As readers of fiction we all love the fact that as soon as we open a new book and read that first line, reality fades and fantasy comes to life. It’s akin to walking under the Main Street Railroad station, turning onto Main Street USA and seeing that Sleeping Beauty or Cinderella castle straight ahead. This is where the magic starts. It is where you feel at home and everything around you is filled with joy, discovery, and excitement. They are also the memories that never fade and which you love to experience time and time again on closing the back cover.
Having been a reader since childhood, I can’t count the number of books that have transported me to worlds beyond my imagination and have brought me magic in the darkest of moments.
I keep thinking of all those books right now and it makes me want to curl up in one of the chairs in the corner of the living room, forget about life, and escape.
The “magic” might not be the magic you think about with spells, wizards and whatnot, but I hope some of the books down below will give you an insight into what “magic” is for me.
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
The magic is being dazzled by this extraordinary circus that comes and goes without any warning. It’s the circus that has the French title of ‘Le Cirque des Rêves’ which for me makes everything more enchanting and dreamy. It’s a circus that entices me into the tent and has me question what is the difference between reality and fantasy. It’s the only circus I’ll happily revisit when it arrives again.
Shadow of Night by Deborah Harkness
Some people say Shadow of Night is a classic case of “second book syndrome” but I don’t see it that way because there’s nothing more magical than being thrown head first into a historical setting I’ve always loved and feeling as if I’ve lived in Blackfriars forever. Also, I love the part in books where a character discovers their potential and gains the confidence to be themselves, and this happens to Diana in such a spectacular fashion. It’s magical every time I read it.
The House at Pooh Corner by AA Milne
You know, it is only since watching Christoper Robin that I realise how magical this world and the stories are for me. When I was a child I lived and breathed Winnie the Pooh, whether that was through the books, Disney, or going down to Ashdown Forest and playing Pooh Sticks on Pooh Bridge. I think for me, the magic is there in the friendships, the love all the characters have for one another, and the fact that a bear “of very little brain” is the wisest character I know.
Hunted by Meagan Spooner
As it’s me, do I need words to explain how magical this book is for me?
It’s Beauty and the Beast in the way I always wanted it told – part Beast, part Yeva, with enough folklore to make it believable. It’s magic is also in the familiarity and freshness of the story, which is perfect on the days you want something new yet comforting. It’s not a mix that’s seen very often, yet when it works, it works like a charm.
The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden
This works in a very similar vein to Hunted, but the majority of the magic runs through the writing and Katherine Arden’s ability to draw us into the setting. When reading this, I felt as if I was reading some of my favourite childhood fairytales and watching a traditional Disney classic. At risk of repeating myself, it was new yet familiar at the same time. I’m hoping that the other books in the trilogy exude the same quality because I want to uncover that magic and let it take me far away from reality.
Stephen King says that books are a uniquely portable magic and it’s true. They’re the magic I’m hoping will carry me through the next couple of months and I feel a bit better knowing that they will be there for me.
What books, for you, are filled with magic?
As always, thank you for reading and have a brazzle dazzle day!