I’m beyond excited to welcome you today to my stop on the blog tour for stunning debut novel The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow. Thank you to Tracy Fenton and Orbit Books for giving me the opportunity to read and review this phenomenal book.
About the book:
‘A gorgeous, aching love letter to stories, storytellers and the doors they lead us through . . . absolutely enchanting’ Christina Henry, bestselling author of Alice
EVERY STORY OPENS A DOOR
In a sprawling mansion filled with peculiar treasures, January Scaller is a curiosity herself. As the ward of the wealthy Mr. Locke, she feels little different from the artifacts that decorate the halls: carefully maintained, largely ignored and utterly out of place.
But her quiet existence is shattered when she stumbles across a strange book. A book that carries the scent of other worlds and tells a tale of secret doors, of love, adventure and danger. Each page reveals more impossible truths about the world, and January discovers a story increasingly entwined with her own.
About the author:
Alix E. Harrow is a part-time history adjunct and full-time reader, with stories published in Shimmer and Strange Horizons. In her spare time she writes, gardens, herds pets, and works on her gloriously dilapidated house. She lives in Berea, Kentucky with her husband and son.
It’s very rare that a book comes along that instantly transports you to another world, so special that even the word ‘special’ isn’t enough to convey just how utterly beautiful and enchanting it is. The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow is one such book.
It catapulted me back to my childhood when my love of reading began, to that wondrous feeling of crisp snow beneath my feet as Lucy stepped through the wardrobe for the first time, meeting the unforgettable Mr Tumnus beneath the lamppost in Narnia. To Alice falling through the rabbit hole into Wonderland, and to the magnificent moment the phoenix rose from the flames. Books have the power to take you through doors and into worlds you never knew existed, to escape from the harshness of a real world that slowly strips away the person you used to be. Books allow you to find yourself again.
The Ten Thousand Doors of January made me feel like a child again, allowing me to escape into the kind of magical world I never expected to see again. The power of books and of words have never been more apparent than in the pages of this book that felt like a healing balm to my soul.
It tells the story of January Scaller, a girl of mixed race heritage who is the ward of the wealthy Mr Locke, a man who surrounds himself with the curiosities of the world whilst January’s father is away trying to find them for him. It’s the beginning of the twentieth century and January feels like a bit of a curiosity herself, carefully maintained, largely ignored and utterly out of place. When she is seven she stumbles across a strange door that briefly transports her to another world, but upon returning is told by Mr Locke to stop being so fanciful and to never speak of it again.
But many years later, on the cusp of adulthood, January comes across a strange book. A book that carries the scent of other worlds, worlds like the one she stumbled on all those years ago. It tells the tale of secret doors scattered throughout the world, of a love like no other that leads to adventure and danger. Each page reveals more impossible truths about the world, with a story that January soon realises is increasingly entwined with her own.
To say any more would do this book a disservice as The Ten Thousand Doors of January is a story that deserves to be savoured and experienced. You need to discover the magic and wonder of January’s story for yourself as no words I could ever write would be able to do this unique and stunning tale justice. I’m sure there are many other reviews out there that have somehow managed to find the words I can’t, but suffice to say this is a mesmerising and unforgettable book that transported me back to my childhood where my love of reading began. It sucked me into its pages and the real world melted away, just as it had when I was a child and first realised words had the power to carry me away on a tsunami of magic and adventure, through never ending doors of wonder and delight.
It’s hard to believe that this is Alix E. Harrow’s debut novel. She has written a book that captured my imagination from the very first page, taking me on a journey of discovery that not only told me the remarkable tale of January, but also helped me to rediscover a part of myself I thought I had lost a long time ago.
The Ten Thousand Doors of January is a captivating, beautifully written and emotional story that will stay with you. I felt bereft as I turned the final page, not wanting to say goodbye to these people who had come to mean so much to me. I know this is a book I will want to return to again and again and is easily one of the best books I have ever read. It really is pure perfection.
If this is Alix E. Harrow’s debut novel, imagine what delights she has in store for us in the future? I will definitely be first in line to read whatever this stunning new author comes up with next!
The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow is available to buy now: Amazon UK
Check out what these other lovely bloggers have to say about this book: