Rosemary and Rue Part III

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 Anya at On Starships and Dragonwings. We’re covering chapters 15-20 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 Lily in person! What do you think? Does she live up to the buildup in the first part of the book? We also meet Julie for the first time. Does it surprise you that Toby seems to have more friends than she lets on?

So first, I was totally off in one of my answers last week – about the pond holding magical healing powers for Toby.

Lily seems to have all the common sense that Toby lacks. But she also has a much longer view and I think her powers are confined to this particular garden. I am unsure if Lily ever leaves the garden. There’s still a fair amount of mystery to her, but yes, I feel she lives up to the buildup. I look forward to learning more abut her.

Julie and Toby seem like great friends, practically finishing each other’s sentences kind of friends. After seeing how Toby has all these other friends that she has not bothered to contact since her return from the pond, I was not surprised to see she had yet one more. Let me just say that Mary Robinette Kowal does this great near-pur voice for Julie in the audiobook.

2. Tybalt to the rescue! Do you buy his excuse for why he chose to save Toby’s life? Ulterior motives much?

In part, it makes sense. He could always get out of it by presenting the chest to her corpse and then someone else would be free to pick it up. The letter of the promise is maintained. However, it looks like ties to Tybalt are more complex than we know. Toby is great friends with one of his nieces? distant  offspring? And I suspect there may be agreements between the Court of Cats and Sylvester’s court. Plus, I think Tybalt genuinely likes Toby and may have been flattered by her trust in him when she entrusted him with chest.

3. Toby gets together with Devin in this section. Their relationship is a bit fraught, what do you think? Is it good she is relying on Devin or do you think it is unhealthy?

I think it is unhealthy but not sure it goes any deeper than that. Devin has served a purpose in the gran scheme of Changelings and Fae life for perhaps centuries, right? How long do Changelings live again? So, it might only be a few hundred years, but still, he has become this useful place for unwanted Changelings to go. I don’t like him or how he treats the kids, but Toby makes some strong arguments about how everyone has to choose when to grow up and show some spine to Devin before they’re ready to move on with their lives.

Still, it all smacks of co-dependence. Devin likes the power and Toby likes the attention.

4. That freaking doppleganger! Did you suspect Gillian was fake? Do you think Toby should try to get to know Gillian now that she is older?

Yes, I suspected Gillian was something with malevolent intentions right off the bat. It was too coincidental that Toby’s daughter would pop on by at this moment. I didn’t know if it was a strong glamour or perhaps a possession of the real Gillian. I had not thought of a doppleganger.

Yes, I think Toby is ready to take that tough step. Through all this misadventure, she’s reconnecting with all her fae friends and it’s not as painful (in most cases) as she thought it would be. It would be tough if her daughter rejected her, but that might only be her initial reaction. Toby can’t know unless she reaches out to her.

5. Finally, we only have a few chapters left, any idea how everything is going to shake out? Ideas on who is behind it all yet?

Well, I don’t particularly like Devin, but that doesn’t mean he’s evil, just a jerk on a power trip. Is it wrong to hope it’s him and that he is soundly vanquished at the end of the book? But then there’s Connor’s wife (Luna’s daughter) Ralin or Raslin or some such. She’s not firing on all cylinders so while she might be part of it, she wouldn’t be the master mind. I trust Sylvester and Lily and mostly Tybalt.

I fully expect Toby to end up with a few more scars before this is over.

Other Tidbits:

If I ever get shot with a cold iron bullet, I want some sexytimes healing!

Devin’s kids who are sent to guard Toby seem like a fun pair. I think we met them last week. I am hoping Toby can help them see they don’t have to be dependent on Devin.

Do you think the doppleganger had to meet Gillian in order to look like her, or would a picture suffice? Should I be worried for Gillian’s safety?


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.

7 thoughts on “Rosemary and Rue Part III”

  1. I was definitely thinking about Gillian’s safety after the doppelganger incident! Hopefully it’s not one of those creeps who has to eat their victims before they can take their form…. (horrific twist to the tale!)

    I just can’t like Devin, he has his place in fae society but he’s completely untrustworthy, abusive and possessive. And you’re right – it’s co-dependence all the way! Toby doesn’t do herself any favours with this relationship but it’s almost like she can get some semblance of friendship and normality back whilst she’s with him – even if it is incredibly messed up! She just needs to stop worrying and actually contact her friends (and family!)

    1. I don’t think the doppeganger has to eat the victim to take on their appearance because she took on Toby’s appearance to open the door and offer to bake cookies.

      Devin’s scum even if he’s currently Toby’s favorite fuck buddy.

      1. That’s something I was wondering, too. HOW do they take on their traits? Do they need to actually see them, touch them, have something of theirs like a piece of clothing? I hope we learn that.

  2. First, I hope you are feeling well. I spent time in the hospital for pneumonia a few years back. I almost went bonkers. Take care!

    I LOVED Kowal’s voice for Julie. It felt so spot on for the type of character that Julie seems to be. I think I remember them saying that Lily could leave her knowe, but her powers aren’t as effective as they in her Knowe. I think Toby mentions if she hadn’t been in Lily’s Knowe while she was healing her that she wouldn’t have healed nearly as well, but still there’s mystery to what that means entirely. Everything about Devin drives me crazy because I know them feels, Tobes. So, it’s really hard to read some of those parts as far as their relationships go because I’m just like, “Don’t do this.” I think changelings live for some centuries definitely way longer than humans still. I hate to admit he has his place, and it *could* be a good place if he let it be, but…. yeah…

    1. Thanks for the well wishes. I have a severe dislike of hospital food now.

      I agree with you.I think most people have been in ‘bad for you’ relationships and therefore we can all sympathize with Toby. We might have started off all naive but at some point realized the relationship was bad for us in some way and yet still kept doing it. And that is one thing I am really liking about this book – Toby is easy to relate to because of these weaknesses or very human traits.

  3. I was kind of thinking that the Dopple just had to see the person – maybe need something of theirs it never even occurred to me to be worried about Gillian – whoops!
    I do wonder about the relationship between Devin and Toby – do you think maybe she’s playing the longer game here (like, actually using him) but thing is, she got away from him – and she clearly knows what he’s like and capably of, plus he seems to be a bit obsessed with her for having been able to escape him – I wonder if she’s playing him – I hope so because otherwise she could be in a world of trouble!
    Lynn 😀

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