Recommended by MARY SAWYER, Branch Manager, Ephraim Library
“Wouldn’t you like to be here?” reads the caption on a seascape mouse pad found on the desk in Linus Baker’s office.
I have never read a book that made me want to be there like Klune’s. The House on the Cerulean Seaset in a nameless fantasy world not unlike our own, but where some children fall under the bureaucratic “care” of the Department in Charge of Wizarding Youth.
Linus, our protagonist, works as a case manager, overseeing goblins, shapeshifters, gnomes, and even an antichrist. Despite the unusual nature of his job, Linus lives the life of a slave, with strict regulations at work and constant rain outside of it, until he is sent to a remote island to investigate an orphanage full of charming children, but… potentially dangerous.
This book caught my eye during the spring of 2020, and it was one of the first things that really made me smile and feel like the world could eventually be alright. Klune has mastered quirky language, unexpected love stories, endearing characters, and hopeful storytelling. When an amorphous green blob becomes a character whose dream of becoming buttons takes on the emotional impact of Harry conquering Voldemort or the Baudelaire children escaping from Count Olaf, you know you’ve found a quality writer.
If you like visiting the worlds of Terry Pratchett, Lemony Snicket, or Roald Dahl, I think you’ll feel right at home here in the Cerulean Sea.
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