top of page

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

Updated: Dec 19, 2019

Provided by:

Publisher/date: Doubleday (November 5, 2019)

Genre: Bookish Fantasy (this should be it's own genre)

"He leaves the book on the bed. His fingers start twitching immediately, wanting to take it with him so he can read it again. He wraps his scarf around his neck. 'Reading a book four times in one day is perfectly normal behavior.' He buttons his wool coat. 'Having a physical response to a lack of book is not unusual.' He tugs his knit hat down over his ears...He puts the book in the pocket of his coat."

Have you ever read a book that you never want to end? A book that feels like it was written just for you? I've fallen down the rabbit hole and I don't want to come back out. I wish that this was a book that never ends, wish that it were something that was possible.

"Endings give stories meaning.

I don't know if I believe that. I think the whole story has meaning but i also think to have a whole story-shaped story it needs some sort of resolution. Not even a resolution, some appropriate place to leave it. A goodbye.

I think the best stories feel like they're still going, somewhere, out in story space."

You take five books, a novel and some short stories. The short stories may or may not to tie into one another. You take chapters out of each of these books and rip them out of the books and toss them onto the floor in a giant heap of story confetti. Make sure to lose a couple pieces. Fold those into stars and throw them into dark corners. That is The Starless Sea.

"Books are always better when read, rather than explained."

To try to summarize this book would be like trying to explain color to the color blind. Yes, I could tell you that it's about a boy who finds a book, and through the book finds a world, and instead of falling down a rabbit hole, he jumps in head first.

"Each of us has our own path, Mr. Rollins. Symbols are for interpretation, not definition."

But it is so much more than that. It's a piece of a book lover's soul. It's a choose your own adventure for a person who has lived a thousand lives through the pages of a book. It has love in it, but it is not a romance. If it was a love story, it would not be between people. It would be between a person and a book.

"He believes in books, he thinks as he leaves the room. That much, he knows for sure."

It's like Erin Morgenstern took pieces of each book lover's soul and mixed them up in a pot of words, and served them back to us in china cups.

"Caffeine is an important weapon in my arsenal."

It's a story about fate, and time, and an owl king, and the stars and the moon and a thousand books. Books that love us, books that find us, books that hurt us.

"Important things hurt sometimes."

It's a story about the path that we walk when we are broken. Or maybe a path that we walk, which we know will end in brokenness but walk it anyway.

"There is no fixing. There is only moving forward in the brokenness."

I think that this is a classic in the making. Penguin, go ahead and add this to your Penguin Clothbound collection, Coralie Bickford Smith, I'm gonna need you to get designing on this one, and holy shit go buy up allllll the first editions because I'm telling you, this one has a place in history.

"There's always room for more books."

6/5 stars, "oh no she didn't! Oh yes she did!" Best read of 2019!!! GO READ IT RIGHT NOW. RIGHT NOW!!!

185 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page