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 Reves,” 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 per-formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.
I’ve been sat on this review for over a week now, because I honestly do not know what to say about it- not in a bad way, but I just loved it so much there is nothing left.
The first 100 pages or so were really slow for me, and after so many people telling me how good it was, and how I would love it, I was nervous that the hype was…well, hype.
But push past those pages- the setting scene, the understanding and childhood, and the story really starts.
Its still slow, and the story unfolds over many years and pages- but with this book, its not all about the story.
It’s about the writing.
This is the kind of book where you take your time over reading each word, savouring the sentences like the characters savour the smell and taste of the circus food. It’s the kind of book that makes everything real.
By the end of it, you believe in the story and believe that there is, somewhere, a circus of dreams travelling the world for you to find.
By two hundred pages in, I didn’t want to put it down, and by the end, I wanted to restart the whole book, because I didn’t want to leave the circus, or the characters, or the writing.
But the writing is only the start.
The characters are amazing, from Widget and Poppet to Celia and Marco, each one of them has a wonderful story to tell. The settings- the circus that is pure magic to the dinner parties between those that created it.
I could probably talk about this book forever without actually saying much- because part of the beauty of this book is watching (reading) it all unfold without knowing what can or will happen.
Its beautiful, stunning and wonderful, and theres something in the book for everyone to fall in love with.