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Under the Whispering Door by [TJ Klune]
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Under the Whispering Door Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 720 ratings

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From the Publisher

Editorial Reviews Review

An Amazon Best Book of September 2021: TJ Klune’s The House in the Cerulean Sea has a hold on a big chunk of my heart, and now it has a new neighbor: Klune’s new fantasy, Under the Whispering Door. When the frankly awful Wallace dies unexpectedly, he comes to the attention of Hugo, a teashop owner who ferries the dead to the other side of life. Wallace is a difficult case, but gentle Hugo gives Wallace a chance to come to grips with his predicament, opening up his eyes to love, beauty, and the absurdities that make every moment special. This heartfelt story about a man who discovers the joys of living after he is dead is one that you’ll hand to a good friend with a smile and a hug. —Adrian Liang, Amazon Editor --This text refers to the hardcover edition.


“There is so much to enjoy in Under the Whispering Door, but what I cherish the most is its compassion for the little things―a touch, a glance, a precious piece of dialogue―healing me, telling me that for all the strangenesses I hold, I am valued, valid―and maybe even worthy of love.” ―Ryka Aoki, Light from Uncommon Stars

“A warm hug of a book about a Grinch of a man who dies and a ferryman, who helps the dead in their journey onwards. Under the Whispering Door is a kind book, full of faith in the goodness of people, full of kind people showing how compassion is a strength. It broke my heart with its unflinching understanding that grief never goes away, never empties, only settles into the room of your soul like a strange souvenir. And then it healed me in the next breath.” ―Cassandra Khaw, author of Nothing But Blackened Teeth

“Tenderness, wit, and skillful worldbuilding elevate this delightful tale. Fans of queer fantasy won’t want to miss this.” ―Publishers Weekly

“TJ Klune is a master storyteller.” ―The Mary Sue

“TJ Klune is doing powerful work that inspires and impresses. He is a gift to our troubled times, and his novels are a radiant treat to all who discover them.” ―Locus

Praise for The House in The Cerulean Sea
A 2021 Alex Award winner!
An Indie Next Pick!
One of Publishers Weekly's "Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2020"
One of Book Riot’s “20 Must-Read Feel-Good Fantasies”

"I loved it. It is like being wrapped up in a big gay blanket. Simply perfect." ―V.E. Schwab, #1 New York Times bestselling author

"It will renew your faith in humanity.” ―Terry Brooks, New York Times bestselling author of the Shannara series

“It’s a witty, wholesome fantasy that’s likely to cause heart-swelling.” ―The Washington Post

The House in The Cerulean Sea is a modern fairy tale about learning your true nature and what you love and will protect. It's a beautiful book.” ―Charlaine Harris, #1 New York Times bestselling author

1984 meets The Umbrella Academy with a pinch of Douglas Adams thrown in. Touching, tender, and truly delightful, The House in the Cerulean Sea is an utterly absorbing story of tolerance, found family, and defeating bureaucracy.”―Gail Carriger, New York Times bestselling author of Soulless

“Sweet, comforting, and kind, this book is very close to perfect. The House in the Cerulean Sea is a work of classic children's literature written for adults and children alike, with the perspective and delicacy of the modern day. I cannot recommend it highly enough.” ―Seanan McGuire, New York Times bestselling author of Every Heart a Doorway

“Quirk and charm give way to a serious exploration of the dangers of complacency in this delightful, thought-provoking Orwellian fantasy from Klune.... This tale of found family is hopeful to its core. Readers will revel in Klune’s wit and ingenuity.” ―Publishers Weekly (starred review)

"Lambda Literary Award-winning author Klune (The Art of Breathing, 2019, etc.) has a knack for creating endearing characters, and readers will grow to love Arthur and the orphans alongside Linus... fans of quirky fantasy will eat it up. A breezy and fun contemporary fantasy." ―Kirkus

“This is a sweet narrative about the value of asking questions and the benefits of giving people (especially children) a chance to be safe, protected, and themselves, regardless of what assumptions one might glean from, say, reading their case file.” ―Booklist

“This inclusive fantasy is quite possibly the greatest feel-good story ever to involve the Antichrist.... The House in the Cerulean Sea will delight fans of Seanan McGuire's Wayward Children series and any reader looking for a burst of humor and hope.” ―Shelf Awareness

"A delightful tale about chosen families, and how to celebrate differences." ―Library Journal

“If ever there was an author to watch out for, [Klune] is definitely that author.” ―Culturess Daily

--This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.

