Cover Image: The Ladies of the Secret Circus

The Ladies of the Secret Circus

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Member Reviews

I was blown away by not only the impressive world building of this story, but how complex each character in the story was. This somehow was the perfect balance of mystery, fantasy, historical fiction, with a mixture of a good modern day and hell. I was impressed by how naturally the story felt, and how even with the jumping back in time through the journal entries, this story felt smooth and not at all choppy. The whole time I truly did not know what was going to happen next, or what dark demonic thing was going to be lurking along the corner. This book was honestly a tad darker than I initially thought it would be, but I also thought that it worked really well. Overall the concept, the details, the storyline, and the fluidity of the story made this a very unique and enjoyable read. I would listen to this story at night while I was working on art, and I found myself struggling to turn it off as I wanted to know what was going to happen next, and even in the morning I would turn it on while getting ready for the day so I truly think that this book is gripping and arguably addicting. Thank you so much for allowing me the chance to "read" this I truly enjoyed it.
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Captivating, magical and mesmerizing.
The Ladies of the Secret Circus is a fascinating story about love, loss and magic that captured me completely.
The story was unique and impossible to put down, it alternates between past and present and merge in a fantastic way.
This is my first book from this author and it won’t be my last.

Thank you NetGalley  and Hachette Audio for this ALC.

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This was a very fun novel filled with magic. More so than I originally expected. 
This is a story centered around Laura who is about to walk down the aisle with a perfectly nice man named Todd. Suddenly, Todd goes missing the day of the wedding and his car is found abandoned by the side of the road. 
Through the course of the story we slowly learn that Laura comes from a line of women who are half daemon and have a family grudge causing the men they love to go missing.
There are much more complex elements than this, but basically Laura's great great grandfather is a very cruel daemon. He had two daughters who were conjoined and he brutally ripped them apart. He created this circus that serves as a kind of weird purgatory, but is a place where his daughters are seen as beautiful and accepted.

There is lots of heartbreak, magic and family drama in this book. One of the two twins hates the other because they fell in love with the same man. The evil twin stays alive and young away from the circus by sacrificing a man every 30 years. And she just so happens to always pick the man that her sister's ancestors are in love with.

This was a bit of a weird story, but it was quite intriguing. I don't think I can say it was my favorite fantasy novel, but  it was fun to listen to.
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I saw great potential in the first few chapters of this book. Where was the missing groom? Will he come back? Did someone kill him? It quickly became strange and very hard to follow. Magic circus...just didn’t live up my expectations unfortunately.
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If you found a bleeding ticket that promised an unforgettable.. killer experience. Would you go?

Lara, a descendant of a secret circus family doesn’t have much of a choice.

Wow, this book is smart. Constance Sayers made it up to me after her previous book had me looking the other way. Luckily, The Ladies of the Secret Circus has such a strong central story driving it along that I ultimately didn’t mind the contemporary real world environment which I'm typically not fond of. Added bonus was the ridiculously rich historical detail. I loved the story and enjoyed the movement from time period to time period. Sayers's ability to set a scene is just plain magical. In addition, the construction of the plot with the use of dreams and flashbacks could have been corny, but it is so well done and super effective. The story gripped me from the start, entangling me in the character's lives, all of them. But I did at times find myself wishing there was a little more magic and a bit less realism The narration is wonderfully performed. The different accents the narrator uses which I would have never done in my head if I was reading on my own really transported me to Paris.

