Delightful! If you need a STARLESS SEA read-alike, you'll find this historical novel as bookish and magical but more approachable.
Intimate narrative and a story within a story device work together elegantly to unfurl the tale of January Scaller and her missing father, their wealthy benefactor, and a mysterious door in Mississippi that opens into another world. TEN THOUSAND DOORS OF JANUARY has all the elements of a precocious, coming of age story within a low fantasy world. There's adventure, secret societies with nefarious plans, a big best friend pooch called Bad, and places drawn from the wildest reaches of imagination.
“This is one of the most beautifully written pieces of magical fiction I’ve ever read. I was obsessed with the book within the first two pages. Take an unforgettable journey with January Scaller through doors of lost worlds and heart-wrenching love stories. This book shows just how much power a story can hold, especially with the right storyteller at the helm. I could re-read this book countless times and still find new treasures that speak to me!”
— Alexa Butler, Beach Books, Seaside, OR
Summer 2020 Reading Group Indie Next List
“I didn’t want this novel to end! Filled with magic, adventure, and—even during its darkest moments—hope, Harrow’s sweeping and whimsical storytelling is enchanting. Set in the early 1900s, the novel follows January’s journey of pinpointing her own individual identity as well as discovering her parents’ pasts. The Ten Thousand Doors of January is a stunning debut novel and a perfect read for any fantasy fan!”
— Isabel Pless, Phoenix Books Essex, Essex Junction, VT
"A gorgeous, aching love letter to stories, storytellers, and the doors they lead us through...absolutely enchanting."—Christina Henry, bestselling author of Alice and Lost Boys
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 journey of self-discovery after finding a mysterious book in this captivating and lyrical debut.
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.
Then she finds 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 turn reveals impossible truths about the world and January discovers a story increasingly entwined with her own.
Lush and richly imagined, a tale of impossible journeys, unforgettable love, and the enduring power of stories await in Alix E. Harrow's spellbinding debut--step inside and discover its magic.
Praise for The Ten Thousand Doors of January:
"One for the favorites shelf... Here is a book to make you happy when you gently close it. Here you will find wonder and questions and an unceasingly gorgeous love of words which compasses even the shape a letter makes against a page."―NPR Books
"Devastatingly good, a sharp, delicate nested tale of worlds within worlds, stories within stories, and the realm-cracking power of words."―Melissa Albert, New York Times bestselling author
"A love letter to imagination, adventure, the written word, and the power of many kinds of love."―Kirkus
For more from Alix E. Harrow, check out The Once and Future Witches.
About the Author
Alix E. Harrow is an ex-historian with lots of opinions and excessive library fines, currently living in Kentucky with her husband and their semi-feral children. She won a Hugo for her short fiction, and has been nominated for the Nebula, Locus, and World Fantasy awards. Find her at @AlixEHarrow on Twitter.
"Many worlds, vanishing doors, mind-cracking magic: I clung to each page, searching for answers. This is one of the most unique works of fiction I've ever read!"—Tamora Pierce, New York Times bestselling author
"A gorgeous, aching love letter to stories, storytellers and the doors they lead us through...absolutely enchanting."—Christina Henry, national bestselling author of Lost Boys and Alice
"The Ten Thousand Doors of January begins as a simple adventure, but like its mysteriously transportive doors, leads deeper and deeper the further you read. Each page dazzles with things to be discovered: a mansion of priceless artefacts, a secret journal, a tantalizing quest through strange and beautiful places, and a love story that spans time, worlds, and magic. I couldn't put it down."—Peng Shepherd, critically acclaimed author of The Book of M
"One for the favorites shelf... Here is a book to make you happy when you gently close it. Here you will find wonder and questions and an unceasingly gorgeous love of words which compasses even the shape a letter makes against a page."—NPR Books
"Harrow has created a gorgeous world of magic that is at once familiar and startlingly new. With lush writing and a sense of wonder, The Ten Thousand Doors of January examines power, progress, and identity. It is an adventure in the best and grandest sense."—Erika Swyler, author of The Book of Speculation
"The Ten Thousand Doors of January is devastatingly good, a sharp, delicate nested tale of worlds within worlds, stories within stories, and the realm-cracking power of words."—Melissa Albert, New York Times bestselling author of The Hazel Wood
"The Ten Thousand Doors of January healed hurts I didn't even know I had. An unbearably beautiful story about growing up, and everything we fight to keep along the way."—Amal El-Mohtar, Hugo Award-winning author
"A love letter to imagination, adventure, the written word, and the power of many kinds of love."—Kirkus
"A gorgeously written story of love and longing, of what it means to lose your place in the world, and then have the courage to find it again. This book is a door I'm glad to have opened."—Kat Howard, author of An Unkindness of Magicians
"The Ten Thousand Doors of January is both whimsical and smart, using engaging writing and a unique plot to touch on serious topics. Harrow's debut reads like a love letter to the art of storytelling itself, and readers will be eager for more from her."—Booklist
"The Ten Thousand Doors of January is rich and poignant, angry and beautiful, by turns. Alix Harrow has written a stunning, unforgettable debut."—Gwenda Bond, New York Times bestselling author
"A wild adventure, a sharp critique of our cultural norms, both past, and present, and a wickedly funny and powerful exploration of the power of words and stories. The Ten Thousand Doors of January is a triumphant debut!"—Los Angeles Public Library
"Every page of this smart, heartfelt expedition celebrates an abiding love of stories and slips between genres in wonderful ways. Readers are going to relish every sentence and surprise in this book--I know I did!"—Matthew Sullivan, author of Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore
"A magical, spellbinding saga... A fantastical journey of self-discovery that reveals the true power of our imagination."—Woman's World
"I loved this book so much. It's a beautiful, dazzling paean to the idea that what was lost can be found again. The Ten Thousand Doors of January is a gift: Give it to yourself first, and then to all your friends."—Kevin Hearne, New York Times bestselling author
"A stunning debut novel with inventive worlds, sumptuous language and impeccably crafted details... Readers seeking a fresh fantasy with an enduring love story need look no further, and they'll be left wistfully hoping to stumble upon doors of their own."—BookPage
"To open this book is to open a Door to a brand new world that you'll never want to leave. With the masterful prose of a true Wordworker, Harrow has created a richly imagined, multi-layered narrative full of wonder, sorrow, and strength."—Jordanna Max Brodsky, author of The Wolf in the Whale
"The Ten Thousand Doors of January ... creates startling, fantastical worlds and dreams up thrilling adventures, yes, but also examines why we so often dream of finding a door to a new place. Before I read it, I thought I knew what a door was. I thought I knew what a story was. Now, I'll never look at either in quite the same way."—B&N Sci-Fi & Fantasy Blog
'Beautifully written. . . a wonderful, insightful, and imaginative book. I highly recommend it."—Josiah Bancroft, author of Senlin Ascends
"All the magic you once knew but have almost forgotten waits in these pages for you to discover again. With a masterful voice and a spellbinding story, reading The Ten Thousand Doors of January feels like coming back to a beloved childhood classic to find it unexpectedly grew up with you. It's a deeply satisfying pleasure to read, and lingers in your heart afterward. I loved it!"—Melissa Caruso, author of The Tethered Mage