The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern (2011)
Children are dragged away with promises that they may return the next evening, though the circus will not be there the next evening and later those children will feel slighted and betrayed.
Set in a wandering circus in a fantasy of the Victorian era, two master magicians pit their young proteges against each other in deadly competition.
This was a simply lovely book, so carefully crafted that the images became fully formed in my mind. I felt quite enchanted as I was reading this, which is appropriate since this is a book about enchantment. Also, how refreshing it is to read a book where most of the characters are essentially good and likable, set in a place that is so essentially positive and welcoming, magical and like home all at the same time. How wonderful to imagine it might be real. I hope someone very good makes a movie out of this (Tim Burton perhaps?), as I would love to see these images brought to life.
There is also an interactive game.