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Erin Morganstern’s debut novel The Night Circus is an enchanting tale of two illusionists battling each other in a magical contest within “Le Cirque des Reves”, the Circus of Dreams. Set in the late 1800’s, the circus travels from city to city, appearing in town, with no fanfare or notice. Gardens of ice, mazes of clouds, bonfires that never go out, and tent after tent of performers of unheard-of feats keep circus attendees amazed. The circus is made with magic, real magic; which weaves its spell on every aspect of the book.
Le Cirque des Reves mesmerizes fans throughout the world and inspires a group of “Reveres”, fans who follow the circus, but the circus of dreams is all backdrop to the secret contest of Celia and Marco. Both are magicians, who as children were bound by their father figures to compete in a secret contest against each other, creating illusions and manipulating objects, but they don’t know the rules or how the winner is determined.
The Night Circus is lush and vivid, a treat for the imagination. The split narrative can at times be confusing, as we are sent back and forth in time, but chapters are never boring. However, plot is slow to develop throughout this book. The reader does feel suspense building around the Celia and Marco, as they figure out the rules of their contest and fall head over heels in love with each other, but the book is generally one long descriptive narrative of the circus and the people surrounding it.
The supporting characters are so well imagined, like the tattooed contortionist Tsukiko; who can turn her body in amazing shapes, or Anna Padva; retired prima ballerina and costume designer of the circus, that they could exist in novels of their own. Sadly, they and other supporting characters are lost to the vivid backdrop and the story of Celia & Marco, and come away totally underused. Others like twins; Popit and Widget, born on opening night, who age while others involved in the circus never seem too, and their friend Baily, who dreams of life bigger than as a sheep farmer; shine just as bright as the circus. Baily’s simple desire to dream and the innocence of his youth while visiting a magical world remind the reader of an innocent time when anything is possible.
This book is not for everyone, it is slow to develop and may frustrate some readers who love action, but for those who love a bit of magic you may think this is the best debut novel you have ever read.

Review: The Night Circus

User Review  - Lois - Goodreads

I really enjoyed this book! The magic, the fascinating characters, the intricacy of the plot line. I could read this one again. I almost wish they would make it a movie so we could see some of what ... Read full review

Review: The Night Circus

User Review  - Bettina - Goodreads

“The most difficult thing to read is time. Maybe because it changes so many things.” -Erin Morgenstern, The Night Circus First thing first, this book is not what is seems. The summary of this book ... Read full review

Review: The Night Circus

User Review  - Belinda G - Goodreads

It took me quite a while to read this, as it was an audio book. I think it was wonderful, but I also feel that some of that wonderful description of the circus hid a very slow plot that could have ... Read full review

Review: The Night Circus

User Review  - FourteenRedRoses - Goodreads

*Spoiler Free Review* The Night Circus is most likely a book I would never have picked up if I weren't reading it as a part of a book club. Despite this, I did really enjoy it. I definitely enjoyed ... Read full review

Review: The Night Circus

User Review  - marcella - Goodreads

I have no idea how to put my feelings about this book into a review, so I just won't bother writing a proper one haha. I'll just say that I thought this book was brilliant, from the first chapter right up until the last. A great start to my 2015 reading year! Read full review

Review: The Night Circus

User Review  - Elisa The-Bookie-Monster - Goodreads

Ok. So things I loved about this book: the characters and world-building. The majority of this book is description and it's great because you feel like you are inside of the circus, but on the flip ... Read full review

Review: The Night Circus

User Review  - QS - Goodreads

I'm having a really hard time trying to sort out how I feel about this book. On one hand, it was absolutely beautiful, mostly serene, and sometimes heartbreaking, but it wasn't what I expected. First ... Read full review

Review: The Night Circus

User Review  - Torey - Goodreads

Super descriptive and imaginative... Exactly what you want to read immerse yourself in an world of escapism. Great read! Read full review

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