Published: September 13, 2011
Pages: 387 (Hardcover)
My Rating: 4.0/5.0
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.
But 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 the balance.
Have you ever read a book that makes you long for a particular season or location? The Night Circus did that for me- I was longing for crisp, cool autumn skies, gold and scarlet leaves, the scent of pumpkin spice wafting from every coffee shop in existence. Heck, I even started looking at boots and flannel and it’s the middle of JULY as I write this!
The Night Circus is simply magical. It’s much more than that though-it’s a love story, a work of art, and a singularly memorable novel. It is the story of two magicians locked in a competition of strength and skill and Le Cirque des Reves is their stage; an act that travels the world, suddenly appearing and disappearing just as mysteriously. It is a thing of wonders, containing a garden made of ice, a tree made for wishing, a bonfire that never goes out and so much more. The Night Circus is also the story of the others in and around the circus, the Reveurs who follow it around the world, the man who created it, and the magicians who began the contest when the contestants were mere children.
Following Celia and Marco throughout their lives as they learn their trade, join the circus, and begin their slow dance around one another was…nice. Both were isolated in their own ways from those around them, much of which was due to their craft. Celia could practice her art openly in the guise of incredible illusion, but Marco was forced to play a subtler hand, wearing a mask and never letting others know what he can do. As the two magicians competed with one another, adding more and more ethereal tents to the Circus of Dreams, they also began the slow dance of falling in love. Celia and Marco may be the main players in this story, but Poppet, Widget, and a New England boy named Bailey also play a significant role in the fate of the circus, but I’ll leave that for you to figure out!
The Night Circus would be a perfect read for those long October evenings with a great cup of tea in hand and maybe some pumpkin bread or a caramel apple! My only real complaint about this book is the tense it’s written in is a bit odd and can be difficult to get used to. After a few chapters I was alright, and by the end of the book it made sense as to why the very first chapter was written in the manner it was. If you’re a fan of bookish-themed stuff, The Melting Library has two candles that were designed after scents described in The Night Circus on their Etsy page! I seriously want the “Au Reveur” candle because it sounds like it would smell HEAVENLY.