Last night I finished an outstanding book, which is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because, as a reader, there is nothing better than getting...moreLast night I finished an outstanding book, which is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because, as a reader, there is nothing better than getting wrapped up into the world an author creates. Feeling as though you are there with the characters or, better yet, that you are a character in the story. A curse because finishing an outstanding book kind of overshadows a reader's next read. Nothing can compare! a reader thinks. I've been guilty of that line of thinking many times. And yet, of course, I always continue reading and I always find the next outstanding book. However, "The Night Circus" is definitely a book and a story that will stay with me for a long time.
Set in the early 1900s, "The Night Circus" by Erin Morgenstern is a story of love and heartbreak, of magic and illusion, of selfishness and selflessness. It's a captivating read, truly. Two former friends bind two children to a game of more significance than either player realizes . . . until it's almost too late. The rules are vague, the competition is magical and the venue is Le Cirque des Reves, the Cirucs of Dreams.
The games opponents, Marco and Celia, do not know one another; really, it's more accurate to say that they do not know one another at the same time. But they are, as Celia says, "well and truly bound" to one another - in many ways. It isn't until the consequences of their teachers' actions have become clear to both Marco and Celia, that they realize the true stakes of the game and just how many people will be affected by it. Then the question becomes not how to win, but who to save.
I really enjoyed this book very much. I found myself reading faster and faster, and then forcing myself to slow down and savor the words and the story. Kind of like how you find yourself doing when faced with a favorite dish or dessert. It's so good that you want to shovel it in, but you want to make it last, all the same. I gave it a five-star rating (less)
I have to admit, this book was nothing like what I was expecting. At first, I was thinking of giving up on reading it; it just wasn't capturing my att...moreI have to admit, this book was nothing like what I was expecting. At first, I was thinking of giving up on reading it; it just wasn't capturing my attention at all. Then I reached the end of chapter three and found myself laughing as I replayed the scene in my head while trying to fall asleep one night. I committed to the story and only set it aside to begin "Across the Universe" when that came in from the library. Miss Peregrine is the headmistress of a very special school for children who are peculiar - children who have special abilities like levitating or having a back mouth. The book combines the story and a series of old black and white images of the peculiar children. Monsters, the German air raids and time travel all weave together off the coast of Wales. And the way it ends practically shouts "sequel!"(less)
Brian Selznick's books are, to me, what a graphic novel should be. A wonderful story punctuated by amazing drawings. I was a fan of The Invention of H...moreBrian Selznick's books are, to me, what a graphic novel should be. A wonderful story punctuated by amazing drawings. I was a fan of The Invention of Hugo Cabret and, now, I'm a fan of Wonderstruck, as well.
This story is about a boy in northern Minnesota named Ben. Ben's living with his aunt, uncle, and cousins after losing his mom in a car accident. One night he finds the courage to go back to the house he once shared with his mom and he finds a book, Wonderstruck, that captures his interest. Even more so when a bookmark falls out that might include a clue to who Ben's father is. But a lightening strike puts Ben in the hospital and derails his plans of finding the man who may be his father.
It is also the story of Rose, a girl in the 1920's who lives in Hoboken, NJ and dreams of New York City. Her mother is famous, but Rose barely sees her. Instead, she lives with her father, a doctor, and builds paper models of New York in her bedroom. One day, Rose gets the courage to sneak away to New York, but her mother isn't at all pleased to see her. She runs, instead, to the museum and her brother, Walter, finds her there and takes her home.
There are common threads in both Ben and Anna's stories, but the most obvious one is that both children are deaf. Both children are also fascinated with the museum and collecting - and that is a fascination which connects them in profound and unbreakable ways.
The story is wonderful and the illustrations are captivating. (less)