Thursday, 29 December 2011

Review - The Night Circus By Erin Morgenstern

This book is absolutely amazing! It is without doubt the best book I’ve read this year and has provided me with an abundance of inspiration for various things, majorly my new graphics project which is now focused on the deepest, darkest depths of the circus and its history. Before I read The Night Circus I’d been told by at least three people how brilliant and inspirational they thought it was, but unfortunately since I have no money to buy books to read I joined the queue of people wanting to read my sister’s copy of it. After about a month of waiting my original enthusiasm for the book had waned and I was starting to doubt whether it could actually be as awesome as everyone said it was. It turned out they were absolutely right. Erin Morgenstern is a total genius!
It took me a while to properly get in to this book because I am unfortunately the kind of person who can never settle for doing one thing at time. I’m always reading at least two books, and when The Night Circus finally reached me I was already in the throws of reading Franny and Zooey, Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and T.S Eliot’s The Family Reunion, so I started the book and then had to force myself to finish a few of my other conquests before letting myself relax and really enjoy it’s awesomeness.
If I’m being totally honest any doubts I had about the book were laid to rest when I actually looked at it. I’m a sucker for pretty things and absolutely addicted to anything related to graphic design or art of any kind and this falls in to all of those categories. I have to say that this dust cover is possibly my favourite book cover of all time. On top of the initial beauty of the cover, the theme continues throughout the book adding to the mystery and atmosphere of the circus as every standard page is white rimmed in black and the introductory pages to chapters are patterned alternate black and white forming spot lights around each title, and this is all before we get to the literary genius of the story itself.
The story is told in a totally unconventional way, in a series of quotes, descriptive pieces and what appears to be something like diary entries which allows the narrative to jump backwards and forwards in time and follow the lives and adventures of various different characters. There are too many things to say about this book, but I don’t want to spoil it for any potential readers so I’ll refrain from continuing. The Night Circus is brilliant because of the depth of detail in the description of characters and the circus it’s self and because of the way that we are made to believe that things that in our right minds we know are totally impossible actually could be possible. I’ve fallen in love with the circus and wish that I could create something as beautiful, intricate and all out spectacular as it. This book took me back to when my mum read my Circus Shoes by Noel Stretfield when I was about 8 and I decided that I wanted to run away and join the circus. Apparently that dream wasn’t what grownups consider realistic and at the time I was much more susceptible to what grownups thought, now I don’t really care. My new ambition in life is no longer graphic design; I want to be part of the night circus. 


  1. Me too!i never wrote a review of this cos I couldn't find words for the awesome but you've done a brilliant job!:-)

  2. thanks :) i don't think i've done it justice but i did my best :) i'm planning to illustrate it at some point, cos the descriptions are too awesome to be wasted