by Terrance Mc Arthur
Details at the end of this post on how to enter to win a copy of The Winter Long, along with a link to purchase the book where a portion goes to help support KRL.
If someone turned you into a fish for fourteen years, it would be hard to forgive them. October (Toby) Daye, a part-human changeling, can’t forgive Simon for transforming her all those years ago, even if they are sort-of related.
In Seanan McGuire’s The Winter Long, he’s back, causing damage, but seeming to be trying to tell her something that he can’t. Several of the fae characters appear to have information they are not allowed to divulge because of a power-hold from another character, and bad things happen to them if they spill as little as one part of a bean. Toby is becoming less human and more fae, and she uses blood magic which means she has to cut herself to use her powers. She manages to ruin a lot of clothes, but, in her defense, a goodly portion of the bleeding is from others. For Christmas, her friends should get her a gift card for the blood bank.
She has friends, from her boyfriend Tybalt (who is King of the Cats) to her squire Quentin (who is the son of the fae High King of North America) to the Luidag (who is the Sea Hag of San Francisco). They drive around the Bay Area, travel in super-cold dark ways, and venture into seldom-used wild-wilderness paths. Toby helped restore the local queen to her throne, so she has honored status, but it doesn’t help much when a vanquished foe returns to take over a lot of territory.
McGuire’s eighth book in the series was one of the first plotted, so many of the story arcs have led up to this point, with seeds and clues scattered through the previous tales. This imparts a richness and fullness to the narrative. Of course, reading eight volumes of Celtic-mythology-drenched writing has its problems. Jumping into the narrative this far downstream and understanding everything is not easy, but it is doable. Identifying the mythic creatures is a challenge, and their Celtic names require a two-page pronunciation guide; I mean, does “Luidaeg” look like it’s pronounced lou-sha-k?…and forget about Daoine Sidhe! Doon-ya shee? Good grief!
Pronunciations and bloodletting aside, this is a twisty-turny adventure wrapped in a mystery, and it will keep you enthralled–maybe not The Winter Long, but at least for a few good nights.
To enter to win a copy of The Winter Long, simply email KRL at krlcontests@gmail[dot]com by replacing the [dot] with a period, and with the subject line “Winter,” or comment on this article. A winner will be chosen December 6, 2014. U.S. residents only. If entering via email please include your mailing address.
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Use this link to purchase this book & a portion goes to help support KRL: