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Rosemary and Rue (October Daye #1)

3.74  ·  Rating Details  ·  19,032 Ratings  ·  1,720 Reviews
October "Toby" Daye, a changeling who is half human and half fae, has been an outsider from birth. After getting burned by both sides of her heritage, Toby has denied the Faerie world, retreating to a "normal" life. Unfortunately for her, the Faerie world has other ideas...

The murder of Countess Evening Winterrose pulls Toby back into the fae world. Unable to resist Even
Mass Market Paperback, 346 pages
Published September 1st 2009 by DAW BOOKS Inc
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Kari Chapman What do you mean by "Fade to black"? Asking because I'm not familiar with that term :-)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Jessica ❁ Far Dareis Mai ❁ Rabid Reads
Reviewed by: Rabid Reads

There are two things I want to tell you in advance:

1. October Daye is one of my Top 5 Favorite UF Series.

2. The first time I tried to read ROSEMARY AND RUE, I DNF-ed it.

YEP. I did.

I didn't pick it up again for a couple of years, and when I did, it was b/c DESPERATE for new UF.

So I was more patient . . . Which was good, b/c I made it past the '90s flashback of a prologue, and the depths-of-despair aftermath that had initially put me off.

You: Yeah, but how long did that
✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)
BR with my MacHalo Freaks starting Oct 5, 2015.

Welcome to the most uninspired review in the history of uninspired reviews!

Why am I out of ideas, you ask? Because this book =

It's a Bleh, Meh, Yawn and Blah Blah Blah Super Fest. And surprisingly enough, it seems that quite a few of my weird dear buddy reading accomplices agree with me here. Wow. It turns out they might not have such crappy book taste after all. Who would have thought?!

Okay, since I don't have much to say about this thrilling pie
Feb 26, 2010 Katie(babs) rated it did not like it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 02, 2016 Anne rated it liked it
Recommended to Anne by: steven
So, Steven recommended this to me, and since I've enjoyed his recommendations in the past...I snagged this one from my library the same day.
Was it any good?
Hmm. Kinda.


I'm going to settle on 3 stars, because it wasn't bad, but I wasn't immediately sucked into the world, the plot, or any of the characters.
I can see why a lot of my friends weren't all that impressed with it.
I also remember that I 'liked' the 1st Mercy Thompson, and only felt a vague tingle when I read the 1st Kate Daniels. And
Robin (Bridge Four)
Mar 15, 2016 Robin (Bridge Four) rated it really liked it
Shelves: uf-pnr, buddy-read
Read with Buddies Books & Baubles impromptu like because Jessica and Joanita are pushers.

See below


This is a solid first installment to a series. It is also not what I thought it was going to be. I say this as my book BFF creatively found a way for me to jump into the read of this series with her. I trust her on this because we have pretty similar book tastes but here is the part I wasn’t expecting. Toby is a bit dark, the entire book is a bit dark and I somehow thought eventually it would g
The Flooze
ETA: I've continued reading this series and want to point out I gave books four and five considerably higher ratings. Four stars each.

I can't make up my mind what to rate this. The unforgiving and frustrated side of me wants to saddle it with a two. The part of me that loves depictions of the fae, their powers and lands leans towards a three for effort.

My problem with Rosemary and Rue is this: Nothing really happens.

Sure, there’s a lot of running around. Bullets
This started off strong, but it lost a whooooole bunch of steam as it went. The story never really felt like it was driving forward, just sort of meandering onward.

Toby is likeable enough, but she's sort of ineffectual. She spends a large portion of the book constantly being battered about and recovering from various near-fatal injuries and in the grand scheme of the plot and what she's attempting to do, very rarely does she ever actually accomplish anything herself. Which is not to say that sh
Mar 10, 2016 Choko rated it really liked it
*** 4 ***

An impromptu buddy read with the UF loving BB&B Fae maniacs!!!

This was fun. I have had this series for a while, but never really thought about it. Another reason everyone should belong to a book club - you get to read things you would have never read was it not for your buddies!

