The Night Circus Hardcover – Sep 13 2011
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A Globe and Mail Best Book
"A book that stops you in your tracks, a book [that]… tears you open and leaves you gasping…. A book that makes the hair on your arms stand on end, and that has you picking up the phone or sending a text to tell everyone you know, 'You have to read this.'… One of those rare, wonderful, transcendent books that, upon finishing, you want to immediately start again…. The Night Circus welcomes all visitors."
—The Globe and Mail
"It's a world whose mystique and enigma is hard to shake off, and that invites multiple visits."
"Magical. Enchanting. Spellbinding. Mesmerizing. Morgenstern - in much the same way as her cast of magicians and performers might - builds a fantastic creation out of words and spells and ink and paper and the power of imagination. And like her colorful characters, she's not dealing in illusions and sleight of hand. This is real magic."
—The Seattle Times
"So should you read Erin Morgenstern's debut novel, The Night Circus? The short answer: Yes. The book is engaging and magical, entrancing the reader every step of the way."
—The Huffington Post
"Read The Night Circus and be mystified, finish it, as breathless as an aerialist, and you'll want to start again… you won't want to miss this amazing book."
"With a showman's flourish in an opening paragraph, author Morgenstern invites readers into a mesmerizing 19th-century world where everything and nothing is real, and even the characters don't know the difference. There are shivers here, as well as a story of betrayal, mistrust, love and horrifying secrets. I was captivated by this darkly stunning debut novel from an author who bears watching, and there's no way you should miss it, either. So step right up, ladies and gentlemen, and be amazed at what you'll find between these fiendish covers. For you, The Night Circus conjures a most excellent read."
"Morgenstern manages to conjure up a love story for adults that feels luxuriously romantic. When Celia calls their circus a 'wonder and comfort and mystery all together,' she could have been talking about this book."
—The Washington Post
"…dark and extravagantly imagined… the author entices her audience and rewards its members with captivating pleasure… when this Circus leaves town, it trails a sense of smiling wonder in its wake."
"The Night Circus is quietly, enchantingly perfect. …reading this novel is like having a marvelous dream, in which you are asleep enough to believe everything that is happening, but awake enough to relish the experience and understand that it is magical. Morgenstern is an artist as well as a writer, and her novel is lusciously visual. Every scene is like a medieval painting, saturated with color and detail; each realistic facet only enhances the mystical strangeness of the whole.
"Morgenstern's novel feels crafted from the fabric of a dream, and the circus itself never fails to astound. For me, the only real disappointment was that I couldn't buy a ticket."
—Christian Science Monitor
"Prepare to be entranced by Erin Morgenstern's debut novel, The Night Circus."
"Startlingly inventive, haunting, and definitely strange, it's part love story, part fable, and a knockout debut… Morgenstern's book is so sparklingly alive, you swear the pages are breathing in your hands."
—The Boston Globe
"Enchanting… Move over, Twilight!"
"The Night Circus made me happy. Playful and intensely imaginative, Erin Morgenstern has created the circus I have always longed for and she has populated it with dueling love-struck magicians, precocious kittens, hyper-elegant displays of beauty and complicated clocks. This is a marvelous book."
—Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler's Wife
"Every once in awhile you find a novel so magical that there is no escaping its spell. The Night Circus is one of these rarities - engrossing, beautifully written and utterly enchanting. If you choose to read just one novel this year, this is it."
— Danielle Trussoni, author of Angelology
"A riveting debut. The Night Circuspulls you into a world as dark as it is dazzling, fully-realized but still something out of a dream. You will not want to leave it."
— Téa Obreht, author of The Tiger's Wife
"Pure pleasure… Erin Morgenstern is a gifted, classic storyteller, a tale-teller, a spinner of the charmed and mesmerizing - I had many other things I was supposed to be doing, but the book kept drawing me back in and I tore through it. You can be certain this riveting debut will create a group of rêveurs all its own."
—Aimee Bender, author of The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake
"'Dark as soot and bright as sparks,' The Night Circus still holds me willingly captive in a world of almost unbearable beauty. This is a love story on a grand scale: it creates, it destroys, it ultimately transcends. Take a bow, Erin Morgenstern. This is one of the best books I have ever read."
— Brunonia Barry, author of The Lace Reader
"The Night Circus is a gorgeously imagined fable poised in the high latitudes of Hans Christian Anderson and Oscar Wilde, with a few degrees toward Hesse's 'Steppenwolf' for dangerous spice. The tale is masterfully written and invites allegorical interpretations even as its leisurely but persistent suspense gives it compelling charm. An enchanting read."
