Review: One Salt Sea by Seanan McGuire ★★★★★

One Salt Sea by Seanan McGuire
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Series: Book one in the October Daye series
Publication Date: September 6, 2011
ISBN: 0756406838
Page Count: 368
My Rating: ★★★★★

Summary

October "Toby" Daye is settling into her new role as Countess of Goldengreen. She's actually dating again, and she's taken on Quentin as her squire. So, of course, it's time for things to take a turn for the worse.

Someone has kidnapped the sons of the regent of the Undersea Duchy of Saltmist. To prevent a war between land and sea, Toby must find the missing boys and prove the Queen of the Mists was not behind their abduction. Toby's search will take her from the streets of San Francisco to the lands beneath the waves, and her deadline is firm: she must find the boys in three days' time, or all of the Mists will pay the price. But someone is determined to stop her-and whoever it is isn't playing by Oberon's Laws...


REVIEW


The fifth book in October Daye series, One Salt Sea, picks up one month after the events of book four, Late Eclipses. Someone has kidnapped the children of the Duchess of the undersea courts of Saltmist. Toby only has three days to find the kids, and in doing so, clear her Queen’s name and stave off a war between the land and sea Fae.

One of the things I love about this series is the incredibly detailed worldbuilding. I've read many series involving the Fae but this one seems particularly vivid and vibrant to me. Perhaps because in this one they are the only focus - we are not distracted by having to learn of other races, vamps, werewolves, etc. And incredibly, the worldbuilding in One Salt Sea is even more expansive than in most of the previous novels, largely due to the introduction of a new realm: Saltmist, home of the undersea Fae.

I'll be honest, I was slightly dubious about this upon reading the summary. I've seen many books featuring mer-people and other sea-dwelling folk and always thought "hmm, how does that work then?", and never bothered with them. Since this is the continuation of one of my now favourite series, not reading this particular undersea adventure wasn't even a possibility. And how wrong I had been to dismiss books based on my own preconceptions. McGuire made me feel like I, too, was diving into the big deep blue for the first time. It was fascinating. Although I'm glad it wasn't this setting for the majority of the book, as I would have severely missed my landlubbers had I been denied access to them for too long.

Speaking of which, the full gang was out in force in this one, with equal time dedicated to all of my favourite characters. Obviously, if it were up to me I would have Tybalt on every page, but being slightly more realistic for a second, I can concede that he was probably in it just the right amount, considering what's going on in Toby's personal life currently.

This is the first book in this series to reduce me to tears. McGuire is some sort of evil genius, to be sure. Just when I was starting to appreciate certain characters and find a level of grudging acceptance where they were concerned, she goes and rips the rug out from under me. Before this book, this turn of events might have made me happy, but now? Now I'm just a blubbering mess, that's what.

And do you know what else makes me sad? That I now have to wait twelve stinking, agonising months until the next book, Ashes of Honor. On the plus side though, after such a long time I'd simply have to do a re-read prior to it coming out, wouldn't I? *evil grin*

Well, as you'll no doubt have guessed by this point, I am in love with this series. It's right up there with my other UF favourites: Kate Daniels, Horngate witches, Cassie Palmer, Mercy Thompson, etc., and I recommend it to ALL.

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