Review: Finale-Stephanie Garber

Review: Finale-Stephanie GarberFinale by Stephanie Garber
Published by Flatiron Books
Published: May 7, 2019
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four-stars

Welcome, welcome to Finale, the third and final book in the #1 New York Times bestselling Caraval series!

Welcome, welcome to Caraval...all games must come to an end.

It’s been two months since the last Caraval concluded, two months since the Fates have been freed from an enchanted deck of cards, two months since Tella has seen Legend, and two months since Legend claimed the empire’s throne as his own. Now, Legend is preparing for his official coronation and Tella is determined to stop it. She believes her own mother, who still remains in an enchanted sleep, is the rightful heir to the throne.

Meanwhile, Scarlett has started a game of her own. She’s challenged Julian and her former fiancé, Count Nicolas d’Arcy, to a competition where the winner will receive her hand in marriage. Finaly, Scarlett feels as if she is in complete control over her life and future. She is unaware that her mother’s past has put her in the greatest danger of all.

Caraval is over, but perhaps the greatest game of all has begun―with lives, empires, and hearts all at stake. There are no spectators this time: only those who will win...and those who will lose everything. . .

The final book in a series always, always worries me. I get so invested in the characters and the story and have an idea in my head how I want it to end. Sometimes I am let down because my idea doesn’t happen and sometimes I am blown away because it doesn’t end how I expected at all and it is utterly perfect. It never fails though, final books make me anxious but they also make me extremely excited because I get to see how it all wraps up.

Since I read Caravel in 2016 I was sucked into the world Stephanie Garber created. Between the setting and the characters, I was enthralled. Garber gave us something that felt magical and enchanting. It felt new and fresh and I was so excited to see what kind of journey we were in for. And then I read Legendary and I was blown away by it even more. Book two in the series took everything I loved in book 1 and made it amazing. This left me dying for Finale. I couldn’t wait to see how it all ends and what the fate of my favorite charters would be. And although it wasn’t my favorite of the series, it was a satisfying ending for a trilogy that captivated me from the start.

I think my issue was that I love Tella so much more than I love Scarlett so I found myself not really caring what was going on in Scarlett’s world. I wanted to see what would be Tella’s story, especially after the events of Legendary. I wanted to know where her story was going. And believe me I understand that Scarlett is a part of Tella’s story, but there was just something about her that I didn’t love. All in all, though I loved how everything played out and how each girl’s story ended. It seemed fitting and it seemed right.

I don’t want to give too much away, but definitely a series I would recommend and a world I will miss.

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Review: Legendary – Stephanie Garber

Review: Legendary – Stephanie GarberLegendary by Stephanie Garber
Published by Flatiron Books
Published: May 29, 2018
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five-stars

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.

When I love a series debut I tend to get nervous for the next book. Whether is is a continuous story or a companion, I worry what will happen to the people/couple I have grown to love and be invested in. It truly makes me anxious. And that feeling was strong when I started Legendary. How did I feel when I was done? Broken. I was completely broken by how amazing the book was. If I’m honest, I loved it more than Caraval and I wasn’t sure that would happen.

I think what I ended up loving the most about Legendary was Tella. Having met her in Caraval I had a rough idea about who she was, but what I didn’t know was that didn’t even scratch the surface. Tella was a formidable force. She was way stronger than her sister, Scarlett, made her out to be. And man was she sassy. Even when she was up against an uncertain situation she never backed down or showed her fear. But underneath all of that she was still a teenager that was figuring out her spot in life and love.

The other part I loved in Legendary was the mystery that was threaded through the book. As a reader I love thinking I have everything figured out but still find myself questioning what I thought was happening. I would be convinced I was right and then something would happen and I would have a new theory all over again. For me that’s the sign of great storytelling. Whether I was right from the start of never figured it out it didn’t matter because I loved every step of the journey.

In the end I loved everything about Legendary. I loved the characters, the setting, and the story. I was on the edge of my seat the whole time I was reading. Sure I was left broken by the end but what better way to know you just read a fantastic book. Now the anxiety can start for the next book.

Have you read this series yet?

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On my Radar: Top TBR Books (and a dream book)

As book bloggers and readers we have a ton of books. At any given time I have about 100 books I want to read at once which we all know isn’t possible. But with those 100 books I usually have a few in mind that I want to read (unless I’m in a mood reading phase). Currently I have 6 books that I have my eye on to read next, and one that I am desperate to show up on Edelweiss so I can download it and the read the crap out of it.

On my Radar: Top TBR Books (and a dream book)Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum
Published by Delacorte Press
Published: April 5th 2016
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Everything about Jessie is wrong. At least, that’s what it feels like during her first week of junior year at her new ultra-intimidating prep school in Los Angeles. Just when she’s thinking about hightailing it back to Chicago, she gets an email from a person calling themselves Somebody/Nobody (SN for short), offering to help her navigate the wilds of Wood Valley High School. Is it an elaborate hoax? Or can she rely on SN for some much-needed help?

