I never imagined I would love Caraval as much as I have, so when I finally got my hands on its sequel, Legendary, I could barely hold my excitement in. I had very high expectations coming into it and now I can honestly say, Legendary didn’t meet those expectations, it was a bit of a let down.
It started off well. I was surprised to see that this novel is a story of Donatella, the younger Dragna sister. That was the first thing I’m not really sure how I feel about still. I don’t mind following a different main character in the sequel but the further in I read, I realised, that Scarlett – protagonist of Caraval, was an almost non-existent character in the sequel. The sisterhood that I adored so much was now gone. Because I already fell in love with Scarlet and Julian as characters in the previous book, I could never feel the same about Tella, I couldn’t just leave Scarlett behind as the author has. The moments she appeared in were short-lived and not significant and I felt as if, even through those snaps of her life that we were aloud to see, her personality has shifted and I didn’t like Scarlett as much as I used to.
I praised Caraval on not being too heavy on romance and drama that is so common and boring in YA genre. Unfortunately Legendary fell into that trend and it lost its magic.
The story-line itself and/or the writing were monotonous, the same things were said over and over again: I wonder who Legend is, is it Dante, is it Julian, or is it someone else? Should I choose option X that will lead me to certain consequences, or should I choose option Y that would lead to other consequences?
It was too repetitive not to notice it. It made it slow-paced as well and I felt like it was force written. All the magic of the series vanished and the action wasn’t there.
Last but not least, something that I could no longer ignore were grammatical/spelling errors. I will be the first to say that I am not very good at either one myself, English being my second language, but the amount of mistakes that my edition of the book had was atrocious.
Now, I’m tolerant when it comes to that and usually my not so 20/20 vision skims over those things, I won’t even notice, but Legendary… I’m sure the book is read over on multiple occasions by the author and her/his family and friends, publisher, people who read the ARC, etc. As an individual there is nothing wrong in making a mistake, but if such a great number of people missed them and those mistakes got published, that makes me wonder if they even paid attention to it. I counted 11 mistakes in my edition and they were significant enough to make me stop at the time of reading, because what I read did not make sense. There were words misspelled or missing, there were repeating words in certain sentences and those were only the ones that I saw, I wonder if I missed many myself.
Legendary wasn’t what I wanted it to be, I only hope the author will pick it back up for the Finale. I still love Caraval and if I ever decide to re-read it, I will omit the Epilogue that leads to Legendary, because frankly at the moment, I think Caraval would be better off to be a stand-alone book.