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Untamed City: Carnival of Secrets [Kindle Edition]

Melissa Marr
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (36 customer reviews)

Kindle Price: $10.67
Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers

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Book Description

Warriors Kaleb and Aya will stop at nothing to destroy their competition. But when Kaleb finds his fate entwined with that of Mallory, a seventeen-year-old human girl, he can't seem to separate the vicious Carnival contest he's entered from his sudden devotion to her. He and Aya may be prizefighters from the otherworldly Untamed City, but his strange, obsessive connection makes staying away from the witch-ruled human world, and Mallory, harder every day.

All Mallory knows of the Untamed City is what her elders have told her—that it's full of debauchery and daimons looking to destroy her. But she knows she's being pulled toward Kaleb with an emotion so fierce that it's utterly foreign.

The two are forced apart by Mallory's overprotective witch father, stranded by necessity between warring populations that can't coexist. But when The City's ruler raises the stakes of the Carnival's prize, there's nothing Mallory, Kaleb, or Aya can do to stop the two worlds colliding. Mallory's about to discover her true identity—and stumble into a fate she'd die to avoid.

Fans of The Hunger Games will devour this tale of lush secrets, dark love, and the struggle to forge one's own destiny from the bestselling author of Wicked Lovely, Melissa Marr.

(Formerly published as Carnival of Souls)

Product Details

  • File Size: 826 KB
  • Print Length: 321 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins (September 4, 2012)
  • Sold by: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007HBY0VK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #131,740 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
28 of 30 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great characters and ideas, slightly poorer execution September 5, 2012
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I have a funny relationship with Melissa Marr books. It's not love/hate per se, more like the enjoyment of greasy fried rice from the local, that despite knowing it's no good still enjoying from time to time.

Anyway, I was very interested to see Marr's first real break away from the Wicked Lovely universe, and at first I really enjoyed this book.

Marr introduces a pair of worlds, one ruled by daimons, the other our human world. Witches exists as a third species that span the two. Our main protag, Mallory is an adopted daimon, living in the human world under the delusion that she a human being raised by a witch (I think I got that right.)

Aya is a hybrid witch-daimon hoping to successfully gain political power (by competing in the Carnival of Souls) in the demon world - which is ruled by Mallory's birth father. Standing in her way is her lover, who she must either kill or confide her hybrid status and risk her own death.

Rather than come across as convoluted - Marr successfully creates an intriguing world with well rounded characters with 'real' motivations and tension filled relationships.

So why am I crying poor execution?

firstly this book has way too much 'tell.' Now I'm not trying to be authorly and snarky. It's just so much of the world building and some scenes (including what must have been the oddest sex act, described in the most blaise of prose ever.) Was simply stated by the narration rather than being included in the action.

For example two of the characters were curs, or lower caste daimons. Yet very little happened to really make this believable, just we were told this in the narrative.

My other qualm, is that this book was somewhat un-epic in plot.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Do Yourself a Favor and Listen to This Book October 8, 2012
Format:Audible Audio Edition
I've been a Melissa Marr fan since Wicked Lovely, though I admit that I've gotten way behind, having missed reading several of her more recent books. This one, though, I simply knew that I had to listen to, because James Martsters, so I made time. Melissa Marr's newest differs quite a bit from her Wicked Lovely series, but shares the dark romance and gritty world building that I enjoyed so much in those books.

Mallory has been raised knowing that daimons and witches exist, that her father, Adam, is a witch. Because of something he stole from the daimon ruler, she and Adam move constantly, and she's never had the chance to get close to anyone but him. What the reader knows and Mallory does not is that what Adam Stole is Mallory, the daughter of the daimon ruler, Marchosias. She is a daimon, but has been trained how to kill them, tutored on the use of firearms.

