Friday, April 26, 2013

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

A six year old girl loves her father, of course she does.  Even when that father is a famous magician and bonds her to a contest that will take decades and whose purpose is to prove that she is the best magician alive.  An orphan is grateful to the man who rescues him and more than willing to learn magic if that is what makes his rescuer happy.  He is also bonded to the contest; these two children who will grow into adults whose life will be consumed by the contest.

Imagine a circus more magical than any ever seen.  It shows up outside of towns unannounced.  The tents are all done in black and white as are all the costumes.  The circus is only open at night, but while it is open, those lucky enough to attend see sights that will stay with them forever.

Celia Bowen is the young girl, and she becomes the circus' main illusionist.  Marco Alidair is the boy who is her adversary.  He does not perform at the circus, but works behind the scenes keeping it organized and moving.  Both individuals know that they are bound to the competition, and that the circus is the neutral proving ground.  Each creates more and better acts and wonders as time goes by.  As they meet over the years, they fall violently in love and then discover that they are, in fact, adversaries in the game and that one must utterly defeat the other.  How will they reconcile the game with what they feel?  Is emotion allowed in those who would perform magic?

Erin Morgenstern has written an original tale destined to captivate and enchant the reader.  The details of the fabulous circus and the marvels contained within make the reader crave the experiences visitors have.  The love between the two main characters introduces a conflict that is not readily resolved, and brings up the conflict between obligation and feelings.  This book is recommended for readers ready for a wondrous tale that will leave them satisfied and sure that magic does indeed exist in this world.

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