The Night Circus

The Night Circus

by Erin Morgenstern

Gail Reid (06/16/12): I read The Night Circus immediately after seeing that it had 1,000 customer comments on Amazon! What kind of book fosters such enthusiasm from readers?

The Night Circus is a magical experience; it only operates when it is dark and maintains no advance schedule. Its tents are black and white, completely devoid of color. And the acts are phantasmagorical, a Cirque du Soleil gone wild.

The circus is really a front for a wager between two master illusionists. Each has a pawn, Celia and Marco, who eventually find out that they are competitors and horrified to learn the outcome of their challenge. When Celia and Marco fall in love, the outcome of the night circus becomes unclear.

There are several other richly drawn characters, most of whom have talents that suspend your belief. But that's what fantasy is all about, so play along for a joyful read.

A few shortcomings include long drawn-out descriptive passages. Some might think that it makes the story more poetic, but I would not miss the many extra pages in favor of tighter editing.
Rating: ****

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