Book Review: The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow

*I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
Title: The Ten Thousand Doors of January
Author: Alix E. Harrow
Publisher: Redhook
Publication Date: September 10, 2019
ISBN: 9780316421997

Synopsis from Goodreads:
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.


The Ten Thousand Doors of January has easily shot its way to the top of my favourite books list. It’s got a little bit of magic and a little bit of mystery. It blends the fantastical with the dangerous. Following the young life of January Scaller, this story explores hidden artifacts and mystical, unknown lands. January is a woman of mysterious heritage in a time where women, especially women of colour, do not have many rights or much autonomy. She has been afforded many luxuries as a child in the care of her benefactor, Mr. Locke; however, her life of comfort has come of the expense of not knowing her father whose employment (by Mr. Locke), leads him all over the world. Seemingly everywhere but with January. As such, she grows up mostly a stranger to her father. As she nears adulthood, her world startlingly expands to more than she could have ever imagined.

In January’s world, she soon discovers that nearly anything she can imagine can be written into fruition. Words are her magic power. They are full of her past, present, and future. Paper and a pen provide her with more than just a mental escape from reality. The writing of this book transports you, the reader, into this gorgeous and boundless world. With a sense of mystery, but also the impending threat of loss, Harrow leads you through this adventure with her lyrical and flowing prose. The worst thing about this book was that it ended far too soon. I have not been so wholly consumed by a story in so long, reading The Ten Thousand Doors felt like a breath of fresh air. Each of the characters is so much more than they first appear to be. They all have fully formed story lines and character arcs that developed into fully manifested beings as the story progresses. Even though there is so much unknown, each character jumps off the page, almost into reality, as you devour these pages.

Honestly, reading this book was like falling into a dream. Although heart-wrenching at times, overall, the possibilities, the magic, and the surreal nature of the story made this a very beautiful and appealing dream that I wish I could experience over and over again. I can’t recommend this story enough. Travel through space, and perhaps even time with this beautiful book. Happy adventuring!

Published by wornpagesandink

Hi! I'm Jaaron. I'm a book-obsessed blogger, writer, reader, coffee-drinker, and dog-lover. I have a B.A.H. in English Literature and a post-graduate diploma in Book and Magazine publishing. I've been fortunate to have worked in both trade and educational publishing. If you have any recommendations for excellent reads, let me know!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: