Series: Girl On A Wire #2
Author: Gwenda Bond
Published Date: July 5th 2016
Genre: Fantasy, YA, Magic
My Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★
Eighteen-year-old Moira Mitchell grew up in the shadows of Vegas’s stage lights while her father’s career as a magician soared. More than anything, Moira wants to be a magician too, but her father is dead set against her pursuing magic.
When an invitation to join the Cirque American mistakenly falls into Moira’s possession, she takes action. Instead of giving the highly coveted invitation to its intended recipient, Raleigh, her father’s handsome and worldly former apprentice, Moira takes off to join the Cirque. If she can perform alongside its world-famous acts, she knows she’ll be able to convince her dad that magic is her future.
But when Moira arrives, things take on an intensity she can’t control as her stage magic suddenly feels like…real magic. To further distract her, Raleigh shows up none too pleased at Moira’s presence, all while the Cirque’s cocky and intriguing knife thrower, Dez, seems to have it out for her. As tensions mount and Moira’s abilities come into question, she must decide what’s real and what’s an illusion. If she doesn’t sort it out in time, she may forever remain a girl in the shadows.
"The coffin might sound morbid, but I wasn't planning to die in it. I was planning to live. Forget college or a normal future. I wanted to be a magician: The Miraculous Moira."
Moira has always wanted to be a magician just like her father, but he refuses to let her do it, or even be a part of his act. So instead she does what any young woman would do, sneak around and learn tricks on her own until she is sure they are good enough to show and prove to him that she can be a magician to.
Once Moira becomes a part of the circus and gets her act going though, she realizes that something isn’t quite right and that maybe she really does have magic. Along the way she makes friends, and even gets a boyfriend, who is a smooth talker and potentially into dangerous things.
"Beware the smooth-tongued boys, the ones who flattery comes easy to. There's nothing wrong with wanting to believe it, even with believing what they say is true-you are beautiful, you are smart, you are unique, these are good things to believe- but it's foolish to assume it means anything beyond pretty words. Sweet Nothing was an apt phase. Taken seriously, sweet nothings become bitter regrets.”
She also starts looking for her absent mother who she has always wondered about, but never had been told much of anything. This causes problems as well, and makes the story even more interesting because of what her mother is involved in.
I was a bit apprehensive about reading another circus book, after being disappointed in the night circus. This was so much better than that though. I loved the characters, it was an easy read, and nothing got confusing. Moira is a strong female character who takes insane risks in order to do her magical acts and somehow talks her boyfriend in to being her assistant even when it means doing stunts that could kill her if she doesn’t make it out in time. When she was doing those magical acts, I couldn’t wait to see if she was able to pull it off and I couldn’t stop reading until the act was done to see if she was hurt or not. Plus the mystery behind his friends and what exactly the boyfriend was involved in was a nice spin on the story to.
"I keep telling you, where I come from, it's not like wherever you're from, lovely Moira. We believe in fairy tales. Magic coins, fair ladies, evil witches, tyrant kings, and benevolent queens."
The ending where Moira figured out what to do was amazing as well. She brought everyone together, in order to stop something bad from happening, and in the process realized who she really was and what she really wanted out of life.
"Maybe we would fail miserably. But we would do it together. For once, I was in a situation that seemed truly inescapable."
Overall I loved this book, and will recommend it to everyone looking for a good circus/magic book. In the future I hope to read many more books by her, including the first one in this series/duology. I don't think it is necessary to read the first one though, because I was still able to understand who everyone was.
Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for an e-Arc of this book in exchange for my honest review.