Bibliophile Books

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (Bibliophile #4)


Genre: Fantasy

Pages: 391

Published: September 13th 2011

Goodreads Rating: 4.03 / 5

My Rating: 5 / 5

Plot Summary

Le Cirques de Nuit is a pecuilar circus which only opens at night. Two of the performers, Marco and Celia, have been trained since childhood by their mercurial instructors in order to compete in a magical competition against each other.

Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing and the circus serves as the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite the two falling in love, the game must play out and the fate of everyone involved hang in the balance.

Character Development

Marco and Celia, the two rivals of the magic competition, have been trained hard since their childhood in order to master their magical abilities. Their upbringings differ greatly but have a common factor: their isolation

Having reached their adulthood they both join the circus and strive to prove their worth by creating the most spectacular venue after the other, in a game where they don’t fully understand the rules.

Their blossoming romantic feelings for each other make their will for victory fade away, especially when they learn that one must perish in order for the other to win.

Their instructors (Hector and Alexander) are quite selfish in the sense that they enjoy competing against each other, not by themselves, but by putting their apprentices to do the work. Hector takes it a step further by choosing his own daughter to compete, with no regard for her safety.

The other members of the circus (the manager Chandresh, the twins Widget and Poppet, fortune teller Isobel, contortionist Tsukiko) as well as those closely connected with the circus ( Bailey, sisters Tara and Lainine Burgess, Tanta Padva and Mr Barris) play their own role during the competition, wether small or large, while also having their own interests and goals outside from it.


Using the circus and the competition as a background the book realistically exhibits the attitude of people, common and magicians alike, to magic.

Selfishness and the desperate need to outperform your rivals often leads to dramatic casualties and isolation, as with the case of Hector and Alexander.

Child abuse, both emotional and physical, is shown while watching Celia’s harsh training and Marco’s imposed isolation from the outside world.

Love is one of the most valuable things in life whether it is romantic, platonic, meant for a place or a hobby.

Commiting to a cause or a person often means making sacrifices in your personal life that aren’t easy but worth the effort if you want it with your heart.

My Thoughts

With a vivid imaginary setting, complex characters and amazing lyric prose, the Night Circus makes up the perfect book for the lovers of fantasy and atmospheric elements as well as those with a special fondness for circuses.

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