Wednesday, 9 January 2013

Book Review - The Night Circus

My sister Hannah recently recommended that I read the book 'The Night Circus' by Erin Morgenstern as she really enjoyed it, and I finally got around to doing so just before Christmas.

The novel follows the story of two characters, Celia and Marco, whose destinies are set to entwine thanks to a duel between two magicians who use them as pawns as they aim to prove that their method of teaching magic is superior. However, Celia and Marco's story is, in some ways, incidental to what I think is the real power of the novel. The descriptions of the circus itself are, simply, captivating. Peppered throughout the novel are short chapters written in the second person, as if it is genuinely 'you' who stand observing the circus, and these chapters in particular are extremely effective at transporting the reader to the magical world of the Night Circus itself.

The story is set in a vaguely Victorian era, in some ways similar to Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell (although The Night Cricus is nowhere near as epic), which I found enjoyable to read about and many of the characters - including twins, Poppet and Widget, born the day the circus itself comes into being - are intriguing and likeable. Morgenstern appears to have taken care to create 'real', complex characters even when they are on the periphery of the narrative.

I would definitely recommend this novel as a light but gripping read, it certainly transports its readers to another time and place. And, to be honest, what else do you read novels for?

1 comment:

  1. More book reviews please :) you are my main inspiration on the 'what shall I read next' question :) Amy x