“Someone needs to tell those tales. When the battles are fought and won and lost, when the pirates find their treasures and the dragons eat their foes for breakfast with a nice cup of Lapsong souchong, someone needs to tell their bits of overlapping narrative. There’s magic in that. It’s in the listener, and for each and every ear it will be different, and it will affect them in ways they can never predict. From the mundane to the profound. You may tell a tale that takes up residence in someone’s soul, becomes their blood and self and purpose. That tale will move them and drive them and who knows what they might do because of it, because of your words”(499).

The Night Circus is such a tale. It is magical and breathtakingly beautiful, and I can imagine that with each reading I would discover more miraculous ideas and images much like visiting the Le Cirque des RĂªves and exploring its tents and spectacles.

I borrowed this novel from a friend who couldn’t recommend it more and I’m now regretting having to return it. The novel echoes the magicians’ game played within, how the chapters are set up and moved like chess pieces, or perhaps pieces from a puzzle slotting into place, as the story builds towards its magical showdown. The leaping through time, starting off with years between events, makes me think of a skipped stone across a pond, the splashes getting closer and closer and increasing the story’s tension and pace to its spectacular conclusion.

The characters are colourful and complex. Celia and Marco with a supporting cast of clockmakers, fortune tellers, contortionists and engineers (to hint of just a few) are woven together to make the Circus into something I wish I could visit and explore, perhaps even run away to.

The magic, the costumes and, most of all, the circus were enchanting and I happily say The Night Circus is almost transcendent! It’s a novel I look forward to visiting again.