Witches and daimons do not get along. They fought wars over The City, and the daimons won, thanks to the leadership of Marchosias. The witches live hidden in the human world; the daimons live in the demon world, comprised of The City and the Untamed Lands. The City is dark, violent, sordid, and built around a rigid social hierarchy. In an effort to provide the slightest chance of social mobility to his citizens, Marchosias hosts a competition, wherein daimons can sign up to battle, the winner obtaining high rank and a position in the government. It's rather like The Hunger Games, only made up of a series of individual battles during a long span of time, and the battles do have the option of ending in forfeiture, though forfeiting, for those in the lower castes, ends in fates worse than death.

The story opens with Mallory, in the throes of her first real crush upon a boy named Kaleb.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audible Audio Edition
It was almost exactly a year ago that I picked up a Melissa Marr book for the first time, and experienced her amazingly creative, intricate, and beautiful worldbuilding through her adult book, Graveminder. Since that time, I've devoured the entire Wicked Lovely series and her short story collection, Faery Tales and Nightmares, that released earlier this year. And I really liked (or dare I say, even loved) all of them. So of course I was over the moon excited about Carnival of Souls. I waiting in line for well over an hour for the opportunity to meet her and pick this up at BEA, but once I heard that the indelible James Marsters would be narrating the audio, I decided to save myself and pick it up for a listen on release day.

After my initial disappointment when I forgot that James Marsters is actually American (alas, poor Spike, I loved him well), I knew beyond a doubt that I had made the right decision to listen to this book. Because I most often listen to audiobooks while I work out, I love them to be high action-it keeps me going-and while Carnival of Souls could have had more action in my opinion, it still had enough between Mallory's perilous existence and the deadly competition in The City to satisfy. While I'm still not sure how I feel about Kaleb's southern accent (which lingers somewhere between hot-Georgian and dim-sounding-Virginian), I felt that Marsters voiced the characters of Carnival of Souls excellently, and I certainly recommend this format.

Melissa Marr's world building was, as always, stunning. We are wedged almost uncomfortably between our world, where Mallory has been raised as a human and that of The City where the daimons rule. The City is run on a caste system with the ruling class on top and the curs at the bottom.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Daimons and Witches
Melissa Marr is one of my favorite authors. Her stories are always filled with adventure and danger and this book is no different.
Wonderful characters and exciting problems. Read more
Published 19 days ago by Nicole Hinds
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
good book
Published 1 month ago by Jennifer Barnard
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
so good
Published 1 month ago by Amber
5.0 out of 5 stars I wish I'd known it was the first of a series....
I absolutely loved this book, and now I'm stuck waiting to see what happens next book... hurry up Melissa!! :)
Published 2 months ago by Lisa Nord
3.0 out of 5 stars Fells like the story was incomplete and the cliffhanger was just awful
I’m usually a fan of whatever Melissa Marr writes, but this one really wasn’t my favourite. I really tried to enjoy it and despite the few positive aspects to the book, it just... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Stephanie Leroux
4.0 out of 5 stars Welcome to the Carnival of Souls
The center of the City is home to the Carnival of Souls. And every generation the Carnival of Souls hosts the Competition. Read more
Published 12 months ago by Brittany Moore
5.0 out of 5 stars amazing YA genre-line-crosser
Dark, original, and utterly compelling. The characters for the most part are interesting and well drawn, and there's a nice pacing to revelations about the world. Read more
Published 14 months ago by Casey
4.0 out of 5 stars Carnival of Souls
I'll be honest by trying to do my traditional review would absolutely give too much away. I don't like having books I've not read yet spoiled even before I start them. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Amazon Customer
4.0 out of 5 stars almost fabulous
It was great except for the last few pages which seemed really rushed and even changed the nature if the main character to a degree, but I won't explain that any further. Read more
Published 19 months ago by bewarethewriter
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't wait for the next book
There are some serious twist and turns in this novel. The passion between the characters is refreshing. Thegladiator like theme made it an exciting read. Can't wait for more
Published 19 months ago by Monique Miller
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