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The Circus Rose

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A queer retelling of “Snow White and Rose Red” in which teenage twins battle evil religious extremists to save their loves and their circus family.

Twins Rosie and Ivory have grown up at their ringmaster mother’s knee, and after years on the road, they’re returning to Port End, the closest place to home they know. Yet something has changed in the bustling city: fundamentalist flyers paper the walls and preachers fill the squares, warning of shadows falling over the land. The circus prepares a triumphant homecoming show, full of lights and spectacle that could chase away even the darkest shadow. But during Rosie’s tightrope act, disaster strikes.

In this lush, sensuous novel interwoven with themes of social justice and found family, it’s up to Ivory and her magician love—with the help of a dancing bear—to track down an evil priest and save their circus family before it’s too late.

288 pages, Hardcover

First published June 16, 2020

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About the author

Betsy Cornwell

7 books641 followers
Betsy Cornwell is a New York Times bestselling author living in west Ireland. She is the story editor and a contributing writer at Parabola, and her short-form writing includes fiction, nonfiction, and literary translation and has appeared in Fairy Tale Review, Zahir Tales, The Violence Prevention Initiative Journal, and elsewhere. She holds an M.F.A. in creative writing from the University of Notre Dame and a B.A. from Smith College.

Mechanica was published in 2015 and has featured on several best of the year lists, including Amazon.com’s Best Young Adult Books and USA Today‘s Must-Read Romances. In a starred review, Kirkus called this retelling of Cinderella “a smart, refreshing alternative to stale genre tropes.” Mechanica is a YALSA Teens’ Top Ten nominee for 2016.

Betsy’s debut novel, Tides, was published in 2013 to critical acclaim including a starred review from Publisher’s Weekly, a place in the Bank Street Best Children’s Books of the Year, and a Bisexual Book Awards nomination.

Betsy has two more novels forthcoming from Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, in 2017 and 2018.

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5 stars
115 (14%)
4 stars
251 (30%)
3 stars
275 (33%)
2 stars
130 (15%)
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47 (5%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 254 reviews
Profile Image for megs_bookrack.
1,469 reviews9,367 followers
Want to read
June 24, 2020
Thank you, Clarion Books, for my ARC! I have been anticipating this for a long time!!!


For Your Consideration:

~ Queer Retelling of Snow White and Rose Red .
~ Twins are awesome.
~ A Circus family.
~ Giant bear and big top on cover.
~ Battle against religious extremists.

Profile Image for Lamaleluna.
282 reviews1,086 followers
September 4, 2022
Fue una lectura muy rápida, se lee en una tarde. Y eso me vino bien, necesitaba algo así. Un libro refrescante.

Si bien hay cosas que destaco del circo de la rosa, creo que la trama se quedó un poco corta. Me hacía acordar a las historias que inventaba cuando era chica y eso me trajo lindas sensaciones. Pero no termino de entender bien a qué público está dirigido. Puede llegar a ir bien como libro Middle Grade, pero a la vez tiene una mínima escena donde los personajes tienen relaciones que ya hacen que lo descatalogue cómo middle grade (8-12 años).

Tenemos a dos jóvenes hermanas que trabajan en un circo y que son completamente opuestas pero saben que no pueden vivir la una sin la otra. Me faltó un poco más ver su relación y también sentí que Nivea se robaba todo el protagonismo de la historia y tenía muchas desarrollo. Los capítulos de Flema están escritos en verso, algunos muy lindos pero que no te permiten acercarte tanto a ella como con Nivea.

Fue libro encontrar un libro con tanta representación LGBT+, de hecho creo que es la primera vez que leo a un personaje no binario. Aplaudo a esta editorial por publicar libros con representación que no estaban siendo traducidos.

La parte de fantasía queda un poco corta, me dan ganas de sacarla del libro. Pero como lo leí un poco como algo pasajero tampoco me molestó tanto.

