Book Review: The Night Circus

~ Warning! Spoilers! Book review: The Night Circus by: Erin Morgenstern ~

SUMMARY (Back of the book)

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it, no paper notices plastered on lampposts and billboards. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. 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, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

REVIEW

I have to start off by saying that this is a beautiful book full of wonderful and enticing imagery/visuals. The different tents, scents, colors, and additional attractions created by Celia and Marco really brought the circus to life. The author created this magically lavish setting which draws readers in and makes them feel as if they are truly there as well. I was blown away by the amazing descriptions of Celia’s and Marco’s illusions/magic/creations. On the surface, the book is vivid and dream-like; it’s absolutely stunning. However, when thinking about it deeper, The Night Circus lacks plot. The duel between Marco and Celia was not one of epic proportions. Honestly, it was slow and a bit dragged out which makes sense once the rules are revealed. The winner is determine by endurance, and on top of that, the previous battle lasted 30+ years. So, a battle never actually takes place especially since the two competitors end up falling for each other. I can understand why they start developing feelings for each other. Celia and Marco have been connected to each other since childhood and have the ability to do and comprehend things no one else can. Yet, for two young people for barely knew each other, who rarely spent time together, and dangerously strung Isobel along… something was missing in making their passionate and undeniable love to come off as real. Truthfully, I did find the book interesting. I enjoyed that ending conversation between Widget and Alexander. I liked the conclusion of Celia picking out a new Bailey and how long the circus lasted after their ‘death’. Side note: I did get thrown off by the timeline, but it was my fault for not paying attention. Anyways, this book had so much potential and quite a handful of thought-provoking characters which could have used more time. When thinking more about it, I guess I expected more. I was sad that there wasn’t more of an elaboration as to how this brilliant circus which answered attendees wildest dreams ended up having an under layer of a selfish and secluded prison. Plus, I was unhappy to see Bailey become this chosen-like character when he did not have to be. His ability to swiftly step up to the home plate was so manufactured and used as a tool to forcefully drive the story along. I am not saying I did not find this book entertaining because I really did. I had a pleasurable time reading it, but looking back, there were some things that were lacking. Overall, I’ll give it a 3/5.

Lastly, due to the phenomenal details and visuals, I can totally imagine this book being turned into an awesome film. I see that the rights have been sold to Summit, so I would like to know what is Summit doing?

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