Book Review: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

Title: The Night Circus
Author: Erin Morgenstern
Series: None
Released: September 13, 2011
Publisher: Doubleday
Tags: Fantasy, Magic

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

Many new books will debut this fall,
So many in fact, it’s hard to remember them all.
But one novel in particular I’d like to remind,
Defies all expectation, it’s one-of-a kind.
The title you ask? Why The Night Circus of course!
It’s a formidable debut, an enchanting tour de force.
A reminder if you have yet to enter the Circus gates,
A matchless world of wonder, novelty, and fervor eagerly awaits.
So I invite you dear friend to read with tenacity,
And you’ll see that the above is said with veracity.
Le Cirque des Rêves is calling your name,
Once you step inside, you’ll never be the same…

First off I listened to the audio version of this book.  Jim Dale is the narrator and everything came alive as he read this book.  I’m not sure if my experience would have been different if I had read the book.  It is full of details and descriptions.  It seemed like half this book was nothing more than imagery and the characters seemed almost secondary to the circus itself.  I usually enjoy books that are much more fast paced and plot driven but this held my attention the entire time.  It is beautifully written.

There is romance in this book but it wasn’t the focus of the book. There was a large cast of characters who all played a large part in the story instead of just focusing on the two main characters.  This has to be one of the most original, well written books I’ve read.

Content: (May be considered a spoiler)
There was only one swear word that I remember in the entire book (but it was the F word) and one scene with implied sex.
So if you take white out to the F word on page 10 and skip the second half of page 295 it would be a clean read. (At least those were the page #s in the ARC I have).

Rating: 5 Stars

Source: ARC from publisher but I downloaded it from because Jim Dale is the narrator.