Sunday, 11 September 2011 | By: Nicole @ Nicole About TOwn

Review: The Night Circus

Title: The Night Circus
Author: Erin Morgenstern
Genre: Fiction & Literature
Rating: PG
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Release Date: September 13, 2011
Pages: 387
Source: Finished Copy provided by Chapters Indigo

[Goodreads | Amazon]

The 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 RĂªves, 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.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.


"Well then," Chandresh says.  We are set as far as contortionists go.  That's a start."
"Shouldn't there be more than one?" Lainie asks.  "An entire tent, like one for the acrobats?"
"Nonsense," Chandresh replies.  "Better to have a single perfect diamond than  sack of flawed stones.  We'll make a showcase of her, put her in the courtyard or something."
The matter is considered settled for the moment, and throughout dessert and after-dinner drinks, the only subject discussed is the circus itself.

My Thoughts

     The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern is absolutely masterful and after having read it, I can say that it has been without a doubt my favourite book of 2011.  The Night Circus is one of those books that you come across very seldom and it's one of those books that leaves a lasting impression on the reader.  The kind that you find yourself picking up and reading more than once, and every time you do read it again, another facet of it's brilliance is revealed.

     The prose is lyrical and almost poetic and with that same sense of fluidity Erin Morgenstern has created a world that leaves the reader with a longing to experience it for themselves.  The book is a feast for the senses.  As you are reading you feel the silk of a dress worn by one of the performers, taste the food at one of the midnight dinners, or smell the caramel in the air as you walk from tent to tent exploring all of the delights that the circus has to offer.

     I personally don't understand the comparison to the Harry Potter series.  To me, the only thing that they share in common is that they are both written by extremely talented women, on paper, and they both deal with magic!  That's it.  To say that The Night Circus is the second coming of Harry Potter does a great disservice to both stories.  The Night Circus is not a series, but rather one stand alone book.  It is a richly written tale that uses the circus itself as a backdrop.  It is not a book about magic.  It is not a book about vanquishing the most evil wizard of all time.  The Night Circus, at the end of the day, is a love story.

     The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern is to me, much more than a book.  It is an experience to be savoured and treasured by all of those who read it.


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