The Winter Long by Seanan Mcguire 5 Stars

The October Daye series has quickly worked its way up to being one of my favorite Urban Fantasy series. In the 8th book of the series, events of the first book have come back to haunt Toby.

After losing just about everyone she loves, Toby has finally built a little family of her own and she’s also admitted she’s in love with Tybalt, the King of Cats. At the beginning of this book, October hopes to just take a break from being the Knight of Sylvester Torquill, Duke of Shadowed Hills, and all that it entails. Unfortunately, Faerie has other ideas.

The story in Winter Long seems to turn everything Toby knows to be true, into a lie. Even people she loves have been keeping secrets from her. The plot twist in this book was so great, that even the book blurb was limited to 4 short sentences, as if the publishers were afraid of giving something away. And everything, up until the big reveal, is an intense ride as Toby runs between faerie and the mortal world, trying to unravels the events of her past.

Once again she teams up with Tybalt, Quentin, Raj and The Luidaeg, (pronounced lou-sha-k) to solve the riddles of her life and to erase the threat to the Kingdom she’s sworn fealty too.

Even though her relationship with Tybalt is really sweet, (and much better than the relationship with Connor) I really love the dynamic between Toby and the The Luidaeg, a supposed monster in her own right. Snarky, sarcastic banter is the norm between them, but despite threatening to kill Toby from the moment they met, the Luidaeg has protected her and has helped keep her safe for the last 4 years. After pretty much being abandoned by her own mother, she has developed a sort of friendship with her mother’s sister, and the one woman who doesn’t have friends…ever.

I am amazed by the intricate world building in this series, and Toby has to be one of the best characters I’ve ever read. She has grown and matured throughout the series, and even though she’s still running headlong into situations that are extremely dangerous, she’s a lot more cautious and methodical about it….now that she has something she can’t bear to lose again.

If you haven’t read this series, I definitely recommend that you do. Starting with book one: Rosemary and Rue.

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