It’s SO great when a second book’s even better than the first–and that’s saying a lot, since you hated the first one. Annoying romances and underwhelming twists will definitely bother me, but I still want to give Caraval (and Legendary, duh) a try in the future. 🙂

    – Aimee @ Aimee, Always

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I requested an ARC even though I didn’t like the first one and honestly I was kind of questioning this decision because what kind of person does that??? Anyway, I’m happy it ended up being a good thing!! You definitely should! I’m not sure if you’ll like it or not cause the romance (for me, at least, idk about you) was sort of my least favorite thing. There are some cool twists, so it wasn’t all disappointment 😀


  2. AHHH I’M SO HAPPY YOU LOVED IT, SAVANNAH. ❤ Now I'm much more excited about it, because I enjoyed Caraval, but I didn't LOVE it, you know? I'm so, so glad we get to see more of the sisterly relationship in this one, and I'm also excited for all the little plot twists – but the final reveal of Legend was disappointing?? WHY.

    I love you for this review (but also, I hate you a tiny little bit for dangling that non-spoiler in front of my face.) ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I am almost guaranteed that you’ll love Legendary. I have a feeling in my gut. Maybe you won’t be disappointed?? I don’t know, I just kind of was and I’m not 100% sure why. *what spoiler???*


      1. Ahhh I hope your gut is right.

        This: “Not to mention the romance… okay. So this one annoyed me a bit less than in the first book. But it still annoyed me nonetheless. Especially because of something… that I will not say because this is a spoiler-free zone!” I hate spoilers, but you made me so curious, haha.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. OH such a lovely review! I wasn’t too impressed by Caraval, but I’m still very curious to read Legendary and to know what happens. I’m so, so happy you found it better than the first book and that you enjoyed Tella’s perspective – you made me a bit more eager to get to it haha 🙂 Thank you! x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! It depends on what you didn’t like about Caraval, but there’s a chance that you might end up enjoying Legendary 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. SO MUCH SHADE. and yet you still loved it! caraval and Legendary were both five stars for me, I FELL IN LOVE with everything and the writing and just GAH?! My main problem was the reveal of Legend. It felt so…eh :/// I was expecting a SPECTACULAR reveal but it was kinda of just slipped in and not made a big deal? and the person legend turned out to be wasn’t shocking. Ahhh BUT I DID LOVE IT.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so happy you loved both books!!! I wanted to love Caraval SO MUCH ~ but it didn’t work for me?? Happy that Legendary was an improvement. Now we can squeal over it together and complain about the mediocre way Legend was revealed xD

      Liked by 1 person

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