Its not the most captivating book and the characters took to long to develop. It lacked the exciting aspect of mystical thriller drama and I sadly turned it off half way through and started reading a novel. Maybe next time Erin. Or perhaps its just me and I don't get what you were trying to accomplish. None the less, hats of for getting it published and so much attention at the national level.
The author is so adept at evoking the sensory pleasures of the circus you can practically smell the popcorn and caramel. The plot, two lovers pitted against one another in a magical challenge over the course of decades with the circus as a venue, unfolds very slowly and does plod a bit at times, thus I've given it 4 stars and not 5.
The narration by Jim Dale is superlative. Each character is distinctive and I was never at any loss to discern who was speaking and each one sounded "true" and unaffected.
I got so excited at how good this book is when I started listening that I forgot what it was saying and I had to rewind it. She has an imagination in the leagues of J.K. Rowling, which is obviously saying a lot. Actually, she sort of has the same sense of humor too. You know, I think J.K. Rowling secretly wrote another story under someone else's name and picture. The fact that Jim Dale reads it adds to this illusion I am sure. Hoping the story holds up. Will update later.
Later: I'm giving it five stars because I loved every minute of it. However, since I started off by comparing it to the likes of Harry Potter, I feel I should finish in that vein. The fantastical, imaginative elements hold up till the end and remained just as impressive to me as those found in the Potter universe. The story? In comparison, I would have to admit it lacks substance. It would sort of be the equivalent of the Harry Potter books being mostly a tour through Hogwarts, discovering every little nook and cranny and just having an exploration of the senses (only in this story it's a circus). I'm not saying there's not a story, because there is. And it held my interest. What I felt it lacked was high stakes. It had the potential to have the conflict of Harry Potter or even Hunger Games, but you never really felt the urgency of it. You were certainly curious how it would play out, but it just didn't have that gripping quality I felt it could have had. Still, it was highly enjoyable, and I would very much recommend it for those who love magical things, or the circus, or Jim Dale :).
This book was ranked as a 5 star. I thought it was a zero. Do yourself a favor and don't even start it. It's convoluted, not believable, and very boring and while the reader took great pains to make something out of nothing, in my opinion he failed. I made myself go the end hoping it would redeem itself. But it didn't. I am sorry I wasted my time on it.
By time time I was one hour into this book I desperately wanted to go to the Le Cirque des Reves. The beautiful prose creates an amazing world which we learn is the battleground of two interesting people who happen to be powerful magicians. If you have no patience for books about magic (like Jonathan Strange and Mrs. Norrell), you might not like it but otherwise I highly recommend it. Jim Dale does a very nice job of voicing a varied cast of characters. BTW, ff you find out where Le Cirque des Reves is right now, let me know and I'll meet you there.
I love BOOKS and reading, listening is as good when I can't look at the book. I listen every minute driving.
The plot and premise of this book is great, well though out and very imaginative. The novel sucked me in and kept me around just like the visitors to the circus, I have become a Reveur.
The sights, sounds and smells of the circus are so vivid I can still feel it all right now. Jim Dale weaves his own vocal magic into this book in the same way Celia and Marco do to the circus.
I recommend this book to all. You won't be disappointed.
I absolutely loved this story and the narration that carried it perfectly. As soon as it ended, I wanted to start it all over again
I write, I read, I cook, I watch movies...I'm a big kid.
Think Cirque du Soleil meets Harry Potter with youthful imagination and mature sophistication. Listening to this story is like hearing a secret that no one else can handle, except you.