It’s been barely two years since her mother’s death, and because her father eloped with a woman he met online, Jessie has been forced to move across the country to live with her stepmonster and her pretentious teenage son.

In a leap of faith—or an act of complete desperation—Jessie begins to rely on SN, and SN quickly becomes her lifeline and closest ally. Jessie can’t help wanting to meet SN in person. But are some mysteries better left unsolved?

Julie Buxbaum mixes comedy and tragedy, love and loss, pain and elation, in her debut YA novel filled with characters who will come to feel like friends.

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On my Radar: Top TBR Books (and a dream book)Wait for Me by Caroline Leech
Published by HarperTeen
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Set on a Scottish farm in the spring of 1945, Wait for Me begins as Paul, a severely burned German prisoner-of-war, is sent to the farm to work. Lorna, the farmer’s teenage daughter, soon discovers that in wartime, your family and your allies might not actually be your friends, and your enemy might turn out to be the love of your life. Lorna’s friendship with Paul, and their developing love for each other, is challenged by Lorna’s own prejudices and by the intolerance of her soldier brother and her friends in the village. Ultimately, the events which bring peace to Europe will tear Lorna and Paul apart. What will Lorna have to give up in order to find Paul again?

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On my Radar: Top TBR Books (and a dream book)Caraval (Untitled, #1) by Stephanie Garber
Published by Flatiron Books
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Before you enter the world of Caraval, you must remember that it’s all a game . . .

Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their ruthless father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the legendary, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

Then, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation to Caraval finally arrives. So, Tella enlists a mysterious sailor’s help to whisk Scarlett away to this year’s show. But as soon as the trio arrives, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nonetheless soon becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with her sister, with Legend, and 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.

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On my Radar: Top TBR Books (and a dream book)The Problem with Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Published by Harlequin Teen
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For some people, silence is a weapon. For Mallory “Mouse” Dodge, it’s a shield. Growing up, she learned that the best way to survive was to say nothing. And even though it’s been four years since her nightmare ended, she’s beginning to worry that the fear that holds her back will last a lifetime.

Now, after years of homeschooling with loving adoptive parents, Mallory must face a new milestone—spending her senior year at public high school. But of all the terrifying and exhilarating scenarios she’s imagined, there’s one she never dreamed of—that she’d run into Rider Stark, the friend and protector she hasn’t seen since childhood, on her very first day.

It doesn’t take long for Mallory to realize that the connection she shared with Rider never really faded. Yet the deeper their bond grows, the more it becomes apparent that she’s not the only one grappling with the lingering scars from the past. And as she watches Rider’s life spiral out of control, Mallory faces a choice between staying silent and speaking out—for the people she loves, the life she wants, and the truths that need to be heard.

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On my Radar: Top TBR Books (and a dream book)For This Life Only by Stacey Kade
Published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
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A young man struggles to move forward after the death of his twin brother in this gripping, coming-of-age tale about loss, redemption, love, and the moment you begin to see the world differently.

Three minutes.

Jacob Palmer died for three life-changing minutes.

And when he woke up, nothing was the same. Elijah, his twin brother, is dead, and his family is broken. Jace’s planned future is crushed, along with his pitching arm. Everyone keeps telling him that Eli’s in a better place, but Jace isn’t so sure. Because in those three minutes, there was nothing.

Overwhelmed by guilt and doubt, Jace struggles to adjust to this new version of the world, one without his brother, one without the certainties he once relied on. And then Thera comes into his life.
She’s the last girl he should be turning to for help.

But she’s also the first person to truly see him.

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On my Radar: Top TBR Books (and a dream book)Wrecked by Maria Padian
Published by Algonquin Young Readers
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Everyone has heard a different version of what happened that night at MacCallum College. Haley was already in bed when her roommate, Jenny, arrived home shell-shocked from the wild Conundrum House party. Richard heard his housemate Jordan brag about the cute freshman he hooked up with. When Jenny formally accuses Jordan of rape, Haley and Richard find themselves pushed onto opposite sides of the school’s investigation. But conflicting interests fueling conflicting versions of the story may make bringing the truth to light nearly impossible--especially when reputations, relationships, and whole futures are riding on the verdict.

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This is the book I am desperate to show up on Edelweiss. I’m about half way through the first and I need more!

On my Radar: Top TBR Books (and a dream book)Corruption (Disruption, #2) by Jessica Shirvington
Published by HarperCollins
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The thrilling finale to bestselling author Jessica Shirvington's Disruption series.

How do you live with yourself when you've deceived the one you love?
How do you move on when the person you've been fighting to save betrays you?
Two years ago, Maggie Stevens began the hunt.
Four weeks ago, Maggie's world fell apart, when she finally found what she'd been looking for. And when Quentin, who had blindly trusted her, unravelled her web of lies.
Now, Maggie lives in the dark. But she's not about to stay there. Not when she still has to bring M-Corp down. Not when there is still a chance she could win him back.
In the exhilarating conclusion to Disruption, Maggie must do whatever it takes to show the world the truth. And the price for her quest?
Everything.
But for who?

What are the books on your radar?

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