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Orillia Public Library seeks readers as it gears up for Big Read finale

Empathy radiates from this novel, and will wrap itself around you like a soft, warm blanket that is just perfect for fall weather, says library staff

With the end of summer in sight, we are quickly approaching the time of year that many bookworms savour the most. 

There’s nothing quite like a cozy sweater, steaming tea and a great book in autumn. The changing weather also brings another favourite event for local booklovers: The Orillia Public Library’s Big Read Finale, taking place on the evening of Saturday, Oct. 23, 2021! 

So, if you haven’t picked up a copy of this year’s Big Read yet- there’s still time. The staff of the Orillia Public Library have decided to give the Sunshine City a great big hug in the form of a book, by choosing the heart-warming, charming tale The House In The Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune as the 2021 Orillia Big Read!

First, you’ll meet Linus Baker- a quietly lonesome caseworker for the bureaucratic “Department in Charge of Magical Youth”.  Linus oversees the well-being of children in various orphanages across the land with measured detachment, having very little power to make any meaningful change. 

One day, Linus is surprisingly given a very important, top-secret mission: travel to the remote Marsyas Island Orphanage and determine if six dangerous children residing there are likely to bring about the destruction of the planet.

Oh, and those children just happen to be: an irritable, murderous gnome, a rebellious teenage sprite, a treasure hoarding wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob with dreams of being a bell-hop, a were-Pomeranian, and, well, the underachieving juvenile Antichrist. 

During this mission, Linus’ square edges get softened, by both the “dangerous” orphans and by the loving, empathetic headmaster, Arthur.  Will this motley crew of misfits and their enchanting headmaster bring about the “end of days”, or will they signal instead the end of Linus’ interminable loneliness?

The House in The Cerulean Sea gives adult readers delightful touches of the fantastical and extraordinary, while remaining rooted in an otherwise realistic literary treat- bringing various fables, folk tales, and myths into contemporary social relevance.  It’s also a story about kindness and speaking up for those who don’t have a voice.  

Empathy radiates from this novel, and will wrap itself around you like a soft, warm blanket- just perfect for fall weather.  This novel will also have you questioning the human tendency to categorize and judge people rashly, and it may bring about a new understanding of what “family” truly means. Plus: it’s hilarious. 

If you think this is not your usual type of read, get outside of your comfort zone and you will be so glad you did! So many of our readers have told us how much they loved it, so see what all the buzz is about and place a copy of The House in The Cerulean Sea on hold now from the Orillia Public Library, and let yourself be whisked away to a magical island. 

Then join us for the Big Read Finale on the evening of Saturday, Oct. 23 at 7 p.m.  where we will be joined live via Zoom by the author himself, TJ Klune!  Visit our website to place your hold and register for our Finale Event!