For What It's Worth

For What It's Worth

Monday, May 3, 2021

Review: The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune

 



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. ~ Goodreads

Source: Audiobook from the library (Duration: 12:12:18 - narrated by Daniel Henning)


💖 Such a beautiful story of acceptance (of yourself and others), found family, forgiveness, being brave and finding your place in the world. 

👌 I'm going to be honest, this is one of my favorite books so far this year but...there's not a lot going on action wise. Linus is sent to investigate the Marsysas Orphanage, it's very special children and enigmatic caretaker. 

The children are different because of their abilities or for what they are (sprites, gnomes, a green blob, the antichrist just to name a few) and they encounter the usual judgement and fear from locals while being sequestered on the island.

Linus spends his days talking to and getting to know the inhabitants of the island - and that's kind of it - although there is a bigger picture story about Extreme Upper Management and the ultimate fate of the orphanage. 

🙌 What makes this book special is just how wonderful each and every character is. How they all grow and learn to open their hearts and minds to each other - learn to both give and accept love. 

I was so sad when this book ended. I listened to it on audio and I wanted to spend another day in Talia's (the gnome) garden, let Chauncy (the blob lol) take my bags (he dreams of being a bell hop) or give Theodore (a wyvern) a new button collection to hoard. They felt like delightful friends by the end. 

Overall: After the year we've just had, I needed this book. In a world of selfish shitheads - The House in the Cerulean Sea showed me a world where people can do and be better. It was gentle and sweet and felt like I was like being wrapped up in a warm hug.


30 comments:

  1. That's some high praise up there, but I am not surprise. Everyone seems to adore this book.

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    1. It's not my usual read but it was what I needed.

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  2. You just motivated me to pick this up!!!

    Also, love your response to the spam comment 😂

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    1. I hope you like it!

      It's my most frequently repeated sp*m comment and I usually just delete it but I felt first this morning lol

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  3. Oh nice- I love it when a book makes me feel like that. And I love how quirky this sounds- the blob and sprits and all those. Wouldn't it be nice to have a magical place like that?

    "dump the guy" lmao

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    1. It was just so sweet and funny. I really wished I could hang out with those kids. And I never like the kids lol

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  4. That sounds delightful. It would be nice to find a place like this.

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  5. I have wanted it since I saw that cover :D

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    1. I don't know if you'll like it. It's very funny but also slow-ish.

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  6. What a lovely review, Karen! Feels very comforting ❤

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    1. Thank you! And comforting is a great word for it!

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  7. Glad you found a book that made you feel hugged! LOL. Nice review format BTW.

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    1. It gives me a prompt to get me moving lol

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  8. This book is such a warm hug and I can still hear then narrator's voice whenever I think of it!

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  9. I've heard such good things about this one. And I love that it's so wonderful BECAUSE of the amazing characters.

    Lauren
    www.shootingstarsmag.net

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    1. It's such a comforting,sweet read Lauren

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  10. I requested this and I am excited to try it.

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    1. I really don't know if you'll like it or not. I hope so!

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  11. Found family stories are my faves! I cannot wait to read it. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this one. And I agree... it's been a year of selfish shitheads. 😒

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    1. I really hope you like it! It was the book I didn't know I needed.

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  12. This was easily one of my favorite reads this year! There is very little action, true, but I think the characters more than made up for it. SO GOOD.

    Lindsi @ Do You Dog-ear? 💬

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    1. Yeah, they were absolutely wonderful to be around!

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  13. I want to try this one because TJ Klune and because I've heard it's great. Glad to have the heads up that not much really happens, so I'll wait until I'm in the right mood :-) I'm glad you loved it so much!

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    1. I thought of you when I read this. It's just the sweetest, purest book! I think (I hope!) you would love it.

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  14. I absolutely adored this book when I read it and it makes my heart so happy to see others loved it as I did. You try and explain this book to people and it sounds like it's such a slow story and not all that interesting but it's the characters that made it so special! That found family and they all cared for each other so much. It is probably a favourite of the year so far and I honestly cannot explain how brilliant it is but I think you've perfectly captured the important parts.

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    1. Yes, it's jus them living? lol Like, nothing much happens but the purity and sweetness of it is everything.

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  15. Wha....how come I’ve never heard of this book?! It sounds so lovely. Especially the part about being wrapped up in a warm hug. I’ll take that part, please! Thank you for this review, Karen 😊

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    1. It was quite popular online for awhile there but not something I would have picked up on my own. Glad I did!

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