Cover Image: Night and Silence

Night and Silence

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Night and Silence by Seanan McGuire, Can't say how much I really like this series. It's well written and engaging with just enough "fairy tales" pulled in to leave you thinking "Hmmm that works". This book pulls you further into the Rabbit Hole with even more backstory to make you not want the book to end!
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The newest in the October Day Series from Seanan McGuire doesn't disappoint! As expected from Ms. McGuire, the narrative hits the ground running and doesn't let up until the end. Some people binge watch a TV series, some binge on a well loved snack food. I confess, I binge read the October Day series. As soon as I finished this book, I read it again, then started the series over again.

In this installment, October's daughter Gillian has gone missing (again). At first, I felt like this might be like watching a re-run. But this book seems to be more about the relationships that October has. It's also commentary on the complication relationships that come up with divorce, and the insecurity of parenthood. 

Every day (in real life) it seems I see news of another missing child, another family torn apart. October has gone to extremes to try to make sure her daughter is safe. But there is no such thing as safe, especially when faerie is involved. And she has her own personal relationships to deal with as well. Tybalt isn't around and she's having to deal with the ex and his wife.

The usual cast of characters makes their appearance, and this page-turner will no doubt keep readers of this series entertained and (as always) left wanting more.
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There comes a time when things must end. It’s one of those inescapable truths and, as humans—keenly aware of our own mortality—we get this.

But carbon life forms don’t hold a monopoly on the concept; eventually, everything hits a point of being past its prime.

Most of us hope to reach a place of some decrepitude before it’s time to stop walking this mortal coil. (Being “old” is sorta the goal, for most humans.) Big-ticket items such as computers, phones, and cars are all designed with an expected obsolescence built in (which typically has more to do with corporations making money than with a sudden lack of functionality or usefulness, but I digress…). When it comes to series, though—whether books, movie franchises, or TV shows—the object is definitely to go out on a high note… before whatever-it-is seems tired and long-in-the-tooth.

And that notion is what kept popping into my mind when reading Night and Silence, the latest in Seanan McGuire’s ever-engrossing (and long-running) October Daye urban fantasy series. “Could it be time..?” 

Now, don’t misunderstand; it would be virtually impossible for me to not enjoy this book (and I did—a good deal, actually). But, I find myself increasingly starting to question just how much gas is left in McGuire’s tank for Toby’s story.

If you’ve read my reviews on some of the earlier entries in this series (and you should, if you want to get a handle on her world, here), or are already familiar, then you’ll remember the basics: October Daye, once a changeling (born of half-Fae, half-human blood) splits her time between the regular world (that would be our world) and that belonging solely to the Faeries (which they work their damnedest to make sure humans remain unaware of), acting as a sort of P.I. in both.

The plot, well… there are always similarities from book to book in this series, so I won’t go into Night and Silence’s storyline in any depth; suffice it to say that this time out, someone in Toby’s immediate family goes missing, and it’s up to her (and her delightful little crew of constant companions) to find the missing person and see that the miscreant(s) responsible are duly punished for the heinous acts committed.

One of the biggest constants is that poor Toby never seems to catch a break—in any sense. She’s always being run ragged (the Fae are nothing if not demanding of her time), and you know that law, about whatever can go wrong? Yeah, that.

In a roundabout way, though, that leads me to the notion that this series may be starting to show its age; it isn’t the fact that Toby is overworked, (often) under-appreciated, and exhausted—after all, the constant action, danger, and friction fuel these stories—but rather, the problem is that we’re being told that, here… every few paragraphs. Or, how many times, within the space of a few chapters, does Toby mention Tybalt (her feline-based fiancé) using the “bridal carry” (in his human, not four-pawed form) to get her to safety? Too many. When things begin to feel repetitive, that’s when I start looking for the exit… and Night and Silence, unfortunately, has a lamentable amount of repetitiveness.

(Interestingly, these instances could have been fixed in the editing process—re-wording phrases here, just cutting out unnecessary bits there—and I’m curious as to why they weren’t. Making this a tighter book would have made it a better book.)

Like I said earlier, though, with (nearly all of) our favorite characters taking part, and the author making us work hard to keep up with the twisty familial ties and histories, there’s still much to keep the reader engaged, here. 

