I am currently reading my way through a long list of science fiction and fantasy titles. (http://www.npr.org/2011/08/07/138938145/science-fiction-and-fantasy-finalists if you are interested in the list).
October "Toby" Daye is finally doing all right—and that inevitably means it's time for things to take a turn for the worse. Someone has kidnapped the sons of the Duchess Dianda Lorden, regent of the Undersea Duchy of Saltmist. To prevent a war between land and sea, Toby must not only find the missing boys, but also prove that the Queen of the Mists was not behind their abduction. She'll need all her tricks and the help of her allies if she wants to make it through this in one piece.
Toby's search will take her from the streets of San Francisco to the lands beneath the waves. But someone is determined to stop her—and whoever it is isn't playing by Oberon's Laws. As the battle grows more and more personal, one thing is chillingly clear. When Faerie goes to war, not everyone will walk away.
Another fabulous fae book from Seanan McGuire. I was finishing it up in the lunch room at the museum where I work and was dismayed to find myself weeping uncontrollably. The military guys already have their misgivings about me and I really didn’t need to get all emotional over black squiggles on a slice of dead tree to prove to them that I’m a little different than they are. Fortunately, I had chosen an odd time to go for lunch and I got to cry surreptitiously. I went home and re-read the last few chapters and allowed myself to have a really good, ugly cry.
Normally, crying wouldn’t be a reason that I would recommend a book, but I find myself very emotionally invested in this series and I was relieved when I checked and confirmed that I am only half way through the series. Plenty of Toby Daye adventures are still in my future!
So what were the good points of this book? Toby gets herself a squire, none other than young Quentin. We learn more about the sea witch, the Luidaeg, and I couldn’t help but appreciate her more! Plus the undersea Fae were both interesting and inventive. Anyone who has been in the presence of an Orca whale will likely be willing to think of them as mysterious representatives of the undersea world!
The sad points? Well, you can’t make an omelette without breaking eggs. There are a lot of people unhappy by book’s end—kidnapping victims injured, dear ones dead, irreversible bargains made. As Toby is reminded, everything has a cost and it seems that all the main characters have to pay a bit in this one. As do we all.
So there was sadness, but the decks are clear now for more adventures and more happiness in the next book Ashes of Honor.