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The Night Circus
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Angela | 95 comments For week 1 (a book I meant to read in 2015, but didn't) I chose The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.

Welcome to Le Cirque des Rêves.

Beyond the smoke and mirrors, however, a fierce competition is under way--a contest between two young illusionists, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood to compete in a "game" to which they have been irrevocably bound by their mercurial masters. Unbeknownst to the players, 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.


I'm not entirely sure why I chose this book, other than it's been sitting on my list for a while. I read Water for Elephants this year, so maybe that put me in a circus mood. In any case, I think it looks like an entertaining book, and I'm excited for it!


EllenZReads | 174 comments I've got this one on my list for week 13 (Reader's Choice). I looked at it briefly at the library once but I already had so many books checked out I decided to wait on it.


Sophie (sawphie) | 2920 comments I read it this year and absolutely loved it! It is simply beautiful...

Don't panic if you don't understand everything at first, the writing is a bit cryptic in some places and the story doesn't follow all the action that goes on, you sometimes only see the results. I hope that won't put you off, it is in a good way!


Krissy (krissystewart) | 411 comments I was not a fan of this book. But that has a lot to do with the narrator of the audiobook. I didn't think he fit the book at all so it sort of ruined the story for me.


Sophie (sawphie) | 2920 comments Audiobooks are great, but they can definitely spoil a book! It's such a shame!


Kristin | 54 comments Loved this book! Details and descriptions made the book what it was! I hope you enjoy it!


message 7: by [deleted user] (new)

Such a beautiful, breathtaking book-it's on my top 20, all time favorite book list!


Katie | 2369 comments I loved this one!


Merry Green One of my all-time favorites.


Angela | 95 comments I just finished this. It was absolutely beautiful! I do have one question that I couldn't seem to figure out, though, and would love to hear your thoughts if you have them. Why did they always refer to Alexander by the last name H---? Is it to provide more of an air of mystery? Or was there more to it than that? I kept hoping they would reveal who he was! Otherwise, I thought it was a fantastic book, and I loved the way it all came together at the end.


Celia (cinbread19) | 359 comments I LOVED this book and not just because there is a Celia in it!!


Manda (bookwenchmanda) | 1094 comments This is such a beautiful book! I hope you're enjoying it.


message 13: by Tia (last edited Mar 08, 2016 03:34PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Tia | 128 comments I read this book for week 17, a book with a beautiful cover. I really enjoyed this book and rated it 4 stars. At the end the only thing missing for me was the lack of explanations. Though that worked with the pace and the tone of the story, it did leave me wanting a tiny bit more. All in all, a beautiful read.


Pamela | 632 comments Krissy wrote: "I was not a fan of this book. But that has a lot to do with the narrator of the audiobook. I didn't think he fit the book at all so it sort of ruined the story for me."

I hated this book when I first read it (or maybe majorly disappointed) but then reread it when my book group did and was so happy I did! I think the first time around I was too busy trying to figure out what was happening and where and the second time I could just focus on the story and writing and enjoy it. Life is too short for bad books and probably by that rule should not read a bad book twice, but was so happy I broke that rule here.


Celia (cinbread19) | 359 comments Krissy wrote: "I was not a fan of this book. But that has a lot to do with the narrator of the audiobook. I didn't think he fit the book at all so it sort of ruined the story for me."

Sometimes a narrator can really add to the book. I thoroughly enjoyed the audios of "Necessary Lies" by Diane Chamberlain and "The Invisible Man" by Ralph Emerson, not just because of the story but also because of the talents of the narrator(s) with their differing accents and vocal interpretations.


message 16: by Zaz (new) - rated it 5 stars

Zaz | 3034 comments I read it last month and loved it. The atmosphere was really well done, the story was interesting enough and the writing was totally in my comfort zone. It wasn't a fast paced book, I took my time to read it, but each moment I spent with it was pleasant :)


Ana A (anabana_a) | 491 comments Angela wrote: "I just finished this. It was absolutely beautiful! I do have one question that I couldn't seem to figure out, though, and would love to hear your thoughts if you have them. Why did they always refe..."

