4 stars · 5 stars · Books · Epic Fantasy · Fantasy · Fiction · High Fantasy · Literary · Magical Realism · Mystery · Mythology · Reviews · Young Adult


If anything, this was a book that I could not put down. For a series that begin with me not really liking it, this took it to a whole new level.

Perhaps it was the shift in main character. Donatella was always more interesting than Scarlett ever was. As well as the fact that she planned and schemed while Scarlett dreamt and waited.

It combines all the characters and some of the others. Except they become a lot more alive here. It feels a lot better, more refined. And the plot is more complex than that of Caraval.

With how the magic was a lot more clear here. With rules, myths, and fate having a hand here. Tella knows quite a bit, which is why it isn’t just watching everything happen without any explanation. It worked because she has fiddled with it before.

It worked because she knew what it meant.

I was surprised at certain things, even though I wasn’t despite it obviousness. Mostly because of how expected, except the ending took it in unexpected directions. Directions that I will not have thought that it will have went until the last few pages.

And it is a book where Donatella makes an actual sacrifice. Something that she gave so that another might not. If anything, to see her struggle through the entire book was a satisfying and worthwhile journey.

From the beginning where she was willing to do anything as long she could be reunited with her mother. Despite not wanting to give up much. And at the end, when she chose her mother over her. At every inch of the way.

For Dante, he was surprising and for once I do like their romance. It is small, sweet and clearly really strange even till the end. But it is romantic and he has respected her. Or rather Donatella ensured she was respected. Same for Jacks, albeit I’m still wondering about how it really begin. You’ll only know once you read.

This is a strange triangle. Dante because he is just so random being in there, Jacks because he is this mysterious and cool stranger who also randomly appeared. It’s not really a struggle, it’s not a competition. It just is. Both happen to like Donatella and is willing to give something up. But how much is the right question here.

And also, both have their moments when they are absolutely jerks to her. Which helps to make them feel like real beings rather than love interests. Mostly because their actions fall into the category of self interest and self preservation. Not because they were in it for kicks and giggles.

And something that did help Donatella, she was seeking her own mother. Her mother whom Donatella assumed she doomed her into vanishing. I’m just amazed at how this subplot could tie into the other two, and made the triangle even stranger than it should be. I can’t really explain it unless of course I include spoilers.

Which I don’t.

Last but not least was because of how these characters were shaped. Donatella was willing to go to any means to get her mother back, she will never sacrifice her family for anything. While Dante did have his reasons as well as Jacks. They were all independent, never giving something they treasured immensely without no reason. And when they gave it was their own choice to do so.

Donatella had a choice, she made hers. As much as possible. And this was why I feel that Legendary was a lot better. The people here all lived for themselves more than it was for other people. But it made them human to me as they struggled to give up something as compared to doing so readily.

And why even if I disliked Caraval, I will recommend Legendary. Although I’ll advise you to at least read parts of the first book to know what’s going on. It’s important. But not so important that it is integral to the story.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5


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