Lo recomiendo si están buscando algo tranqui para pasar el rato y con muchos personajes de la comunidad LGBT+

Yo leyendo el circo de la rosa: 😊😌😅🥺🥰
Profile Image for Lou (nonfiction fiend).
2,771 reviews1,616 followers
June 16, 2020
The Circus Rose by Betsy Cornwell is a queer young adult retelling of one of the most popular fairytales of modern times: the cautionary tale of Snow White. When it was described as ”perfect” in the description I had no idea it would not only meet my expectations but surpass them, too, bringing a renowned story bang up to date and endearing it to the minds of a whole new generation and important minority. I tend to pick YA reads carefully but I would say if you're a fairytale fiend this is a wonderful read from start to finish as it encapsulates all that makes the original so mesmerising but the author manages to also make it her own and so very unique. It’s the bewitching, potent mix of social commentary, thrills and danger, engaging characterisation and a rather hefty slice of enchanting escapism that had me riveted from the moment I picked it up.

Cornwell hasn't shied away from infusing the story with bold, timely, ripped from the headlines issues but addresses them all in such a subtle and intelligent fashion that everything works so beautifully; often heavy, preachy topics are approached with a refreshingly deft and subtle eye and that's just one of a multitude of reasons why this culminated in such an intense, compulsive and gripping read. Never once did these topics dilute the fun and magical aspects of this superbly written piece.

It was also a pleasant surprise for a YA retelling to actually weave a more detail-orientated narrative than the original as that is not usually the case at all. I absolutely devoured this akin to Snow White taking a tender bite out of her poison apple and cannot recommend it highly enough to young adult fantasy fans who appreciate sophistication and interplay between real-world themes and those who revel in the mysterious allure brought about by beguiling fairy tale worlds both old and new. There is certainly much to love and sink your teeth into here, and if this tickles your fancy Ms Cornwell has penned a few other retellings in the same vein as this; that's exactly where I am heading right now. Exquisite. Highly recommended. Many thanks to Clarion Books for an ARC.
Profile Image for Cande.
1,030 reviews179 followers
January 7, 2021
I was incredibly excited about The Circus Rose when it was announced, I very much enjoyed Betsy Cornwell’s debut when I read it the first time. And this book is set in the same world, where magic and technology coexist. Sadly, the things I liked from Mechanica and its sequel, Venturess, weren’t there in The Circus Rose.

Mechanica handled, in my opinion, very well emotional abuse and queerplatonic relationships. The characters were charming and the world-building, the conversations about technology and magic, had me at the edge of my seat.

So let’s start there because I really didn’t like this story BUT I went with all the good intentions, hoping to really like it at least. It was a disappointing read and this review, although negative, deeply pains me. But god, sometimes gays can’t save terrible plots.

Read my full review on my blog, Cande Reads
Profile Image for Lucía Cafeína.
1,477 reviews173 followers
October 2, 2020
¡Menuda pedazo de fantasía!
Un retelling de verdad, de esos que mantienen la esencia del original pero que le dan una vuelta de tuerca estupenda, con personajes que transmiten todos sus sentimientos y a los que no puedes evitar coger cariño, con dosis importantes de representación lgbt, valores, y con una trama de misterio que te atrapa. Como única pega, diré que hay algunos detalles al respecto de la magia que no me han quedado del todo claros, pero aun así, ¡ha sido una grata sorpresa!
Profile Image for Stay Fetters.
2,041 reviews117 followers
January 31, 2020
"No memory is ever quite as you left it, no matter how carefully you lay it away."

Lately, I've been such a whore for circus books. If it has something to do with a circus or an act or even a family, I'm all in. And once I saw this book, I knew that I needed this in my life. ALA had my back with this book.

What draws you in first is the mesmerizing cover. The colors and the art is so spectacular that it's one to pine over. I'm in awe of this cover but I just wish the story was just as amazing as the cover is.

The story starts off with a loud bang but loses its steam pretty early on. The writing flows beautifully but the story itself isn't something that sticks with you. It took a little too long for the author to get where she actually wanted it to go and then it abruptly ends. The big mystery was there and in a blink, it was all over.

Circus life, the atmosphere, and the worldbuilding were all superb. She could have done just that and I would have been content. But the plot was something to sleep through. Not much actually happened and I wanted some crazy twisted mystery but we got nowhere near that.

But Bear is the character that will melt your heart and we need a prequel to this book.

The Circus Rose had the synopsis to be one of the best circus books that I've ever read but it fell short. This is a book that still needs some work but I'm glad that I got the opportunity to read it. I would suggest people pick this book up because the circus is life.
Profile Image for charlotte,.
3,049 reviews806 followers
March 8, 2020
My circus family. I missed them so much, and I mourned them.

And by heaven and earth, I was going to get them back.

On my blog.

Rep: lesbian mc, wlw li, bi mc, nonbinary li, bi side characters, side polyamory

Galley provided by publisher

Sometimes you open a book, and you only need a couple of pages to realise it’s not going to be for you. in this case, it was the third chapter that did it for me. Because this book alternates POV by alternative between poetry and prose. And it does not do it well.

The Circus Rose is a retelling of Snow White & Rose Red, a fairytale I am happy to admit I have not a clue of what it’s about. In this world, Snow White and Rose Red are twins, Ivory and Rosie. They work in a circus, run by their mother. Ivory helps backstage, while Rosie has an act as an acrobat, with Bear, who is, as the name suggests, a bear. Ivory and Rosie have different fathers, both of whom wanted to marry their mother, and both of whom were refused by her. But now the circus is back in their town and Ivory and Rosie must contend with their reappearance, as well as the disruption caused by a fundamentalist church.

First, the major issue I found with this book. The poetry/prose dichotomy just doesn’t work for me here. I know good books where the whole thing is told in poetry and it’s done well, but it isn’t here. The poetry is bland and feels more like sentences sliced up oddly rather than being actually poetic. Like, I would argue learn how to write poetry for poetry’s sake before trying to tell a story through it because it’s hard. So it’s understandable, in a way, that it went wrong here. Also, slightly annoyingly, it means that Rosie isn’t nearly so central as Ivory in the narrative, and I kind of wanted them to be more balanced in that respect (especially with the whole storyline surrounding Bear).

I think this also possibly contributed to the book feeling slow-paced. Because not much was happening in the poetry chapters (bar occasionally repeated exactly what was said in the prose chapters, which slowed the story in itself) and the first half of the book seemed to be dedicated to setting up for the second half. Like, the plot didn’t kick in until halfway, and they didn’t start to do anything about it until three quarters in. But what makes it most disappointing is that the last quarter was good. I enjoyed it, but if it was supposed to be at all like a mystery, I’m not buying it because they seemed to know exactly who was behind the disappearances with hardly a thought.

Finally, a little point on the worldbuilding. This isn’t a sequel to anything, as far as I can tell, but it’s set in the same world as another series by the author, and I found that sometimes impacted on the worldbuilding. Like there would be points where I felt the lack of having read those books to understand what was going on. Not often, mind, but enough.

So, in the end, what I’m left with is yet another book that I was disappointed by. It was okay, but it was never really more than that.
Profile Image for Lucía Arranz.
Author 4 books135 followers
October 29, 2020
El circo de la rosa es una historia de fantasía que me ha cautivado. Tenía muchas ganas de leer este libro desde que la editorial anunció su publicación, pero es que con esa premisa de que tiene lugar en un circo, la representación que hay y esa portada, yo ya sabía que esta historia me acabaría gustado. Aunque es lo que me acaba pasando con todos los libros de Kakao Books. Si no conocéis la editorial, os la recomiendo mucho porque tienen una historias y ediciones muy bonitas que cuentan con representación LGBT+.

Flama y Nívea son dos hermanas que viven en el circo junto a su madre y la familia que ha creado allí. Para Flama toda su felicidad está dentro del circo, su pasión es estar encima de la cuerda creando un espectáculo y compartiendo su pasión con su madre. En cambio, a Nívea le gusta más estar detrás, poniendo en funcionamiento las luces, controlando que todo está en su sitio y creando aparatos. Flama es el torbellino de fuego, Nívea la calma de la nieve. Hermanas de distintos padres que, a pesar de sus diferencias, siguen teniendo en común algo: El circo de la rosa.

La narración está contada en primera persona desde el punto de vista de las dos hermanas. Los capítulos de Flama son en prosa y, aunque parezca algo confuso, creo que se entiende perfectamente lo que quiere transmitir. Aunque las dos hermanas tienen su protagonismo en esta historia, la mayoría de los capítulos están narrados desde el punto de vista de Nívea por lo que nos encontraremos con un protagonismo más fuerte. Flama narra en momentos exactos y al ser en verso, creo que no llegamos a conocer lo suficiente a esta hermana por mucho que la otra nos hable de ella.

El resto de mi opinión aquí
Profile Image for Meghan.
2,067 reviews
March 25, 2020
This book was received as an ARC from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children's Book Group - Clarion Books in exchange for an honest review. Opinions and thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

The Circus Rose was breathtakingly brilliant. A mix of Water For Elephants and The Prestige except for the fact that it involves a tightrope act instead of a grand finale involving an elephant. A tightrope act that cost her everything calling it a disaster. With politics taking over the major decisions and costing everyone everything, a rampage of social in justice comes into play that could play a major role in saving the circus and doing what's right in the world with the help of Ivory, her magician, and even A BEAR! I could not get enough of this book and I know it will circulate very well with our YA collection and our YA community. Our teen book club will sure love this book too.

We will consider adding this title to our YA collection at our library. That is why we give this book 5 stars.
Profile Image for Taylor.
767 reviews424 followers
March 25, 2020
I read Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell years ago when it was first released and I loved it so much. I hadn't gotten around to picking up her other releases but when I seen the synopsis for The Circus Rose, I knew I had to read it and I was so excited.
I loved the writing style so much. It was beautiful and the alternating styles of the chapters, one character's perspective is written in poetry, was really interesting. I didn't love the poetry chapters but they were very unique.
The one thing that I feel really holds this book back is how aimlessly the plot wanders and nothing really happens throughout the book. I honestly couldn’t tell you what the actual plot is because there isn't one. The writing style and the fun atmosphere of the setting gives this book life but the complete lack of plot drags it down.
Profile Image for Susan.
576 reviews16 followers
June 14, 2020
Full Review at Novellives.Com

This shouldn't be starred.

Seeing the ratings plummet for Circus Rose by Betsy Cornwell plummet when I went to update my progress on Goodreads, really makes my heart break. It shouldn't be the case. I truly feel it is more a case of bad marketing, than anything. This isn't a YA book. I don't blame the majority of YA readers to be bored by it or feel like nothing happened or that it was slow. For most adults and even teenagers that is fair. If you take out the scene in the library between Tam and Ivory, this could be a fantastic guided reading book for elementary school. That has nothing to do with the Queer representation. There aren't any elementary school, guided reading books with kids ripping each other's clothes off.

Since that part of the story isn't going anywhere, this is a solid Middle School book for struggling to on-level readers. You have the representation. There are two formats, a wonderful story, a mystery and brilliantly painted characters.
Profile Image for Yuliana Rueda.
123 reviews14 followers
April 4, 2022

La idea de este libro sí que me gusto. Era como OMG me encanta esto, pero tenían tan poco desarrollo que al final lo volvía un poco meh. Es que en serio se mencionaron muchas cosas que pudieron haber sacado mucho potencial de ahí y mejorar la trama.

Mi personaje favorito de la vida fue Nívea. Sin embargo, mis capítulos favoritos eran los de Flama por cómo estaban escritos, no sé me llegaba al alma y me hacía estremecer y me daban ganas de llorar. Pero ahora sigamos con Nívea, ya que siento que fue la que tuvo más desarrollo. Aunque fue poquito me gustó como vimos la transformación en pensamientos y sentimientos de ella.

