"The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not."
"The Night Circus" is a story about a circus, but not just any circus. A black and white circus with different tents that each hide an exhibit full of magic beyond your imagination. There are also two magicians that duel to the death and the circus is their stage.
Erin Morgenstern has a beautifully descriptive writing style, that takes you to a whole other place. I love how she describes the beautiful imagery from both the vantage points of the patrons of the circus and those who's lives are the circus. The setting of this book, Le Cirque des Reves, The Circus of Dreams, is such a unique circus and it is described in beautiful flowing prose.
This book takes place between the 1800s and 1900s and Erin Morgenstern does a wonderful job including and weaving all of the details to create a flawless representation of this century. Every detail from the dresses, down to Marco's bowler hat screams late 1800s and early 1900s. Every descriptive detail made me feel like I was there in that time period, with the rest of the characters.
The story is told from many vantage points and I absolutely loved hearing about the circus and story from both sides of the gate. Each chapter is told in third person, sometimes third person omniscient, and is about a different character, and a different event during a different time. You get the perspective of Marco, Celia, Bailey, Herr Friedrick Thiessen, Hector Bowen, Chandresh, Isobel, and others. Bailey is a boy who grew up traveling through the field from his backyard to visit the circus every time it showed up unexpectedly. Herr Friedrick Thiessen, is the one who made the clock that sits inside the circus and fell in love with the circus, starting a chain reaction. Celia is not only the illusionist at the circus, but she is also one of the magicians involved in a magical duel. Marco is the assistant of the circus proprietor and is a magician on the side. Isobel is the fortune teller at the circus and Chandresh is the circus proprietor. We see how each of their lives was affected by the circus and we also get to travel through the century and around the world with this book. From London, to New York City, to Boston, to Munich and a lot of other places. Its a magical, whimsical, roller coaster ride around the world.
The characters were also very well developed and so engaging. The masters of both Marco and Celia were so devious and vengeful. While, Marco and Celia themselves were both so woeful. I loved Marco so much, because he was so mysterious, charming and handsome, from his bowler hat to his personality. Every detail woven together, from the characters' words, to their dress, to their actions, makes these characters so unique and dynamic. These characters are definitely bound to each other and the circus.
"The Night Circus" is amazing and with the powerful imagery you will not only get to travel around the world and feel like your in the era, but you will also feel like you are at the circus with the rest of the characters. You will be able to see every black and white detail in your mind's eye and smell the caramel corn and taste it on the tip of your tongue. I highly recommend this book to everyone!