WOW!! I just finished listening to this Audiobook and I am blown away by the enormity of it all. I LOVE Erin Morgenstern, I always have! In fact, the Night Circus happens to be in my top 10 favorite standalones of all time!! Her inexhaustible imagination is enviable. Her brain is both unique and fascinating in equal measure and always comes dressed to impress. Her ethereal, yet distinctly un-floofy (it's a word) writing invokes a visceral response in me that is downright Pavlovian.
“For those who feel homesick for a place they’ve never been to. Those who seek even if they do not know what (or where) it is that they are seeking. Those who seek will find. Their doors have been waiting for them.”
This was one such book for me. I was wanting, needing, fiending for... Something. A Something book rich in both body and soul. Even though I am a HUGE fan of her work/brain/Worlds, when I finally commited to sitting down and wrapping myself up in the Starless Sea, I had no idea it would satiate my literary cravings so completely.
The writing, of course, is sublime. It is transcendent, boundless, celestial and Extra... Extra-ordinary, extra whimsical and extra je ne sai quoi. There are many intricate machinations going on simultaneously. The myriad of characters are supernal and each a star in their own right. There are incredible circumstances that intersect and moments that interject. There are unforeseen twists and great loping turns... both of which may very well be described as Finesse incarnate... so much so that you will find yourself scouring the prose for clues while blissfully being swept up and away... simply grateful to be brought along for the ride.
It feels like I took in a great many threads and wove together an approximation (be it a beautiful approximation) of what the tapestry was meant to be. There is SO much going on in the Starless Sea and I know, with 100% certainty, that there are still new threads to discover... tidbits scattered here and there to be gathered and incorporated into the whole with each successive revisit, gently augmenting it in subtle yet significant ways.
Within these pages lay stories embedded within tales and a beautifully rounded cast of characters within the lore. It is a multi hued yarn that comes together to form a picture tangible enough to envelope you and your inner King of the Wildthings. It kept me in a state of perpetual awe. It is a refuge... a love letter to the Story and the Storyteller alike. For those who feel lost or those that feel there should be something more to this life... Something more magical, adventurous, dangerous, spectacular or simply just... more. This is an invitation for we dreamers to let loose and dream impossible dreams. It calls to those of us who "are here to wander through other people's stories, searching for our own." For we are the consummate revelers among the harbors embracing the edges of the Starless Sea.
All of the above is both accurate and adjective laden SO I'll boil it down to this-- this book is all sorts of evocative, fanciful, wonderous, and lush AND I can not recommend it highly enough!
Task 1: Find a redeeming quality in a book you read this year and didn’t like.
I had so high hopes for this book and in the end it was such an underwhelming read because of the lack of character development. But the descriptions of the Night Circus were absolutely and breathtakingly stunning. If there is one imaginary place that I wish would exist in real life, the Night Circus would be that place.
Morgenstern's first book, The Night Circus, continues to be one of my favorite books, so I was eager to see if her next book would live up to that promise. It did not disappoint. Given what I consider to be an extraordinarily high bar, this is a terrific accomplishment. My biggest dilemma reading this one was trying to savor it without racing through it; but, in taking my time, losing some of the thread of the complicated story. When I picked it up, I tended to do a bit of rereading to get me back into the action. This is not a criticism, maybe just a warning. If you have a comfy couch, a lot of free time, and enough snacks, I would definitely recommend binging on this book.