Friday, February 3, 2023

Every Heart A Doorway by Seanan McGuire | Book Review

Today Jen recommends EVERY HEART A DOORWAY by Seanan McGuire. Have you read The Wayward Children series?


Every Heart A Doorway by Seanan McGuire

"Eleanor West’s Home for Wayward Children

No Solicitations

No Visitors

No Quests

Children have always disappeared under the right conditions; slipping through the shadows under a bed or at the back of a wardrobe, tumbling down rabbit holes and into old wells, and emerging somewhere... else.

But magical lands have little need for used-up miracle children.

Nancy tumbled once, but now she’s back. The things she’s experienced... they change a person. The children under Miss West’s care understand all too well. And each of them is seeking a way back to their own fantasy world.

But Nancy’s arrival marks a change at the Home. There’s a darkness just around each corner, and when tragedy strikes, it’s up to Nancy and her new-found schoolmates to get to the heart of the matter.

No matter the cost."

Amazon | Goodreads 

Jen's Review

This reread is so heartbreaking. Having now read 6 more books in this series and coming back to the beginning - I think it hits even harder reading about these wayward children who have been forced to return "home". I get it now that no matter where they went through their portal doorway - a nice place, a dark place, a nonsense place, that was home.

I went back and read my original review for this and for some reason I focused on how weird this series would get according to reviews. It definitely does get strange, but it's wonderful and quite often heartbreaking.

I don't know if it's the end of the year or my lack of focus, but I've been in full reread mode. This is the perfect time for me to make my way back through this series. I think I will enjoy book 7 and the new book coming out in January much more revisiting the previous books in this series. I want to reacquaint myself with all of the characters we've met along the way.

Every Heart a Doorway is a perfect introduction to this universe and what it's like to be a wayward kid who has gone through a portal to another world and forced to come back to the life they left behind. These children struggle to cope and often wind up at the school for wayward children which is where Every Heart a Doorway is set.

In each book after Every Heart a Doorway, we get to follow someone through a doorway to another world (with the occasional return to school). This is one of my favorite series, and I look forward to a new release every year. You could probably jump into most books of series without starting at the beginning, but I love the magnitude of what Every Heart a Doorway spells out for these characters and the expectations that are set for these children ever finding their doorway again.

I'm awful at classifying genres so I've always thought of these books strictly as fantasy, but I can see why these also make it onto horror lists. Every Heart a Doorway is certainly horror adjacent and should appeal to a wide range of genre readers.

I feel like you will know if this is a series that sounds right for you. As for me, I love it and I hope it lasts forever.

Thank you for joining us today! Please share your thoughts about EVERY HEART A DOORWAY as well as any recent reads in the comments below.

We are currently accepting horror fiction and horror adjacent fiction written by diverse authors in print and epub format ONLY. If this is you, please visit our review submission page here.

Jen is one of our Horror Spotlight admins. Jen manages the technical side of the Horror Spotlight website. She also keeps a spotlight on new horror releases, middle grade horror, and young adult horror each month.

You can also find Jen on her blog Book Den, Twitter as @bookden, Instagram as @bookdenjen, on Goodreads, and Letterboxd.

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