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The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. – Erin Morgenstern

How I discovered this book: The cover of this book is absolutely beautiful! (click here) I am a sucker for beautiful book covers. I decided to listen to the audiobook.

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Plot Summary:

“Le Cirque des Reves” is the world’s most amazing circus. In every tent, there are mystifying illusions defying all natural logic resembling that of a dream. Behind the scenes, the circus is but a venue to showcase a competition between the protégées of two master illusionists.

The story begins with a young five year old girl named Celia who is sent to live with her father, Prospero the enchanter. Prospero is the world’s greatest illusionist, and he spends his life travelling the world while performing in numerous venues. Though Prospero has a secret, his illusions are not mere parlour tricks, they are real. In order to settle a long dispute with his comrade and fellow magician, Alexander, Prospero forces his daughter Celia into taking part in a competition to test her magical abilities. As Celia grows up, Prospero instructs her in the art of magic while preparing her to anonymously face her competitor.

Meanwhile, Alexander chooses a protégée of his own. He chooses a young boy named Marco, an orphan with a love of reading. Marco spends his life learning how to master the art of magic from a textbook as he anticipates the day when he can finally begin the challenge. When both Marco and Celia grow into adulthood, Alexander decides to begin the competition. “Le Cirque des Reves” becomes the venue for the competition where Marco and Celia must astound the world with the help of their magical powers.

About the book:

Title: The Night Circus

Author: Erin Morgenstern

Series: N/A

Year Published: 2010

Pages:

Genres: Fiction, fantasy, young adult, romance, mystery

The review

All I can say is… WOW! This was an amazing book!

I have read many excellent books in my lifetime, but it is rare that an author would be able to create a convincing magical world rich with detail beyond imagination. J.K Rowling, Tolkien, and C.S Lewis come to mind when I think of Morgenstern’s story. The characters are vivid and original with a touch of nostalgia that I cannot quite place. Fans of fantasy and of Harry Potter are destined to fall madly in love with this book.

Although this is her first book, Morgenstern is a professional at creating atmospheric scenes. There were times in the book when all I wanted was to see “Le Cirque des Reves” with my own eyes and visit each spectacular tent. I wanted to see the clock at the circus’ gates and watch as it performs a spectacle on its own. I wanted to try chocolate mice and all the delectable circus food Bailey tries on his adventures with Poppet and Widget.

My only critique is… why isn’t this book a series? All loose ends are tied up at the end and there is no fear of being ensnared by a good story only to be let down at the very end. Morgenstern carefully wraps up the ending just as carefully as she had woven the story together.

Final rating: A (excellent!)

Until next time,

-Alice

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