For how much longer, though, that is the question… 

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This series just gets better and better. In this newest installment, faerie knight October Daye deals with the estrangement of her lover, the kidnap of her daughter (yes, again, but wait--it's actually ok and not totally trite!), and learning some new family history. Although the kidnapping of Gillian, Daye's daughter, was a previous plot point, in this episode the kidnap leads to changes in Daye's world that I never expected and that work remarkably well with the series universe and previous plotlines. We also get introduced to a new character who begins as a threat and becomes...a possible future ally, and we get lots of the Luidaeg, who is one of the best characters in any fantasy world.
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Seanan McGuire never fails to amaze me... and to wreak utter havoc with my emotions. Night and Silence is a strong addition to the October Daye series, with new twists and turns and some totally startling revelations and developments. How many series can get to book #12 with no signs of slowing or slumping? The October Daye series has always been excellent, and this new book lives up to all the rest.

Since this is a pre-release review, I'm going to be vague about just about everything. I know I'd hate to discover spoilers before the book even comes out, so I'll be discreet, I promise! If you're reading this review, chances are more than good that you're a Toby fan, and that you're panting (and maybe drooling a bit) to find out what happens next, after that doozy of an ending from book #11, The Brightest Fell.

As the synopsis above makes clear, things are NOT okay at the beginning of this book. Toby and Tybalt are more or less estranged, since Tybalt is suffering serious trauma after his ordeal at the hands of Amandine in book #11. And this just breaks my heart. I love the two of them together, and I love Tybalt as an individual. It hurts to see him suffering, and it hurts to see Toby suffering from his distance and her inability to reach him and help him.

When Gillian is kidnapped and Toby springs into action, it brings her back into contact with both the humans from her past and some nefarious folks from the fae part of her life too. Still, it's great to see Toby on a mission, and to see her allies rallying round to back her up and give her their support.

There are some MAJOR reveals, including the answer to a question that's bugged me almost from the start of the series. But see, I'm being discreet, so I won't even say what the question is, much less the answer.

The hunt for the kidnappers and the outcome are not what anyone would expect. Let's leave it at that. The ending of this book is a game-changer, and I can't wait to see what happens next.

It's startling to me to realize that as of the beginning of this year, I had not yet entered the amazing world of October Daye. What a difference a few months make! I love this series to bits and pieces, and can't recommend it highly enough! Seanan McGuire must be part Fae herself, because she spins the best magical stories. I love everything she writes, and Night and Silence is a treat. Read it! And if you haven't read any October Daye books yet, start with Rosemary and Rue. I dare you to stop after one book!


As an afterward to Night and Silence is the long short-story Suffer A Sea-Change. I'm not going to tell you who's in it (okay, obviously the Luidaeg, but I'm not saying who else) or what it's about, because anything I might say would be majorly spoilery. Suffice it to say that Suffer A Sea-Change picks up from the end point of Night and Silence, and is a fantastic side note to the main novel -- absolutely not to be missed.
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Title: Night and Silence
Series: October Daye Book #12
Stand Alone Title: recommended in order
Author:  Seanan McGuire
Genre:  Urban Fantasy
Blurb: The twelfth installment of the Hugo-nominated, New York Times-bestselling Toby Daye urban fantasy series!

Things are not okay.

In the aftermath of Amandine's latest betrayal, October "Toby" Daye's fragile self-made family is on the verge of coming apart at the seams. Jazz can't sleep, Sylvester doesn't want to see her, and worst of all, Tybalt has withdrawn from her entirely, retreating into the Court of Cats as he tries to recover from his abduction. Toby is floundering, unable to help the people she loves most heal. She needs a distraction. She needs a quest.

What she doesn't need is the abduction of her estranged human daughter, Gillian. What she doesn't need is to be accused of kidnapping her own child by her ex-boyfriend and his new wife, who seems to be harboring secrets of her own. There's no question of whether she'll take the case. The only question is whether she's emotionally prepared to survive it.

