Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: March 17, 2020
Genre: Adult Fiction / Fantasy / Contemporary / LGBTQ
A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret.
Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.
When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.
But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.
An enchanting story, masterfully told, The House in the Cerulean Sea is about the profound experience of discovering an unlikely family in an unexpected place—and realizing that family is yours.
I don’t think words will fully be able to describe just how much I loved The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune but I am sure going to try! It might be a fantasy novel, but there are so many things that are going to resonate with readers, and it was an extremely timely piece of fiction. Klune touches on so many topics in this book – family, how other people perceive us, and prejudice just to name a few – and he handled them so beautifully and gave them the attention they deserve. This book broke my heart but at the same time is so filled with so much hope that it’s basically impossible not to love it.
And the characters! I loved so many of them so much. The children, Arthur, Zoe, and Linus all touched my heart and there are serious parts for sure, but The House in the Cerulean Sea is also hilarious. I love the way Klune infused serious subjects with wit and humor, and I almost constantly had a smile on my face. I would honestly LOVE to see this turned into a movie because it would be so wonderful to see these characters brought to life. J-Bone from the record store reminded me so much of the yak from Zootopia and it makes me curious if the author did this intentionally or if it was a happy (for me) accident.
I really can’t recommend The House in the Cerulean Sea enough and I know it’s going to a book that I’m not going to forget anytime soon. If you are a fan of the fantasy genre even just a little bit and want a timely but funny read I would highly recommend this one. It made me cry at the end and I was left feeling so satisfied with everything in the book. The imagery is just glorious, and I will now be reading anything and everything Klune writes!