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Every Heart a Doorway (Wayward Children) Hardcover – April 5, 2016
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From School Library Journal
This new story from a veteran fantasy author offers writing that's full of imagery and evocative emotions and helps build suspense from the very first sentence. Behind the titular doorway lie alternate worlds, some magical, some dangerous, and some both. The children, mostly girls, who go through the doors become irrevocably changed, many of them becoming mature beyond their actual years. When they return to the real world, their families and friends no longer understand them. And some, like Nancy, want desperately to return to their alternate world, where they felt welcomed and loved. Eleanor West was once a young traveler to those worlds, and now she runs a home for these wayward children, helping them adjust to reality. Just as Nancy begins to make a place for herself, a puzzling and gruesome series of murders threaten the students and the home's very existence. The characters are well drawn, and their feelings about their impossible situation are believable. The alienation they experience and their struggles to find a way back will appeal to teens. When the murderer is revealed, the motivation will be understood by characters and readers alike. VERDICT Though short (this tale is more novella than novel), this clever inside out fantasy will intrigue fantasy fans and those who loved Ransom Riggs's Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children.—Gretchen Crowley, Alexandria City Public Libraries, VA
"A jewel of a book that deserves to be shelved with Lewis Carroll's and C. S. Lewis' classics, even as it carves its own precocious space between them." ―NPR
"This is a gorgeous story: sometimes mean, sometimes angry, and always exciting" ―Cory Doctorow for BoingBoing
"McGuire's lyrical prose makes this novella a rich experience." ―Library Journal starred review
"This amazing fantasy pierces the shimmering veil of childhood imagination by reminding adult readers that their own doorways still exist deep in the champers of their all-too-human hearts." ―Booklist starred review
"This gothic charmer is a love letter to anyone who's ever felt out of place." ― Publishers Weekly
"This gothic novel is ideal for fantasy fans who have longed for a world of their own, as well as readers looking for books with diverse casts." ―Bookish
“Girl Interrupted meets Grimm's Fairy Tales. Let it in and it will touch your heart and open your mind.” ―Geek Syndicate
"The broken doors are open, and you should come and enter. Every Heart a Doorway feels like home." ―B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog
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Top customer reviews
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Dear Miss McGuire take a bow because I think you might have outdone yourself.
This isn’t going to be for everyone. It is different, strange, fantastical, weird and utterly wickedly wonderful and then someone dies.
But before we get to that, imagine a world were the people who don’t quite fit into the norm sometimes disappear. ’That if you open the right door at the right time, you might finally find a place where you belong”. Now imagine that sometimes for various reasons that door opens again and put them back into this world where they never felt they had a place in. This is a story about those kids. The ones that desperately want to go back to the world that was home and are just trying to learn how to cope in a world that never was. But they always have hope that they can find another door to take them home, all they have is hope.
“Because hope is a knife that can cut through the foundations of the world,” said Sumi. Her voice was suddenly crystalline and clear, with none of her prior whimsy. She looked at Nancy with calm, steady eyes. “Hope hurts. That’s what you need to learn, and fast, if you don’t want it to cut you open from the inside out. Hope is bad. Hope means you keep on holding to things that won’t ever be so again, and so you bleed an inch at a time until there’s nothing left. Ely-Eleanor is always saying ‘don’t use this word’ and ‘don’t use that word,’ but she never bans the ones that are really bad. She never bans hope.”
This was the strangest story I’ve read in awhile. It was so different from the book I read before it that I finished the first chapter and had no clue what I just read and had to go back and reread it to bring myself into the right mind frame. But once I immersed myself I was all in. I wanted to know so much more about Sumi and the crazy candyland like world she visited, or Nancy and her time with the Lord of the Dead and the Moors where Jack and Jill spent there time
“I think the rules were different there. It was all about science, but the science was magical. It didn’t care about whether something could be done. It was about whether it should be done, and the answer was always, always yes.”
We get little snippets here and there but I wanted to live in these other worlds too.
There is a bigger overall plot of murder as some of the travelers are being killed off for no apparent reason and none of the kids at the asylum/school are safe. All of the kids need to work together to try and figure out who is killing them off and why. But for me all of this was secondary to the overall weirdness of all of the characters.
Very rarely do I read a short story and think ‘I need this so be so much longer’. I wanted this to be a full novel I wanted so much more. I loved the strange interactions between all of the travelers and how I believed that none of them were supposed to be in this land. I was genuinely sad when the story over but I loved how it ended.
You’re nobody’s rainbow.
You’re nobody’s princess.
You’re nobody’s doorway but your own, and the only one who gets to tell you how your story ends is you.
I truly believe that this is for anyone who has ever felt like maybe they just didn’t belong. I’m telling you right now that everyone feels that way at some point and you should read this because I’m 98% sure that you fit in way more than any of these kids ever did.
I really hope there are a dozen or more stories set in this world, because I really want to go through all of the doors and visit all of the crazy worlds Seanan McGuire can conjure in her head.
And the main characters of this story are asexual girl (yay!) and trans boy! What else can you ask for?! Honestly, I almost screamed when Nancy confessed she was asexual!
Most recent customer reviews
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