A Quick Book Review: The Night Circus’s Magic

Last week I finished reading Erin Morgenstern’s first novel entitled THE NIGHT CIRUCS. I’m still thinking about it.

So, if you’ve already read BENEATH THE MIMOSA TREE (wink wink, with a hint hint), you can move on to this one. It’s worth reading if you like dark magic and mystical settings.

I’ve never been a reader of the fantasy genre. But it all may turn around for me now thanks to THE NIGHT CIRCUS.

The story revolves around a circus that appears in the middle of the night, but it’s not your average circus. It is filled with magic, illusionists, and contortionists. It’s dark and lovely at the same time. It’s about manipulation and control. But at the very heart of it is a love story, though it’s a very different one, indeed.

I liked the book mostly because of Morgenstern’s interesting development of both plot and character. It’s so creative, it made me feel inadequate in the realm of creativity. It took me a little while–only because I’ve been a little busy–to finish the novel. But what I liked best about it was Morgenstern’s ability to tell a story and the way she took her time telling it. At times, I did think the detail could have been less, though it did help me visualize this world that Morgenstern created; it all comes together as the plot thickens. The construction of the novel is very different. She writes in present tense from a third person narrator, but not entirely. She also uses the second person “you” for chapters, strategically placed to talk directly to the reader. Though the story spans years — a hundred plus — it comes back to present day in the ending. Very clever.

I have to admire someone who has an intricate imagination and can create a new world. The details are colorful (or black and white and red) and meaningful. It feels like a story that was written around the turn of the century, and that lent itself to great storytelling.

While the book is a little slow-going in the early pages (and maybe that’s just because I don’t typically read this type of novel), it picks up at the halfway point; the second half of the novel is where all the guts and glory are. I would recommend this novel if you want to get lost in a resplendent, fictitious world and leave all your cares and worries to the participants in THE NIGHT CIRCUS. Plus, it appears it’s being made into a movie. Let’s hope Hollywood does right by this novel. It reads as if it were written for the big screen.

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