cover image Be the Serpent

Be the Serpent

Seanan McGuire. DAW, $28 (368p) ISBN 978-0-7564-1686-7

Sixteen installments into the October Daye series (after When Sorrows Come), McGuire proves that her capacity to play the long game remains unparalleled. This tense tale picks up on seeds planted since the very beginning, while also delivering jaw-dropping revelations. After marrying Tybalt, King of Cats, October “Toby” Daye, a changeling detective and acknowledged Hero of the Realm, is tentatively content. But even as she catches her breath and takes care of long overdue business—including testifying at the trial of her old enemy Rayseline—a brutal attack on her friend Stacy Brown’s family upsets the fragile peace. Toby’s frantic search for the culprit leads to a legend dating back to the origins of the Fae: Titania, the Summer Queen of Faerie, has finally surfaced after centuries of absence. She’s bound by a magical compulsion to slay all those who know of her existence, making her a threat to Toby and everyone Toby loves. Now Toby and her allies must find a way to stop the closest thing the Fae have to a god. The usual blend of magic, mayhem, and mystery is fully present as McGuire continues to push her world’s boundaries and her hero’s limits. This proves a wholly satisfying payoff for longtime readers. Agent: Diana Fox, Fox Literary. (Sept.)