Welcome everyone to the read along of Seanan McGuire’s A Local Habitation, Book 2 in the October Daye series. Anyone is welcome to join us over at our GoodReads Group! Check out the info at the end of the post.
This week’s hosted by Books By Proxy. We’re covering chapters 17-25 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. First things first, Toby braved the likelihood of being eaten alive by summoning the night-haunts! What are your impressions of this strange race of fae? And how do you think Toby’s relationship with the Luidaeg will change now that her final question has been asked?
Well, someone or something always has to eat the dead, so I kind of think of this race of fae as sentient fungus and scavenger insects. It’s really the only thing they live on (dead organic matter) and they provide a much needed service. But not too many people want to hang out with beetles and mushrooms. Still, Toby needs to tread very carefully with her new knowledge. If the fae start burning their dead and the Night-haunts go hungry, then Toby will be at the top of their hit list.
I think the Luidaeg is a bit sad. But I hope she will rise above it and find a way to ‘trick’ Toby into still being a part of her life, like a mentoree kind of thing.
2. The storyline has really kicked off with another death to add to the body count and yet another attempt on Toby’s life. How did you feel about this latest murder? Are you suspicious of anyone in particular or seeing any patterns regarding motivations?
This last murder, of January, was brutal. It felt personal. So I think we are looking at two murders now, with different motivations. I am starting to look funny at Elliot. He has lost his love (Barbara) and further killings haven’t stopped. He might have got to the point where he blamed January for that and carried out a kind of revenge killing.
The first several all have the same MO and I still wonder if they are really dead. But their blood is empty, which means their minds are empty as well. So, brain dead looks more likely. And what if one of those Night-haunts went rogue and swept in early to devour the memories but left the bodies? That would explain little Night-haunt footprints surrounding Jan’s body.
And I could be totally off base. Probably am.
3. Before her untimely demise, January was on the verge of revealing a secret regarding ALH and a mysterious project it was running. Do you have any suspicions on what this might be?
I wonder if it is a kind of virtual reality experience, perhaps for entertainment, perhaps for brainstorming with colleagues great distances away. There’s that thing with the cats – they go in to ALH but don’t come out. Tybalt can’t find a way into through the shadows. Then April can teleport with objects, including living ones. Matrix gone bad? Are they in the Matrix as soon as the step through the door and the bodies they find are the left over husks of their Avatars from those that escaped?
4. April is a fascinating and amusing character to read about, how do you think she’ll cope now she no longer has her adoptive mother? Can you see her becoming part of another court or as an addition to Toby’s life?
She’s heartbroken, obviously. But she also seems to be rallying, helping out where she can. She’s also become a little protective of Quentin, fetching him the aquarium and telling Toby not to disturb him as he rests. So perhaps April will be transferred over to the Duke’s court. After all, he will probably see it as the right thing to do, since his own niece adopted April as a daughter.
5. In this section of the novel a little more is revealed about one half of our suspicious siblings, Alex and Terrie. Whilst Alex gets very handsy and a bit hypnocreep with Toby, Terrie is almost non-existent! What are your thoughts on this pair? Was Toby’s reaction justified? And are you as suspicious of at least one half of this pairing as Toby?!
I still think that Alex and Terrie are the same being somehow and that is why you never see them together. But now I wonder if they are some kind of succubi – able to turn on the lust and charm and then feed off of it. I do believe that it is Alex’s nature and it is hard for him to control it, but that doesn’t excuse him pushing the physical aspects on Toby after she made it clear she didn’t want to kiss him. Personally, I would have left a mark on him – bloody nose or such.
6. Alex might not be able to turn off the seduction but in this section we see the return of both Connor and Tybalt. What do you think of Connor and his obviously complicated relationship with both Toby and Raysel? Do you think they have a future? Or is Tybalt too much of an infuriating temptation? Or more to the point, will either of them be of any use during the investigation? Thoughts please!
OK, so I know from other readers that have read more of the series that there is a Team Tybalt opportunity coming up. But right now, being totally new to the series, I see that Tybalt is a little fascinated with Toby and that Toby is rather oblivious to his interest. They have a friendship that they are building on and I really like this. It’s healthy for Toby. So once that romantic aspect does finally blossom, I hope it will be awesome for both. But right now, Tybalt might be a small distraction because of his snarky comments.
Connor is a different story. Toby obviously still has steamy feelings for him and he is familiar. In the stress of the situation, it’s easy to push away the fact that Connor is not a free man. Raysel isn’t playing with a full deck and Toby keeps telling us (and Quentin) that insane fae are so fucking dangerous. So, yeah, these two need to cool it before anyone takes note and word gets back to Raysel.
Quentin nearly died again! He was such a minor character in Book 1, but I have gotten rather attached to him. I think that Toby needs to 1) get her ‘staff’ blood typed and 2) get some emergency medical skills so that in a situation like this she can maybe even do a blood transfusion.
So that selkie skin that was burnt to ash in Toby’s car – like that’s going to be a big freaking deal later, right? It’s a little creepy, but I survived the Night-haunt scene, I can deal with skinned kelpie lines of heritage dangerous BS as well.
Info on the Read Along
Here’s the schedule:
Week 1: Saturday 5th March, Chapters 1-8 hosted by Over The Effing Rainbow
Week 2: Saturday 12th March, Chapters 9-16 – hosted by Lynn’s Book Blog
Week 3: Saturday 19th March, Chapters 17-25 – hosted by Books By Proxy
Week 4: Saturday 26th March, Chapters 26-end – hosted by The Bibliosanctum
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.