Originally I had put this down for 4.5 stars, but I needed some time to think it over and in the end I felt like 4 stars would suit my opinions better. Nevertheless this was a great read and one of the few I was talking about at work (I need to choose my books rather carefully there since I read so many and I don’t want to be raving about a new book each week. The average reading of my colleagues varies from 0-15 books a year, and they sometimes question where I find the time to read the amount of books I do).
I first got interested in The House of the Cerulean Sea when my book club (who just before had made me read The 7.5 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle – which I also liked a lot) started praising this book to the Cerulean Sky with many a 5-star review. It seemed like the perfect feelgood book.
I was not wrong there. I immediately liked the writing and got sucked into the story. The menacing hierarchy of Extremely Upper Management was not so unlike Academia and Linus was a very likeable main character. The book was cute in a way only a six-year-old hellspawn can be cute, but I really liked all the kids in the orphanage a lot. They made the story.
So, what caused my rating to drop? I gave it a good thought and it basically bottles down to two thing that both have to do with Arthur. First, I was not too fond of Arthur’s big secret. The whole point of the story was about how everyone deserves to be helped even when they are different from you, but the secret weakened this a bit since he turned out to be not so different after all. Second, I was not such a big fan of the romance (I rarely am), because everything was settled so neatly in the end and it sort of suggests that the characters couldn’t have been truly happy without a romantic angle.
This was a standalone – and I really like that not everything is a series these days – but I would have loved to see a sequel to this. Maybe with Lucy as a teenager?
The House in the Cerulean Sea – T.J. Klune