The Night Circus Book Review

Grace Pyne, Staff Writer

“The circus arrives without warning, no announcements precede it, no paper notices on
downtown posts and billboards, no mentions or advertisements in local newspapers. It is simply there, where yesterday it was not. (The Night Circus page 1). The Night Circus is a stand-alone novel written by author Erin Morgenstern. It was published in 2011 and spent 7 weeks on the New York Times Best Sellers List, eventually reaching a position at number 2. This Victorian Era fantasy novel follows a competition between 2 magicians, Celia Bowen and Marco Alisdair, egged on by their guardians Prospero the Enchanter (Hector Bowen) and the man in grey (Alexander). The venue for this competition is la Cirque des Reves, a travelling circus that opens at nightfall and closes at dawn. Amidst the performers and patrons, Celia and Marco attempt to outdo each other with elaborate tricks and intricate performances. But as the stakes get higher and higher, the 2 magicians find themselves falling in love. This not only jeopardises the competition. It puts the lives of those frequenting the circus and the performers at risk. There is only so long Marco and Celia can maintain the delicate balance before the circus spirals into ruin.

This book sells itself as a romance novel and while that is true, it brings so much more to the table than just a soppy love story. I’m not a huge fan of super cliché love at first sight romance stories, and if that were all this book was, I wouldn’t be recommending it to you. Although it is principally a love story, there is something for everyone: magic, adventure, mystery. The book is jam-packed with stories and different narratives to follow so if you aren’t a fan of the whole romance thing you can still enjoy the other components of this novel. With so many different viewpoints, this book can be hard to follow at times. It can be pretty hard to sit through some of the seemingly irrelevant viewpoints but Erin Morgenstern masterfully ties everything together at the end.
Now, I know I just said that so many viewpoints can make for difficult reading, but there were quite a few advantages to reading a book like that. For one thing, it was interesting to see how the main characters’ actions affected all the other characters. In a lot of books, you don’t really understand the impact that a choice the main character makes has on the supporting characters, or if you do, you don’t care. Did you really understand how the other tributes felt when they were training with Katniss or how the choices the shadow hunters made really affected the people living in the city because I know I sure didn’t. Erin Morgenstern makes you feel connected and involved in every character’s journey. When reading this book, you really get the impression that you must be engaged in and paying attention to every little detail because even the tiniest things can have a huge impact overall. I learned this the hard way and halfway through the book when everything started unravelling I slapped myself on the head because I should have seen that coming. Anyways, as someone who likes books that are full of information and surprises, I can say that The Night Circus is certainly jam-packed with wonderful characters and some pretty nail-biting scenes.

Overall, the night circus was a really great book. For those of you who like mystery and
adventure with a romantic undertone, this book is for you. If you pick up The Night Circus and feel bogged down and confused by so many different viewpoints, please keep reading. It gets better, I promise, and if you can get through the beginning, the ending makes it worthwhile. A circus that only opens at night, duelling magicians and fantastic writing make the Night Circus a must read for anyone even remotely interested in the fantasy genre.


Cat of the Month: Mickey

Angelina Bustos, Staff Writer
Hello humans, you may address me as Mickey. I don’t know what my human was thinking, naming me after the sworn enemy of my fellow felines, the mouse! Due to my attentive and loving personality, I will respond to Nicky, Ricky or Vickie when my human is being particularly dull-witted. While it may be unclear, as I was rescued from the Edmonton Humane Society, in your human years I am 7, yet my thoughtless human has no clue as to what breed I am. Perhaps a mixed breed tabby cat of some sort. In my free time, I keep the bed, chair, couch, floor, closet, table and window sill warm for my human, (I’m only allowed on 2 of those, guess which ones). Usually, I am asleep in those moments, but sometimes I just laze and demand ear scratches and belly rubs. My human especially appreciates when I purr and give headbutts and licks with my little sandpaper tongue. Sometimes I act disinterested but I do love my human and bring them prey I catch since she is such a lousy hunter; I even stop her from freezing to death when she lies on the bed for hours!


No One Cares About Our Elections

Elizabeth Ossowska, Staff writer 

With growing instability in the Middle East since the Kurdish referendum, the rocky situation between Spain and Catalonia, and the debacle that has shaken the United States and North Korea, it doesn’t take huge insight to notice that something’s up. Some people have gone to the extent of predicting the advent of WWIII at this point. Through all of this, it can seem quite trivial to be talking about our municipal elections. Even the federal government has faded from the spotlight – Trudeau himself has slipped somewhat behind the scenes as we busy ourselves with international happenings. Yet the Edmonton elections may affect you more than you think, not to mention our school community at large. So, here’s a quick debrief on what the election outcomes mean and how they could be relevant to you.

