The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there when yesterday it was not.
The Night Circus is a mysterious traveling magical circus. The story takes place during the late 1800s through the turn of the century, with a myriad cast of characters involved in creating, performing and attending the circus. As a reader, you are also a particpant in the illusions of the circus, the rich imagry and fantastical wonders as it unfolds for you. You understand the circus in snippets, but not entirely until you are already pretty invested in the story.
Behind the magic, a competition takes place between two young magicians who aren't informed who they are fighting, for what purpose or even what they are supposed to do. The competition is as much a mystery as the circus, and it's all a secret. It's kind of like The Illusionist meets Cirque de Soliel mixed with Water for Elephants.
This is the book everyone read last year and it made lots of year-end lists. It's intriguing, and quite different than other books out there. It's clever, funny at times and of course, mysterious.