Book Review: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Publisher: Doubleday
Publication date: September 2011
Pages: 400
Source: Library
For: Fun

This book is very hard to describe, but at its center lies Le Cirque des RĂªves, the Circus of Dreams, a mystical, unusual, different kind of circus. Battling behind striped curtains and caramel apples are two magicians, Celia and Marco, locked in a battle not of their making. Will this place of dreams be a witness to their destruction or to a much different end to their battle?

Things I Liked:
This book is very, very atmospheric, and I think this is it's greatest strength, why so many people have raved about it.  The way Morgenstern writes, the strange details and the unique elements of the circus come right to life.  It is like living through a vivid and strange dream on page, never knowing exactly what will pop up next.  I really liked some of the characters, notably not Celia or Marco, but Chandresh and Poppet.  It is, to use the overused phrase, evocative.  You actually feel (and smell and taste) like you are at the Night Circus.  A truly interesting and unique book that really pops from the page to life.

Things I Didn't Like:
I was not really impressed with the epic love story.  I felt like there wasn't any development of their relationship.  They have very little page time together and yet they have this unbreakable bond of love.  I just couldn't buy it.  I also really wanted more explanation of the magic, the illusions, and what happened in the end.  It was so vague that I honestly thought I'd skipped a chapter or something.  Definitely worth the read just for the experience, though.  All that raving didn't go awry in this case.

I really don't know of anything similar, maybe Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clark a little

s-factor: !@# 

at least one f-bomb that I can remember

mrg-factor: X 
sensual, but not much action on the page

v-factor: -> 
a few incidents but the details are light

Overall rating: **** 

Can you think of anything like this?  It is very unique, I think.
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