Caraval Readalong: Day 3

Beautiful photo by the wonderful @stephanie_garber herself.

Welcome, Welcome friends!

Today is day 3 of the ‘Caraval’ readalong! I really hope those of you who are re-reading with us are enjoying revisiting the story. And I hope those of you who are reading for the first time are loving it as much as we are!

Today we’re starting the Readalong by reading chapters 14 – 19, and stopping at the beginning of chapter 20.

Let’s continue with our Caraval adventure, shall we?

Please be warned, the following will include spoilers for Caraval chapters 14-19 inclusively. Read only if you’ve finished those chapters!


We rejoin Scarlett and Julian as Dante enters the room. Three cheers for Dante! I adore him. Julian acts very protectively over Scarlett, which is very adorable of him. Once Dante leaves, Julian tells us that he won the last Game and it came at a hefty prize, so he suspects that Dante has returned to win back what he lost.

Julian and Scarlett meet Jovan AKA Jo again and she takes them on a tour of the isle as she leads them towards the place pictured on the card. I love, love, love the descriptions at this part. Garber’s descriptions of all the coloured houses genuinely makes me wish I was there. Jo also explains that people visit the Games merely to shop and not even attempt to play. And honestly? That’s what I’d be doing. It’d be like antiquing in Caraval, just imagine what things you could find!

Scarett runs into a fortune teller, Nigel, and offers her a reading for her future as long as she gives him answers to his question. Simple enough, right? Wrong. The question is about Julian. Scarlett admits that he’s the most attractive man she’s ever seen, but incredibly full of himself. I’d say that’s spot on, Crimson.

Scarlett gets her chance to ask her question, and she asks if the man she is going to marry is good and honest. Nigel says he’s neither, he used to be good, but now he isn’t. However, there’s a chance he could become good. Nigel tricks Scarlett as he begins to leave, claiming that she asked three questions. When Scarlett begs him for another clue, Nigel tells her that she should forget about her wedding and follow a boy with a heart made of black. How mysterious!

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Julian is nowhere in sight when she leaves Nigel and wanders into a tent that sells potions. She ends up buying a protection potion in exchange for the name of the person she fears the most. Her father. When she leaves the potions tent, she spots Julian and follows him to a garden with a wishing well dawning Legend’s symbol. When she pushes it, a secret staircase down into what looks like a cave. Would you guys follow the staircase?

Down there she comes across screams and is told to leave. Scarlett tries to convince herself that Julian wasn’t the source of the screams and hopes she’ll find him at the Tavern. When she returns she mistakes Dante as Julian and he is rather rude towards her. Naughty Dante! That night, Julian stumbles into the room they share, with blood over his head. Our beloved Crimson runs to his aid. He reveals the earrings he managed to retrieve for her and denies anything about being in the tunnels. I’m getting suspicious of you again, Julian. But, he does tell her she is starting to ask the right questions. It’s not till later that Scarlett realises Julian managed to avoid the question of how he got injured, and he’d never said how he managed to get back inside long after the doors had locked for the day.

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Soo much is happening in these chapters guys! Ahh! I’m loving being back in Caraval.

That night, Scarlett meets someone named Aiko. I love that name. And then Dante makes a rather dramatic entrance with two giggling girls, looking rather determined and dishevelled. Scarlett notices that on his arm there is a black heart, which of course, makes her follow him immediately. She looses him of course, nothing is ever that straight forward in Caraval.

When Scarlett looses him, she runs into a boy selling cider. She buys some with the last lie she told and her vision shifts, turning greyscale. I don’t know about you guys, but this would freak me the hell out! 

The only thing still in colour is Aiko’s journal which contains pictures of Scarlett’s journey through Caraval. She’s mortified and wonders if Caraval is about her and Tella. According to Aiko, the journal holds the history of Caraval within it’s pages and Scarlett really wants to see her grandmother, the woman that died, Julian and Dante. I would too, honestly.

Aiko tells Scarlett that she can see more of the journal if she buys two dresses for herself as she doesn’t like the one that’s constantly changing. Scarlett agrees and walks inside. The dress keepers says she can buy the dresses by answering her questions truthfully, or two days off her life. I’m going with Crimson on this one and saying that the questions would be my choice.

Scarlett apparently doesn’t answer the questions truthfully enough and has to pay with days of her life. Freaaaky! The devious shop keeper tells Scarlett she will take the days now, but will give her enough time to get somewhere safe to…well…die for two days basically. No pressure.

What do you guys think of chapters 13 – 19?

So much happened in these chapters and honestly, I. am. stressed. Reading this all over again is just as entertaining as the first as I’m getting to focus on all the itty bitty details and descriptions whereas when I first read it, I remember gripping the book tightly trying to predict where the hell Tella was.

Again, please be mindful of spoilers if you decide to continue reading!

We will be back tomorrow and will be reading chapters 20-27.

With Love,




16 thoughts on “Caraval Readalong: Day 3

  1. These chapters made me so anxious to continue reading! I honestly cannot believe Scarlett will lose 2 days of her life… This is my first time readinh the book and I am absolutely loving every page. It’s different from what I expected, but in a very ‘can’t put the book down’ kind of way. Anxious to see what will happen in tomorrow’s chapters <3

    1. Two days of your life is A LOT to give, right?!

  2. I actually read the chapters for Days 2 and 3 together as I missed yesterday, and it was an immersive experience! I’m torn between loving Julian and distrusting him, so I can’t wait to see where his story goes. And I’m very curious to know where Tella and Legend are through all of this… curiouser and curiouser!

