The Ten Thousand Doors of January
LOS ANGELES TIMES BESTSELLER! Finalist for the 2020 Hugo, Nebula, Locus, and World Fantasy Awards.
In the early 1900s, a young woman embarks on a fantastical…
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Why read it?
5 authors picked The Ten Thousand Doors of January as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?
This captivating tale reeled me in with its quiet descriptions and its nineteenth-century American setting. Everything felt charming and peaceful, but there was an undercurrent of a truly disturbing mystery throughout that kept me flipping pages. The plot had several turns which took me by surprise, and some which did not, but whether or not you’re surprised by the twists, you will be one hundred percent delighted with the world and the romantic elements throughout.
Alix Harrow’s writing in The Ten Thousand Doors of January is as beautiful as the cover. This book was a finalist for several awards, including the Hugo and Nebula, and for good reason. The main character’s name is January–hence the title. January struggles against an antagonist who wants to prevent her from opening the magical doors she finds, undermines her confidence, and eventually has her committed to an institution. This will resonate with many young readers struggling to find their identity and take control of their own powers–and lives. The different worlds beyond January’s doors will delight the imagination and…
What struck me first was the author’s language. It’s fresh and sometimes freefalling as it depicts a young girl’s stark reality and complex inner world. This book has the markings of a number of my favorite books: themes of love, identity, family, alternate worlds, redemption, the healing power of stories, and imagination. It may move too slowly for some, but I appreciate the carefully wrought coming of age journey where protagonist, January Scaller, grows through limitations and emotional challenges thrust upon her.
The Ten Thousand Doors of January is my newest favorite portal book, a historical fantasy that explores what it means to open doors, and what effect the strange and new have on the seemingly settled world of our everyday. I love this book for January’s bold, lyrical voice and for its vision of a world that dies without the vibrance of new ideas and open doors.
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