Read Along: Rosemary and Rue – Week One

Rosemary and Rue Read Along

| Week One |

Welcome to the Read Along of Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire, organised by Lisa at Over the Effing Rainbow.

I’ve been looking for another good urban fantasy series for a while so I jumped at the chance to read it when the Rosemary and Rue Read Along was announced. This is the first book in the October Daye series by Seanan McGuire – nothing like another lengthy series to add to my bookshelves – and I have high hopes for it becoming one of my all time favourite urban fantasies!

Week 1 (Saturday 9th January)

Chapters 1-6 – hosted by Over the Effing Rainbow

Week 2 (Saturday 16th January)

Chapters 7-14 – hosted by Lynn at Lynn’s Books

Week 3 (Saturday 23rd January)

Chapters 15-20 – hosted by Anya at On Starships and Dragonwings

Week 4 (Saturday 30th January)

Chapters 21-End – hosted by Over the Effing Rainbow

There will be spoilers!

| Week One Rating |

4 and a half Stars

| The Questions |

| 1. |

So, first impressions time! What do you think of the book setup, first of all? Setting, magic system, Faerie in general?

First things first, I love urban fantasy but I don’t read nearly enough of it. I read eight of The Dresden Files last year (which I love!) so it was about time I diversified and tried something different in the genre. I’d never even heard of the October Daye series before this read along cropped up – but I’m already so glad I decided to join in!

I love the richly detailed urban setting – worldbuilding is one of my favourite aspects of all fantasy and this doesn’t stop when it crosses over to our world – and, like with Chicago in The Dresden Files, an author can really convey the charm and grit of a city location.. even when it is full of faeries!

The narrative style flows very easily and Toby is a compelling character who it is hard not to like. The world of the fae is definitely an interesting one – I love, love, love the nursery rhyme magic, too awesome! – and there are a myriad of different creatures to discover which already has me very excited! The courts and the hierarchies which apparently abound throughout the world of faerie are another dimension that hit on another of my fantasy favourites – court politics and intrigue! So I’m very excited to discover more about this strange world and its even stranger inhabitants.

And that moves us on to purebloods and changelings – It makes for a far more interesting series when the protagonist has obvious deficiencies when contrasted with the rest of the fae population. This also ties in with the court hierarchy where changelings are a lesser people (faeple?) which leaves me a state of intrigue as to how Toby will interact with this somewhat medieval system.

| 2. |

Now let’s take Toby Daye herself. We get to see some of how she’s grown up and how she fits in, or doesn’t, in the modern world as it is post-fish. What are your initial thoughts on her?

The style of the opening prologue actually didn’t hook me in – it worried me a little! But as soon as the fishcident happened, oh wow, instant love! I was excited by everything that happened, the narrative really gripped me and I fully expect it to continue throughout the rest of the novel.

Toby is a really fascinating and complex character who is at a completely different stage in life than many protagonists we encounter in fantasy. This makes her so much more compelling as a character and ups the intrigue factor tenfold! I love that her life is so complicated, that so much has changed since she found herself in a pond, and that she’s struggling to get through it – giving your characters a hard time makes for excellent reading! – and I definitely feel for her for losing her previous life.  Having to cope in this new existence without her family, and in particular her daughter, makes for very interesting (and a little heartbreaking) reading. There are so many questions raised in this section of the novel – about her choices and what will come next –  that I’m finding it hard not to zoom ahead!

| 3. |

We have yet to properly meet certain characters (Devin and Sylvester), though we’ve gotten brief intros to others (Tybalt and the Queen of the Mists)… Who stands out for you among these secondary characters, and why?

So far I’ve loved all the secondary characters, including the brief visit from Toby’s old friend Mitch and the memories it drew up of her other pre-fish friends. And one thing Toby definitely needs at this point in her life is a friend! So far these changelings seem to be the most likely candidates… but we’re only a short way in so who can say!

Tybalt is a very intriguing character! He has a strange sort of relationship with Toby and their interactions are interesting and very amusing. There’s definitely some tension between them… and I’m not entirely certain it’s all of the negative variety. No doubt we’ll be seeing a lot more of him throughout the rest of the novel! Also he’s a cat! Sort of.

The Queen of the Mists seems to me like the atypical faerie queen – beautiful, ruthless and powerful – but this isn’t necessarily a bad thing! She just seems right for the role. Our brief introduction definitely shows us that Toby won’t be in for an easy ride – especially where the fae courts are concerned! In any case, I can’t wait to find out more about all and more of these secondary characters! Here’s hoping Sylvester is a good’un!

| 4. |

Toby has a murder mystery to solve. Any initial thoughts on the whodunit?

It’s been a long time since I got a bit teary in a novel but the murder of Evening did it for me! The fact that she’d showed Toby such compassion post-fishcident, despite it being against her nature, definitely made it a little heartbreaking when Toby retrieved  the answer machine messages.

As for whodunit – I really couldn’t say! It’s very early to be guessing. There are those two nasties from the prologue… however, something tells me that whole affair won’t be as simple as mere spite; there are obviously greater and more dangerous things at work. The Queen of the Mists also had a very strange reaction to the news that her friend was dead – does she just hate Toby that much? Or is there something else at play here? I guess we’ll just have to read on and see!

Stay tuned for the next instalment of this Read Along on 16th January

13 thoughts on “Read Along: Rosemary and Rue – Week One

  1. Yeah, I’m not totally trusting the Queen of the Mists at the moment. There was something decidedly fishy (couldn’t help it) about her reaction. Although one part of me thinks surely it couldn’t be that obvious – maybe she’s a red herring (I’ll stop now!)
    Tybalt, I think he could be one of those characters that we maybe all fall for a little bit. We’ll see.
    As to guessing whodunnit – definitely too early. I normally like to throw around some wild suggestions but even I’m sitting on the fence a little. If feels like the two nasties from the prologue were used to entrap Toby so they’re obviously working for someone and it’s interesting that they didn’t kill her? And yet Evening was killed – it’s all very puzzling.
    I guess we’ll just have to dive in (I said I’d stop and then I didn’t!) and see what happens next..
    Lynn 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes Queenie could just be throwing us off the scent. I suppose there are a multitude of reasons for her reaction including the general dislike for changelings. In any case, I can’t wait to read on and find out what happens next – I’m surprised I had the willpower (although willpower is much easier when you’re reading 7 books at once *shakes head*)


  2. Toby seems to be in such an in-between phase in her life. She hasn’t recovered from the fish accident completely yet, and she feels to be a bit in denial about it all. It’s so interesting to see all the conflict in her. It’ll be fascinating to see it all unfold!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Poor Toby – I feel for her but it makes such good reading! She seems to be overcomplicating her own life a little too. Like you said, in denial!! Can’t wait to see how it all pans out.


  3. Yep – torturing your main characters early on (like turning her into a fish and causing her to lose nearly everything) makes for very interesting reading. I am so glad McGuire got the party started early.

    The Queen of Mists makes me nervous and there is definitely more going on there. I get the feeling that we won’t get all the answers to all the questions in this book which is fitting because it’s already a long series and we’re just getting started.

    Liked by 1 person

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