It’s my second Booklook post! I decided maybe I’d pair these with reviews of the books I’m highlighting. I don’t know yet. We’ll see. I don’t want this blog to be solely books. I still want to add in some fashion. But I’m indecisive. So I guess it’ll be a surprise.

Anyways, if you haven’t read my previous Booklook post, this series is basically me drawing fashion and style inspirations from the books I’ve read. I’ll usually take the inspiration from the setting, the character description (sometimes their outfits are described) or both.

For Caraval, I took inspiration from a dress the main character, Scarlett, wore in the novel. Here’s an excerpt: “No longer dull shades of bland, the dress was now a rich cerise — the color of seduction and secrets. A stylish row of bows ran down the center of a fitted bodice with a scooped neck, set off by a matching ruffled bustle. The skirts beneath were scalloped and fitted to her form, five slender tiers of different fabrics, alternating between cerise silk and tulle, and bits of black lace. Even her boots had changed, from dull brown to an elegant combination of matching black leather and lace.”

I decided to modernize it a bit (but still keeping the same aesthetic). The book doesn’t really say what time period it’s set in, but through the descriptions of the clothes, it seems like it’s similar to something out of the 18th or 19th century. And has a sort of vintage, circus vibe.

As I mentioned, the dress was inspired by a dress in the novel, but instead of choosing a big ballgown, I went with a shorter, over-the-knee dress. I, of course, kept the same red colour, and I chose a dress with a high collar and bow, a nod to the “stylish row of bows” than runs down the bodice of the original dress. The boots I chose gave off a vintage, almost 19th-century vibe. The earrings were a nod to the Caraval master’s symbol: a sun with a star inside and a teardrop inside of the star. I’m pretty happy with how the outfit turned out!

Caraval-inspired outfit

Caraval inspiration

Caraval book mini review

Caraval (Caraval, #1)Caraval by Stephanie Garber

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book. I liked the setting and the atmosphere of the game of Caraval. I like how it was a little dark and twisted. I enjoyed the plot, it was quite fast-paced and entertaining. Some of the plot twists or reveals were done well and made sense. I like the mystery surrounding Legend and I definitely want to know more about him and Scarlett’s sister, Tella.

Some of the problems I had was that I felt like the world was a little underdeveloped, we were just thrown into another world without really getting any background on it. Also, some “clues” or places or things that seemed significant in the game were never elaborated on and kind of just left in the dust. Scarlett as a character was OK, she wasn’t my favourite character but she was tolerable.

The one thing I really didn’t like was the romance (I thought it was really cheesy and cringey at times), the writing (some metaphors were awkward and some parts were too “flowery.” Sometimes simple is better), and the ending (I felt it was a little bit of a cop-out and a tad disappointing).

But overall, I did end up enjoying Caraval and I am looking forward to reading the next book.

View all my reviews

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