Author: Erin Morgenstern
Publication Date: November 5, 2019
Genre: Fantasy, Adult Fiction
Publisher: Doubleday Books
SYNOPSIS: Far beneath the surface of the earth, upon the shores of the Starless Sea, there is a labyrinthine collection of tunnels and rooms filled with stories. The entryways that lead to this sanctuary are often hidden, sometimes on forest floors, sometimes in private homes, sometimes in plain sight. But those who seek will find. Their doors have been waiting for them. Zachary Ezra Rawlins is searching for his door, though he does not know it. He follows a silent siren song, an inexplicable knowledge that he is meant for another place. When he discovers a mysterious book in the stacks of his campus library he begins to read, entranced by tales of lovelorn prisoners, lost cities, and nameless acolytes. Suddenly a turn of the page brings Zachary to a story from his own childhood impossibly written in this book that is older than he is. A bee, a key, and a sword emblazoned on the book lead Zachary to two people who will change the course of his life: Mirabel, a fierce, pink-haired painter, and Dorian, a handsome, barefoot man with shifting alliances. These strangers guide Zachary through masquerade party dances and whispered back room stories to the headquarters of a secret society where doorknobs hang from ribbons, and finally through a door conjured from paint to the place he has always yearned for. Amid twisting tunnels filled with books, gilded ballrooms, and wine-dark shores Zachary falls into an intoxicating world soaked in romance and mystery. But a battle is raging over the fate of this place and though there are those who would willingly sacrifice everything to protect it, there are just as many intent on its destruction. As Zachary, Mirabel, and Dorian venture deeper into the space and its histories and myths, searching for answers and each other, a timeless love story unspools, casting a spell of pirates, painters, lovers, liars, and ships that sail upon a Starless Sea.
Okay first I want to say that is the longest synopsis of a book in history 😂 did you actually read it? I didn’t lol. Hopefully you did though because I definitely won’t be going into as much detail as it did. Mainly because it’s been a month since I read this and I still have no idea what this book is even about.
This book was SO hyped and I think over all it was well deserved? I am still conflicted on this book because I don’t understand it. The story itself is more than slightly confusing, which is a shame because it started off SO STRONG. The beginning of this book was SO GOOD and I knew I was going to fall madly in love with it, but then i think it kind of got away from itself when it started interweaving multiple story lines and all sorts of characters doing different things in different worlds.
Because of this the audiobook also got very confusing which definitely didn’t help me understand the story any more. This book had what was essentially a full cast, but it was strange because it didn’t seem to be for specific characters? There were different narrators for the different stories throughout the book but it felt a little disjointed at times. It took me a while to get reoriented every time we switched narrators because I couldn’t figure out who’s story we had switched to without more context. I think I would have really loved this book if I had read the physical book first instead of listening to the audiobook.
Overall I really enjoyed the characters, I think. Again it’s been over a month since I read this and I’m a little fuzzy on the details already but I know overall I enjoyed them. My only disconnect was the different stories that interweave each other and knowing who was who and where they were! If I can give you all one piece of advice it would be to read the physical book first if you are able to!