Rosemary and Rue Part II

rosemary_and_rue_read_along McGuireWelcome everyone to the read along of Seanan McGuire’s Rosemary and Rue, Book 1 in the October Daye series. Anyone is welcome to join us! Check out the info at the end of the post.

This week’s host is Lynn at Lynn’s Books. We’re covering chapters 7-14 below, so beware of spoilers if you have not read that far. I’m doing the audiobook version (which is awesome) but I apologize now for any misspellings of names and such.

1. We finally get to meet Devin and Sylvester. They’ve both played important roles in Toby’s life. What were your initial impressions of both of them and the worlds in which they live. What were your first thoughts about them?

Devin comes off as a bit slimy. He has his rules and, so far, seems to hold to them. He fills a void for those unwanted or wandering misfits. Toby has some fondness for him still, so he can’t be all bad. Still, I think of him as a bad, unhealthy habit that can still give a little sugar rush upon first consumption.

Sylvester rules with a light touch. I like him far better. He has genuine affection for Toby and I really do wish she had gone to him sooner. Still, I think I understand why she didn’t – she doesn’t feel worthy for some reason.

2. I’m totally intrigued by the Hope Chest – do you have any ideas about what exactly it is and what might be the significance of it being found?

Well, I don’t have any solid ideas, but I have to assume that the name – Hope Chest – has some significance. Does it hold the hopes of Evening or the hopes of whoever holds it?  Does it make those hopes come true? Or does it twist them? So far, everything to do with the fae has had some price. Everything is a trade. So I am guessing this Hope Chest exacts some price on the user or bearer.

So far, both Toby and Tybalt seem quite surprised at its very existence and yet they both know what it is. Toby, we know, hasn’t been alive all that long compared to many of the fae we have met. Not sure how old Tybalt is, but probably at least 100, but maybe 400 or more. So, that probably means that tales of Hope Chests feature in fae lore and bedtime stories and yet I don’t know the real significance of it yet.

3. Tybalt – I was curious as to Toby’s reasoning to trust him with the Hope Chest – what do you think?

Even if you are on the outs with someone, if you understand their nature and know that they will hold to their word, then you can make use of them. So, I agree with Toby’s reasoning here. It will make the Hope Chest far harder to find.

However, everyone has that price at which they will trade away their promise. I wonder if Tybalt will be pressed or tempted to do so at some point.

4. We experience the reaction of other members of the fae to the murder of Evening and Toby telling them about the Queen’s reactions – did their reactions give you any clues at all??

I think Sylvester’s and Luna’s reactions were closest to what Toby was expecting – that sense of true loss and worry over the murder of such a powerful and long-lived fae. Raysel is not firing on all cylinders so I am not sure yet if her laughing outburst means anything. Sylvester or Luna (I forget which) told Toby she would be wise to stay away from the Queen and to not trust her. I think that was rather self-evident to Toby, but it’s good to hear from another source. And perhaps Sylvester and Luna have reasons of their own for not trusting the Queen.

5. What were your thoughts on Raysel and Luna?

I’m really very curious as to what Raysel and Luna underwent for 12 years. I think it is significant they went missing at the same time as Toby. Obviously, Luna weathered it better. Perhaps that is because she has Sylvester to confide in. Perhaps it is because she underwent less. Raysel has gone off her rocker and I hope she can confide in someone and get back to good. However, I expect we shall see a tragic ending for her.

6. That ending, did we just end up back in the first post? – what is going on? Speculation?? Lets just talk about it please.

Ah yes, being ambushed by a freaking red cap! I did like how Toby rattled him around the back seat before trying to flee on foot. She’s badly injured but I suspect that particular pond holds some healing powers for her now. I am not sure if she will change into a fish and then be healed, or be healed in her natural form and wake up cold and damp on the pond’s edge in a few hours. Perhaps she now has this special power to change into a koi fish in any body of fresh water and heal herself and this is how she will discover that ability.

Other Tidbits:

Sounds like Toby’s old beau at Sylvester’s court may still hold a little flame for her. Still, when Toby described him as a surfer, I can’t help but think of all the bad surfer comedies and it’s hard for me to take him seriously.

Luna’s rose garden sounds awesome and creepy at the same time. It kind of reminded me a bit of this rooftop garden from Scott Lynch’s series The Gentlemen Bastards, a place where Jean learned to fight – and his balance and of limb placement were greatly improved by the blood drinking plants.

I liked how Tybalt helped Toby make it through sunrise. Like a cold splash of water there!

Info on the Read Along

Here’s the schedule:

Week 1: Saturday 9th January, Chapters 1-6, hosted by Lisa at Over the Effing Rainbow
Week 2: Saturday 16th January, Chapters 7-14, hosted by Lynn at Lynn’s Books
Week 3: Saturday 23rd January, Chapters 15-20, hosted by Anya at On Starships and Dragonwings
Week 4: Saturday 30th January, Chapters 21-End, hosted by Over the Effing Rainbow

You can catch the weekly questions and links to folks’ weekly posts over at our GoodReads group SF/F Read Alongs. Have a look  around and you’ll see we have other upcoming SFF read alongs planned. As always, you’re welcome to be lurker, a commenter, or do your post.

6 thoughts on “Rosemary and Rue Part II”

  1. I really love Luna and Sylvester – they seem so genuine and like true friends, perhaps even family, to Toby. Raysel is most definitely off her rocker though! I’m sure she’ll have some part to play in this book or the next because she certainly is unhinged. I’m definitely intrigued to find out what happened to them!

    1. Luna and Sylvester seem solid. I do worry a little (just because I have a suspicious mind) that Sylvester (because he’s such a good guy) would be easily manipulated by someone he trusts or cares about, like Luna or eve Raysel.

      1. I don’t doubt that Raysel would try to manipulate everyone she comes into contact with! I definitely took an instant dislike to her. Obviously this will provide a bit of conflict at some point as Sylvester and Luna may have to choose between their daughter and whatever is ‘right’.

  2. I LOL’d at your Connor comment because I thought the same thing. I could NOT take Connor seriously after he was described as a surfer. I don’t know if Luna weathered it better. I mean, she could have, but without us really knowing what happened, I don’t know. Some people are just STEEL and some people are not in bad situations. That’s okay. Luna was obviously affected greatly, too. She SEEMS the better adjusted one. Ray’s outbursts were a little more reassuring to me for some reason. She is showing outrage. She needs help for sure, but she’s not holding it in. Luna seems to be holding all hers in, and it seems to never fail that people who hold it in like that meltdown in the most terrifying ways in the end. That may not happen, but that’s what I keep thinking.

    1. Connor the Surfer Fairie. Sigh….

      I would like to know if Luna was growing sharp, cutting roses before her lengthy disappearance or if it is something she took up afterwards. If afterwards, then I think this is her way of showing her anger and also building her protection.

      1. Me too. After I posted that comment, I wondered if maybe the glass garden was actually a defense system or maybe it was an allegory to self-punishment, making things that could hurt you if you’re not careful, because you hadn’t been “strong enough” to protect your family. I don’t remember Toby mentioning glass roses before this happening, but I do remember her mentioning Luna being a pro at gardening. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t a thing before, but it really feels like it started afterwards.

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