Signs of Faerie's involvement are everywhere, and it's going to take all Toby's nerve and all her allies to get her through this web of old secrets, older hatreds, and new deceits. If she can't find Gillian before time runs out, her own child will pay the price. One question remains:

Who in Faerie remembered Gillian existed? And what do they stand to gain? No matter how this ends, Toby's life will never be the same. 
Favorite quote(s): “I am – damaged, October, I am hurt in ways I have never been hurt before, that I can barely put name to, much less chart in their healing.  I flinch from my own shadow.  How is that fit behavior for a king?  How is that fit behavior for your love?”
“Your definition of victory will never cease to shock and horrify me.”
Thoughts: This is one of my absolute favorite series – if your new to the author or to October Daye, I definitely recommend reading all the previous books….not just because this one builds off of events in those, but because they are amazing!!  You can’t get a better urban fantasy series than this one.  With that being said, this book broke my heart.  Having followed this series from book one, I know these characters and love them….and after the events in the last book, I knew this one would be hard.  No one comes back from trauma the same.  October felt that and struggles seeing it from Tybalt, and I struggled right along with her.  The changes in Tybalt were heartbreaking.  I loved how Toby’s friends stood by her – even against one of their own who was hurting her without meaning to.  This was not only and adventure but a poignant, emotional journey.  One of the best in the series!
Rating: A+
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All is not well in the land of Toby Daye. Toby’s fiance Tybalt has been unable to cope with his imprisonment and has withdrawn from her life. Toby’s fetch May is doing everything she can to keep her lover Jazz sane. Just when Toby thinks life can’t get any worse, her ex-husband contacts her and explains that Toby’s estranged daughter has been kidnapped and he clearly thinks its Toby’s fault. Toby’s new quest will stretch her abilities and familial ties to the breaking point leaving only one real question to be answered. Can Toby survive long enough to save everyone?

I’ve read every installment of the Toby Daye series and I confess, this series is one of my all-time favorites. It’s dark, and gritty, and suspenseful, and has just enough of the fantastical to satisfy a very specific itch. Nothing in the world can replace this series in terms of all around awesomeness. My only bone of contention is that Toby and Tybalt deserve a HEA. Toby has been enough of a hero for the realm that at least one of her relationships should last without strain. Hopefully Toby and Tybalt will get their HEA in the next book.
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The October Daye series is one of my favorites. I have eagerly awaited Night and Silence and it was everything I had waited for and more. Night and Silence focuses on the relationship between Toby and her daughter. The emotional connections and character development complemented the action and magical quest. This is a must for urban fantasy fans and will be devoured.
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I find myself torn between 3 and 4 stars (ultimately deciding on a 3.5.) Part of me is so happy to be back in the world of October Daye, that I'd likely be just as content if they never left their house. 

With that said, I was a little less than thrilled about another daughter-gone-missing storyline. I never really felt the connection to October's daughter and thought we (the readers) and October had closure after the previous time she went missing. This plot grew on me the further into the story I read and I really couldn't put it down.

Parts of Night and Silence really moved series forward and gave us more foreshadowing to October's longterm quest with the Sea Witch. HINTS were dropped, my friends.

Readers can look forward to cameo appearances from October's friends and some great banter with her Squire and Tybalt. 

Twists and turns galore throughout the story; some were slightly predictable and some change the series forever. Strap in, the next couple books should be a doozy (in a good way.)
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Thanks to Netgalley and Berkley publishing for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.

No idea how Seanan McGuire does it so often, but she knows how to step up the stakes, over and over and over. And she sure knows how to make her characters suffer for the sake of the story!

If you've not been keeping up (but really, why wouldn't you be following me at this point?), Seanan McGuire is one of my absolute favorite authors. Her worlds are gloriously fleshed out, her characters are deep and nuanced, and her plots are inviting and twisty and chock full of surprises.

In this installment in one of the best series ever, Toby's family is front and center yet again - both the family she has built, and her blood relations - and yet again, those two things are at odds. Also, there are some surprising twists when it comes to villainy, one I wouldn't have expected (at least not yet!)...

But mostly, there's a cast of characters that will draw you in, make you care, and truly cause you to wish to be part of their little ragtag bunch.

Pick this one up if you're up to date in the October Daye series, but if you're not, start with book one - Rosemary and Rue. You've got plenty to binge - go on. :)
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Night and Silence
By Seanan McGuire
DAW (4 Sep 2018)
October Daye series

Settings / Time Periods: Present day San Francisco area, mostly.
Point of View: 1st person
Main character: October “Toby” Daye, a changeling Hero Knight who is frequently in way over her head.

What genres could this book be categorized in? Officially, it’s urban fantasy. It is a bit of a fairy tale, and also an adventure, and a mystery, and a love story. And probably a few other things, as well.