    1. Girl!
      You are on a roll!
      Curiouser and Curiouser is a total mood for this book!

  3. I honestly cannot deal with these chapters! (or the book) I LOVE the descriptions of Caraval and Stephanie’s use of colour, it just makes it so magical and you can really picture Caraval!

    I seriously want to know what Julian is up to! It’s like he’s got insider info, despite playing before he seems to know an awful lot and is keeping a hell of a lot away from Scarlett. He seems to sweet and also mysterious which is cray alluring!

    I wish Scarlett was able to get more info from Nigel on her future, I’m kind of thinking that her future husband isn’t the mysterious count but someone else… (Julian??) seeing as he’s got options to be good again. I’m hoping anyway but I’m also routing for Dante who also is crazy alluring, although we haven’t seen much of him yet! I feel like Dante and Julian know each other better than is being let on.

    Oh my god, the selling of two days of life! I was screaming that the days would be taken off now and not at the end (face balm) I would have asked but… thats not how it works in books, I’m intrigued by this dream world, i want to know what she see’s!

    Thoughts over… I’m loving it 😀 x

    1. I’m so so sooo happy you’re liking it so far!
      I hope you love what you read tomorrow!

  4. The describtion of the buildings and places is just so mesmerizing, I would love to be there and would probably be in constant awe. I would try to get stuff as well. But I would love to play and love to explore (yes I would have went down that staircase)
    I have a guess who Nigel ment. But I think I am keeping that to myself for now, curious to lern more about everything. Every hint, every mystery.
    I was shocked about the two days… I mean for a dress? That seems a bit much. But of course she wouldn’t wait untill the end of her live, but right now seems a bit inconvenient. I loved the reason the shop girl gave XD
    Can’t wait till tomorrow

  5. These were really gripping chapters and make me anxious too! I felt Scarlett’s confusion about the two days as I had also thought it would be at the end of her life, not two days now!!!

    Still don’t trust anyone!

    Really enjoying this and loving the sense that nothing is real, or is it???

  6. This is my new favourite book by far. I love everything about it.

    oh no what has scarlet done she can’t die for two days she will miss so much. I really want to know more about that book. What will it tell?

    I starting to wounder About Julian what is he hiding? but I also love him and wished he had of kissed scarlet.

    And Dante I want to know more about him Please tell me more.

    There is so much happening in these chapters and I can’t wait for more.

    Scarlet PLEASE come back from the dead soon


  7. Im stressing out because first of all DID SHE MAKE IT TO THE HOTEL before she “died” lol also, I feel like since Aiko said she would visit her in the “dream like state” to show her the book, that her “dying” was part of the game all along. Just educated guesses though because this is my first time reading it lol

  8. I feel like I would make so many bad decisions if I was in Caraval. Two days of your life as payment? I know that’s terrible, but I can’t honestly say I wouldn’t pay the price. Can you imagine if you could get highly anticipated books before the release date and it only cost you one day of your life? I don’t think I would make very sensible choices here. ?

    1. Ah for books over dresses. But then you’d lose those two days and have to wait to read the book anyway. ?

      1. Worth it! ?

  9. The story about Scarlett protecting Tella’s dreams when she was younger was so cute.

    So Julian recognises Dante as someone who won Caravel before but lost something yet he still asks for an introduction?!

    ?? so annoying when your disgusted reaction ends up a whimper. Scarlett needs to give up and admit she is the teensiest bit attracted to Julian.

    The tattooed and very exotic man is called Nigel ?? and just like magic he gets her to admit what I said above.

    The man she will marry. Doesn’t necessarily mean the count now does it?

    Follow the boy with a heart made of black – there’s so many boys to pick from tho

    Elixir of Protection. So this will show up later but it only works on someone once for 2 hrs. Hmmm will I remember that later. Will she?

    Spooky staircase in the fountain. Would you go down alone? What she witnesses there is creepy but I’m unsure why the girl would seemingly protect her.

    Dante was a douche. And he wasn’t Julian. Is he okay?
    Head injury. Copious blood. He got her earrings. Near smooches. Passionate.

    Aiko says she’s not playing but encourages Scarlett to. Julian doesn’t show up but Dante does and he has a black heart tattoo. ? this scene with the moving monkey boy remind me of Labyrinth.

    Enchanted cider turns everything black and white except for some roses and Aiko’s journal which holds pictures of the history of Caraval. She pays to look at it by buying two dresses with her greatest fear and her greatest desire except she can’t be honest with herself about her desire and loses two days of her life. Unfortunately right now. Aiko promises to come to her in her dreams if she makes it back to the room and her body stays safe.
    Cliffhanger much.

  10. I am finally all caught up with the read along! I have never read this book before and wanted to participate in the read along before deciding to buy the box or not. At first I wasn’t really into the book. In a lot of ways I felt like the first 40 pages except the letters could have been summed up in one chapter and we could have gotten right to Caraval because thats why we’re here right? However at the end of day 2 the game has started and today’s chapters are amazing! I love the risk reward thing going on here but am not sure how 2 days of Scarlett being dead is going to work? I kind of think she needs to give up on the wedding thing. She has to win the game to find her sister and by doing so she will get a wish and doesnt have to marry the count to escape her father. I love Julian’s character and think Dante is super interesting. I love Aiko’s book can you imagine getting your hands on that? It might be worth two days of life for that. Can’t wait til tomorrow!

  11. God, Scar needs to take a pause and breathe before she f¨¨up more, all that running is only making herself make worse mistakes. Also, she does need to decide if she trust or not Julian.
    Yeah, I’d follow the stairs.

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