I was wondering about this when the same thing happens in other books, too, usually in classics. I looked it up and online-literature.com says "because that was the style of writing back then. Writers would do that to dates, names, and cities to help the reader focus more on the story, instead of the name or city. They wanted to make it so that the eyes would just scan over it. Although, now, it does the exact opposite." :)


message 18: by Ana A (last edited Mar 22, 2016 04:49PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ana A (anabana_a) | 491 comments I read this book for the book set in the past (at least 100 years) week.

I found it funny that cinnamon rolls was a new thing for them.

This book is on one of the many "must-read" lists that I have, so when someone offered to buy me a book, I chose this one. It was actually supposed to be a Christmas gift, but I had lots of books waiting before I got around to reading this one.

The challenge between Marco and Celia was actually not what I was expecting. (view spoiler) I loved the Murray twins. They are so adorable. I found the jumps in time a little confusing, but all in all, I really enjoyed this book.

Date started: Mar. 14
Date finished: Mar. 20


message 19: by Erica (new) - added it

Erica | 460 comments I tried to read this a couple years ago but didn't get into it and put it down. But it has so many great reviews that I think I'll have to give it a second chance. Maybe I was just not in the mood or I was too busy when I tried to read it before.


Sophie (sawphie) | 2920 comments I think you really need to be in an open-minded mood to read this book. Don't expect a normally constructed story.


Peter | 0 comments I just finished this one for the topic a book with a beautiful cover.

You know the saying don't judge a book by it's cover? Well, I didn't find the book as interesting as the cover. It started out well, and seemed interesting, but then it just sort of dragged on. The imagery was very well done, but after a while it became a little repetitive and most of the book amounted to two characters sitting in various locations talking to each other. Most of the character development occurred through dialogue which is fine, except that there were very few actions to actually back up any of the characters as they developed. It made for a very, excruciatingly slow moving plot. The jumps in time back and forth didn't help either. My three favourite scenes in the book were (view spoiler) They were the best for me because there was more than just dialogue or description; something actually happened, the plot moved forward and characters developed, and there was a sense of danger, excitement and suspense that was lacking elsewhere.

Overall, I thought it was an interesting story, although much longer than it needed to be and I found the ending quite anticlimactic. It would have benefited from a little more action on the part of the characters (not action in the sense of action movies, but just having the characters do something other than talk to each other). The descriptions and imagery were very detailed and interesting, but eventually became tedious. I liked it well enough, but felt like I only read to the end to finish the book and not because I couldn't wait to see how it ended.


Katie | 11 comments I read this one for wk 33: the 16th book on your TBR list - because it was.

I really liked it, but it took me a while to get into it because of the writing style and non-linear narrative.


Rachel A. (abyssallibrarian) | 2672 comments I've heard so much about this book that I've decided to rearrange a few things to try and fit it in. The best fit I can see for now is as a book set more than 100 years in the past, since from what I've seen, it's set in the 1800s.


Michelle (mich2689) | 476 comments I loved this book. The imagery was simply beautiful and magical. I agree that there wasn't much to the plot but I thoroughly enjoyed it. It's definitely a great book for an escape.


message 25: by Anna (new) - rated it 5 stars

Anna (librairieimaginaire) Read for week 49

I adored this book. It was atmospheric and sweet. Fantasy isn't my usual genre so this was a pleasant surprise. The writing was really pretty, which probably helped. I agree that there wasn't much plot though. It seemed to me like it was more about showing the life of the circus rather than formulating a real story.


Rachel A. (abyssallibrarian) | 2672 comments I just finished this book, and I really enjoyed it. I do think the blurb on the sleeve is a little misleading. The book is definitely not a fast-paced magical battle, but it is a beautifully written, very atmospheric story. I agree with Peter that it could have used a little more action, but I enjoyed the writing enough that it wasn't really that much of a problem for me.


Jennifer Van Beveren | 32 comments Just finished this book for week 6. LOVED it! Very well written. Loved the magic and fantasy but the underlying love story as well.


