Review: October Daye Bk 1 – Rosemary & Rue by Seanan McGuire

01 Sep

I promised Seanan that this review would be up before today (the 1st) but internet providers are (most of the time) such a pain and work to their own convoluted and useless schedules (no surprise there, I s’pose) that I’m only now getting to post the review – sorry Seanan!

Anyway, here we go:

As Urban Fantasy goes, Seanan has crafted a fun, intense and inventive read that’s sure to have you flipping through the pages until the wayyy early hours – you might even set the book down and then wonder why you’re hearing the early worm-catching birds! 🙂

Rosemary & Rue introduces the witty, wounded and brave Changeling, October ‘Toby’ Daye. She has the blood of mankind and faerie running through her, and as far as magic goes, can perform enough to get by. At the novel’s start, Toby is a PI; if there are cases that need solving in the worlds of the faerie, Toby takes them, and it is during such a case that something happens – and when this ‘something’ finally wears off, Toby’s entire life has changed. And try as she might, she can’t disappear and lead a safe life. Faerie has a way of pulling you back in, no matter what you want…

Reading this novel is a sure way to be submerged in the coolest faerie culture you never knew existed. 🙂 As Seanan weaves her tale she also effortlessly teaches us about knowes, Kelpies, the many different kinds of faerie and their complex society and relationship with each other, as well as a beautifully rendered cityscape that even natives of San Fransisco might find surprising. As worldbuilding goes, it doesn’t get much better than this! 🙂 Not only does Seanan give us a great introduction to the world she’s built for Toby and all the other characters to inhabit, but she does it without making us feel as if we’re being force-fed the information – everything slips through as easily as Tybalt into shadows 😉 and before you know it, you’re aching for more! I sure as hell can’t wait to find out more about Toby’s world, including the Summerlands! 🙂

Character-wise, Seanan has created (or given freedom to) a great new heroine that stands her ground when put against many other female leads in any kind of speculative fiction. Toby is capable, sometimes reckless, a sure bet when you’re in a tight spot, and justy about as grumpy as anyone would be if they were to suddenly find themselves in her situation. 🙂 This realism lends even more strength to Seanan’s world, so much so that one of the creatures (roses, that’s all I’ll say) is really cool and not at all something that doesn’t fit. Traveling around the city with Toby, meeting the people (and Faerie) she knows, and learning more about who she is and where she comes from is like getting to know a really cool, mysterious person, the kind that everyone’s eyes are instinctively drawn to (but don’t worry, Toby’s got the magic to deal with inquisitive gazes). 🙂

Action-wise, I’ll say only this – Seanan puts Toby through hell!! Man, I hope I never have a day like that! 🙂

One thing I would like to have found out more about is the magic used by the Faerie – the hints and descriptions throughout the novel really made me curious as to how the magic works, where it comes from, etc but then again, I kinda think that’s just my I-read-plenty-of-epic-fantasy fetish coming through. 🙂

After reading Rosemary & Rue, I’m definitely a fan of Seanan and Toby, and I can’t wait to read the next two books (A Local Habitation in coming March 2010 & An Artificial Night coming September 2010)! 🙂

If you like your faeries to be cool and city-smart and your tales intelligent and fast-paced, you will probably enjoy this book! 🙂 Being a newbie to Urban Fantasy myself, I can say that I loved this book and am growing a real fondness for the genre, of which Rosemary & Rue is a great example! 🙂


For those in the US, get to your closest coolest bookshop ASAP or order your copy here; those in the UK can pre-order their copies here, and those in South Africa can pre-order their copies from Kalahari. 🙂


For more info on Seanan, check out her cool web-home here! 🙂


P.S. Thanks for the copy, Seanan! Loved it!

P.P.S. Saw this and just had to post it – the cover art to A Local Habitation!



Posted by on September 1, 2009 in Reviews


Tags: , ,

4 responses to “Review: October Daye Bk 1 – Rosemary & Rue by Seanan McGuire

  1. Mish

    September 3, 2009 at 3:15 am

    I’ve waited long enough (months, even) and will finally get to the bookstore to pick up a copy. I’m a bit envious you got to read R&R in its entirety, but it’s really nice to see reviews like yours the day after its release. Having posted my three cents about Seanan’s writing, I came across your post through the “possibly related” trackback.

    • Dave-Brendon de Burgh

      September 3, 2009 at 5:31 am

      Thanks for the visit! 🙂 It really was a very cool book and Toby is a wonderful character, I’m definitely looking forward to the next two books – and aren’t those covers awesome?! 🙂


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s



C.T. Phipps

Author of horror, sci-fi, and superheroes.

M.D. Thalmann

M.D. Thalmann, a novelist and freelance journalist with an affinity for satire and science fiction, lives in Phoenix, Arizona with his wife, children, and ornery cats, reads too much and sleeps too little.

Greyhart Press

Publisher of Science Fiction, Fantasy, Horror, and Thrillers

Joseph D'Lacey

My pen is my compass. It points to the page.

This Is Horror

The Voice of Horror


Book, comic and sometimes film reviews

The Talkative Writer

Musings by speculative fiction author Karen Miller

Cohesion Press

The Battle Has Just Begun

SplatterGeist Reviews

Books worth a read.

Indie Hero

Brian Marggraf, Author of Dream Brother: A Novel, Independent publishing advocate, New York City dweller

Paws in the Porridge

'She is like a muse...who kicks people in the face.'



Matthew Sylvester

father, author, martial artist

Shannon A Thompson

Science Fiction and Fantasy Author

%d bloggers like this: