Friday, September 30, 2011

Book Review: One Salt Sea (An October Daye Novel)

I know. I know.

It’s Friday and you’re reading a review about a book by the same author that I reviewed last Friday. I would say I'm cheating you out of discovering new authors, but this book series is honestly just as awesome as Mira Grant's (Seanan McGuire) The NewsFlesh Trilogy series. I’m a huge Seanan McGuire fan, meaning I’ll essentially read anything that the woman puts a pen and ink to. I’ve said it before but her writing is genius.

Plus, I was going to write a review on Rot and Ruin, another post-apocalyptic zombie series that has peaked my interest as of late, but then I realized that I wrote a review on a post-apocalyptic zombie series last week and…

For the sake of trying not to appear like I don’t do anything else except blog about the living dead I decided not to write a book review on any of the zombie novels I’ve read recently. At least not yet anyway.

But don’t let that disappoint you. One Salt Sea, is the fifth book in Seanan McGuire’s October Daye series and quite possibly my favorite in the series so far. In case you’re new to this blog and have no idea what I’m talking about, you should read my review of the first book in the series, Rosemary and Rue.

No seriously…

Otherwise the book will be completely ruined for you.


In book five, October “Toby” Daye and the gang are back and this time there’s mermaids. This book picks up a month after Late Eclipses (book four in the series).

The night haunts have come and gone for Oleander de Merelands, Toby is the Countess of Goldengreen (Evening Winterose’s leaderless knowe) and takes on crime fighting accomplice Quentin as a squire. She’s even dating ex, Connor O’Dell, again. Everything is looking bright in October’s future. Unfortunately October must have the worst luck ever because it’s also during this time frame that everything pretty much goes to hell.

Someone kidnaps Dean and Peter, the sons of Dianda and Patrick Lorden--the regents of the Undersea Duchy of Saltmist--and the sea is blaming the land Fae for their disappearance. The Luideag asks Toby to track down the missing children to avoid an impending war between the land and the sea. Toby is essentially racing against the clock to find the missing children and to prove that the Queen of the Mists has nothing to do with their disappearance so that faerie can avoid an all out war.

To make matters even worse, the kidnapper starts getting personal and Toby has to make some tough decisions about her family that could be life changing.

The one thing, or one of many things, that I love about McGuire’s novels is that she writes wit and she does it while making it seem as easy as brushing your teeth or changing your socks.

October, who only recently learned that she isn’t Daoine Sidhe, is still trying to figure out just what exactly she is capable of. I also got a kick out of seeing her in a position of royalty even if she doesn’t quite fit the “part” according to fae standards.


Without completely spoiling the entire book; McGuire focuses more on the secondary characters in this novel. Connor even won a few redeeming points for me in this one. Normally I just brush off his character for Tybalt, on account of he always sort of struck me as kind of dull, but McGuire really makes you feel bad for the guy in this book. Even more so in later chapters.

And we finally get to meet the much talked about Cliff and Gillian, October’s ex-husband and her teenage daughter, who she lost contact with 16 years ago. The Luideag also plays a huge part in this novel and given that she is one of my favorite secondary characters, next to Tybalt of course, I was glad to see that the fifth book has a lot more backstory on her as well.

I'll also say that I was incredibly fascinated with Saltmist. I know that's its been casually mentioned in other books in the series, but so far the other four novels have focused mainly on the land Fae. Comparing McGuire's descriptions of Saltmist and its differing customs to those of the land duchies, really gives you a sense of just how complex and endless her faerie universe really is.

I always have a hard time explaining the concept of this series to anyone who ventures to ask me what I’m reading. When I say it’s about the Fae they just give me a look like, “you’re reached a whole new level of crazy.” Then politely ask: “what are the Fae?” Then I say, “they’re like faeries, sort of…” and the conversation ends there.

See, it’s hard to explain the Fae without a faerie reference or two and just like that the conversation takes a turn for the worse. The average person doesn’t know about the Fae or faeries deeper than what they see in Disney movies and therein lies the problem.

So all I can really say is read the books. These faeries are nothing like Tinkerbell, who by the way is actually a pixie.

Yeah, I know I’m a nerd.


One Salt Sea is the fifth book in the October Daye series. 'Rosemary and Rue', 'A Local Habitation', 'An Artificial Night', and 'Late Eclipses' are previous novels in this series.
posted from Bloggeroid


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