Plot: October Day’s ragtag family still hasn’t healed from Amandine’s betrayal, and now her estranged human daughter is missing… again. Gillian’s human family accuses Toby of being the kidnapper, though one of them may be hiding deep secrets of their own. Can Toby save Gillian in time? Who remembers Gillian? And what old foe is hiding in the shadows setting traps?

Comments: I really love the Toby books, and am always waiting impatiently for the next one. The latest adventure does not disappoint, in that I laughed a lot, I cried more than once, and I got mad enough to yell and scare the cats. I’m not sure what I can say without spoiling something because it’s Toby and everything is connected to everything. There are several old acquaintances reappearing, for good and for ill, a new Tybalt along for the ride, and you get to see May Really Angry. It’s SOOOO good! I can’t recommend it enough. And the short story at the end is a whirlwind of its own.

Is there violence? Yes. It’s Toby. There is punching and stabbing and gnashing of really big sharp, pointy teeth. Toby bleeds a lot. Some other folks bleed, too.

Is there romance? There’s a couple of significant mostly-hetero relationships shown, including one that’s learning to heal and one that’s having some serious issues. There are also several less-central non-hetero relationships.

How to the characters view sexuality? Sex is referred to as a normal, natural part of life. There is no sexuality on-page above G rating, although there are occasional reference to other activities.

How does it rate on the tests?
Bechdel? With flying colors.
Mako Mori? With flying colors.
Ellen Willis? With flying colors.
Tauriel? With flying colors.
Racial Bechdel? Yes.
Deggans? Yes.
Vito Russo? Yes.

Did you enjoy reading it? Yes. I always love the Toby books, and this is another whirlwind roller-coaster that leaves you both exhausted and wanting more Right Now.
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I received an ARC through Netgalley of Seanan McGuire’s newest book, Night and Silence, coming out on September 4th, 2018. 

Night and Silence is book 12 in the October Daye series. With the way The Brightest Fell ended, I was eager to see how this book would start…

In the last book, Amandine has Toby searching for August, Toby’s long-lost sister; in this book, Gillian, Toby’s daughter is the one that goes missing. Her allies are struggling with their own trauma and the consequences from her actions in the last book make it hard for Toby to gather enough resources to get all the help she needs. 

It starts on a more melancholy note and being that the last book ended with trauma on all sides, this isn’t a surprise. Conversations are had while she rescues the wildlife that is still cropping up from Chelsea’s jaunts into the locked realms and Toby being Toby… is trying to retreat and at the same time, hold on to all she loves. 

Scars run deep on all sides of the family for this and Seanan writes a beautiful understanding of how things aren’t magically fixed, but it takes time to heal. Not just the main characters being hurt, but also the fallout for the ones that surround them. Tybalt is damaged and struggling and his Court is feeling the effects of it, too. 

This book was a ride and there are a number of questions that were answered that have been hanging around since the early books in the series! There was a moment I had to stop reading because I was so thrilled at what shoe had dropped and it’s a doozy.  We’re going to have a whole new source of information now, if people are willing to trust the character to ask. 

You get some more understanding of the deeper parts of the story and parts that have been simmering in the background. There is a lot revealed, but at the same time, there are ever so many more questions that make you that much eager for what is coming next.

As before, my favorite “is this a giant red herring or is Seanan sitting on this?” theory hasn’t popped up yet, but I have a feeling we got another hint and it’s glorious. 

The selkies have popped up again and the question of “when” was asked and it’s ever so close now. There are so many issues that are going to set the world on fire and I am eager for it. I have a soft spot for the selkies, especially with all the short stories we’ve gotten of them that have explained more and gave more of that rocky background and the rockiness continues. 

I foresee a lot of tough choices in the future for a number of characters and some of those choices and concessions have already popped up at the end of the book. It’s going to be a long, hard road, but nothing Toby ever did was easy. 

The short story goes well in hand with the rest of the book and it’s amazing. I don’t want to spoil any bit of it at all, but it raises so many questions, gives so much away and you’re left with your mouth open at what could be. 

All in all, an absolutely fantastic book, with a lot of hints of this and that; with Seanan’s impeccable knowledge of fairy tales and folklore, of locations and connecting everything from all her books to a seamless whole.
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When October “Toby” Daye, knight errant in service to the Court of Shadowed HIlls finds her ex-husband and his new wife on her doorstep, she knows it can only mean trouble.  Toby’s mortal daughter Gillian has been taken and not only is she in danger, but it could also bring to light secrets that Toby needs to stay hidden.  Along with her closest friends and fiancé, Toby sets out to discover who in faery knows of Gillian’s existence and why they would dare to threaten her.  But as more clues unfold, the mystery only becomes deeper and the list of who and what Toby can trust becomes smaller.  An amazing story full of fae politics, lore, and magic that keeps the pages turning from beginning to end.
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This series just gets better and better.  I love the characters, and the family Toby builds for herself.  The hints that McGuire gives regarding Toby's ultimate destiny are great.  The Luiseag is probably my favorite character, but there are so many to choose from.  Can't recommend this series enough.
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Sometimes when a series goes on this long it starts to feel formulaic or repetitive. But not the October Daye books. McGuire always manages to find another angle, another piece of the world, to keep the reader enthralled.
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The story starts with Toby not seeing anything of Tybalt and Jazz having problems sleeping from what Toby’s mom did to them in the previous book. When Cliff shows up on her doorstep with his wife in tow looking for Toby’s daughter with Cliff, Toby’s world is cracked. Toby thought after making Gillian fully human and having no contact with her she would be safe and never remember when she was kidnapped by Rayseline.  Now Toby is racing around the city following a trail of Gillian’s blood and what she finds leads to things she never thought would happen.   The coda short story at the end is lovely and bittersweet as well.
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Seanan McGuire continues to be one of the foremost authors of fae-centered urban fantasy.  Her novels are unique in that her portrayals of the many kinds of fae and changeling are deeply rooted in folklore and legend.  Her characters are simultaneously more real and more magical for their depth and complexity. Readers are not simply viewing a new world, they are being submerged in it.  Despite Night and Silence being the 12th novel in the Toby Daye series, the novel is as captivating as any of its predecessors.

When Toby’s ex-husband and his new wife arrive at Toby’s door accusing her of kidnapping her daughter Gillian, there is no question of her not taking the case.  The question is why was she taken and if it was one of Toby’s enemies, who knew of Gillian’s existence. At Gillian’s dorm, Toby finds an assortment of curiously powerful charms designed to repel fae - marshwater work, and a thin blooded changeling obsessed with Toby.  Along with her allies, Toby tracks her missing daughter, in the process discovering secrets where she least expected - in the home of her ex-husband- and facing challenges from a dangerous enemy with a score to settle.

Night and Silence features many of the characters we’ve come to know through Seanan McGuire’s novels.  We also get to know Gillian’s stepmother, and the reason behind her vehement hatred of Toby. In some ways, the plot is relatively straightforward, but it in no way detracts from its appeal.  McGuire’s richly descriptive writing and her unique characters have a lot to offer readers. As a bonus, a short story retelling the end of Night and Silence from Gillian’s perspective is included.  Night and Silence is an excellent addition to McGuire’s series, and is certain to satisfy fans and newcomers alike.

5 / 5

I received a copy of Night and Silence from the publisher and in exchange for an honest review.

— Crittermom
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Seanan McGuire continues to amaze me in that after so many books in a series she still manages to have more in store for her characters without Mary Sue-like power ups or to reduce them to mere caricatures of themselves. I still care about what happens to her characters as they continue to grow, change, take steps backwards and forwards. A pretty impressive feat since most series suffer sorely after only a few books. It takes a very talented writer to keep hitting the pool and coming up with fresh stories and not feeling like parts of the book are recycled from previous ones, especially as readers are updated in the "picture so far" to keep up with the story. Not a lot of rehashing, which I seriously appreciate. Kudos! I still regularly recommend this series and look forward to adding more titles to my own private collection. I'll be purchasing a paper copy of this when it comes out, my highest accolade.
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I loved this installment of Toby Daye. My heart breaks for her and all she goes through. Her Kitty is still damaged from the last run in with her family and here we go again. But the new mess that lands in her lap was one I never expected. I can't wait to see what happens next.
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For me, this has been the most stunning tale in the series so far. More questions, more answers, leaves me wanting MORE. As a bookseller, Seanan makes handselling a breeze, and literally never disappoints. Just a fantastic entry in the October Dayne series! THANK YOU!
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