The fourth instalment of the October Daye series opens innocently enough with a late night trip to the shops. Toby's peace does not last long though and within the first chapter she is called to the court of the insane Queen of Mists. The fae Queen has plans for Toby and she is not the only one because a mysterious sickness rises and targets Toby friends with a suddenness that suggests poison most foul. Now Toby must race against time to save those she loves because if she fails not only will her friends die but she will be framed for murder and be forced to forfeit her own life.
This book is the beast one yet. A Local Habitation was almost entirely set in Fremont and An Artificial Night was mostly spent lost in a nightmare landscape but Late Eclipses returns us to San Francisco and the friends that we love and the old enemies that we love to hate.
The pacing is good and improves on the previous entries to the series. I don't want to spoil any of the events for anyone else because I had such fun reading this myself. Relationships progress and secrets are revealed. There is tragedy and victory and humour and betrayal.
There was one particular moment toward the latter half of the book that changed Toby's life significantly that I thought was particularly well done. It was a brave move by the author but the way it was written and hinted at in previous instalments was brilliant. It inspired rereading of the previous instalments to fully appreciate the authors skill and foreshadowing.
There is also the traditional love triangle between Connor/Toby/Tybalt which personally I feel is unnecessary. I like sexual tension as much as the next red blooded individual but I can't help but feel that it soon needs to come to an end and that Toby needs to make a choice. The right one (Tybalt). Connor is too weak and only hold Toby back but Tybalt would be a partner in a true sense. When the right decision is so obvious it goes from being sexy to being frustration.
Cat people and Tybalt fans will be pleased to find that there is significantly more of the King of Cats and we get a look at the deeper Cat Courts that is both heartbreaking and fascinating. And Tybalt does something that even Toby can't ignore.
Late Eclipses is a brilliant addition to a good urban fantasy series and I hope everyone enjoys this book as much as I did.