This is very much an Urban Fantasy and it is full of multitude of Fae creatures. Actually, rarely have I encountered the depth of Fae lore as I found here. Several times I stopped to research the mythology
Erin (Paperbackstash) *Proud Book Hoarder*

"It can't all be dreams because a broken dream will kill you as surely as a nightmare will, and with a lot less mercy. At least the nightmares don't smile while they take you down."

This unusual Urban Fantasy series focuses on a changeling (half human, half fae) stuck between the politics of different fae branches while fitting in with the human world. Kind of. Toby used to be a private investigator for her leige, but she was almost killed and punished a severe way. When she recovered from this (
Michelle Dockrey
Sep 10, 2009 Michelle Dockrey rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: EVERYONE
Recommended to Michelle by: Seanan McGuire
Shelves: favorites
Full disclosure: this review may be doubly biased; not only is the author one of my best friends, but I'm in the proofing pool. I'm in an unusual position. I've had the privilege of watching this book and this series grow over drafts and years, from an unruly child into a beaming graduate. If authors are essentially releasing their children out into the world to make it on their own, I feel like I'm part of the proud family that's watched them grow up, or at least perhaps one of its well-loved t ...more
 Danielle The Book Huntress (Self-Proclaimed Book Ninja)
Rosemary and Rue is well-written urban fantasy. This novel is full of the melancholy. Not what I would call fatalistic or depressing, but instead in touch with the sad, the weary, the timeless angst of the faerie folklore and myths. San Francisco is a beautiful setting for this story, this grand old city of hills, water, and mists. It's not difficult to believe that Faeries would situate their courts in this place. There is something magical to this setting that does half of the world-building i ...more

09/03/2016 Buddy read with Jessica, Robin, Choko, and Maria over at BB&B b/c we are craving UF, also Jessica loves this series and seeing that she is never wrong.... :-)

“By my word and at my command, you will investigate a murder, and you will force justice back into this kingdom. You will do this thing.” There was a long pause. I was starting to think the message had ended when she continued, softly, “Find out who did it, Toby, please. Make sure they don’t win. If you were ever my friend
Apr 25, 2016 Samantha rated it liked it
This is a series I have been meaning to start for a while now, but haven’t gotten around to it. It’s a favorite of my sister’s and since we have similar tastes I hoped I would like it too. I did like it, but not as much as my sister, but it is only the first book. Also this all started off much different than other books like it and there are things that needed sorted out.

First off our lead character October (Toby) is put under an enchantment while trying to find her Liege's wife Luna and his d
Mike (the Paladin)
Dec 24, 2011 Mike (the Paladin) rated it really liked it
Shelves: urban-fantasy
Okay this is one of those, "I've got good news and I've got bad news" situations. So what would you like first?

I suppose you've already seen some of the "good" news in that I went all the way to a 4 star rating. For me that says a lot. I don't give a lot of 5s and I'm also careful with the 4s. We only have a 5 star system here so for a book to be rated 5 stars I figure it has to be excellent. A 4 can't be that far behind.

This one held my interest, didn't fall into the things that have driven me
Monty Cupcake ☠ Queen of Bloodshed ☠
Buddy Read with the MacHalos

Maybe Ilona Andrews' Kate Daniels has ruined me for all other UF series, but this was not an awesome book. This was like the Jerry Lewis version of KD. Let's go over the things that annoyed me:

1. Tobey has almost no fighting skills and no weapons, yet she romps around getting into trouble. You think she'd take a self defense at the gym or something, because she desperately needs it. I don't care if they're magical beings, stronger than you magic wise, you could still
Mogsy (MMOGC)
3.5 of 5 stars at The BiblioSanctum

October Daye is one of those urban fantasy series I’ve been meaning to read for a long time. And unless you count her novels written under the name Mira Grant, I’ve never read anything by Seanan Mcguire before either, so this was a good opportunity to knock out two birds with one stone.

