This book is simple and stunning, elegant and totally engrossing. The author of the famous Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell has once again created something brilliant and memorable, and I was captivated with Piranesi from the start. A perfect read for any season! Recommended By Marianne T, Powells.com
This is the kind of book I love: dreamlike and a bit esoteric, all about the ways we exist in the world and relate to each other. I felt myself pulled into these mysterious hallways just as the titular character is, and it stayed with me like the best dreams do. Recommended By Alice H., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
New York Times Bestseller
Shortlisted for the Women's Prize for Fiction
World Fantasy Awards Finalist
The instant New York Times bestselling novel from the author of Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, an intoxicating, hypnotic book set in a dreamlike alternative reality.
Piranesi's house is no ordinary building: its rooms are infinite, its corridors endless, its walls are lined with thousands upon thousands of statues, each one different from all the others. Within the labyrinth of halls an ocean is imprisoned; waves thunder up staircases, rooms are flooded in an instant. But Piranesi is not afraid; he understands the tides as he understands the pattern of the labyrinth itself. He lives to explore the house.
There is one other person in the house — a man called The Other, who visits Piranesi twice a week and asks for help with research into A Great and Secret Knowledge. But as Piranesi explores, evidence emerges of another person, and a terrible truth begins to unravel, revealing a world beyond the one Piranesi has always known.
For readers of Neil Gaiman's The Ocean at the End of the Lane and fans of Madeline Miller's Circe, Piranesi introduces an astonishing new world, an infinite labyrinth, full of startling images and surreal beauty, haunted by the tides and the clouds.
"Readers who accompany [Piranesi] as he learns to understand himself will see magic returning to our world. Weird and haunting and excellent." Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)
"Clarke wraps a twisty mystery inside a metaphysical fantasy in her extraordinary new novel....Sure to be recognized as one of the year's most inventive." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)
"As questions multiply and suspense mounts in this spellbinding, occult puzzle of a fable, one begins to wonder if perhaps the reverence, kindness, and gratitude practiced by Clarke's enchanting and resilient hero aren't all the wisdom one truly needs." Booklist (Starred Review)
"Clarke creates an immersive world that readers can almost believe exists. This is a solid crossover pick for readers whose appreciation of magical fantasy leans toward V.E. Schwab or Erin Morgenstern." Library Journal (Starred Review)
"Clarke's imagination is prodigious, her pacing is masterly and she knows how to employ dry humor in the service of majesty." Gregory Maguire, The New York Times
"Nobody writes about magic the way Clarke does....She writes about magic as if she's actually worked it." Lev Grossman, TIME Magazine
"Almost impossible to put down... lavishly descriptive, charming, heartbreaking and imbued with a magic that will be familiar to Clarke's devoted readers, Piranesi will satisfy lovers of Jonathan Strange and win her many new fans." Bookpage (Starred Review)
"What a world Susanna Clarke conjures into being, what a tick-tock-tick-tock of reveals, what a pure protagonist, what a morally-squalid supporting cast, what beauty, tension and restraint, and what a pitch-perfect ending. Piranesi is an exquisite puzzle-box far, far bigger on the inside than it is on the outside." David Mitchell, New York Times bestselling author of Cloud Atlas
"Piranesi astonished me. It is a miraculous and luminous feat of storytelling, at once a gripping mystery, an adventure through a brilliant new fantasy world, and a deep meditation on the human condition: feeling lost, and being found. I already want to be back in its haunting and beautiful halls!" Madeline Miller, New York Times Bestselling Author of Circe
"[Piranesi] flooded me, as the tides flood the halls, with a scouring grief, leaving gleaming gifts in its wake....rich, wondrous, full of aching joy and sweet sorrow." The New York Times Book Review
"A novel that feels like a surreal meditation on life in quarantine." The New Yorker
About the Author
Susanna Clarke is the author of the The Ladies of Grace Adieu and Other Stories and the New York Times bestseller and Hugo Award-winning Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell. She lives in England.