Ya como personajes secundarios amo a Oso y a Tam (hasta creo que forme un crush por elle). El amor de Oso es tan cute, me encanta como protege a Flama y a Nívea. Y Tam es tan perfecte y su magia y todo me ha deslumbrado, me fuera gustado conocer un poco más de elle y de su lugar de origen.

Debo mencionar que la inclusión el libro fue algo fantástico. Tenemos amor chica x chica, personaje no binario, relación poliamorosa y yo diría que también pansexualidad, pero es más lo que yo pienso que algo canon.
Profile Image for Silver Jenkins.
44 reviews22 followers
April 3, 2021
Es un libro más de personajes que de trama en sí misma. Rápido de leer, manera de escribir amena. Debo admitir que me ha dejado con ganas de más, quizás porque no sabía exactamente que era lo que me iba a encontrar. Los personajes son maravillosos, sobre todo Flama, Tam, Nivea y Oso.
209 reviews5 followers
October 3, 2020
Me he leído este libro en menos de 24 horas. No tengo palabras para describir esta joya literaria que todo el mundo debería leer.
La historia tiene por protagonistas a dos hermanas gemelas de distintos padres llamadas Flama y Nivia. Son muy diferentes pero siempre han estado juntas.
Ellas han crecido en un circo con su madre y se ve como trabajan en el y las aspiraciones y deseos y romances de cada una.
Una novela LGTB con personajes bisexuales, homosexuales y no binaries.
Profile Image for Jeimy.
4,453 reviews33 followers
August 29, 2020
My first retelling of "Snow White and Rose Red" was Anna-Marie McLemore's Blanca & Roja, which is interesting because both of my experiences with this tale have been queer retellings. While I enjoyed McLemore's version, Cornwell's is superior in its plot and message.

I loved that Ivory spoke in prose and that poetry was the perfect vehicle for Rose's ethereal thoughts. I loved how unabashedly queer the book is. I loved that it introduced new gender-free third-person pronouns and it wasn't a big deal. And even though I was a bit triggered by the religious persecution (I was raised Catholic), I actually appreciated that the world Cornwell created was not utopic in its acceptance of those seen as "other."

I am not a fan of fantasy, but I devoured this book and wholeheartedly recommend it.
Profile Image for Daniela Díaz.
167 reviews71 followers
April 24, 2022
Estuvo bien, pero la primera mitad fue muy aburrida y lenta y la otra mitad muy apresurada.
Profile Image for La Nave Invisible.
304 reviews158 followers
March 2, 2021
Parece que los retellings estén de moda estos últimos años. Coger cuentos clásicos y volver a contarlos para que sean más inclusivos, darles una vuelta de tuerca o contar la historia de siempre en otra ambientación, es algo que a mí me gusta porque te permiten revisitar los cuentos de tu infancia desde otro punto de vista, siendo algo conocido y desconocido al mismo tiempo. Así que cuando Kakao Books anunció El circo de la Rosa de Betsy Cornwell (con traducción de María Gay Moreno) como «un retelling del cuento Blancanieves y Rojaflor, de los hermanos Grimm, en el que dos hermanas adolescentes deben enfrentarse a extremistas religiosos en un mundo de inspiración steampunk para salvar a la familia que las ha criado» no hizo falta mucho más para convencerme de que lo tenía que leer.
El cuento original es uno de esos cuentos populares menos conocidos. El original habla de dos hermanas que viven con su madre en una cabaña en el bosque en la que un invierno aparece un oso. El oso, en vez de comérselas, se tumba delante del fuego y poco a poco las dos hermanas entablan amistad con él. No quiero contar más para mantener la sorpresa para la gente que no lo haya leído, pero os podéis imaginar que hay magia de por medio. En el caso de El circo de la Rosa tenemos también dos hermanas, que viven con su madre, una mujer barbuda en un circo. Aunque mellizas, Nívea y Flama son hijas de distintos padres (tema que se desarrollará en la novela) y cada una vive el mundo del circo de distinta forma. Flama es trapecista y le gusta estar bajo los focos, mientras que Nívea es tramoyista y adora estar entre bambalinas, dejando todo perfecto para que su hermana (y el resto del circo) actúe cada noche.
La primera parte de la novela se centra en que conozcamos poco a poco a las dos hermanas, al resto del circo y el mundo en el que se encuentran. Un mundo que se nos dice steampunk, pero que lo encontramos sólo en pinceladas dispersas, como la presencia de dirigibles y algún elemento mecánico exótico más. Porque el punto fuerte de este mundo, del que vemos unas pinceladas, es que también hay magia, producida por hadas. Y es interesante ver que el conflicto magia-tecnología es distinto al que se suele plantear, no basándose en el manido argumento de racionalidad frente irracionalidad. Aquí el problema viene porque la magia es cosas de hadas, que son perseguides por motivos raciales y porque su forma de vida se sale de lo tradicional, siendo el principal objetivo de la Hermandad.

