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The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow
Young adult

The Ten Thousand Doors of January


We love supporting debut authors. Congrats, Alix E. Harrow, on your first book!

by Alix E. Harrow

Quick take

Enchanted fairy tale vibes all around, as an odd-girl-out reveals secret after secret through otherwordly adventures.

Good to know

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  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Acclaim

    Critically acclaimed

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  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Magical



In a sprawling mansion filled with peculiar treasures, January Scaller is a curiosity herself. As the ward of the wealthy Mr. Locke, she feels little different from the artifacts that decorate the halls: carefully maintained, largely ignored, and utterly out of place.

Then she finds a strange book. A book that carries the scent of other worlds, and tells a tale of secret doors, of love, adventure and danger. Each page turn reveals impossible truths about the world and January discovers a story increasingly entwined with her own.

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Free sample

Check out a preview of The Ten Thousand Doors of January.

Why I love it

I love books that suggest doorways between our world and others—think C.S. Lewis's Narnia books, or Seanan McGuire's Every Heart a Doorway. There’s something about the possibility of escape, adventure, and magic that gets me every time. So when I began The Ten Thousand Doors of January, a deeply enchanting fable about secret doorways and the power of stories, I fell in love immediately.

The book tells the story of January Scaller, a "natural born wanderer" whose adventurous impulses are curbed by her guardian, Cornelius Locke, a member of a shadowy Society that trades in rare artifacts. As a young girl, January discovers a Door—note the capital “D”—that leads from a field in middle America to another world entirely, and that changes the course of her sheltered life.

This book is stuffed full of ideas, including the notion that Doors are the reason we have myths, fairy tales, and revolutions (because stories can't help but leak from one world to the other). Alix E. Harrow's lyrical prose addresses everything from folklore to race with a sublimely deft hand, making this book feel like an instant classic. Watching January break free from her gilded cage, travel between worlds, and come of age as a free woman with the ability to save our world was not only a pleasure, but also a reminder of just how powerful a good story can be.

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Member ratings (1,297)

  • Amy L.

    Mattawan, MI

    LOVE. Beautifully written, unique and interesting premise, and I literally got lost in the story and the world and the characters. Been a while since I’ve read something that has touched me this much.

  • Laura T.

    Pikeville, KY

    I thought this was a beautiful book. I enjoyed the feel of the book and the story within a story. It’s marketed as YA but this is a book for adults to love as well. Plus there’s a brave, loyal dog.

  • Jessie M.

    Natchez, MS

    Beautifully, soulfully, and imaginitively written! Such a magical, unique story with a cast of strong female characters and one fiercely loyal dog. Must read! This is now on my list of favorites ❤️

  • Amanda A.

    Plainville, CT

    This book was just so beautiful! There was frustration, sadness, adventure, longing, finding, love, and so much more wrapped in this most lovely story. This is definitely one of my favorite BOTM picks

  • Nicole G.

    Louisville , KY

    This is the kind of book that makes me want to drop everything and run away on a grand adventure! It reminded me of The Night Circus with how beautiful it was. It’s a book I’ll be rereading a lot!