The House in the Cerulean Sea (Paperback)

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Staff Reviews

If you are looking for a light-hearted, standalone fantasy novel, this is the book for you! It is laugh-out-loud funny, magical, and unique. I promise you, you will not stop smiling throughout this novel! It also has excellent LGBTQ+ representation in it! One of my favorite books of the year! — Cassidy Washburn

My first foray back into the Sci-fi/Fantasy world, and I absolutely loved it! HITCS is about a man named Linus Baker working at the Department in Charge of Magical Youth who oversees the upkeep of orphanages and care for magical children that inhabit them. When Linus is given a top secret assignment to check in on an extremely far away and isolated orphanage, his time on the island changes him as he learns love and acceptance from the unique children, and mostly from the mysterious master of the orphanage Arthur Parnasiss. — Samantha Beitler

Do you want to read something that is light hearted, sweet, and charming? Then look no further! In this uplifting story, Linus Baker, a caseworker who lives by-the-book is assigned a particularly unusual case to investigate an isolated orphanage which houses “dangerous” children. It is looked after by a peculiar man named Arthur Parnassus. But things rarely go as outlined in his trusty guidebook, and what emerges is a beautiful story teaching us to accept and love ourselves, believe in hope, and fight for what is right. ⁣⁣⁣ ⁣⁣⁣I absolutely loved this one! Highly recommend. — Angela Turon

A heartwarming, laugh out loud, adorable tale of a cautiously anxious social worker, an orphanage head, and all their mischievous magical children. Linus is a highly relatable character working a drab, strict office job with a bit of an Eeyore attitude. Enter Arthur to become his ray of sunshine and hope in the world. Linus goes through a bright development and learns how to go off book thanks to the inhabitants of Marsyas Island. This is the perfect book to read when you’re needing some light in your life.

Jules Wagner

I am currently sitting here with tears rolling down my face. WOW what a powerful, heart warming, and moving story. This book made me sob 4x. It broke my heart and it made me fall in love more times then I can count. If I could live in this world I would. I highly recommend to anyone looking for a heart felt read that will make you swoon that has a touch of fantasy. Please do yourself a favor and read this book. Easily in my top 10 favorite books of all time. — Kylie Thalheimer

April 2020 Indie Next List

The House in the Cerulean Sea is a heart-swelling wave of sweetness and hope. Mild-mannered government caseworker Linus Baker is sent on a secret assignment to an island orphanage he’s never even heard of. The astonishing inhabitants he gets to know there will change his life and make him reassess everything he thought he knew. This book will leave you believing in the good in everyone — even those society has given up on — and contemplating how huge changes have to start somewhere.”
— Haley Stocking, Phinney Books, Seattle, WA


A 2021 Alex Award winner!
The 2021 RUSA Reading List: Fantasy Winner!
An Indie Next Pick!
One of Publishers Weekly's "Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2020"
One of Book Riot’s “20 Must-Read Feel-Good Fantasies”

Lambda Literary Award-winning author TJ Klune’s bestselling, breakout contemporary fantasy that's "1984 meets The Umbrella Academy with a pinch of Douglas Adams thrown in." (Gail Carriger)

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.

About the Author

TJ KLUNE is the New York Times and USA Today bestselling, Lambda Literary Award-winning author of The House in the Cerulean Sea, The Extraordinaries, and more. Being queer himself, Klune believes it's important—now more than ever—to have accurate, positive queer representation in stories.

Praise For…

A 2021 Alex Award winner!
The 2021 RUSA Reading List: Fantasy Winner!
An Indie Next Pick!
One of Publishers Weekly's "Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2020"
One of Book Riot’s “20 Must-Read Feel-Good Fantasies”

"I loved it. It is like being wrapped up in a big gay blanket. Simply perfect." —V.E. Schwab, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue

"It will renew your faith in humanity.” —Terry Brooks, New York Times bestselling author of the Shannara series

“It’s a witty, wholesome fantasy that’s likely to cause heart-swelling.” —The Washington Post

The House in The Cerulean Sea is a modern fairy tale about learning your true nature and what you love and will protect. It's a beautiful book.” —Charlaine Harris, #1 New York Times bestselling author

1984 meets The Umbrella Academy with a pinch of Douglas Adams thrown in. Touching, tender, and truly delightful, The House in the Cerulean Sea is an utterly absorbing story of tolerance, found family, and defeating bureaucracy.”—Gail Carriger, New York Times bestselling author of Soulless

“Sweet, comforting, and kind, this book is very close to perfect. The House in the Cerulean Sea is a work of classic children's literature written for adults and children alike, with the perspective and delicacy of the modern day. I cannot recommend it highly enough.” —Seanan McGuire, New York Times bestselling author of Every Heart a Doorway

“Is it possible to fall in love with someone’s imagination? If so, consider me fully smitten. TJ Klune creates worlds where fear and threat can be conquered by kindness, and a tender, queer heart is more valuable than any weapon or power.” —David Levithan

“Quirk and charm give way to a serious exploration of the dangers of complacency in this delightful, thought-provoking Orwellian fantasy from Klune.... This tale of found family is hopeful to its core. Readers will revel in Klune’s wit and ingenuity.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"Lambda Literary Award-winning author Klune (The Art of Breathing, 2019, etc.) has a knack for creating endearing characters, and readers will grow to love Arthur and the orphans alongside Linus... fans of quirky fantasy will eat it up. A breezy and fun contemporary fantasy." —Kirkus

“This is a sweet narrative about the value of asking questions and the benefits of giving people (especially children) a chance to be safe, protected, and themselves, regardless of what assumptions one might glean from, say, reading their case file.” —Booklist

“This inclusive fantasy is quite possibly the greatest feel-good story ever to involve the Antichrist.... The House in the Cerulean Sea will delight fans of Seanan McGuire's Wayward Children series and any reader looking for a burst of humor and hope.” —Shelf Awareness

“A beautiful little gem of both irony and, yes, kindness.” —Fantasy & Science Fiction

“TJ Klune is a master storyteller.” —The Mary Sue

"A delightful tale about chosen families, and how to celebrate differences." —Library Journal

“If ever there was an author to watch out for, [Klune] is definitely that author.” —Culturess Daily

Product Details
ISBN: 9781250217318
ISBN-10: 1250217318
Publisher: Tor Books
Publication Date: December 29th, 2020
Pages: 416
Language: English