— Katherine Dunn, author of Geek Love
"Self-assured, entertaining debut novel that blends genres and crosses continents in quest of magic… Generous in its vision and fun to read. Likely to be a big book - and, soon, a big movie, with all the franchise trimmings."
— Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"Debut author Morgenstern doesn't miss a beat in this smashing tale of greed, fate, and love set in a turn of the 20th-century circus… a giant, magical story destined for bestsellerdom. This is an electric debut."
About the Author
ERIN MORGENSTERN is a writer and a multimedia artist, who describes all her work as "fairy tales in one way or another." She lives in Massachusetts with her husband and two very fluffy cats.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
I do wish I had enjoyed it as much as everyone else on here seems to have.
Somewhere around the middle of this book I realized I didn't really care what happened to the two main characters, and I lost interest in making the effort to piece together what was really going on. The whole premise that was ruling their lives seemed a bit pathetic and I ended up feeling that the ending didn't really matter to me.
"The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it, no paper notices on downtown posts and billboards, no mentions or advertisements in local newspapers. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not.
Le Cirque des Réves
(The Circus of Dreams)
Opens at Nightfall
Closes at Dawn."
But what visitors don't know is that the circus is a venue for a game. A game between two enigmatic magicians (although they are much more than simple magicians) of indeterminate age and otherworldly skills. Each has chosen a player and trained them for many years. And now that the circus is open, the game begins. The young players, Celia and Marco, are not even sure of the rules, how a winner will be dictated or what the playing should even consist of. And so we follow the circus, the game and the lives of everyone touched by the magic.
Where Morgenstern absolutely excels is in imagination. She has conjured up fanciful, magical places and times. Her prose are rich and lush, painting very vivid images. I often found myself rereading these passages and imagining what one of the attractions would be like. For the attractions at the Cirque des Réves are unlike any other. Each tent contains an unfathomable wonder that you may have only dreamed of.
I loved the following imagery - books as both vehicle and voyage.
"When she opens her eyes, they are standing on the quarterdeck of a ship in the middle of the ocean. Only the ship is made of books, it's sails thousands of overlapping pages, and the sea it floats upon is dark black ink.Read more ›
At any rate - I was wandering around the book store, and the cover caught my eye - I was burned out from a consulting gig, I wanted something with a bit more ... something ... then the urban fantasy I've been burning through, and a bit less substance than the Biography I've been warily eyeing and knowing I should just start already. My roommate finished it before I got around to it on the pile of books to read and her liking it is generally a good sign that it's something I'll like.
This book took me forever to read. I read it pretty much a chapter at a time (which is very, VERY unlike me) and it took a solid month for me to finish. The thing is, it's not because I didn't like it. I get why there were mixed reviews of it, and I get why there was a love/hate relationship with it a lot of readers seemed to have. It's a bit of a slow book, and very layered - you need to pay attention to a lot of subtleties, or you're just going to get bored.
I, personally wasn't bored. I am firmly on the camp that this is one of the best books since ever, and I'm planning to recommend this book a lot, to (almost) everyone. The imagery of the Circus was beautiful and made me wish there was something like it - it brought back that childhood memory of the fantasy and whimsy of the Circus' we went to as kids, the same Circus' that going to as grown ups lost a bit of their magic to adult eyes. The book is high magical realism and I would say even if you end up on the not liking it, it is well worth a read.
Most recent customer reviews
Beautifully written, a story that let your imagination soar and give you beautiful dreams.Published 16 hours ago by S. Finn
An amazing book that is beautifully written. You don't want to put it down, or for it to end. Would recommend it to anyone looking for an amazing read.Published 26 days ago by Connor McCarthy
It has been one of my most favourite pieces I read this year though mostly for the visuals. Erin Morgenstern's background in visual artist bled through the text creating a world I... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
The last time I felt so softly satisfied about a book, was with my first introduction to Neil Gaiman. I loved the imagery and the storytelling. Read morePublished 5 months ago by poi boy
“The Night Circus” by Erin Morgenstern is a powerful tale of pure magic presented as a rich physical and metaphorical creation. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Rashmi Pluscec
The circus is a magical event. Most people only go to one or two in their lives. When they are very young, teenage years with friends, or taking your own child there. Read morePublished 5 months ago by TeenageRead
This was a fabulous read. Dreamlike and full of imagery with interesting characters. Generally not my genre of choice but I thoroughly enjoyed it!Published 7 months ago by Sharene Zemanek