Overall an absolute solid read that was a nice change of pace from the darker fantasy I read frequently. Not to say this isn't dark, because I mean.. it's about a circus run by a demon from the underworld. Yup, You'd never expect it from looking at the cover but it dives into much more sinister areas.
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So, When I got approved for this audiobook by NetGalley I was thrilled. I went through the first 18 chapters in one day. My issue was that after chapter 18 things started to not make sense like bits and pieces of the chapters were missing. So, what I had to do was wait for the book to be published and grab myself a hardcover. That being said I loved this book. My bookish heart is still, the author has done it again. Let me start by saying he can that this is dark, highly addictive, and not for a short novel but this has sealed the deal for this offer to be on my instant buy list. Grab a Cup of tea and your favorite reading spot because you probably could finish this in one sitting. I tend to go into these books blind and get pulled into the atmosphere of them better that way. I did read A Witch in Time and loved it beyond words so happy to have both on my bookshelf. The plot follows generations of the Cabot family between the 1920s and the 2000s and spreads out over three parts. Lara is left at the alter on her wedding day by a vanished husband-to-be. As she puts the pieces of her life back together new revelations on her past, her missing fiancé, and a dark heritage start to surface.  I am learning that I love a good magic or circus-inspired read. I appreciate an author that can tie in the regular with the magical and make the story not miss a beat. I will confess this has become my new favorite genre where magic and romance are mixed. I will apologize for my late review I had such a fun ride with this book that I can not wait to see what comes next for this author. You will want to find out what happens to him and how she copes. You will most likely love the journal entries they were the parts that I inhaled the quickest and they added so much to the story. I loved everything about this thank you to the author NetGalley and everyone involved. Keep up the great writing of an awesome book.
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I absolutely adored this novel. Listening to it was a dream and I was so swept away in the history, the fantasical magical circus, the imagery of France, the atmosphere of this perfect little town that Lara, our MC grew up in, just everything. Relationships and characters are well developed throughout and the pacing was constant throughout, never slowing, gradually building to the finale. 

I really recommend this book to historical fiction lovers who like a bit of magical realism stirred in. To anyone who enjoys books about the circus, mysteries, hunting down clues and exploring their history.

4.5 stars.

Thanks to NetGalley, Hachette Audio and Constance Sayers for an eAlc copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review.
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As a previous Constance Sayers reader, I really enjoyed the story, it's very much in tune with her other book A Witch in Time with the time travel, inherited curse, etc. 

I think it would've been better to have set the "other world" somewhere other than Paris which is a bit cliche and also the same as her other book....there's a big world out there!! I know Americans have a fondness for Paris but even London would've been a better pick.

I listened to the audiobook and the narration is fine except for the French characters - I'm sure some listeners will enjoy it, but the pseudo-Anglo-French accent was not for me. If anything, it felt insulting (I'm a non-English speaker and you can hear zero foreign accent when I speak English!). Not to mention it "glitched" quite often with the narrator going back to her own accent.
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I received a copy of this book in exchange for a review. 

This book has all of the elements that make up a fantasy/magical hit. We have strong women, we have the circus, we have mystery, and we have intrigue. The book starts with a wedding and a disappearance, and while we are trying to figure out what happened there, we learn that there is so much more happening in the background. This book was well written and kept me glued to it the whole time. I was eager to figure out what was going on, so I got through it very quickly, but then wished I'd savored it a little more.
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Thanks to NetGalley and Redhook for an advanced audio book in exchange for an honest review.  

Emily Lawrence did a superb job narrating the book. 

3.8 stars

Book flips between 2004-2005 and 1925 following multiple generations of Cabot women.  

Interesting ideas but story dragged at parts.

Halfway thru I missed an entire section about Lara getting a ticket to the circus and discovering a new circus painting.  I went back several chapters in audio book but I couldn't what I assumed had been written.  That is one downside to audiobooks, it is difficult to scan to recheck part of the story.
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I love audio reading. The Ladies of the Secret Circus as magical as it is, is not my genre.  Emily Lawrence brought this book to life for me. Loved her character development, it was magical as I listened to the voices of Laura, Cecile, Ben, Alcazar, loved hearing the french accents. Ladies of the Secret Circus  took me on a journey, I time traveled, I laughed and cried with demons, and rode the magic carousel that takes you back in time. Constance Sayers enchanted her readers with this magical story. Fans of Night Circus will love this. Even a fan like me was pleasantly mystified by Constance story and Emily's wonderful voices of her characters  she enchanted. An absolutely enjoyable read.
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First of all, I want to say that I loved the narration made by Emily Lawrence. She completely passed the creeps vibes with the narration.

However, I have mixed feelings about this book. It really sucked me in at first, and then it lost me and repeat all over again. There were parts that I absolutely loved and some parts that I felt would never end.

I love a good mystery, and the idea of Lara’s fiancé disappearing few hours before their wedding lured me in. But that was just the beginning of the mystery, for Lara had many more family secrets, dark ones... The dark circus mystery, the macabre, and the otherworldly story are in my opinion the shining and page-turning parts of the book.

Unfortunately, the plot seemed to move at a fairly slow and steady pace. It was difficult to feel any sense of suspense or anticipation since the story didn't change its pace according to what was happening in the plot.
And that made it quite difficult to keep myself absorbed in the book.

*I received this audio book ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest opinion.*
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