The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

GoodReads Summary:
Two star-crossed magicians engage in a deadly game of cunning in The Night Circus, the spellbinding bestseller that has captured the world’s imagination. 
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 Rêves, 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 both, this is a game in which only one can be left standing. Despite the high stakes, Celia and Marco soon tumble headfirst into love, setting off a domino effect of dangerous consequences, and leaving the lives of everyone, from the performers to the patrons, hanging in the balance.
Review:
When I started this book it was as an audiobook that I got from my library. I found with the audiobook that I had a really hard time focusing and noticed that I had to rewind and listen again because I would lose focus and miss important details. About twenty percent into The Night Circus I decided to see if the ebook version was available from my library and it was, so I made the switch. I had a much more enjoyable time once I switch to the ebook.
I ate this story up. The Night Circus is a book that I heard about through the bookstagram world (thank god for the bookish community.) I honestly didn’t even read the summary of the book until after I’d already started the audiobook. But by then my attention had already been caught, so it didn’t really matter what the book summary said.
By then I had already started to become attached to Celia after seeing her meet her father as a little girl and have no idea what her father was signing her up for. After watching her train herself and learn more about her abilities and how far she can take them. I only grew more attached as I read instead of listened to the story. I fell more in love as she became a young woman who learned how to stand up to her father, while still learning the things he wants her to. I love Celia. She’s intelligent, caring, clever, and mysterious all at the same time.
While falling in love with Celia I was also learning to love Marco. Adopted as an orphan for the sole purpose of being trained for this challenge, but never being given the full story, he was a very compelling character. I so enjoyed watching him try to figure things out on his own and the way he learned to teach himself and take care of himself because he knew that no one else would. I liked Marco most of the time. There were a  few moments that had me shaking my head wondering why he thought that was the best course of action  (it wasn’t). Regardless, I enjoyed Marco especially once he and Celia started interacting directly rather than just through the circus.
There were some excellent supporting characters in this story. Many others that got their own side story that only added interest to The Night Circus as a whole, like the clockmaker and the fortune-teller. I love when authors give me supporting characters that have stories to tell. I think it makes the book just that much better overall. This was one thing that made it hard for me to listen to this as an audiobook. There were so many different stories being told within this one book that listening to it had them blending together and it wasn’t always clear when we were moving to a new perspective. I really like books with multiple perspectives, especially when they’re complex like this one. I just might not recommend the audiobook over the ebook or paper version unless you know you’ll be able to focus.
Another thing I really liked was that this story was set in the late 1800s into the early 1900s. Over the period of many years. Too many stories have timelines that just aren’t realistic or don’t make sense. This book didn’t do that. We read through many many years of our characters lives. I think that just gives the reader a feeling of really knowing the characters and as if we’ve been on this journey with them. I also have to compliment the author on her writing skills because I don’t think I would be able to write a multi-perspective book with this complex story.
As a whole, I liked The Night Circus. Erin Morgenstern is a very talented writer and I hope to be able to write a story like this one day. This book was complex and interesting. Extremely detailed and involved but not to the point where it was hard to get through, just enough to hold my attention and keep me dying to know what’s going to happen. I loved that while it was romantic, with forbidden love (my favorite), there were also some pretty dark aspects to this story. This was a nice touch because what’s life without a little darkness?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

*Please be aware that the book cover on this post is a link to purchase this book through Amazon. Feel free to purchase with our affiliate link (just click on the book cover) to support us!

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

Summary:
Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow.
Two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town.
Now for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three troubled girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into Sparrow’s harbor and pulling them under.
Like many locals, seventeen-year-old Penny Talbot has accepted the fate of the town. But this year, on the eve of the sisters’ return, a boy named Bo Carter arrives, unaware of the danger he has just stumbled into.
Mistrust and lies spread quickly through the salty, rain-soaked streets. The townspeople will turn against one another. Penny and Bo will suspect the other of hiding secrets. And death with come swiftly to those who cannot resist the call of the sisters.
Bu only Penny sees what others cannot. And she will be forced to choose: save Bo or save herself.
Review:
The Wicked Deep was brought to my attention through the book blogging world. The beautiful cover was featured on countless bookstagrams and bookish twitters because it photographs so well. Once I read the synopsis I was more than interested. Vengeful sisters and murder? Count me in.
There was a little while during the story that I wasn’t really sure where things were going. Were they going to figure out how to get rid of the Swan sisters for good? What was the end goal here? Then I found out and man I totally should have seen that plot twist coming. I’m honestly not sure how I missed it, all the clues were there.
I don’t think I have anything negative to say about The Wicked Deep. It has an incredibly unique storyline with fully developed and interesting characters that pull you in and leave you with all the feels.
Penny, our main character, is an outsider in her town. I immediately liked her because she chooses to stay on the island and care for her mother. She’s a girl that really cares about the people in her life and is loyal to no end. After learning about certain events in the book I really felt bad for Penny because someone did her real dirty and she will never even find out about it. So many secrets are being kept from her right through the ending and I just felt bad for her.
Our love interest, Bo. He’s mysterious. That typical guy from out of town who comes into town with a secret. We slowly learn more about him as Penny gets to know him. I really liked Bo. Though he was ignorant to the craziness that is the Swan Season in the town of Sparrow, he sticks it out to try to find the answers he’s looking for. He’s determined but finds himself caring for Penny and her island.
I liked the relationship between Penny and Bo. It wasn’t insta-lovey thank god. I can’t handle instalove relationships. There was definitely some infatuation on Penny’s part in the beginning. Their relationship had actual development which I liked. They were both keeping secrets but working together on the island to fix the orchard among other things gives them time to bond and talk and really get comfortable with one another. With this time spent together, they slowly start to open up and reveal their secrets to each other. I liked the pace of their relationship. It’s the same for the whole story. It’s paced nicely. The story flows well, giving us a smooth story that’s not rushed at the end to give us an ending or too slow in the beginning trying to give us all the background information we need.
Overall, I liked this book about as much as I expected to. I knew I was going to like this story just from the synopsis. I certainly wasn’t disappointed. The unique storyline was one that I loved. It’s creative and unlike anything I’ve read before which is impressive because I’ve read quite a few books. The characters are relatable and real. They make you feel all the things and you can’t help but care about them. This was a fun read for sure and I’d recommend it to anyone that liked young adult books.

“Love is an enchantress—devious and wild. It sneaks up behind you, soft and gentle and quiet, just before it slits your throat.”

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

*Please be aware that the book cover on this post is a link to purchase this book through Amazon. Feel free to purchase with our affiliate link (just click on the book cover) to support us!