Review: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The Night Circus

Author: Erin Morgenstern
Publisher: Doubleday
Released: September 13th, 2011
Received: Own
Rating: Kitty Rating

The Night Circus is Erin Morgenstern’s debut novel, and I just realized that I never wrote a review for it! It’s probably a bit too late now, especially with everyone gushing about her latest novel (The Starless Sea – which is an absolute must-read if you’re wondering). But that’s okay.

If you’re a fan of carnival themes, dramatic and iconic imagery, and the idea of magical games, then The Night Circus is a novel worth checking out. When magical masters get bored, sometimes they go to extreme lengths. And sometimes they’ll start a contest unlike any you’ve ever seen before.

Enter Celia and Marco. They are two young magical adepts, but with very different skills and talents. Celia is a natural; her magic is all about imagery and sleight of hand. She was raised to hide her magic behind the guise of stage magic. Meanwhile, Marco was raised with grimoires and magical tomes. He undoubtedly has a better understanding of magical foundations, but little understanding of his own limitations.

These two have been raised to oppose each other. They will compete by magical means, without ever knowing the true definitions of the game they’re playing. And likewise, they are expected to find their opponents without any help or guidance. Naturally, that means these two are ultimately destined to fall in love.


“How can I excel at a game when you refuse to tell me the rules?”

Spoiler Warning

Hrm. My description may have gotten a little long there. But that’s probably all the proof you need that I absolutely adored this book. It has been stuck in my head ever since the moment I read it, and I have no regrets about it remaining there.

The Night Circus was a fabulous read, one full of rich details and this striking aesthetic that I just couldn’t get over. Combining circus, magic, and iconic imagery all resulted in something truly wonderful. The secondary characters played larger than life roles, fleshing out the world to even further extents. It was all brilliantly done.

The love story in this novel was both everything and nothing like what I expected. And that was a delightful blend. It was romantic and full of surprises. It was a study in human behavior. And it was so stunningly intense and brilliant.

I haven’t heard any news of The Night Circus being adapted into a movie or TV show, but I still can’t help but hope that someday it’ll happen. I want nothing more than to see the imagery stuck within my head come to life.

About Liz (AKA Cat)

I am an avid animal lover, photographer, graphic designer, and much more. I love to create art, and am willing to try any artistic technique at least once. I am particularly fond of artworks involving a lot of emotion and color. The purpose of my blog is for me to be open and honest with myself and the world about my attempts to grow as an artist. My other major passion is reading. My TBR pile is larger than I'll ever be able to read, and yet I can't resist adding to it on a nearly daily basis. I love to read science fiction & fantasy, graphic novels, and pretty much anything I can get my hands on. I have a couple of blogs, as you can see. One is primarily my photography, while the other are my book reviews. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out!
This entry was posted in Fantasy, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s