Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Book recommendation: THE NIGHT CIRCUS

Before I'm an editor, I'm a reader. Or I guess another way to phrase it would be, I'm an editor because I'm a reader. In any case, every now and then, you find a book that you just have to shout about to every other reader in the world, you know? And happily enough, I have a blog, which helps me to do precisely that, on occasion. :)

(In short: you should probably buy this book. Or you should go
beat everyone else at your library to checking it out. Hurry!) 
The Night Circus is a book that I fell head over heels in love with with as a reader a few months ago, when I got the lucky chance to grab an early copy. I've been telling people ever since that it's the best book I've read for adults in years, and I promise there's no hyperbole involved in that statement! I truly can't think of the last time I enjoyed a book as a reader as much as I did this one. Oh, and let me be clear, since I most often talk on this blog about books I've played some role in developing: I had *absolutely zero* part in making this book--I can take credit for none of its magic. But I applaud all those who did work on this book, especially its lovely author Erin Morgenstern, and her editor and agent, because they've brought to life a story that is positively bursting with magic. The Night Circus is a tale that's alive with wonder and possibility; it's a mesmerizing love story, and it's rich with sensory detail and fascinating characters (I haven't wanted to eat book food this bad since the first time I read the Narnia books and hungered to try Turkish delight). Best of all, it does one of the things I love most in a story: it creates a sense of place that feels so vivid and real and absolutely essential to the story's telling that the setting is practically becomes a character of its own.

Curious to know more? Here's the blurb from the jacket (and if you read it, come back and tell me if you enjoyed it as much as I did!):

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. It is called Le Cirque des RĂªves, and it is only open at night. 

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. True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.


  1. I just downloaded the sample on my Kindle to check it out. Thanks for sharing!

  2. I've heard so much about this book and fell in love with Erin's writing on her blog. Definitely looking forward to reading this. :)

  3. Yeah, The Night Circus basically ruined me for fiction for a little while. Nothing can compare to that particular brand of magic.

  4. This sounds like such a great read. I certainly will check it out! Thanks for such a good review of it.