I’ve been thinking this a lot lately since flying home over a month ago. Even now, we’re all finding peace and joy and anything else we need to keep going wherever we can. And I realized that is exactly why it’s time to return to this blog – to this small home I created online years ago.
To start off, I’m sharing my thoughts on a book that made my heart ache…
recently finished: the house on the cerulean sea
my thoughts (a list of things i loved)
- This book surprised me. And that was partly because I hadn’t read the GR blurb for it properly so I was just as shocked as Linus when he discovers that the Antichrist resides at the Marsyas Orphanage. There are plenty more bizarre developments throughout the story but none of them felt contrived.
- The slow paced beginning was one of the reasons I didn’t expect to become fully invested in this story. However, if you are willing to put the time in, reading this story can be an incredibly rewarding experience. I felt grateful for the opportunity to slow down and the little moments of character interaction that T. J. Klune lingers on reveal a great deal about these children, Arthur, and even Linus.
- More importantly, there is something undeniably comforting about this book. I never believed the characters are in any real danger which was reassuring because I could immerse myself in the narrative and enjoy every moment spent on that island with them. But there are stakes! Small, yet meaningful, stakes which are particularly effective because I cared so deeply about these characters. Anything which threatened their wellbeing in any way worried me until the conflict was resolved.
- This book does touch on issues such as prejudice and what it means to be marginalized, though it is in the context of ill-treating magical creatures. The characters confront these issues head-on and Linus proves to be somewhat of an activist in his desire to ensure that no one is singled out and harassed for their magical lineage.
- In fact, Linus’s character arc was downright GLORIOUS. The depths of his empathy genuinely surprised me in the latter half of the book because he has his preconceptions thoroughly challenged. The person he becomes after staying at this orphanage (or more accurately home) is incredible. He has a quiet strength and honesty which I really admired. While he isn’t a hero in the conventional sense, he chooses to resist in small and meaningful ways which transform the lives of the children at the orphanage.
- This book felt like home. There is such a beautiful message of love and acceptance weaved into this story. It takes courage to live your truth and these characters are so damn brave.