Continua en... https://lanaveinvisible.com/2020/11/1...
Profile Image for Jennifer.
480 reviews19 followers
February 14, 2021
I'm always down to read Circus-themed books which is why I added The Circus Rose a while ago. I dished out this afternoon finishing it in a single sitting (something that haven't happened since ages). The Circus Rose is the queer retelling of Snow White and Rose Red. Wrote in alternate poetry vs prose form, this is a story about coming of age, sisterhood, love, as well as political extremism. So it packed both the fun (the circus and the magic) as well as the heavy topics nicely into one.

I'm going to summarise what I enjoyed below:

+ Diversity of characters: This is definitely a standout. Both Rose and Ivory have distinctive voices. I also found the Fae's gender role quite intriguing.
+ The central themes: coming of age, sisterhood, and the effects of political extremism
+ The alternating poetry vs prose structure: Rose's POV is poetry-based but the words hit hard. Ivory's POV is written in proses but explores in depth on both her relationship & coming of age.

Quotes I love:

"A circus is all about illusion, peoplie lining up to see something impossible. For most circusgoers, wonder is the goal." - foreshadowed that there are a lot to be fleshed out through the novel. That there are things which need to be understood beyond the surface level.

"We loved each other, we protected each other and helped each other survive in all the strangeness that had surrounded us as we grew up, but there was some profound gulf of difference between us that we rarely crossed." - this is a wonderful quote on sisterhood and rifts due to personality differences & different priorities.

"A hundred of us, at least. A menangerie of humanity. Hands that knew how to open cages." - I love the diversity of the novel and this quote summarised it up really well!

While I read this in a single sitting & wasn't bored, I don't think the details of The Circus Rose will stick in the long run. There are several aspects of the novel which have rooms for improvement.

- The worldbuilding wasn't sufficiently fleshed out. So I was a bit confused how the story built up to the climax moment.
- Similarly, the side characters could be better developed if The Circus Rose is slightly longer. I think the characters would be more likeable if there were more explorations.

Nevertheless, this is a pretty clever retelling of a popular fairytale, with some Circus magic twist! While I don't think I'll recommend this to hard-core fantasy readers, I think this is nevertheless a fun read that younger audiences would enjoy.

N.B. This book contains following triggers: kidnapping, hospital visits, and accidents
Profile Image for Irene Cuenca.
Author 2 books15 followers
July 24, 2021
Betsy Cornwell me ha conquistado con esta novela. La he disfrutado de principio a fin. Con una prosa (y una lírica) super bonita, unos personajes complejos y una magia a la hora de escribir... te atrapa, se hace un huequito en tu día y te hace querer seguir leyendo esta historia.

Nívea y Flama son dos personajes muy distintos entre sí, pero ese lazo de hermanas que las une es tan bonito, tan puro y tan real... Me he sentido muy identificada con Nívea, con sus dudas, con su sentido de la responsabilidad. Y Flama me ha enamorado y también me ha representado con sus luces y sombras.

También mencionar a personajes como Tam (gracias por la representación de la autora), Oso (el mejor personaje, con un amor puro y leal hacia las dos protagonistas), la madre (la admiro mucho por perseguir sus sueños y haber conseguido crear este hogar)...

