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This September, the Vox Book Club returns with Susanna Clarke’s Piranesi

Spend September with the haunted, haunting Piranesi, from the author of Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell.

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Piranesi by Susanna Clarke.
Left, Bloomsbury. Right, Sarah Lee.
Constance Grady is a senior correspondent on the Culture team for Vox, where since 2016 she has covered books, publishing, gender, celebrity analysis, and theater.

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Susanna Clarke’s haunting, haunted Piranesi is one of the most astonishing books I’ve read in a very long time, sort of Narnia meets Paradise Lost meets Borges. From the author of the much-beloved Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell, it tells the story of a man called Piranesi, living all alone in a vast and flooded marble house, full of statues.

As far as Piranesi knows, the house is the only thing in the world, and he himself one of the only living men in it. He loves his life, and he loves the house. He calls himself the house’s Beloved Child. So gentle and compelling is his voice that when you read the book, you can feel yourself getting swallowed up by Piranesi’s beloved house, and by Piranesi’s terrible, radiant innocence.

As the Vox Book Club reconvenes for September, we’re coming back in style by reading Piranesi. We’ll talk about the Narnia parallels, the Jonathan Strange parallels, and what Piranesi has learned from his house. Then, at the end of the month, we’ll be meeting with Susanna Clarke herself (!!!) live on Zoom. Subscribe to our newsletter and we’ll let you know the RSVP details as soon as we have them, and in the meantime, you can catch up on our Piranesi review from last year here.

Here’s the full Vox Book Club schedule for September 2021

Friday, September 17: Discussion post on Piranesi published to

Date TBA: Virtual live event with author Susanna Clarke. Subscribe to our newsletter to receive the RSVP link as soon as it’s available. Reader questions are encouraged!