Unsurprisingly, Don Iveson will keep his mayoral post, and in fact there are many reasons for Mac students to like him. For instance, he’s a huge fan of Star Trek (!!) and a self-described nerd. On more serious topics, such as the diversification of the economy, he has pulled through in keeping Edmonton quite stable despite a largely fluctuating provincial budget. To fully appreciate this, just think about the irony – that Edmonton is the “oil capital” and yet Calgary is actually experiencing the worst effects of the oil crisis. Our city has actually been dubbed one of the best entrepreneurial centres in Canada and has fostered a huge artistic boom in recent years. Among many things, Iveson advocates for more affordable housing, increased activity among Edmonton’s LGBT community, and a diligently respectful handling of the refugee influx. But Iveson’s biggest accomplishments lie in infrastructure – which had been one of his main campaign promises in 2013 – by increasing investment, and many old buildings such as our much-loved public libraries have been replaced in his time. Hundreds of kilometers worth of roads have been repaved, bike lanes and sidewalks have been widened, potholes have been reduced and snow clearing has been rendered more effective. Since he is committed to making Edmonton a greener city, Iveson has focused on improving our transit system and encouraging other modes of transport like biking. The Valley Line LRT happened thanks to him, and future plans await with the expansion of the West Line. For those of us who live in the north west or far south (both under huge developments), good news lies ahead with the unfurling of transit plans there as well.

Evidently Mac has an enormous catchment area and people live on opposite ends of the city, but it is worth mentioning the Ward six councillor Scott McKeen, a former journalist who just got reelected for his second term. Like Don Iveson he cares a good deal about making smart investments in infrastructure, being specifically concerned with the growth of bike lanes around the downtown area. McKeen also supports the growth of local businesses, both industrial and in the arts, especially in music as he himself is an amateur musician. He aims to lower fees for city services in order to better accommodate students, seniors and vulnerable populations. Other topics he cares about include energy efficiency and the expansion of green space (meaning more forested areas and stuff like that), streamlining the city’s permitting process, indigenous
reconciliation, the preservation of Heritage homes, and incrementing concrete mental health initiatives.

Last but not least, we have the Ward 71 Catholic School Board Trustee Terry Harris. A graduate of AOB and later of a BComm at the U of A, he’s got tons of experience under his belt both as a parent of children who attended Catholic schools and having volunteered and worked for ECSD. Harris has the background of a businessman, specifically having worked in HR and in labour relations, yet he also has the perspective of a philanthropist; among organizations he has worked for are Habitat for Humanity and Catholic Social Services. His vision for Catholic schools is to celebrate diversity and to improve the student learning experience, creating inclusive school environments regardless of race, sexuality, etc. Championing smaller class sizes, professional development for teachers, parent engagement and special needs accommodation, Harris aims to reform the board governance in order to function more effectively and with increased accountability and fiscal responsibility. In the ensuing months it may be easy to forget about our little Edmonton, but the municipal government will always be there in the background, working hard to make this city of nearly a million a great one to live in. As conflict continues to plague the world, be careful not to forget how lucky we really are to live here.





It (2017) Review

Paola Andrade Sequera, Staff writer

Following the narrative of Stephen King’s novel, It is a “horror” film set in a little town in the States. This movie illustrates the story of seven different children, united by their circumstances, that must put under the creature that rejoices in their fear. A creature that spawns every 27 years to devour the fearful children.
It resembles more closely a thriller than a horror film. Because, if it wasn’t for the occasional jumpscare, it would not truly inspire fear. The film counts with regular injections of comic relief and a focus on all things heartwarming —such as friendship and love— which deviate from the horror aspect of the film. It uses a gentler kind of horror. Not necessarily the film to watch for a good scare. However, this is not to say the film is not enjoyable.
Stephen King’s fans are mostly likely appeased by the impressive amount of footage that made it past the director’s cut. Sitting at a running time of 2 hours and 15 minutes, It attempted to encompass as much of the book as possible, with a few exceptions. This is to be expected. Nevertheless, as an adaption It should not be classified as a failure, quite the opposite.
With numerous positive responses from critics, It has earned a solid 85% by Rotten Tomatoes standards. Add that to the astounding amount of popularity the film has gained and a sequel is overdue. Although the casting for the sequel is shrouded in mystery. Director Andy Muschietti plans on releasing the second part on September 2019.
It seems they are not waiting 27 years to release the next one.

May PLT Guest Speakers

The following PLT’s will occur in the atrium:

2nd- Virtual Gallery Tour of Amon Cart Art Museum- Live from Texas

5th- Understanding Mental Illness and Recovery Part 1

12th- Understanding Mental Illness and Recovery Part 2

18th- Mess with Stress: Coping Strategies for Students

26th- Forensic Psychology Video Conference: Live from Columbus Ohio

Doodle for Google Canada

Doodle 4 Google Canada is a national contest inviting students from Kindergarten to Grade 12 to redesign the logo for the homepage for a day.

As Canada blows out a whole lot of candles for its 150th birthday this year, what better way to celebrate than by asking students to imagine what the next 150 years will look like? Google believes our youth hold the key to a bright future for Canada, and can’t wait to see what their optimism, creativity, and imagination give rise to.

The winning doodle will be featured on the Google Canada homepage for 24 hours. The winning student will also receive a $10,000 university scholarship, a Google Chromebook, and a $10,000 technology award for their current school along with a trip to the final event on June 13, 2017.

Click here for more details.