A Break From the Doom and Gloom of 2020; Book Recommendation: The House in The Cerulean Sea

The book, The House in The Cerulean Sea, looks at changing the world. But not quite in the way we are used to.

Article written by: Anushka Chatterjee

It’s not really an exaggeration to say that this year has literally been a year sent from the depths of hell. Well, either that or someone decided to play a very long drawn out game of Jumanji. From a pandemic that’s brought all of our lives to a resounding halt, a host of locusts (that now seem to have disappeared!), floods, thousands of jobs and lives lost, and now even a drug scandal; it’s really been a hard year and good or positive news is hard to come by.

While it’s definitely good to keep ourselves aware of everything that’s happening around us, sometimes, and in this year, in particular, we need a break. A spot of light and positivity in a bleak world. A well-deserved break where we little turtles can snuggle back into our shells and ignore the world around us for a little while.

Each one of us has a different way to find this spot of brightness. Some of us bake, others listen to music and binge watch Netflix shows, while still others choose to workout or develop a skill. Whatever the activity may be, the idea is to find something that makes us happy and makes us smile, despite our world burning around us.

Amidst all of these activities that we explore, however, there are instances where we might still find ourselves at a loss; asking ourselves what to watch next, do next or read next. For those instances, where we’re at a loss and we want a bit of sparkle and joy… HERE IS MY OFFICIAL BOOK RECOMMENDATION!!

READ – The House in The Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

the house in the cerulean sea

This book is EXACTLY what the world needs right now. Sparkling, light, and full of heart, this is definitely the book for you if you’re looking for some hope and joy right now.

Set in a world with fantastical creatures and beings with supernatural powers, where humans are in charge and the magical beings the marginalised, the book tells the story of Linus Baker, a by-the-book case worker at the Department in Charge of Magical Youth. Linus Baker who lives a quite unassuming life, who blends into the paint behind him, and who no one ever notices. Linus Baker who likes his sunflowers and cat more than people. That is, until he is set on a Level Four classified assignment, sent directly from Extremely Upper Management. An assignment that changes his life.

With a story like this, particularly in the genre of YA fantasy, one typically expects action, passion, good vs evil, and earth-shattering world changing revolutions (think Hunger Games, Divergent, or even Harry Potter). As someone who is quite well versed in the genre, however, The House in the Cerulean Sea is quite unlike anything I’ve ever read before. The book truly sparkles with life and hope and meaning, like drinking a warm bowl of soup on a cold, misty day; unlike the sharp, jagged edges of books typical of the genre.

This book too, looks at changing the world. But not, quite in the way we are used to. Change comes slowly here, and it starts with changing one person’s mind. One changed mind closer to making the world a true home for everyone. And, at the end of it all, that’s what this book is about. Home.

Creating a space that is a home, where you enter the door and feel like you truly belong. For most of this year, 2020, the world hasn’t felt like home, with violence and mistrust and illness raging around us. This book reminds us that there is love and hope in the world. It might need a little coaxing to emerge, but it can be done. One person at a time.

Read it.

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