This tale set at the turn of the 20th century has magic and romance at its core. It tells the tale of two star-crossed lovers, thrown into a competition of skill and endurance and bound to one another until a winner is declared. The arena for the competition, the Night Circus, is a place of dreams that captures the imagination of the general public, and is only open between sunset and sunrise.
As a debut novel, this 2011 release is an impressive feat of the imagination for author Erin Morgenstern. It took me a long time to get into it, because I kept expecting a Hunger Games-like arena and competition, but once you come to terms with the fact that its slow-building romance novel, it’s quite enjoyable. What I found most difficult about the novel was bonding with the (many) characters that form the heart of the circus, and the fact that the story jumps between dates and years. But if you’re looking for something charming then this is the novel for you.
I paired this story with the Footprint Chardonnay, a somewhat missable white wine made for export (I was in Zanzibar, so I had limited wine options). Put if you’re smarter than I, you’ll pair this with a well-wooded and vanilla-ry chardonnay, like the Bon Courage Prestige Cuvee which comes with hints of butterscotch as well.