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Reviews of books in a series, with a focus on urban fantasy.
Other genres include mystery, paranormal romance, and crime thrillers.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Rosemary and Rue (October Daye Book 1) by Seanan McGuire


I've read a number of debut Urban Fantasy novels in the past few months, and I've enjoyed some of them a great deal.

I enjoyed Rosemary and Rue, but I don't believe it's the cream of this new crop of Urban Fantasy series. It's good, really good... but not the top of the list for me.

However, as a strictly Fae book, Rosemary and Rue is very well done. A good Urban Fantasy should have enough basis in myth or fairy tales or old religions to give the story some (fantasy) believability. Rosemary and Rue gives us more than enough of this. I love Seanan McGuire's view of faerie and of the fae - the world building is exceptionally well done.

As is to be expected in a first novel, there is a lot of backstory, a lot of explanation, and a lot of introductions. These are all fairly well done, and the pacing isn't horrible, even with all of this thrown in.

The plot is very well done - I will go so far as to say it is excellent.  I also think I have an idea of where the story will be headed, where the series arcs are going to take us, but I suppose that only time will tell if I'm right about that. But, if I'm right, then this could end up being a fairly complex series. I hope I'm right.

So, to sum it up, the plot is excellent, the world building is very very well done (I will go so far as to say fascinating), Toby Daye is written as a fully three dimensional character, and the prose is engaging and interesting. 

Here is the back cover text:
The world of Faerie never disappeared: it merely went into hiding, continuing to exist parallel to our own. Secrecy is the key to Faerie's survival—but no secret can be kept forever, and when the fae and mortal worlds collide, changelings are born. Half-human, half-fae, outsiders from birth, these second-class children of Faerie spend their lives fighting for the respect of their immortal relations. Or, in the case of October "Toby" Daye, rejecting it completely. After getting burned by both sides of her heritage, Toby has denied the fae world, retreating into a "normal" life. Unfortunately for her, Faerie has other ideas.

The murder of Countess Evening Winterrose, one of the secret regents of the San Francisco Bay Area, pulls Toby back into the fae world. Unable to resist Evening's dying curse, which binds her to investigate, Toby is forced to resume her old position as knight errant to the Duke of Shadowed Hills and begin renewing old alliances that may prove her only hope of solving the mystery...before the curse catches up with her.

Book Review: Rosemary and Rue: 9 of 10

I can't give The October Daye series a rating after only one book.

1. Rosemary and Rue
2. A Local Habitation
3. An Artificial Night
4. Late Eclipses
5. The Brightest Fell
6. Ashes of Honor
7. One Salt Sea
8. The Winter Long

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