Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus is one of the best books I’ve read…ever. The quality of writing demonstrated throughout the entire work, the imaginative story itself and Morgenstern’s ability to juggle a variety of leading characters, scenarios and time periods without losing or confusing the reader are all reasons why Morgenstern will be a writer to watch for years to come.
The story revolves around two magicians, Marco and Celia, who as children were bound by their instructors to play against each other in a game in which they were given no rules. With no rules and with no idea who their competitor is, the book follows Marco and Celia from childhood into their adult lives as they train to become master magicians, each eventually becoming employees of Chandresh, an imaginative man who becomes the proprietor of Les Cirque des Reves.
Les Cirque des Reves is a circus like no other, open only from dusk til dawn, filled with contortionists, tarot card readers, cloud mazes, ice gardens and of course magicians. Celia works as the illusionist in the circus while Marco works as an assistant to Chandresh. Through their work, the two magicians are able to control the circus, what becomes the venue for their duel.
What their instructors could not imagine was that Celia and Marco would not only discover who their competitor was but that they would also fall in love with one another. Their love for not only each other but also the circus and everyone else involved with it, becomes especially difficult when they learn the rules of the game - only one of the magicians can survive the duel and when one dies, the circus will most likely die too.
Morgenstern creates a world in The Night Circus that is unlike anything else ever created in literature. Her attention to detail is so precise that it is easy for the reader to become enveloped in this world, never questioning the plausibility of such an existence. What is even more interesting is that despite creating remarkable principle characters in Celia and Marco, the subplots in the novel are so well executed that the reader can’t help but become invested in each of them as well.
Erin Morgenstern’s debut is a truly wonderful, innovative work that is not to be missed.
— Ashley Pinciaro
BookHampton in Southampton