The Starless Sea

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Staff Pick!

This book is truly mesmerizing.  You will be transported to a world where stories aren’t just stories--they’re worlds unto themselves.  Zachary checks out an old and obscure book from the library.  Small and seemingly disconnected stories are held in its pages, nothing out of the ordinary.  Until he turns a page and finds himself reading a story that is about him and a very detailed, unique experience he had when he was a young boy.  Adventure after adventure unfolds: doors leading to worlds built by stories, keys to those doors lost and found, and finding one’s home. -- Mary Laura



From the New York Times bestselling author of The Night Circus, a timeless love story set in a secret underground world--a place of pirates, painters, lovers, liars, and ships that sail upon a starless sea.


Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a graduate student in Vermont when he discovers a mysterious book hidden in the stacks. As he turns the pages, entranced by tales of lovelorn prisoners, key collectors, and nameless acolytes, he reads something strange: a story from his own childhood. Bewildered by this inexplicable book and desperate to make sense of how his own life came to be recorded, Zachary uncovers a series of clues--a bee, a key, and a sword--that lead him to a masquerade party in New York, to a secret club, and through a doorway to an ancient library hidden far below the surface of the earth. What Zachary finds in this curious place is more than just a buried home for books and their guardians--it is a place of lost cities and seas, lovers who pass notes under doors and across time, and of stories whispered by the dead. Zachary learns of those who have sacrificed much to protect this realm, relinquishing their sight and their tongues to preserve this archive, and also of those who are intent on its destruction. Together with Mirabel, a fierce, pink-haired protector of the place, and Dorian, a handsome, barefoot man with shifting alliances, Zachary travels the twisting tunnels, darkened stairwells, crowded ballrooms, and sweetly soaked shores of this magical world, discovering his purpose--in both the mysterious book and in his own life.

Product Details

Publisher: Doubleday Books
Published Date: November 05, 2019
Pages: 512
Dimensions: 6.5 X 1.6 X 9.3 inches | 1.9 pounds
Language: English
Type: Hardcover
ISBN: 9780385541213