Thursday, June 27, 2013

Review: The Night Circus

by: Erin Morgenstern 

Published: September 2010
512 pages   

The Night CircusThe circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus performers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

I am so far behind with reviews. I need to catch up!

The Night Circus was a fantastic read. I always thought this book was YA, but after I read it I saw it was often considered a book for adults. Even so, I think YA readers would enjoy this story. I certainly did! I will warn you though this story is slow paced and I think that could turn some readers off. There are definitely moments where I felt like I was waiting for something to happen and there are not many flashy action sequences. The book is slow paced, but it captivated me. Morgenstern had a great way of describing the circus that made you feel like you knew everything and nothing about it at the same time. The time line jumps around and even the point of view changes throughout the story which took some getting used to. While it does create some confusion, I think it added to the mystery of the book and overall I enjoyed it.

I think one of my favorite things about this story was the slow development of the romance. So many stories introduce two characters so early before you know each character by themselves.In this story I felt like I knew Celia and Marco independently before they even met one another. For much of the novel Celia and Marco are only concerned about the other because of the competition they have been entered into. When romance finally does blossom, I thought their reasons for falling in love were so understandable and believable. Their meetings and actions are incredibly romantic and beautifully described as well. I was swept up by their story and thoroughly enjoyed this aspect of the book.

There is so much mystery though out the book as well. There was no point in the book where I was sure what was going to happen or who all the characters were. The circus itself changed constantly though out the novel and I was always interested to see what would be added. There were enough mysteries to keep me guessing and interested through the entire novel. Each character is unique and while I never felt like I knew everything about the characters, I cared about all of them. The circus performers have a wide variety of interesting talents and there are more acts than what you would expect at a normal circus. Marco and Celia's talents are also a great take on magic and something unique and interesting. The circus itself is fascinating and has a personality of its own as well. The ending is fantastic because somehow all these bits and pieces of story about the circus all fit together in the end.

I recommend this for anyone who is willing to be patient and slow down to enjoy this story. While it is slow, I think it is definitely worth the time to read it. It is one of my favorite books of this year so far!

Rating: 5/5

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