An Artificial Night Read-Along Week No.1

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We’re journeying through the third book in the October Daye series. If you’re interested in joining this Read-Along, visit the SF/F Read-Along group for more information and to join the discussion.

“October “Toby” Daye is a changeling-half human and half fae-and the only one who has earned knighthood. Now she must take on a nightmarish new challenge. Someone is stealing the children of the fae as well as mortal children, and all signs point to Blind Michael. Toby has no choice but to track the villain down-even when there are only three magical roads by which to reach Blind Michael’s realm, home of the Wild Hunt-and no road may be taken more than once. If Toby cannot escape with the children, she will fall prey to the Wild Hunt and Blind Michael’s inescapable power.”

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schedule

Week 1: Saturday 9th April, Chapters 1-7, hosted by Over The Effing Rainbow
Week 2: Saturday 16th April, Chapters 8-17, hosted by Books By Proxy
Week 3: Saturday 23rd April, Chapters 18-24, hosted by Lynn’s Book Blog
Week 4: Saturday 30th April, Chapters 25-End, hosted by Over The Effing Rainbow

Questions

1. The book opens with Toby at a birthday party for Mitch and Stacy’s youngest child, and follows with an early-morning meet-up with Connor. Both scenes serve to keep previously introduced characters in play and show us how life is progressing for Toby, but in very different ways. What do you make of these scenes after all that’s gone before?

Honestly, I am tired of Connor. After three books, that song and dance is starting to get a little old between Connor and Toby. I really tried to sympathize with him because his life is privileged, but he’s obviously not happy. Maybe if I truly believe that he needed a friend and not someone to fall in bed with, I might really feel some sort of sympathy for him.

I was glad to see more about some of Toby’s friends, and I love that her life is moving forward slowly yet surely. It’s nice to see her actually interacting with others and having a life. I know everything isn’t perfect for her, and she still has many threads in her life that’ll eventually need addressing (such as her issues with her own daughter). However, it was nice to see her in such a relaxed setting actually enjoying herself. Also, seeing how she interacted with her friends gave the later scenes more impact because we know how close she is to Stacy and Mitch.

2. As we may have come to expect by now, things rapidly go downhill from there… What are your thoughts right now on this interpretation of the Wild Hunt?

I love the Wild Hunt in stories. One of my favorite interpretations is from The Witcher series. I’m very curious about these children that Blind Michael takes. She’s repeatedly told not to trust them by Luna, so I’m going to assume that she’s going to be faced with some of them later in the book. I was also interested in this idea of using human children as steeds. I’m wondering how that works. It’s mentioned that they’re changed. Does that mean that they’re changed into some kind of beasts? I’m hoping so because I keep laughing at the mental image of fae children riding piggyback on other children. LOL.

Steed

FORWARD TRUSTY STEED!

3. And (because it wouldn’t be a Toby read along if I didn’t celebrate him) Tybalt is back! After what was apparently a lengthy absence… What do you suppose kept Tybalt away after the events in A Local Habitation…?

Hello there, Tybalt!

Hello There

I’m not sure. Maybe since he’s been having all these weird interactions with Toby he decided to take a step back. Maybe he had something important to do. Or maybe he’s a cat and therefore capricious and was probably doing whatever it is that cats do such as sticking themselves in things they shouldn’t be in and sleeping.

no cat

This is probably what Tybalt was doing.

4. Back to the real drama – Toby (eventually) gets some answers from Luna after a non-starter meeting with Lily. Everyone’s being mysterious, but Luna is acting especially strangely – as is Sylvester, who is openly unhappy with her about something… Any thoughts? Guesses? Suspicions?

I don’t know what to think quite yet. All I could think is that Luna was acting very, very strange, even after she explained what was going on it seemed really odd. It feels like Toby still isn’t getting a complete story despite knowing that the Wild Hunt is now involved. I’m interested to see where this is going.

Favorite Quote

“Got it. And you think about what I said. Getting out more couldn’t hurt.”

“With who? Mitch and Stacy have kids, Kerry’s always busy, Julie hates me, and you have a cab to drive.”

He shrugged. “I don’t know. How about you call that King of Cats guy I used to see you with? Take him out, get him drunk, and see if you can make him sing karaoke.”

* * *

There are certain basic rules of survival in my world. One of them is that you don’t live to a ripe old age by ignoring the warnings you get from your pets. Cats who live with the fae tend to get a little touched by strangeness, and the things that get that kind of reaction from them are usually looking for worse reactions from me. Reactions such as screaming, running, or going for a weapon. Whoever or whatever was out there probably didn’t intend anything good.

