With Book 10, Once Broken Faith, out on Tuesday, September 6, here is a primer on Seanan McGuire’s best-selling series…
Genre: Urban Fantasy
My name is October Christine Daye; I live in a city by the sea where the fog paints the early morning, parking is more precious than gold, and Kelpies wait for the unwary on street corners. Neither of the worlds I live in is quite mine, but no one can take them away from me. I did what had to be done, and I think I may finally be starting to understand what’s important. It’s all about finding the way home, wherever that is. I plan on finding out.
Our story begins with October “Toby” Daye newly emerged from a spell that cost her fourteen precious years of her mortal life. Roundly rejected by the Fae for being a Halfling, she has now also lost her human family, but before she has a chance to even process this, an occult murder, the hint of a hope chest, and the ungentle nudging of possible allies conspire to pull Toby back into the Fae world.
As his appointed knight-errant, Toby is tasked by her liege lord Sylvester, Duke of the Shadowed Hills, to visit a neighboring domain to investigate a sudden break in communication. Toby arrives to discover a cascade of murders surrounding his jumpy niece, and she needs to both stop the deaths and repair the diplomatic damage before her liege is attacked as well.
Toby continues to hunt down trouble as well as answers in a serial kidnapping case that is shattering both mortal and faerie lives. She is sent down the roads to the realm of Blind Michael, leader of the Wild Hunt, to find the children and save them, as well as herself.
Toby’s friend Lily has been struck gravely ill by a mysterious source, and Toby has to both get to the source of this affliction as well as protect Lily’s subjects from the criminally insane Fae out to destroy, well, everyone and everything. Toby solves (loses?) one of the mysteries about her mother, while also finally gaining an appreciation for many allies that extends to actually including them in her reasoning and accepting both their help and their advice.
Again, Toby rides (or limps) out on a personal crusade to save lost children, this time with the goal of stopping a war between the land Fae and the sea Fae. The full cast of characters is out in force with her, but they can’t stop the choices that tear Toby’s heart to pieces.
Toby’s still trying to recover from the heartbreaks of the previous two books. But losing herself in the mundanity of being a knight and paying the bills doesn’t work, because someone is literally tearing apart the worlds of Faerie. This time, it is a changeling child who is coming into her powers in explosive ways. Toby has to stop her: honorably.
Goblin fruit – a drug fatal to humans and Changelings alike – is spreading across San Francisco, killing and scaring everyone around… except for the increasingly unstable Queen to whom Toby owes allegiance. Toby has to figure out who is spreading this fatal addiction and what is going on with the kingdom. It’s too late to stop the murders, but she might be able to contain the mayhem.
Betrayals! Insight! More betrayals! This is the story that reaches all the way back to the beginning of the series and pulls it all forward again. The evil Fae from Book 1 is back, and has an even darker shadow behind him. Along with solving this insanity, Toby has to deal with the fact that only those friends who she has made out of her own free will are there to stand beside her.
Toby and a number of her friends are dispatched on a diplomatic mission to the Kingdom of Silences to stop the war declared on the Kingdom of the Mists. The King of the Silences has joined with the insane ex-monarch of the Mists, indulging in slavery, torture, and other sundry unpleasantness. The undiplomatic Toby and her friends have to figure out when to take the offense in this fight for freedom.