Monday, August 12, 2013
Review: Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr
(Untamed City #1)
by Melissa Marr
Published: September 4, 2012
In a city of daimons, rigid class lines separate the powerful from the power-hungry. And at the heart of The City is the Carnival of Souls, where both murder and pleasure are offered up for sale. Once in a generation, the carnival hosts a deadly competition that allows every daimon a chance to join the ruling elite. Without the competition, Aya and Kaleb would both face bleak futures—if for different reasons. For each of them, fighting to the death is the only way to try to live.
All Mallory knows of The City is that her father—and every other witch there—fled it for a life in exile in the human world. Instead of a typical teenage life full of friends and maybe even a little romance, Mallory scans quiet streets for threats, hides herself away, and trains to be lethal. She knows it's only a matter of time until a daimon finds her and her father, so she readies herself for the inevitable.While Mallory possesses little knowledge of The City, every inhabitant of The City knows of her. There are plans for Mallory, and soon she, too, will be drawn into the decadence and danger that is the Carnival of Souls.
From Melissa Marr, bestselling author of the Wicked Lovely series and Graveminder, comes a brand-new tale of lush secrets, dark love, and the struggle to forge one's own destiny.
From very few reviews I scanned before reading this book, I gathered Carnival of Souls' setting was pretty much like the trailer I posted below although I actually saw it just a few minutes before writing this review. But that's how I imagined it to be like before I started it and even after reading the prologue. So I was really surprised when I read Chapter 1 and there was a mention of AP Physics and internet and stuff. That's the human world though. The world I was looking forward to is actually The City, where daimons live hidden from humans.
The human world and The City are very different from each other that sometimes it can be disorienting when perspectives suddenly change. Daimons are not agreeable with the way humans live hence their differences. The City's way of life is barbaric. Daimons can shape-shift into dog-like creatures; bloody fights everyone enjoys, assassins for hire found pretty much everywhere. I enjoyed these fights as well and I think that's the only thing I enjoyed in this book. Maybe a little of Aya and Belias' love story, if you can call it that.
I like the Aya-Belias relationship. Kaleb and Mallory's however has that typical insta-romance that made me disinterested because it gives the i-know-where-this-is-going feeling from the start. I can't relate much to the characters except maybe Aya since I found her perspective enjoyable and more informative. Mallory's role in the story was disappointing since I was looking forward to her involvement with The City, her part in it, and finally see her "lethal" side but saw otherwise.
It was, at first, kind of hard to get into the book especially when I was introduced to what makes up The City. It's confusing and I sometimes can't tell the difference between a lot of things or I'm just not clear about the whole of it; the night circus, the carnival of souls, the untamed lands, daimons and watchers and witches and curs, the class lines and.. more. It's too much that when I try to think and remember what I can about it, it seems like it does not match in some aspects and there's something missing that I can't quite get the whole picture. The ending also didn't surprise me considering that there's only 20 pages, more or less, left and nothing was resolved yet so it's clear where the book is going to end.
Carnival of Souls was an okay read. I just hope the next book will be what I'm expecting it to be based on that ending. Fans of paranormal and romance will love this book except readers like me who'd had her fair share of something that sounds like this. But I still kind of enjoyed reading it although it could have been much better.
PS Watch the trailer, if you haven't already. I LOVE it! The song raised goosebumps on my skin. Aww. Aya and Belias..