Originally written for Pari617's blog.
Dear The Night Circus,
The first time I heard about you was in 2014, when Indu was reading you in a read-a-long with a few others scattered across the world. That time, I didn’t think much about you because you didn’t really grab my attention and I didn’t see you in flesh and blood (or should I say, pulp and ink?). And I definitely didn’t think that I’d fall in love with you the way I did.
Your blurb sounded weird and delightfully magical. The only thing that seemed exciting in the whole of you was the circus, The Circus of Dreams. Your plot seemed…not very interesting. I still put you on my TBR list; I didn’t want to miss out on anything.
Later next year, I kept hearing about you. Snatches of words, here and there: “enchanting”; “stunning”; “a truly magical experience”; I am a sucker for fantasy books, you should know. I felt intrigued when I heard all that. I considered buying you online but my finances pulled me towards other things and couldn’t buy you.
But when I went to Blossoms this April, I saw you and I didn’t think twice about adding you to my basket. Never mind that you had previously belonged to someone else and was of an edition that’s unheard of. Never mind that you have a pinkish-orangish stain in the corner of the last fifty pages that came from who knows where. Never mind that some of them thought you were boring and lacked story and what-not but believe me, you weren’t and you didn’t. Never mind that I didn’t consider you YA because I just wanted to devour you.
You were not what I expected. I expected ill treated animals and a hero trying to save them (like a rip-off of Water For Elephants) and a nice forbidden love (I love me some forbidden love; there’s just something really exciting about it and the anticipation of what’s going to be). But the “unexpected” was brilliant. Even though I often had to keep going back to check dates to keep myself on track, I was totally mesmerized by your words.
I buddy-read you along with Parvathi and it was a wonderful experience. There is nothing better than two people falling in love with the same book (happens a lot with Indu and me :D).
You were poetry, simply removed from their lines and strung together, sentence after sentence. The description of the Night Circus made me ache for it to actually happen. And the slight twist of tale, with what I call, “a background romance” (but those parts didn’t cease to give me butterflies in my stomach), and something so deep happens that it is beyond the perception of humans.
I loved most of the people you created: from Marco to the Murray twins (Poppet and Widget, amazing, amazing characters) to Tsukiko to Bailey. Celia reminded me of Tessa Gray from the Shadow Hunter chronicles, though I wish she could’ve been better described and was stronger. The two fathers, a psychopath and another one a sorry excuse for a father made things interesting, however much we didn’t want those things to happen for Marco or Celia. I loved the detailing: the clock, the Midnight Dinners, the food of the Midnight Dinner, the clothes, the reveurs’ attires with the little splash of scarlet on all black, and all the tents at the circus. I have quite a few unanswered questions which I will discuss with Parvathi as soon as she had read the book.
I just want to thank you for being one of those books that makes me stop all my work and just read. It had been a while since that happened, at least over six months, and I don’t know if I’ll find another book as worthy of binge reading as you were.
With all my love,
P.S. The feel of your velvety cover in my hands was to die for.
Published by Parinitha Prasanna