Lo más bonito de todo son los lazos, la familia que se crea en El Circo de la Rosa, cómo se quieren y se protegen. Vale totalmente la pena leer esta novela solo por los personajes y la ambientación con toques steampunk y mágicos.
Profile Image for Mónica.
106 reviews22 followers
September 20, 2020

Esta novela me ha gustado bastante, esta llena de magia y fantasía. Me ha resultado una historia de lo más entretenida y bonita.

Transmite mensajes preciosos sobre el amor de la familia, y que la familia no siempre está en la sangre. También sobre como no hay nada malo en ser diferentes, a pesar de que siempre pueda haber alguien que vaya en nuestra contra.

Sin duda esta editorial trae historias maravillosas que merecen mucho la pena.

La única pega que le sacaría a esta novela es que, para ser una historia de 285 páginas, peca de simple. Las primeras 150,o así, son demasiado introductorias y faltas de acción. Pero el final ha hecho que merezca la pena, en las últimas 100 páginas nos encontramos giros y finales felices.

Sin duda nos lleva a ese aura de cuento.

Otra pequeña pega, personalmente, es la forma poética del punto de vista de Flama, que para mi en ocasiones parece confuso e incluso escaso. Ya que apenas llegamos a conocerla. Y me hubiese encantado conocer a ambas hermanas por igual. Pero a la vez entiendo que es una forma de mostrar la mente fracturada de Flama, ya que en ocasiones nos dan a entender que sufre episodios por los que necesita finalmente oscuridad. Lo cual nos puede llevar a tratar una enfermedad mental en este mundo de fantasía, lo cual le proporciona realismo.

En fin, ha sido otra muy buena historia, que recomiendo mucho 😊
Profile Image for Libros Prohibidos.
868 reviews355 followers
December 7, 2020
El circo de la Rosa no es una historia basada en la acción o en lo trepidante, aunque resuelve muy bien los momentos donde esta resulta necesaria y las escenas más tensas. El tramo final no te deja soltar el libro hasta haber concluido la novela. No obstante, impera un ritmo pausado, que no lento, que nos envuelve en la fascinación que genera, tanto el propio circo y quienes lo integran.
Reseña completa: https://libros-prohibidos.com/betsy-c...
Profile Image for Fleys.
42 reviews9 followers
December 23, 2022
Lo he dejado a medias al 40%

La historia de amor es super rápida y me parece sinceramente 0 realista. No se conocen y se enamoran, wtf. Está bien que haya un personaje agénero, eso me ha gustado, pero creo que no se le hace justicia y la representación es mala, me ha cabreado y todo. Enfin mal mal mal, además es aburrido, estaba al 40% y estaba si acaso empezando la trama un poco, pero no había pasado absolutamente nada como tal.

Sinceramente, vaya mierda de inicio de lectura, ni siquiera me voy a molestar en terminarla.
Profile Image for Nat in Books.
237 reviews37 followers
September 16, 2020
Conocemos a los personajes más destacado gracias a sus conversaciones y sus actos de una manera muy fluida y sin ser excesivamente descriptiva.

La autora, mediante capítulos cortos y distintos registros y estilos en la narración, te mantiene atrapada en esta sencilla historia.

Betsy demuestra una gran facilidad para transportar al lector a una serie de escenarios preciosos y relevantes.

Es el primer libro que leo que posee un lenguaje inclusivo. La historia es sencilla, pero gracias al estilo tan bonito de la autora y a los detalles de la editorial, te atrapa de principio a fin.
Profile Image for Vorágine (ig:voragineblog).
683 reviews116 followers
July 29, 2021

El Circo de la Rosa ha sido una lectura entretenida y una grata sorpresa de la que me quedo sobre todo con Flama y Nívea, el mundo circense steampuck que construye Betsy Cornwell y la importancia de los mensajes y la representación que transmite.

