The Night Circus

The Night Circus

A Novel

Book - 2011
Average Rating:
Rate this:
313
17
9
 …
In this mesmerizing debut, a competition between two magicians becomes a star-crossed love story.

The circus arrives at night, without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within nocturnal black and white striped tents awaits a unique experience, a feast for the senses, where one can get lost in a maze of clouds, meander through a lush garden made of ice, stand awestruck as a tattooed contortionist folds herself into a small glass box, and gaze in wonderment at an illusionist performing impossible feats of magic.

Welcome to Le Cirque des Rêves. Beyond the smoke and mirrors, however, a fierce competition is underway - a contest between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood to compete in "a game," in which each must use their powers of illusion to best the other. Unbeknownst to them, this game is a duel to the death, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will.
Publisher: [Toronto] : Doubleday Canada, c2011
ISBN: 9780385671712
Branch Call Number: FIC MOR
Characteristics: 387 p. ; 25 cm

Opinion

From Library Staff

Comment
westcoastreader Feb 21, 2012

Simply the most imaginative book I have read in years. I will actually buy this book to read again and again. I only wish the entire book focused on creating "new tents" in the circus. Bravo!!!

An elegantly written adult fantasy. I was sorry when I finished it! I hope we'll see more from her in the future!


From the critics


Community Activity

Comment

Add a Comment
CMLibrary_DJeffrey Apr 08, 2021

More visual than 75% of movies I've seen. Breathtaking.

q
QAGeek
Mar 25, 2021

Per Laura H.

n
niewegec
Mar 16, 2021

This is one of my all time favourite books. I think Erin Morgenstern has created such an beautifully intricate world where so many stories are brought together to form something amazing. Her characters are complex and unique, and the concept is phenomenal. I loved this book from start to finish. It contains themes of love, growth, honesty, passion, tragedy and cunning wit. Such a good read!

c
clewis81
Mar 13, 2021

I truly enjoyed the visual artistry and detail of this fantasy. It reminded me a little of JK Rowling's style.

WPL_Erin Mar 12, 2021

Stunning novel. Morgenstern outdoes herself.

s
svdeshmukh
Feb 28, 2021

Erin Morgenstern's The Night Circus, is all about the Cirque des Rêves, a mystical circus that comes and leaves without warning, and is only every open at night. In this circus, the story follows two magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been training since birth to face each other in fight, where only one will be left standing in the end. Though the main characters of this novel are Celia and Marco, the book is really about the atmosphere and community of the circus: the performers, the spectators, and everybody in between. I greatly enjoyed reading The Night Circus because of the astounding world and ethereal writing Morgenstern has accomplished. However, despite the entrancing literature and alluring magic, this book is not for everyone. To begin with, the plot is almost nonexistent, and it is confusing for the reader to follow what exactly is happening to the book. In addition, the author throws the reader right in the midst of these event, without a lot of background information or solid world-building. However, a reader who loves intricate detail and imagery will love this book!

g
gillescoughlan
Feb 26, 2021

Could not finish it. The story was relying on plot devices that I just could not believe.

Two young children are chosen to be pawns in a contest by adults who, in one case, is her father, in the other, his legal guardian. What must they do to win they contest? Neither the children, nor we the readers, are told. Any attempts by the children, who rather quickly in the novel become adults, to get information about the contest, or what they should do is dismissed out of hand. When they accomplish something, it is impossible for us to judge if they are gaining or falling behind in this contest. Furthermore, when they do accomplish something, were are not really told what sort of spectacular, magical accomplishment they succeeded at making - just that they made a move in the contest - but again, without knowing what, if anything that moves accomplishes.

At about the half way point of the novel, I just did not feel that it was worth the effort to continue reading this story that was going nowhere.

n
nsalter1
Feb 26, 2021

Duning

f
FloraWest
Feb 23, 2021

A very submersive reading experience. Reads quickly and is beautifully absorbing.

_
_alishabari
Feb 21, 2021

I have never fallen in love with a book like this before. Somehow this book is an incredible journey and I am so thankful to have been on it.

However, this book is not for everyone. Not even close. I like to describe this book as a fairytale. Beautiful, flowy, and easily to get lost in.

But it’s also like a fairytale in the way there is little to no worldbuilding, rules or reason.

The magic told in this story just is. It has no limitations or lengths it cannot reach, it is like a fairytale because everything in this story just is- and you simply have to accept that.

There is no plot- Well that’s not exactly true. There is a plot, but it is incredibly slow-moving and (seemingly) random side plots will appear. The timeline jumps around, and you have to pay attention to keep up with the dates.

If you need a constant plot moving book, this book will not give you that. It is an extremely character-driven book.

I was perfectly happily to get lost in it and love it that more because of these reasons, however if you can’t- I would not recommend this book.

To everyone else, this was a gorgeous book. So easily to fall into this deep, magical world that made me feel like I was on some ethereal journey. I found myself yearning for things I didn’t know I wanted through this book. The descriptions are incredible and I will forever be thankful I read this book.

View All Comments

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability
d
dstradling
Jan 11, 2021

dstradling thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

k
Kristen MERKE
Mar 05, 2019

Kristen MERKE thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

s
selenium_dove_3
Jan 25, 2019

selenium_dove_3 thinks this title is suitable for 10 years and over

l
littlemisslyds_
Jan 06, 2016

littlemisslyds_ thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

m
Monkeyshines
Jul 25, 2015

Monkeyshines thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

BostonPL_JordanD Oct 07, 2014

BostonPL_JordanD thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

SlaYall Sep 13, 2014

SlaYall thinks this title is suitable for 12 years and over

r
Reading_Robot
Jun 23, 2014

Reading_Robot thinks this title is suitable for between the ages of 8 and 16

biggles26 Mar 19, 2014

biggles26 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

e
EricaReynolds
Mar 14, 2014

EricaReynolds thinks this title is suitable for 15 years and over

View All Ages

Quotes

Add a Quote
_
_alishabari
Feb 21, 2021

I would have written you, myself, if I could put down in words everything I want to say to you. A sea of ink would not be enough.

_
_alishabari
Feb 21, 2021

Someone needs to tell those tales. When the battles are fought and won and lost, when the pirates find their treasures and the dragons eat their foes for breakfast with a nice cup of Lapsang souchong, someone needs to tell their bits of overlapping narrative. There's magic in that.

a
AceOfSpadefish
Jan 01, 2020

When the battles are fought and won and lost, when the pirates find their treasures and the dragons eat their foes for breakfast with a nice cup of Lapsang souchong, someone needs to tell their bits of overlapping narrative. There's magic in that. It's in the listener, and for each and every ear it will be different, and it will affect them in ways they can never predict. From the mundane to the profound. You may tell a tale that takes up residence in someone's soul, becomes their blood and self and purpose. That tale will move them and drive them and who knows what they might do because of it, because of your words.

a
AceOfSpadefish
Nov 27, 2019

The circus arrives without warning.

b
ByStephanie
Jul 11, 2015

"I am tired of trying to hold things together that cannot be held. Trying to control what cannot be controlled. I am tired of denying myself what I want for fear of breaking things I cannot fix. They will break no matter what we do."

n
NovaStar47
Jun 27, 2015

"The heart of the tale and the ideas behind it are simple. Time has altered and condensed their nuances, made them more than story, greater than the sums of their parts. But that requires time. The truest tales require time and familiarity to become what they are."

b
becker
Sep 21, 2012

“People see what they wish to see. And in most cases, what they are told that they see.”
― Erin Morgenstern, The Night Circus

b
becker
Sep 21, 2012

“Most maidens are perfectly capable of rescuing themselves in my experience, at least the ones worth something, in any case.”
― Erin Morgenstern, The Night Circus

JewelMcLatchy Apr 18, 2012

The Burgess sisters arrive together. Tara and Lainie do a little bit of everything. Sometimes dancers, sometimes actresses. Once they were librarians, but that is a subject they will only discuss if heavily intoxicated.

Notices

Add Notices
midnightvupecula Jul 30, 2012

Coarse Language: Some swearing involved.

midnightvupecula Jul 30, 2012

Sexual Content: Brief sexual content.

E_Kaufman Apr 06, 2012

Frightening or Intense Scenes: People's finger tips get cut off in this book.

Summary

Add a Summary
a
Ashley Chen
Mar 30, 2012

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 Rêves, 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.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Recommendations

Subject Headings

  Loading...

Find it at VIRL

  Loading...
[]
[]
To Top