So I'm guessing this is one of those love it or hate it kind of books. Having just finished it, I'll put myself in the lover category. It was heartbreaking, yet hopeful. Intriguing, yet sentimental. Sweet, yet steamy. The story itself was amazing and the author truly transported me to a 1930's traveling circus. I fell in love with Jacob. And Rosie. Not so much Marlena. I agree with others that the character fell a little flat. I never really got why she was so special other than she looked good in pink sequins. At times, the language didn't ring true for that time period and setting. The author seemed to do her homework remarkably well on the circus aspect of the novel, but not on other things. But those are my only 2 gripes. I loved the switching back and forth between old Jacob and young Jacob. I kept thinking it would make for great cinematic effect, and shockingly there is a movie in the works. The ending was perfect, perhaps too perfect, but fitting for the story and satisfying to the reader, well to this reader anyway.