Cameron's Reviews > The Night Circus

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
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's review
May 29, 2011

it was amazing
Read in May, 2011

THE NIGHT CIRCUS is magical realism at its most fun. The major storyline pits two young magicians (and two schools of thought) in a mysterious battle set in a traveling night circus. The circus is both the main and most interesting character. The secondary story line involves a young boy in Massachusetts who visits the circus and returns as a young man. The tertiary story line involves you, the reader, walking through the circus in the present day.

The structure of the book mimics the circus where it's set: short, captivating chapters, each a feat to take your breath away. As you read from one to the next, the marvels pile up, the plot lines converge, and you're left wondering how the whole thing was even possible.

There's also the sensory overload of fantastical, wildly original sights that defy physics, sweet and savory smells drifting across chapters, and the kind of perfectly delicious foods that only exists in the imagination. It left me as happily dizzied and awe-struck as a reveur.

A few of my favorite things about the novel: Widget and Poppet (nicknames) are twins born in the circus. Widget's story to his sister of a wizard and a tree might be the best bedtime story I've ever read. Also, I love how Morgenstern ends so many chapters, not with a cliff hanger to get you reading on, but with a dramatic flourish that'll lead you to reflect on what's already happened.

Caveats: The plot takes a little while to rev up, but this is fine considering the beautiful writing that sets the stage. There are a number of plot lines mentioned only in hints and rumors, and Morgenstern relies on these to add depth. I enjoyed that, but some people might not.

All in all, this is a wonderful book I feel comfortable recommending to anyone, regardless of their reading tastes. Five stars.
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03/04/2016 marked as: read

Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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Hayley Alfers Your review is so spot on! I am still dizzy with the sights, smells and sounds of the night circus and it's inhabitants. One of the most beautifully written books I have ever read.

message 2: by Amy (new) - rated it 5 stars

Amy What a fantastic review. :-)

Sherie I wholeheartedly agree with your review. I just finished the book, and am on a dreamy high from it.

Yuliya Good review for so much dreamy and vivid book

message 5: by Carl (new)

Carl Wow, you convinced me to buy it!

Cameron Carl wrote: "Wow, you convinced me to buy it!"

Thanks! It's fun, vivid, magical, smart...what more could you want? A worthy buy.

Cameron Yuliya wrote: "Good review for so much dreamy and vivid book"


message 8: by Nan (new) - rated it 5 stars

Nan I totally agree. I was curious about this book, but because of the wildly divergent reviews, I borrowed the book from the library. I loved it so much I bought my own copy, and am reading it again. People who enjoy this book might also enjoy another favorite of mine, Nicholas Christopher's A Trip to the Stars.

Nadia Loved your review... Almost as much as the book. Been a thinking about reading it for a second time, as it is my all time favourite book. You've just convinced me.

I wanted to give the audio book a go, but the narrator just did not work for me.

Thanks for an awesomely delicious review.

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