Product details

  • ASIN ‏ : ‎ B0879GPLKD
  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Tor Books; 1st edition (September 21, 2021)
  • Publication date ‏ : ‎ September 21, 2021
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • File size ‏ : ‎ 8714 KB
  • Text-to-Speech ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Screen Reader ‏ : ‎ Supported
  • Enhanced typesetting ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • X-Ray ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Word Wise ‏ : ‎ Enabled
  • Print length ‏ : ‎ 390 pages
  • Page numbers source ISBN ‏ : ‎ 1250838142
  • Lending ‏ : ‎ Not Enabled
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 720 ratings

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Customer reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6 out of 5
720 global ratings
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on September 21, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful and touching story.
By CarolinaBelle on September 21, 2021
Under The Whispering Door

Simply put: this is an absolutely beautiful and amazing story. It will break your heart and heal you again.

First you meet Wallace. Wallace is cold, unforgiving, unlikeable. No redeeming factors, or are there?

Wallace evolves, realizes what he missed in life. He starts to feel, really feel. His journey through the stages of grief, of the acceptance of his death is heartbreakingly sad in parts, laughing out loud in others.

It took Wallace dying to find his humanity. This book asks “what would you do with the time you have left?”, “what would you do if you had seven days to get your affairs in order!” It makes you think, it makes you feel, and it makes you want more out of your own life. This is a very deep and moving story, without being too heavy.

This book will stay with me for a very long time. I felt like I was on Wallace’s journey with him. I felt his stages of grief, and I felt him find his humanity. I believe that this is a once in a lifetime story. I believe that this is needed during these times, to help us see the bigger picture and remind us of our own humanity.

I want to thank TJ Klune, NetGalley, and Tor Publishing for giving me this ACR in exchange for my review.
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21 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on September 21, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars Such a poignant story, I loved it so much!
By ShannonVM on September 21, 2021
Oh, are my eyes going to be puffy tomorrow, the tears! I don't even know how to put into words what I'm feeling right now. I loved it.

Yes, my eyes are still puffy this morning! And no, I still don't know how to put into words my feelings about this book that I love so much. I full on cried, at times sobbing, from 74% on, it hurt so good.

Under the Whispering Door is such a unique story. Wallace's journey was so sweet and hopeful, and unlike anything I've ever read. It deals with death and grief in such a way that you can only hope when it's your time to go there'll be a Hugo and a Mei, a Nelson and an Apollo, to lead you on your way. Found families are truly the best, and Wallace was so very lucky to have found this one.

Death isn't a final ending, Wallace. It is an ending, sure, but only to prepare you for a new beginning.

Poignant and endearing, and at times laugh out loud funny, Under the Whispering Door captivated me from start to finish.

***I loved the Easter eggs that were included!!!
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18 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on September 27, 2021
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7 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on September 29, 2021
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5 people found this helpful
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Reviewed in the United States on September 21, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars There is beauty in life and in death
By Dotdala_reads on September 21, 2021
“We aren’t supposed to force someone before they’re ready. That’s not our job. We’re here to make sure they see that life isn’t always about living. There are many parts to it, and that it continues on, even after death. Its beautiful, even when it hurts”
And boy does it hurt.
*NOTE TO SELF* do not read another TJ Klune on your break at work-or you will have to answer WHY YOU HAVE: tears cascading out of your eyes, snot sliding down your face and why you’re uncontrollably sobbing in the middle of the day.
Wallace was a tool: he didn’t care about anyone but himself. He won’t be missed by anyone when he dies because he never made one GOOD impact on anyone he came across. Did he care? No, he didn’t- but given the chance to reflect on his life and what he made of it, Wallace begins to see what life truly is about and how healing it can be to be vulnerable.
We follow Wallace when he is brought by Mei (the Reaper) to meet Hugo (the Ferryman who helps people cross), Nelson (Hugo’s adorable grand-father), and Apollo (Hugo’s sweet pup). He begins to understand what he missed out on while living, and how life isn’t about how much money or how many hours worked- it’s about the connections we make and how we have the ability to help others even in small ways.
The subject of death and grief is heavy-BUT Klune elegantly and insightfully touches on the importance of a life worth living and that death isn’t always an ending, but a beginning. That we should always say or do the things we want- we never know when it’ll be too late.
An amazing story of grief, loss, friendship and redemption-you’ll laugh, you’ll cry and you won’t want to leave your new friends behind when it’s over.
THE BIGGEST TY to @netgalley @torbooks and the author for an ARC in exchange for an honest review
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Top reviews from other countries

5.0 out of 5 stars TJ Klune is a poet of the soul
Reviewed in Germany on October 10, 2021
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One person found this helpful
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3.0 out of 5 stars Love TJ but this one wasn't for me
Reviewed in Canada on October 4, 2021
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Megan J
5.0 out of 5 stars A book of hope and redemption and love.
Reviewed in Australia on September 25, 2021
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Kindle Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars So good
Reviewed in Canada on September 22, 2021
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5.0 out of 5 stars Un libro precioso.
Reviewed in Spain on October 11, 2021
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