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Every Heart a Doorway

Book 1, Wayward Children

This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.


Winner: 2017 Hugo Award
Winner: 2017 Alex Award
Winner: 2017 Locus Award
Winner: 2016 Nebula Award
Nominated: 2017 World Fantasy Award
Nominated: 2017 British Fantasy Award
2016 Tiptree Honor List

"A mini-masterpiece of portal fantasy — a jewel of a book that deserves to be shelved with Lewis Carroll's and C. S. Lewis' classics" —NPR

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 things.

No matter the cost.

The Wayward Children Series
Book 1: Every Heart a Doorway
Book 2: Down Among the Sticks and Bones
Book 3: Beneath the Sugar Sky
Book 4: In an Absent Dream


"Seanan McGuire has long been one of the smartest writers around, and with this novella we can easily see that her heart is as big as her brain. We know this story isn't true, but it is truth." — Charlaine Harris, New York Times bestselling author of the Sookie Stackhouse series (TV's True Blood)

"Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire is one of the most extraordinary stories I've ever read." — V. E. Schwab, New York Times bestselling author of A Gathering of Shadows

"Seanan McGuire once again demonstrates her intimate knowledge of the human heart in a powerful fable of loss, yearning and damaged children." — Paul Cornell, author of London Falling and Witches of Lychford

"So mindblowingly good, it hurts." — io9

"With Every Heart a Doorway, McGuire has created her own mini-masterpiece of portal fantasy — a jewel of a book that deserves to be shelved with Lewis Carroll's and C. S. Lewis' classics, even as it carves its own precocious space between them." — NPR

At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

From Publishers Weekly

Nov 02, 2015 – A boarding school offering sanctuary for very special teens is threatened by a series of murders in McGuire's darkly hypnotic standalone fantasy. Eleanor West has spent her life helping kids who discover secret doors to beguiling worlds and long to return to them. When Nancy arrives at Eleanor's manor, unrest seems close behind. If only Nancy could return to the Halls of the Dead and the waiting arms of that dimension's lord, she could be happy, but first she'll have to help the others track down a killer who's taking something different from each victim. The students include twins called Jack and Jill; a boy who can speak to bones; and Sumi, Nancy's roommate, who comes from a world of nonsense and speaks in lilting, looping curlicues of words. McGuire (the October Daye series) puts her own inimitable spin on portal fantasy, adding horror elements to the mix, and her characters are strange and charming. Being different is all these kids have ever known, but as much as they pine for their other worlds, they ultimately find comfort in one another. This gothic charmer is a love letter to anyone who's ever felt out of place.

Customer Reviews

Amazing story.

I enjoyed every second of this book. I was really happy about the representation of asexuality and transgendered individuals. The story was absolutely stellar and I'm excited to read the other books.

These kids resonated

I started this morning thinking I'd read a couple chapters, then get a start on my day. Instead I read the whole thing through, utterly spellbound. Stories about children who travel to other worlds were a mainstay of my childhood, from Narnia to Oz and Winnie the Pooh to A Wrinkle in Time. This, though, is a story about kids I recognize, kids I knew. Queer, morbid children who don't feel like they quite fit right and can't leave their stories behind.

Aspects of the story that were really amazing included the emphasis on respecting people's identities as valid and the way self-determination provided the happy ending.

My favorite book from on of my favorite authors

Very possibly the best thing she's ever written, and there are at least two more on the way!

Other Books in This Series

Every Heart a Doorway
View in iTunes
  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Contemporary
  • Published: Apr 05, 2016
  • Publisher: Tom Doherty Associates
  • Seller: Macmillan
  • Print Length: 176 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Series: Book 1, Wayward Children
  • Requirements: This book can only be viewed on an iOS device with Apple Books on iOS 12 or later, iBooks 1.5 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings