“Ashes of Honor” by Seanan McGuire (Daw, 2012)

Ashes of Honorstarstarstarstar

October Daye is back again in a new story in this sixth book in the series.  A year has passed since Toby’s last adventures left her exhausted, wounded and barely alive, and someone close to her dead.  Now she is focusing on training Quentin as her squire, doing her job as Sylvester’s knight and trying to make her life go by in a normal way, but her life is ragged and worn due to her decisions and what she’s done.  Then there’s the question of Tybalt, the King of Cats, who’s a whole issue on his own.

And then she is asked to help once again, as a friend and fellow knight, Etienne, reveals to her that his daughter has been kidnapped.  This comes as a shock to Toby, as she didn’t even know he had a daughter, but that’s because he’s kept secret about it, as she’s half-changeling — like Toby — and lives with her mother in the human world.  Her name is Chelsea, and like her father, she can teleport.  But because she is young and just coming into her powers, she is able to open doors and gateways that shouldn’t ever be opened; places that haven’t been accessible for centuries.  She also can’t stop herself as she’s on the run from her kidnappers, but also because she can’t control her powers.  If they don’t stop her soon, she’ll end up tearing Faerie apart.

Just another ordinary day of mayhem and adventure for Toby, though this time the stakes seem higher than ever.  And she can easily identify with a half-changeling not knowing what is really going on and how to control her powers, and if this were to get out about Etienne, it would ruin him.  Plus there’s Tybalt who keeps lending a helping hand and is always there when she needs him, and Toby really needs to work out what her feelings are about him.  Just another ordinary day.

Originally written on October 24, 2012 ©Alex C. Telander.

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