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Review: The Night Circus

Author: Erin Morganstern
Series: N/A
Publishing: September 13, 2011/Doubleday/387 pages
Format Read: Hardback
Source: Borrowed
Classroom shelfability: No
 Review Blue Egg 3
Summary (from GoodReads): The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.Written in rich, seductive prose, this spell-casting novel is a feast for the senses and the heart.

 My Thoughts: I have a confession– I feel like a bad book blogger. I heard WONDERFUL things about this book. Raving reviews, tons of praise, “OMG THIS IS THE BEST BOOK EVAR!”  fangirling, etc. I was all prepared to a d o r e this book and be swept up by it’s amazingness.

But, I didn’t…

In fact, the only reason this book got 3 eggs instead of 2 or 1 (eek!) is because of Morganstern’s imagination. Holy macaroni, I’d love to live in that woman’s head. I was seriously blown away by her truly fantastic writing and vivid imagery. In that sense, this book was beautiful.

I also LOVED the cover and interior of the book. Gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous.

And that’s where my praise ends. Everything else? “Meh.” I gotta be honest: I was TOTALLY bored by this book. I kept waiting for more– romance, a battle, more magic, some type of serious twist or exchange between characters. Nada.

While the characters were likeable enough, none of their stories sucked me in. I was apathetic, at best, to their situations and the only character who I even kinda liked was Bailey. And, I am the type of reader that usually wants to cuddle around a campfire with all the characters singing “Kumbaya”- not this time, folks.

I am usually very taken with changes in POV and multiple time frames but it didn’t work for me here. Perhaps because there was a very weak, boring-as-heck plot? It took me FOREVER to finish this book.. like 2 weeks, at least. Very rare for me. Even my husband said “isn’t it taking you a really long time to finish that book?”. I meekly replied: “I don’t like it.” “Well, clearly!”… yeah, pretty much solidifed my fairly unpopular opinion on The Night Circus.

I will give credit where credit is due- the ending was one of the other decent parts of this book. But even combined with the positives I discussed above, this book still fell super flat for me. Enough cannot be said about Morganstern’s craft or incredible imagination and for that I commend her highly {she very well could be one of the best writers in the bunch}. But, everything else? Not my piece of cake.

It’s funny: from the blogger folk I’ve talked to, you either love or really dislike this book. I can’t even begin to loosely group people together who I’d think would enjoy this book- it seems fairly random. So here’s what I’ll say, read The Night Circus for the imagination and creativity that oozes off the pages but don’t expect anything more.

Classroom shelfability? Heck to the n o.