The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Rating: 3.5 stars
Genres & themes: YA, magic, romance, competition, mystery.
The circus arrives
without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when
yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is
an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is
called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.
behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway: a duel between two
young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood
expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst
to them both, this is a game in which only one can be left standing.
Despite the high stakes, Celia and Marco soon tumble headfirst into
love, setting off a domino effect of dangerous consequences, and leaving
the lives of everyone, from the performers to the patrons, hanging in
''A circus?'' says Lainie Burgess with a smile. ''How marvelous!''
''Like a carnival?'' Mr. Barris asks, sounding mildly confused.
than a carnival,'' Chandresh says. ''More than a circus, really, like
no circus anyone has ever seen. Not a single large tent but a multitude
of tents, each with a particular exhibition. No elephants or clowns. No,
something more refined than that. Nothing commonplace. This will be
different, this will be an utterly unique experience, a feast for the
This is quite an unique book and story. The cover is
captivating, that is for sure. The story itself is very original and
beautifully written. It started with an intriguing ambience, a magician,
known as Prospero, discovering a daugther he never thought he had, who
in fact has special abilities as himself. I would even say she is even
more talented. The man in question decided to embark his daughter,
Celia, in a long and mysterious competiton of which very few people know
about. Her opponent will be chosen by one of Prospero's powerful
The reason I decided to read this popular novel is simple. I love competitions. As I said in my review of Panic,
I love the feeling of excitement and being able to choose 'my' winner
and hoping he/she will be the one who will succeed until the end. In
this book, it was a bit disappointing because the competition itself is
but isn't at the same time the main attraction. Not many people know
about it, so it is mainly a secret the two participants are keeping.
They're actually trying to understand themselves what it is actually
about. The synopsis is misleading us to think that it will exciting and
mysterious and maybe fun, but it isn't quite like that. It sure is
mysterious but than mostly annoying because you want to learn why the
two men started it and what happens and when but it is very vague.
characters are interesting. A huge problem I had is that, at the
beginning, I thought Celia was in fact Isobel all the time she was
hanging with Marco. It changed my way of seeing those characters and I
only discovered they were not after about half of the book. I would like
to say it is my only fault but I can't because it truly was confusing.
When Isobel first met Marco, she was shy and has a passion for magic, of
course, but so was Celia. And they both had similar if not the same
age. I'd like to warn you so you won't make the same mistake: Celia and
Isobel are two different person.
My favorite character at the
beginning was Celia because she was a bit of a rebel but Bailey fastly
took her place. His admiration for Le Cirque des Rêves was adorable and
interesting. I always wanted to know what would have this time when he
goes to the circus. It mostly was through him that we witnessed shows
and breathtaking illusions. It is impossible to not like his calmness
and charming nature.
The romance wasn't rushed but it felt to me
like it was a bit, yes, even if there was some leap of time before the characters
grew fond on each other. Marco and Isobel were bonded to each other
since a young age, so I guess I can understand it. I obviously didn't
predict it because I thought Celia was Isobel so that she already met
Marco before and was just afraid to tell him that. Well...that's not
what happened of course. After all, at least it wasn't cheesy as I
thought so it made it quite enjoyable.
Overall, I thought this was an interesting, well-written and especially
different read with unique characters. It has an alternative POV and
the chapters are actually back-and-forth in time ones. It didn't bother
me because it made me always wonder what will the next chapter contain. I
recommend The Night Circus to teenagers and adults.