The Weight of Feathers: Or, Romeo & Juliet in the Night Circus

The Weight of Feathers: A Novel - Anna-Marie McLemore

Anna-Marie McLamore writes so beautifully I think I would be mesmerized even if she were writing about paint drying. No lie. She is the sort of writer that makes me feel simultaneously inspired and dejected when it comes to my own writing craft. She's that good. If you haven't read her before you owe yourself the treat of discovering her voice.


Weight of Feathers is best described as a heady blend of Romeo and Juliet meets The Night Circus. I usually really hate comparing books to other books in a review, but in this case it's really accurate. You have this lovely lyrical and rich feel mixed with this feuding family drama. The magical realism blends with the dreamy quality of the traveling performers. There is a sensuality, not just to the romance, but to the performances and world as a whole. Simply put it was lovely.


There was some predictability and repetitiveness to this book, which was its one down side. The fairytale feel means that some of the characters fit neatly into molds, and take the stage as set pieces more than people. The familiarity of the story being told feels like the one dull point surrounded by so much originality. I enjoyed this book quite a bit, but if I were going to recommend a McLemore book I would much more heartily champion When the Moon was Ours, wherein her storytelling catches up to her beautiful prose. As is McLemore has entered onto a short list of authors that I will pre-order future titles from on the spot.