Reading/Interest Level: Primary, Intermediate
Author: Cassie Beasley
Publisher: Dial Books
When Micah’s grandfather gets sick, he writes a letter asking for a miracle that he had been promised when he was a little boy. Grandpa Ephraim always told Micah stories about the magical Circus Mirandus and how the Lightbender offered him a miracle. When it appears that Grandpa Ephraim might not live for much longer, Micah decides to seek out the circus himself to make sure that Grandpa Ephraim gets his miracle. With his doubting friend, Jenny, he finds the Lightbender and asks for the miracle that he wants: Grandpa Ephraim’s recover. Grandpa Ephraim had something else in mind, however. He knows he is dying. His miracle request is that Micah will have a happy life even after he dies.
Circus Mirandus is likely to remind readers of the wonder and magic in books by Roald Dahl and J.M. Barrie. This book is about fighting to believe in magic and good in the world, even when hard things happen. The book has its sad moments as Micah deals with the possibility of his grandfather dying and how that will change his life. Micah is a main character worthy of looking up to and emulating, as opposed to many male characters in popular books for young readers. Circus Mirandus captures the magic and excitement of childhood for younger readers and brings it back to readers who are a little older.