* * *

“I’ve never shopped naked,” I said.“I thought you were my Fetch. Aren’t you supposed to know these things?”

“Of course. I know everything there is to know about you, right up until the universe decided you were destined to die and created me to be your guide.”

“Everything?” I didn’t like the sound of that. There are some things I don’t want anyone to know.

“Everything. From what you got on your sixth birthday to what kind of flowers you leave on Dare’s grave. I even know what you were thinking about Tybalt after you saw him in those red leather pants—”

I held up my hand. “Stop. I believe you.” “I thought you might.”

She smirked, adding, “I didn’t even need to get detailed.”

* * *

 

One of the stranger tenets of the fae moral code says that the phrase “thank you” implies an obligation beyond the acts already performed and is thus to be avoided at all costs. Faerie is fond of avoiding obligations. I guess that’s part of why the mortal world has always dismissed us as flakes and tricksters; we only thank you if you owe us.

* * *

“Ah,” he said, softly. “I should have known it would be something of the sort.”

Before I had a chance to react, he stepped forward, kissing me on the forehead. “I have to return to my Court and let the parents of the missing ones know that you’ve agreed. I’ll come to you later.”

I stared at him, stunned. “What . . . ?”

“Open roads, Toby. Find our children.” He hesitated like he was about to say something else, but he didn’t; he just turned and walked to the edge of the parking lot.

Additional Thoughts

I don’t know how I feel about all this talk about Ray being crazy. I mean, I don’t doubt that she is, but I haven’t really seen her do anything to make me think that she’s batshit crazy. I’ve only been taking Connor and Toby’s word for it. This excuse of having to tip around Ray is just starting to get old and tired, too, until I really see her doing more than just being overly bitter as she was in the first book.

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Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire (October Daye #1)
Rosemary and Rue Read-Along Week No.1
Rosemary and Rue Read-Along Week No.2
Rosemary and Rue Read-Along Week No.3
Rosemary and Rue Read-Along Week No.4

A Local Habitation by Seanan McGuire (October Daye #2)
A Local Habitation Read-Along Week No.1
A Local Habitation Read-Along Week No.2
A Local Habitation Read-Along Week No.3
A Local Habitation Read-Along Week No.4

Tiara

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5 Comments on “An Artificial Night Read-Along Week No.1

  1. When I read your sentence about being tired of Connor I had to laugh out loud because I had the very same reaction to him back when I was reading the book. Yes, he’s in a bad situation – arranged political marriage and so on – but the guy comes across as big whiner, doesn’t he? 😉
    As for the rest of your questions… well, they will have to wait because my lips are sealed! LOL LOL

    Have fun…

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    • Connor is getting on my last nerve. There aren’t many characters that feel like they’re draining me like some real people can do, but he’s one of them. Maybe because his drama reminds me exactly of people I’ve had to take a break from because they are emotionally exhausting. They just leech all your willpower. I feel like I’m tired on Toby’s behalf. LOL.

      I know. I’ll get there. It’s fun to speculate where things are going. Are you all caught up on this series?

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  2. I too hope the children are changed into appropriate steeds, otherwise it could come off as some sort of silly, albeit warped, game as one finds in Peter Pan stories.

    Yep, cats sticking themselves in things they shouldn’t be in – that does sound like Tybalt!

    That’s a good point about Raysel. We the readers haven’t really seen her doing anything truly crazy and/or dangerous yet. If someone in real life told me someone else was crazy, I would need detailed examples before I believed them, and then for some people, I would actually need to see it first hand.

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  3. Yeah, I agree – I think we need to see some Ray badassness. At the moment it’s all talk and no action! And Connor is a whiny pain in the proverbial – frankly, I have a little bit of sympathy but it’s being stretched to the limit. It just feels like he’s desperate to take Toby down a route that will be like five minutes of fun for him and 5 years of misery for her! Selfish much. It’s not like he’s interested in being her friend is it !!!
    The Hunt – this sounds so creepy! Maybe it’ll be like the scene in Pinocchio where the children are transformed into donkeys – only obviously they won’t be donkeys, and Pinocchio won’t make a surprise appearance !
    Tybalt – I think he’s checking things out, I think he has suspicions about Toby and he’s digging. Tybalt, Tybalt, don’t be too nosey – curiosity killed the cat after all! Of course I’m only speculating there. It would be good to have his mysterious disappearances explained.
    Lynn 😀

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  4. Pingback: Tiara’s 2nd Quarter Update | The BiblioSanctum

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