• $11.99

Publisher Description

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.

Fiction & Literature
November 5
Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group
Penguin Random House LLC

Customer Reviews

Carrie FW ,

Keep your mind wide open

So, I liked this book. But I did have to put it down for several weeks in the middle before I picked it up to finish it again. This book is a storytellers love letter to stories and it doesn’t let you forget it.

However if you can keep an open mind and let go it’s self indulgent use of poetic phrases like “a lost city of honey and bone” there really are elements of magic that draw you in and tug at your childhood fairy tale seeking heart.

Reading the book is much like Zachary’s experience in the book. He is so close to something truly magical but can’t quite touch it. That’s how I felt reading it.

However, all that being said if there was ever a sequel I’d definitely read it.

FranklinistheShiTTzu ,

Truly Transportive

I loved the Starless Sea because the wildly imaginative and creative “world” was ignited in my mind. I felt a part of that world, and it is one I think many of us would have loved to be real. While the story had some elements that were oddly underdeveloped (like the Owl King)…and maybe took turns that seemed unnecessary, the world created by this book is so fantastic that I could look past that and still love it. I love being sad because a book is over. I know then it was well worth the time.

mghooplax ,


amazing. this is the sort of book i would NOT want to be turned into a movie congrats erin if youre reading this you blew my mind.

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