“The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not.”
And if that’s not enough to intrigue you, then let me continue. Not only is the circus full of amazing performers and spectacles, it is also the arena for a mysterious competition between two magicians, Marcus and Celia. What audiences assume are simply illusions, they both know is genuine magic, as real as it gets, their skills carefully honed from a young age. However, even knowing they are pitted against one another, doomed to compete until a champion can be declared, Marcus and Celia fall deeply in the throes of love. Meanwhile, the very fate of the circus itself, is being called into question.
I have never read any book like this one. Let me rephrase: No one has been able to achieve what Erin Morgenstern has so flawlessly done with this beautiful, beautiful book. To have the pleasure of reading something so unique and magical and dazzling and, damn it why can’t I think of another word for beautiful, is a rare occurrence these days in a world full of a lot of the same, mostly defunct of originality.
This novel is full of description, told from multiple perspectives with converging timelines. It’s what I call “slow-burn prose” — it shows you the details, builds the world; you hardly know a story is happening you’re so busy being caught up in all the different sights to see. And then before you know it, you’re in the middle of this epic plot, on the brink of utter disaster or something life-changing. I loved it.
I cannot recommend this book enough. Chances are, you’ve never read anything like it.
My rating: ★★★★★