Reseña completa
Profile Image for Kade Gulluscio.
751 reviews30 followers
December 7, 2022
This was an interesting read. It's a queer retelling of Snow White featuring twins, a circus, and a big bear. haha. It's an YA book, and it definitely starts off with a bang.
I wish it held onto the same momentum / energy the entire way through, but unfortunately it just didn't. The book was good, but not great. The world building was good... and most of the character development was as well. I really did enjoy the twins. And Bear was an amazing addition to the story.

I'd say this is worth a read overall, and I'm sure there are others that loved it much more than I did.
Profile Image for Bo0kSLoth.
1,415 reviews38 followers
February 26, 2020
Man, this is a hard one for me. On one hand, the world-building and descriptions are 5 stars. On the other hand, the plot is thin in some places (almost forced to move the story along); What could have been interesting is glossed over and other parts tend to drag leading to a lot of lull in the story.
I put this story down several times over a two month period. I read twenty other books in-between starting and finishing this book. At the beginning of the book, you think the random background information that takes up the first 80 or so pages will help with the plot later on but really it doesn't. A lot of it could have been left out and other parts of it fleshed out to make a better rounded plot.
I also felt like this book was confusing with two different POVs between the twins. The poetry style of Rosie kept throwing me off. I honestly thought that Ivory was saying a poem about Rosie until it finally dawned on me it was Rosie's POV. The author also uses these weird androgynous Fey pronouns "fer" and "fe" when writing about the Faerie magician. I kept thinking there were typos or something. It was a fail. I understand that the being didn't identify with neither male nor female and it was too informal but switching back and forth between the two forms was just confusing.
Why do most YA books feel like they have to cover EVERY demographic? It seems like lately every YA book has to have some character in the story that meets LGBT representation. In this story Ivory loves men, but once she meets the beautiful, androgynous Fey (who is "no more male than I am") she recognizes something. It's like it just fills in a check-box (can't use Rosie's sexual preference wasn't fleshed out as much so have to tweak Ivory and make it work). It's almost like too many ideas in a first-draft. I can hear the conversation.
"Oh I know, let's have one sister white and one brown to cover the racial demographic. With two different fathers to get the kink factor. Wait I know, make one a lesbian and the other straight -- no better yet make her bi and fall in love to androgynous hermaphroditic Fey to make the LGBT group read. Add a dancing bear 'cause, you know, it's a circus. Hehe with a robot arm! What!?! Now, that just crazy. Okay, okay, no robot arm, but s bearded lady."
I feel like it had some real potential, but the plot got away from the author.

** I received a free copy of this book via NetGalley and am voluntarily leaving a review. **
Profile Image for Levi van Zyl.
67 reviews88 followers
March 7, 2020
2.5 stars???? 3 stars??? I don’t know.

This book really was....something. It sure was absolutely something. I am sure that I have read. Something.

The writing was excellent. I could have read about Rosie and Ivory for ages, and would have preferred that to the rushed and hastily thought out plot shoved into the last few chapters of the book. It’s 270 pages long yet the mystery and sinister ongoings promised on the back cover only hop in at around page 200. And even then I’m left with more questions than answers and staring at the book like, “yo. Actually. What is happening right now?”

I would have much preferred a novel that uses Ivory and Rosie’s voice to narrate how hard it is to run a circus and the complications, one of which could’ve been the church. There was really like no need to do a mystery here because it happened and was over in like 30 pages and left me confused and wondering why we needed that.

We also didn’t really need Rosie’s POV either? It’s told in verse, whole Ivory’s is told in prose. I love novels in verse but Rosie’s are so short and few, and we get so much of her through ivory, that there’s almost no reason to have her view. I came out of this much more invested in Ivory than Rosie because we get so little of Rosie and Ivory narrates all of the important things.

Like. The writing and world-building and relationship building was fabulous! Great! But the rest of it had me saying WTF the entire time. I wish this book had stuck to the first 150 pages of talking about the hardships of the circus and a romance, because that, compared with Cornwell’s writing style, was so interesting!! Instead it has a half baked mystery that made me want to halfway chuck this book across the room.

TL;DR: the writing was good but everything else was slapped together with elmer’s glue and left me wondering what the fuck I just read
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