Book Review – Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire

October “Toby” Daye, a changeling who is half human and half fae, has been an outsider from birth. After getting burned by both sides of her heritage, Toby has denied the Faerie world, retreating to a “normal” life. Unfortunately for her, the Faerie world has other ideas…

The murder of Countess Evening Winterrose pulls Toby back into the fae world. Unable to resist Evening’s dying curse, which binds her to investigate, Toby must resume her former position as knight errant and renew old alliances. As she steps back into fae society, dealing with a cast of characters not entirely good or evil, she realizes that more than her own life will be forfeited if she cannot find Evening’s killer.

I can’t tell if it’s today’s next vampire series or it’s just me, but it seems like half the books I’ve read lately have something to do with the Fae. After a while, a lot of them blend into one big faery mess.

Not so much with Rosemary and Rue. This one was different from the beginning – I mean the main character being turned into a goldfish for 12 years? Haven’t seen that before!

McGuire has created a fascinating and realistic alternative universe where Kelpies lurk on San Francisco street corners and Faries have a halfway house where they can hide out from their peers. Toby is gruff, rough, and not always likable, but she’s always interesting, and when the shit starts to hit the fan, I was totally hooked. McGuire’s prose is witty and engaging, the world she’s created makes sense and is believable, and her characters leap off the page.

The twists and turns continue all the way through, and I read the last half of the book in a breathless rush, trying to figure out who done it. While this is the first in a trilogy, there was no cliff hanger ending, just a burning desire to get lost in Toby’s world again. And luckily, book two is sitting on my nightstand even as we speak!

I give Rosemary and Rue 4 out of 5 stars