Book Review: “Of Things Unknown” by Seanan McGuire

Posted November 3, 2017 by Kathy Davie in Book Reviews / 0 Comments

Book Review: “Of Things Unknown” by Seanan McGuire

I received this book for free from the library in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

"Of Things Unknown" by Seanan McGuire
Series: October Daye #11.5
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Published by DAW Books on September 5, 2017
Pages: 61
Format: Hardcover
Source: the library

Also in this series: Chimes at Midnight

Also by this author: Chimes at Midnight, Indexing, The Winter Long, The InCryptid Prequels, Pocket Apocalypse, A Red Rose Chain, Reflections, Once Broken Faith, "Dreams and Slumbers", Chaos Choreography, Magic For Nothing, Indigo, Every Heart a Doorway, The Brightest Fell, Beneath the Sugar Sky, Night and Silence, "Suffer a Sea-change", The Girl in the Green Silk Gown, "The Recitation of the Most Holy and Harrowing Pilgrimage of Mindy and Also Mork", Tricks for Free, That Ain't Witchcraft, "The Measure of a Monster", The Unkindest Tide, "Hope is Swift", Come Tumbling Down, Imaginary Numbers, "Follow the Lady", "The Fixed Stars", "Forbid the Sea", "No Sooner Met", Across the Green Grass Fields

A short story that falls in at 11.5 in the October Daye urban fantasy series with this tale set in the San Jose area and revolving around Countess April O’Leary. It’s been three years since A Local Habitation, 2.

My Take

It’s all about love (and can be found in the back of The Brightest Fell, 11) and guilt in first-person protagonist point-of-view from April’s perspective.

I gotta say this was rather annoying for all the whining that April does, and yet it also makes for a fascinating insight into how a computer might think, if it were alive in the sense we understand. And it’s that combination of dryad-computer that provides April with her belief.

Now, I loved the outcome, but it doesn’t seem right. But then who am I to argue with a dryad-turned-lightning?

The Story

It’s been three years of grieving and guilt for young April. She feels responsible for her mother’s death. For so many deaths. And she’s terrified of losing her only other mother, for life goes on.

Yet her own beginnings give her hope. A crazy, farfetched sort of hope that her mother’s last project may hold the key.

The Characters

Countess April O’Leary, a.k.a., April ap Learianth, was the “daughter” of January, a fae of mixed blood — alchemy and blood-work — and April now rules the County of Tamed Lightning. A dryad who ran and became so much more. Li Qin Zhou had been January’s wife and the only remaining mother for April. Li Qin is also acting as custodian over the Duchy of Dreamer’s Glass since its true Duchess, Treasa Riordan, disappeared in Ashes of Honor, 6.

Yui, a kitsune descendant of Maeve’s, had been their alchemist engaged to Elliot, a Bannick also descended from Maeve who served as January’s and now April’s seneschal; Barbara, a Queen of Cats and Gordan’s best friend; Peter; Colin; and, Terrie had also been killed. Gordan is the fae who betrayed.

Sir October Daye is a knight errant of the realm. Quentin Sollys is Toby’s squire. Duke Torquill of Shadowed Hills is/was January’s uncle.

The Library of Stars is located in San Francisco.

The Title

The title is a hope “Of Things Unknown” that may restore the balance in April’s and Li Qin’s lives.

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