SF/F Read Alongs: Late Eclipses, By Seanan McGuire. (Week 3)

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The SF/F Read Along for Late Eclipses (Book 4 of the October Daye series.) continues.

There WILL be spoilers beyond this point – and Squeeing, lots and lots of squeeing!

This read along of Late Eclipses was organized by the SF/F Read Along group on Goodreads, and has been broken down into four parts and participants are asked some questions on what they think so far.

The read along to Late Eclipses has been broken down as follows;

Week 1: Saturday 2nd July, Chapters 1 to 9, hosted by Over the Effing Rainbow

Week 2: Saturday 9th July, Chapters 10 to 18, hosted by Lynn’s Book Blog

Week 3: Saturday 16th July, Chapters 19 to 27, hosted by Books By Proxy

Week 4: Saturday 23rd July, Chapters 28 to End, hosted by Hisham… Hey – That ME!

The banner I’m using is a based upon the original cover art by Christian McGrath. I created the banner using free wallpapers from Seanan McGuire’s website.


The Book

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Late Eclipses by Seanan McGuire. (October Daye #4)

October “Toby” Daye, changeling knight in the service of Duke Sylvester Torquill, finds the delicate balance of her life shattered when she learns that an old friend is in dire trouble. Lily, Lady of the Tea Gardens, has been struck down by a mysterious, seemingly impossible illness, leaving her fiefdom undefended. Struggling to find a way to save Lily and her subjects, Toby must confront her own past as an enemy she thought was gone forever raises her head once more: Oleander de Merelands, one of the two people responsible for her fourteen-year exile.

Time is growing short and the stakes are getting higher, for the Queen of the Mists has her own agenda. With everything on the line, Toby will have to take the ultimate risk to save herself and the people she loves most—because if she can’t find the missing pieces of the puzzle in time, Toby will be forced to make the one choice she never thought she’d have to face again…”

~ Goodreads Description.

This is book four! (As with all October Daye books, this will be a re-read for me!)


Previously on October Daye…

Week 1, Toby was ordered to attend the Queens court – where she was unexpectedly gifted the title Countess of Goldengreen. Surely a trap of somekind! Oh, and Tybalt kisses Toby! UH-HUH!

Lily is strangely sickening – and nobody can explain how or why!

Karen visits Toby in a dream to show a memory of Amandine and Oleander – a memory that Toby doesn’t seem to recall!

Toby also attends a party in Shadowedhills where Luna is seemingly poisoned! Toby understandably suspects the work of old foe – Oleander.

Week 2, Sylvester reacts badly to Luna’s poisoning. Raysel is prepping to take over Shadowed Hills and blame Toby for her mothers death under Oberons law the moment Luna might die! Connor is revealed to have been attacked when he tried to summon aide (When Toby discovered Luna).

Lily has died! The Fae of Goldengate park and the Tea Gardens mourn for her – but also worry for their own futures and security!

The Cait Sidhe has also been attacked, some of the meat that the weakest and most vulnerable cats eat has been poisoned causing tragedy amongst Tybalts Kingdom.

Toby seems to be jumping at shadows, seeing Oleander in various places – Toby is beginning to believe that she might actually be going crazy! She secures from Tybalt a promise, that If she is guilty of all of the deaths and suffering – that if she really is crazy, Tybalt will kill her!

This Week, We learned that Toby was indeed poisoned too! Spike and the other Rose Goblins are suffering as well as Luna. Rayseline REALLY doesn’t like Toby and we find out WHY! Manuel has really become a hater of Toby – so much so that he actually lies about her before the Queen!

Oleander is definitely REAL, not a crazy imagining of Toby!

Toby gets shot by Elf-shot TWICE! Amandine swoops in and saves Toby just as she dies by giving her a choice… In doing so, Toby learns some secrets that have been hidden from her about her own family and blood! May is no longer Toby’s Fetch!

Walther, after figuring out how to potentially save Luna – was last seen taking a cure for the Cait Sidhe poisoning victims to Tybalt – but did he make it?

Toby was thrown into an Iron rich prison cell, to be driven mad over three days by order of a hateful Queen – before being executed in the most excruciating manner known to Fae! But Connor, Quentin and Tybalt have other ideas and break her out!


The Questions for Week Three of the SF/F Read Along by Proxyfish* Lisa

1. We get to meet a new character in the form of Walter, who’s got a rather unusual special skill among the Fae… What are your first impressions of our first faerie scientist in the Tobyverse?

I like him. He seems like a decent guy – a little unusual in that like Toby, he has embraced life outside the Summerlands/Knowes and is pursuing a life and career at the University!

2. “I choose the evil I know.”
We finally get to meet Amandine (sort of) in the flesh, and she’s got one hell of a bombshell to drop… How surprised were you by the revelation of Toby’s bloodline, and by her second Choice?

*cough* Not very… This revelation was one that stood out and got firmly lodged in my memories from when I first read this book 😉 (That being said, I was completely surprised the first time around!) What I still find interesting is that Tybalt managed to figure it out on his own… and that no other Daoine Sidhe saw fit to mention anything to Toby over the years!

3. Rayseline’s reasons for hating Toby come out in the open, though that doesn’t put a stop to her efforts to have Toby removed from her position… Do you think she deserves more or less sympathy now, after their confrontation(s)?

I’m still not very sympathetic to poor Rayseline. Sure, she had a terrible upbringing/traumatic experience… But despite the explanation she gave, why did she fixate on Toby over any of her fathers other Knights or Allies? I think Rayselines issue is more to with the jealousy she feels over the favouritism she perceives Toby getting over her! For that I have no sympathy for her whatsoever.

4. “We were peaceful while you were gone.”
Speaking of scheming to remove Toby, the Queen is handed a chance to lock her up and takes it – and she doesn’t waste much time or show much mercy. What do you make of her reasons for what she’s done? Is that all that’s driving her or do you think there might be something deeper and darker behind it?

Oh, there must be more to it… It’s all very murky in my memories from the last time I read this – but the Queen is all about The Queen. I don’t think she would do anything out of anything BUT self interest or betterment. If this isn’t going to benefit the Queen somehow directly – someone else must be pulling her strings!

5. And what about Oleander? It seems she isn’t a figment of Toby’s imagination after all – but how is she managing to stay so close without being found? Any guesses/theories/suspicions?

The Queen is very good at illusions and transformations… isn’t she! Otherwise, I’ve no real idea how Oleander is pulling this off – surely not on her own!

(*There was a last minute change of plans and unfortunately Proxyfish was unable to host this week. Lisa at Over The Effing Rainbow stepped in this week instead. Hopefully Proxy will be back and in the swing of things again soon – fingers crossed!)


Well, the intrigue and twists are coming thick and fast in week 3. Who will survive to see the end of the final week… Stay with us to find out!

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One thought on “SF/F Read Alongs: Late Eclipses, By Seanan McGuire. (Week 3)

  1. It’s all very intriguing and I can’t wait to read the final chapters now as I’m definitely puzzled by all the revelations this week.
    Raysel actually seems a little jealous of the way Sylvester likes Toby – I don’t understand it, she’s made herself into a really very bitter person and her reasons seem so fragile – like you said above, she might just as well blame the rest of Sylvester’s knights or Sylvester himself even. I can’t help wondering if she developed some sort of ‘Stockholm Syndrome’ and is actually working in cahoots with Oleander!
    Lynn 😀

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