Sunday, March 24, 2013

Book Shelf: Carnival of Souls by Melissa Marr

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.

More info on Goodreads.......


Carnival of Souls is a darkly seductive read that will enthrall you from start to finish. Its Mortal Instruments meets the Demon Trappers in the latest release from one of the queens of Urban Fantasy, Melissa Marr!

I have to be honest here and say that I've never been blown away by Melissa Marr's books. I've read a few of them by now, and I know people seem to adore them-especially her Wicked Lovely series-but I've never been a fan.....until now! Melissa Marr blew my mind with this book and I cannot begin to accurately describe just how much I adored it.

From the very opening chapter, this dark twisted world of pleasure and violence beckoned me. The mysterious and exciting story, so expertly told, mixed beautifully with amazingly dark, but thrilling characters to completely entrap me. Truly, I did not want this book to end!

Melissa Marr's writing is dark and beautiful, incredibly detailing the unique world she has created within Carnival of Souls where witches and daimons dwell and no one is ever what they seem. The world of The City and the actual Carnival of Souls itself is quite alluring. The carnival atmosphere mixes with desperation and despair to create a place so raw and so harsh, that it took my breath away at times.

Awash with danger and pleasure, this story wouldn't be complete without a fantastic cast of characters to capture the reader. Carnival of Soul switches back and forth between the human and daimon worlds and features characters that are simply beguiling. They're so mysterious and so tormented and twisted in their own ways that it's impossible not to find yourself invested in their journey, even so early on. With each one facing their own individual problems and dangers, they all have a different story to tell and it's this that really makes the book. Told in third person, this book introduces us to those that live and fight in The City, Aya, Kaleb, Belias and Zevi as well as Mallory, a supposedly "human" girl who isn't exactly what she thinks she is and her father Adam, who loves her deeply and protects her no matter what, but whose connection to her isn't traditional.

Marr has set up an interesting relationship between the daimons and the witches, where their history is complicated and their present intermingles, forcing the characters into situations that don't really want and into personal connections they're not yet aware of. I must give Melissa Marr props for the way she connects each of the characters to each other--it's spectacular!

The growing relationship between Mallory and Kaleb proves to be a big focus, with Mallory the character the book features around the most, but I have to say, Aya and her plight have become as important to me as Mallory and Kaleb. There's so much going on in this book and so much mystery and uncertainty surrounding the characters that I find myself soaking up every minute of it!

With romance, danger and revelations galore, Melissa Marr's superb storytelling abilities become apparent as she weaves together this very intricate and exciting story in the first installment of her new series beginning with Carnival of Souls!

Source: Sent for review from Harper Collins Australia (Thank you guys!)
Format: Paperback ARC
AU Release Date: Available now!
Buy it: Booktopia // The Nile // The Book Depository
Recommendation: This book will appeal to everyone!
Cover: It's alright--doesn't blow me away though.
Will I read sequel/continue with series: Looking forward to reading more!


  1. I'm actually a BIG fan of the Wicked Lovely series so I'm glad to see that this book worked out for you! I, however, will probably not read this book because the reviews I read well . . . it doesn't sounds like my kind of thing. Still, I might give it a go later this year.

    Anyway, great review! :)

  2. I'm a big fan of Melissa Marr, so hopefully I'll enjoy this book too. Sad to hear it didn't live up to your expectations though. Anyway lovely review!

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