Back in the summer, on holiday in the US, I nearly bought this book. I nearly did so for three reasons:
1. It says “Circus” in the title. As a juggler, I’m a sucker for all things circus. Except clowns, obviously.
2. It has a brilliant cover. Yes, I judged the book by its cover. Cliches exist for a reason.
3. It’s written by Erin Morgenstern. I thought the name sounded familiar, and then realised it’s the name of the person who sort of wrote “The Princess Bride” If you want me to explain that reference, then I’m sorry, I’m not going to. Watch the film, and thank me afterwards.
For various reasons, I didn’t buy the book back then. Lucky for my family, since I enjoyed it so much when I did get my hands on a copy, that I wouldn’t have seen them for the entire length of our camping trip (3 days – which is exactly how long it took me to finish reading it)
I loved the book, which makes it hard to do a serious review. My impression was that Erin Morgenstern had perhaps written several descriptive passages, maybe working out what the Night Circus would be like. These then got incorporated into the more traditional narrative as the writings of one of the characters in the story. From the blurb on the back, you might expect a love story combined with elements of “The Prestige”, where two rival illusionists strive to best one another in a magical tourney, but it isn’t like that. The story ranges a little in time, is magical in almost all senses of the term and, for once, did not disappoint with the ending. That’s no mean feat.
I’d recommend this book to anyone with a love of magic, or circus, or love stories. There’s no vampires or werewolves, which, frankly, is a relief.
Buy the book HERE