Jackie | 18 comments Just finished reading this for week 2 challenge, a book from multiple perspectives. I loved it! I was drawn to the setting and the exquisite beauty of the descriptive writing. Rarely am I disappointed by a love story..... and this was no exception.
I can see reading it a second time.


Barbara Pereira (babitix) | 733 comments Reading this for Week 33. A magical realism novel


Lizzy | 714 comments This is one of my favorites. Hope you enjoyed it.


message 31: by Valerie (last edited Feb 24, 2018 05:44PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Valerie | 357 comments I read this book for Week 7 of the 2018 challenge: a Gothic Novel.

Spoiler Alert? This is one of those books that you do not want to finish reading because you could just be in its world forever. You would think a book about magic could do that for you, wouldn't you? However, it cannot and really you should be living your own life and not someone else's. And whose life would it be? Would you follow Marco, who kept the circus alive with his fire? Would you follow Celia, whose magic was so extraordinary? Maybe, Bailey, who became the owner of the circus? I would not want to become Alexander or Hector because their pride caused so much trouble. Isobel had too much power and jealousy; too bad she allowed it to unbalance the circus. Marcus and Celia cared so much for each other, cared not for the challenge contrived by Alexander and Hector, and cared for those in the family of the circus. Who won the challenge? It is up to you to decide. I wonder if you and I would agree?


message 32: by Jody (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jody (jodybell) | 3491 comments I'm listening to the Jim Dale-narrated audiobook of this for my AtY Hard-Mode challenge, for "A book written in 2nd person (the point of view is a "you")". Only part of it's written in that perspective, but it's close enough for me!

I'm 30% through, and although there's no real plot, and I don't really care much about the characters yet, I'm actually really enjoying it. I'm enjoying his narration too, so I can see why so many people love his Harry Potter audiobooks, if this is anything to go by.

Valerie - maybe you could add a spoiler tag to your comment above. It's pretty spoiler-y. ☹️


Michelle (mich2689) | 476 comments I didn’t care so much for the plot either but I still love this book so much. It was such a magical stimulation of all the senses. I’ve never listened to the audio but I can imagine it being wonderful, especially with Jim Dale as narrator.


message 34: by Jody (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jody (jodybell) | 3491 comments It's so funny that there's really nothing that would traditionally be a great book for me, but that I'm still really enjoying it. I'm a bit weirded out, to be honest!


Perri | 781 comments I love love loved that book. Wouldn't it be a magical place to go? What tent would you most want to experience?


message 36: by Jody (new) - rated it 4 stars

Jody (jodybell) | 3491 comments I ended up really liking this, but really not liking the narration.


Rachelnyc | 943 comments I just finished this and am wondering what took me so long to read it?! I absolutely loved it and so far at least, it's one of my favorites for the year.

The author does an incredible job of painting the picture with her descriptive imagery. I usually don't want books I love to be adapted to tv or movies but I would love to see this circus come to life on screen. I know it was optioned years ago so hopefully it will happen someday.


message 38: by Sara (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sara (phantomswife) | 928 comments I liked this particularly for the same reason Rachelnyc cites...the imagery is fantastic.

Perri--I want to sit in at the Pool of Tears with rock in hand and feel lighter when I emerge.


Silvia Turcios | 1071 comments I really enjoyed this story and didn't have any problem with the different lines of story or the changes of timeline ... maybe at the beginning, because I had to return to the previous chapter to check the dates :P , but for me it was kind of magic when all the pieces came to place ... however I had a problem with the end (view spoiler)


message 40: by Sara (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sara (phantomswife) | 928 comments I see your point, Silvia, but I suppose the difference was (view spoiler)


Rachel (wildhoney) | 68 comments Read this for ATY's 2019 prompt #39, "A book with a strong sense of place or where the author brings the location/setting to life". The imagery is so beautiful throughout you really get transported to this special circus that only comes out at night. Really enjoyed it.


message 42: by Angela (last edited Nov 15, 2019 01:18PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Angela | 397 comments I read this for 2019’s Week 39 ‘a book with a strong sense of place or where the author brings the location/setting to life’. I loved this book, and found it utterly mesmerising. The imagery is just gorgeous and the sense of place is really strong.


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