2012-03-06

Sharing the Love

So . . . as I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I’m changing things up a bit for these posts. To be honest, I’m finding it a little difficult to keep up with the lists of interesting posts and websites. And let’s face it, what’s interesting to me might not be interesting to you. Add to that the fact that I’ve pretty much recommended all my favourites and you can understand why I’m starting to flounder a bit.

I started thinking of other ways to be “Sharing the Love” and what better way for a writer to share than with books? So starting today I’m going to include the odd book review of books I’ve recently read and really enjoyed. That’s not to say I’m abandoning my recommendation lists, I’m just expanding a bit.

Now, without further ado, I give you my first official review:

In Patti Frazee's astonishing debut novel, enchantment and illusion casually commingle with reality as the Borefsky Brothers Circus makes its way across the American Midwest in the summer of 1900.

Mariana, the fortune teller, makes herself invisible and drifts through the nighttime circus, listening in on conversations and watching over her beloved Shanghai, a fire-breathing dwarf who closely guards his secrets, even from Mariana's second sight. Conjoined twins Atasha and Anna cling to each other and weep for their home and for their mother and father who sold them to the circus. Jakub, the circus manager and husband to Mariana, fears his wife's gifts, grieves his own failures, and drinks to forget it all. The stories and closely guarded histories of the troupe of performers dance around each other until a love affair between Shanghai and Atasha destroys the delicate balance.

As secrets are revealed and old wounds are opened, the consequences are unbearable to some and liberating to others. Lyrically graceful and populated by vividly drawn characters, Cirkus is a haunting novel of devastating heartbreak and exquisite loveliness.


One of the things I love about my Kindle is that I download books like crazy, and then by the time I get around to reading them I’ve forgotten what they’re about so it’s usually a surprise when I start. It was pretty easy to figure out what Cirkus was going to be about, but it was definitely not what I expected.

This is a character driven story - the characters were both beautiful and tragic, and so vivid I could easily picture them in my mind. I vacillated between sympathy and anger at Mariana and her meddling, but was totally sympathetic towards Shanghai and his secrets. Atasha and Anna were so innocent . . . and Jakob – I really hope to see a sequel some day that tells about Jakob getting his comeuppance.

We’re treated to a side of the circus most people never think about - behind the scenes of the performances and the daily lives of these people when they’re not performing. The writing is vivid and draws you in. You can feel the circus around you.

Don’t just take my word for how wonderful this book is. You can purchase your own copy of Cirkus from Amazon.

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