Cover image for Beyond the black door
Title:
Beyond the black door
ISBN:
9781250198747
Edition:
1st ed.
Physical Description:
394 pages ; 22 cm.
Summary:
Everyone has a soul. Some are beautiful gardens, others are frightening dungeons. Soulwalkers--like Kamai and her mother--can journey into other people's souls while they sleep. But no matter where Kamai visits, she sees the black door. It follows her into every soul, and her mother has told her to never ever open it. When Kamai touches the door, it is warm and beating, like it has a pulse. When she puts her ear to it, she hears her own name whispered from the other side. And when tragedy strikes, Kamai does the unthinkable: she opens the door. --
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Summary

Summary

Beyond the Black Door is a young adult dark fantasy about unlocking the mysteries around and within us--no matter the cost...

Everyone has a soul. Some are beautiful gardens, others are frightening dungeons. Soulwalkers--like Kamai and her mother--can journey into other people's souls while they sleep.

But no matter where Kamai visits, she sees the black door. It follows her into every soul, and her mother has told her to never, ever open it.

When Kamai touches the door, it is warm and beating, like it has a pulse. When she puts her ear to it, she hears her own name whispered from the other side. And when tragedy strikes, Kamai does the unthinkable: she opens the door.

A.M. Strickland's imaginative dark fantasy features court intrigue and romance, a main character coming to terms with her asexuality, and twists and turns as a seductive mystery unfolds that endangers not just Kamai's own soul, but the entire kingdom ...

An Imprint Book

"I couldn't put down this deliciously dark dream of a fantasy ." -- New York Times bestselling author Lisa Maxwell

" A dark delight, gorgeously written and as twisty and enigmatic as a labyrinth at twilight. I wanted to stay lost in its pages forever, wandering ever deeper into the maze of Strickland's beguiling, intricately imagined world." --Margaret Rogerson, New York Times bestselling author of An Enchantment of Ravens


Author Notes

A.M. Strickland was a bibliophile who wanted to be an author before she knew what either of those words meant. She shares a home base in Alaska with her husband, her pugs, and her piles and piles of books. She loves traveling, dancing, tattoos, and every shade of teal in existence, but especially the darker ones. Her books include Beyond the Black Door and Wordless. Find her on Twitter.


Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

Gr 9 Up--Kamai is a soulwalker who visits other people's souls while they are sleeping. Kamai never knows what she will discover but some souls are simple while others are dark and mysterious. Kamai's mother, also a soulwalker, is a Pleasure Artist who sleeps with both men and women. Her intimacy with others allows her to know their secrets and sell them to the Twilight Guild, which uses the information to better society. While Kamai is mentored by her mother as a soulwalker, she is warned to never enter the black door, which is always present regardless of which soul Kamai visits. When her mother is murdered, Kamai is lured by the black door and after entering, she finds Vehyn, who is half human. As Kamai learns more about Vehyn, an unexpected twist takes readers deeper into the mind of the main character. While the romance that develops is dark and Beauty and the Beast--like, Kamai begins to come to terms with her asexuality. Other characters also come to terms with their identity and one is transgender. The author has done an outstanding job of helping readers fully understand how these characters feel, delivering a thoughtful explanation without preaching. Kamai is a well-developed heroine who uses her wits and readers will want her to succeed. VERDICT Perfect for those who enjoy dark romances with insightful characters.--Karen Alexander, Lake Fenton High School, Linden, MI


Kirkus Review

A soulwalker opens a forbidden door and lets in a world of danger.When 17-year-old Kamai's mother is killed and her life upended, Kamai gives in to the temptation to open the black door that always appears whenever she walks through others' souls. She unleashes Vehyn, a darkly fascinating being who appears as a boy, her age and pale-skinned like herself, who resides in a grand, foreboding fortress that Kamai accesses when she sleeps. Despite warning signs, Kamai ill-advisedly finds herself romantically attracted to Vehyn, who proves himself to be manipulative and threatening. Sometimes in the physical world and sometimes in the sleeping realm of souls, Kamai strives to uncover her mother's killer and discover Vehyn's (likely menacing) intentions. The drama, which is at times unnecessarily sprawling, involves a plot to kill the king, two secret societies, and plenty of intrigue as the stakes soar. Strickland (co-author, as AdriAnne Strickland: Shadow Call, 2018, etc.) excels at rich descriptions, painting vivid settings and a patriarchal culture shaped by belief in three gods. The cast, which includes a transgender character, is also diverse in race and sexuality. Crucially, Kamai's asexuality authentically affects how she moves through the world; her journey to understanding her identity includes a detailed explanation that cleverly ties in modern views of asexuality with in-world terminology.Lovers of dark fantasy and edgy romance will enjoy this tale, which gives the stage to an asexual protagonist. (Fantasy. 13-18) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.


Booklist Review

Kamai's mother told her two disturbing things when she was young: Kamai had no soul, and she was never to open the black door in the in-between space where she could soul-walk. Kamai comes to discover her soul, but only after opening that black door and nearly unloosing ""the Darkness"" on her world. It takes determination, strength of purpose, and the support of good friends to close and lock that door against someone she loves. Strickland constructs a somewhat melodramatic but always engaging tale akin to Faust and his deal with the devil. Her imagery is potent and productive, her world building solid, and the growing attraction between Kamai and the dark Veyhn is believable and made more complex by Kamai's asexuality. First-person narration from Kamai limits readers' knowledge, letting them unravel the mysteries as she does. Strickland also manages to slip in a sub-subplot about a female soldier Kamai's eventual bodyguard who is transgender. Give this to dark fantasy fans.--Cindy Welch Copyright 2010 Booklist