The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

About the book

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. The black sign, painted in white letters that hangs upon the gates, reads: Opens at Nightfall Closes at Dawn As the sun disappears beyond the horizon, all over the tents small lights begin to flicker, as though the entirety of the circus is covered in particularly bright fireflies. When the tents are all aglow, sparkling against the night sky, the sign appears. Le Cirque des Rêves The Circus of Dreams. Now the circus is open. Now you may enter.

 

Reviewed by Porchester Monday Morning Reading Group

“We enjoyed the BBC Drama series, Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanne Clarkeand this book about magic casts the same spell. Three of loved this book, two did not!”

star rating ** ½

 

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Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

About the book

When Jacob Jankowski, recently orphaned and suddenly adrift, jumps onto a passing train, he enters a world of freaks, grifters, and misfits the Benzini Brothers Most Spectacular Show on Earth a second-rate travelling circus struggling to survive during the Great Depression, making one-night stands in town after endless town. Jacob, a veterinary student who almost earned his degree, is put in charge of caring for the circus menagerie. It is there that he meets Marlena, the beautiful young star of the equestrian act, who is married to August, the charismatic but twisted animal trainer. He also meets Rosie, an elephant who seems untrainable until he discovers a way to reach her. Water for Elephants is illuminated by a wonderful sense of time and place. It tells a story of a love between two people that overcomes incredible odds in a world in which even love is a luxury that few can afford. Water for Elephants was a major movie starring Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon.

Reviewed by Page Turners Reading Group:

The highest scoring book with the group this year. Wonderful atmosphere, rich description and exotic characters (human and animal). Gripping plot and fast paced story all the more enthralling as many of the incidents described were taken from real events.

Star rating: ****

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