Mandy Moody's Reviews > The Night Circus

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
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's review
Feb 13, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: fanstasy, mysterious, favorites
Read in February, 2012

My rating might eventually be changed from 4 stars to 5...I really enjoyed this one, but I prefer to let a book fade from my memory before I rate it 5 stars, and I only just finished this one this morning.
ETA - I'm back to change my rating. A month later this was DEFINITELY a 5 star read.

The Night Circus was, for me, wholly unique I can't think of another book that I've read that compares to this one in pure originality. This is the type of book that when I read it, I wonder HOW the author EVER came up with this idea.

Celia Bowen and Marco Alisdair are competing magicians, each schooled in a different method. They are competitors in a challenge that their instructors bound them to - a challenge that neither knows enough about and that will end only when one of them cannot go on any longer.
The venue for their competition is The Night Circus - the most amazing circus ever conceived. The vast majority of it's incredible attractions are rooted in magic, controlled by either Celia or Marco...or both. And while (most of) the world around them remains ignorant of this magic, it's palpable, discernible and enchanting to everyone who enters. Enchanting to the reader, too.

This story unfolded in a complex, meandering way.
I started off enjoying the book. I found it engaging...if a bit confusing.
In the middle, I got a tiny bit bored. For a time, it felt like nothing was happening.
But by the last 1/3 of the book, I was completely enthralled. I was absolutely DYING to know how it ended.

I was surprised - but thoroughly pleased - to find The Night Circus morphing into a love story. And not just any love story, but a REALLY GOOD love story. Marco and Celia were beautiful characters, and their relationship was perfectly executed. Their ending took my breath away with it's absolute perfection.

The writing was stunning. It seems impossible to describe magic, but Erin Morgenstern did it. From Herr Thiessen's dream clock to the cinnamon whatnots, the descriptions are awesome. I was so caught up in this world...
And the story telling was just as stunning.
An example - one of my favorite quotes from the book - largely because of how it echos the plot of The Night Circus
"Stories have changed, my dear boy. There are no more battles between good and evil, no monsters to slay, no maidens in need of rescue. Most maidens are perfectly capable of rescuing themselves in my experience, at least the ones worth something, in any case. There are no longer simple tales with quests and beasts and happy endings."

One last thing -
The story of Widget, Poppet and Baily was no less engaging than that of Celia and Marco. Kudos to Ms. Morgenstern for creating not one lovely relationship and magical story, but two.

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