The Greatest Showman made me love the circus. I wasn’t a big fan as a kid, mostly thanks to a lifelong fear of clowns. Thanks to the story of P.T. Barnum and some really great songs, though, I became fascinated by the story and the history of the greatest show on earth. When I started searching for books on the subject, I came across some really great ones.
A few years ago, I was introduced to Kristy Cambron’s split time books. I loved The Ringmaster’s Wife. About the book: Rosamond’s life is planned for her, until her father sells her beloved horse to the American entertainer John Ringling. Rosamond leaves everything she knows to follow her beloved horse, her last tie to her brother, and make her own way as a bareback rider for the circus. She meets Mable Ringling, John’s wife, and their lives intertwine. As their stories unfold, you’re transported to the roaring 20’s and the world of the circus as two women’s journeys are changed forever.
A book I heard so many great recommendations for is The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischof. I finally picked it up from our local library and am right in the middle of it now. I’m wondering what took me so long. It’s so good! About the book: When lion tamer Charlie Lionheart shows up at the hospital with a very sick little girl, the doctor doesn’t pay much attention, but Ella Beckley is drawn to the girl and takes over her care. As she continues overseeing the girl’s recovery, Ella is drawn deeper into the world of the circus and into Charlie’s life and heart. Ella and Charlie’s broken pasts and broken hearts find healing and hope in a faith far bigger than their painful stories.
Jamie Jo Wright’s newest release, The Haunting of Bonaventure Circus, is another great circus book. With a story that’s just creepy enough to really enjoy and mysteries connected in two time periods, Wright proved once again why she’s one of my favorite authors. About the book: 1928 – When Pippa Riley receives mysterious messages from someone in her past, she’s drawn back into the world of the circus to search for her birth parents. She begins caring for an injured baby elephant, the future hope of her adoptive father’s circus, and finds herself getting closer to a trainer with a broken past. But is the writer the link to her past Pippa hopes for, or is he a dangerous killer? Present – When Chandler Faulk convinces her uncle’s company to buy an old circus train depot for a renovation project, she doesn’t count on it’s mysterious past and unsolved murders. The danger soon proves very much alive as Chandler and her son are caught in the middle of an investigation. As past and present collide, Chandler desperately searches for answers before it’s too late.
What circus book flight would compete without watching The Greatest Showman? Not that you need an excuse to watch it. It’s one of my favorite movies. If you have Disney+ you can stream it for free.
What are your favorite circus books? What’s missing from my list that I should read next?
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