[Review was originally posted on my personal blog.]
I’m not a cry-baby. I’ve never been easily moved by the small things or even the big things for that matter. I spent a long time in my life believing (and making others believe) that I was the most stoic a person could get. That has changed considerably, but I’m still far from being a cry-baby.
Having said that, I must confess, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern made me cry. ACTUAL tears. From-the-heart kind. It is a beautifully written, perfectly paced, poetic piece of literature that I feel honored to have read.
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.Goodreads
It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.
The complete blurb on Goodreads does not do this book justice. I doubt any description would. The magical realism contained in this book is breathtaking. It was an immersive experience that I’ve rarely experienced before.
The book contains a love story, but it is not a romance.
The book is supremely thrilling, but it is not a thriller.
The book is magically mysterious, but it’s not a mystery.
What it is is a mesmerizing fantasy.
The two main characters are pitted against each other since childhood. They grow up learning magic. Once they are old enough each begins creating magic (and hiding it in plain sight as Cirque des Rêves) first as a challenge and then as an ode, a gift to the other. The romance is such a slow-burn that I didn’t even notice – and when finally I did see it I wondered how I hadn’t before.
The Night Circus is filled with magical realism, thought-provoking dialogue, intense mystery, and at the heart of it all is a relationship that reduced me to a crying heap.
It took me more than a week to get over this book. And having read it as an e-book I can’t wait to get my hands on a paperback so I can go through it again! I’m not much of a re-reader, so this is saying A LOT.
Erin Morgenstern made a stunning debut with this book. Her next book, The Starless Sea, was published in November 2019 and is another wonderful treat that I’ve reviewed here!
If you’re looking for a book that completely enchants, this is highly recommended!