The series’ eponymous protagonist is a half-human and half-fae changeling with an incredible and downright uncanny history. The book’s pr
Dec 02, 2009 Felicia rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 09, 2015 Mimi rated it liked it
3 confused stars

Never thought I'd say this, but I can't with this book and the reason I can't is because I kinda, sorta don't like the main character Toby. Not liking the MC has never stopped me from reading a book, continuing a series, or enjoying the writing. But I can't with this book.

There are too many things wrong with it--pacing's too slow, tone too depressing, main character too apathetic--and generally I don't find the fae that interesting. However, despite all of that, Seanan McGuire's
Apr 26, 2015 Alexa rated it it was ok
Another one of the misses during my book slump. This one was a DNF @ 34%.

This book had one of the best prologues I've read in a while.

October "Toby" Daye, is following a suspect for a case in her PI firm, and she gets caught and turned into a freaking fish for fourteen years.

I kid you not. Fourteen Years A life lost. A new start. That is probably the best entrance ever.

And then it just goes downhill. I never cared about Toby, I never cared about her friends, the murder or the investigation. I
[4 Stars] Review to come soon, but I will say that I really enjoyed this one! Much of this book was spent world building and Toby pretty much introducing us to all the major fae players, but I didn't mind. I enjoyed seeing the worldbuilding, and it is cool that Toby is a changeling. I did have a couplenof problems with this, but overall they weren't big enough for me to give this anything less than 4 stars!
Lisa Kay
Rue’s symbolic meaning is regret. It is sometimes called “herb-of-grace” in literary works. Rosemary means “flower” and was draped around the Greek goddess Aphrodite when she rose from the sea.

Rating: (This is a review of the audiobook.) I liked Mary Robinette Kowal’s narration. I didn’t love it, but I liked it. She does the voice for October - AKA “Toby” - the best. Since this is a first person POV, that's a good thing. She sounds like a fairy would sound, light and full of melody. Soft. But d
”There’s rosemary and rue. These keep seeming and savor all the winter long. Grace and remembrance be to you.” –William Shakespeare, Winter’s Tale, Act 4, Scene 4.

Add to that quotation Ophelia in Shakespeare’s Hamlet who tells us that rosemary, that’s for remembrance. And the name of the plant rue has become synonymous with regret and repentance. There’s a lot of remembering and regretting in this book.

October (Toby) Day is spending a lot of time remembering her family, her old job, the circumst
The Holy Terror
May 08, 2011 The Holy Terror rated it liked it
Recommends it for: fans of Merry Gentry or Melissa Marr
In retrospect I think I was blinded at the time to this book's promising start. I give it 3.25 stars.

October Daye used to be a private investigator until she was turned into a fish and left in the Koi Pond in the Japanese Tea Gardens of Golden Gate Park. The spell lasted 14 years and October lost her entire life. She's trying to start over and then she receives a message on her answering machine from a friend. The friend knows that she's about to be killed so she curses Toby into finding out who
Oct 12, 2015 Cathryn rated it it was ok
DNF at 50%. I just couldn't get into the story and I can't put my finger on why. The world is interesting. I want to know the answer to the mystery. However, every time I put this down I had no desire to go back to it. I'm sure if you ask me what this is about in a couple of weeks I'll have a hard time remembering. I might skim the last half a little later on just to see who done it. Right now, I have another book I'm dying to get to.
Sep 04, 2009 Rebecca rated it really liked it
For a book that managed to hit a rough spot with me on the first page, I liked Rosemary and Rue.

The rough spot was in the pronunciation guide. The author (or someone) noted that kitsune* was pronounced kit-soon, when the closer pronunciation would be kee-tsoo-neh -- Japanese transliteration doesn't leave silent letters. For that matter, I wasn't too thrilled with the use of a kitsune character in a book about fairies, because it felt like an afterthought to have a Japanese fox-spirit in a book a
Oct 20, 2010 Megan rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: Anyone who loves fae stories or is a hard core UF fan & isn't bothered by extensive world building.
Rosemary and Rue really isn't bad. I can't complain about the writing, the action, the mystery or the protagonist, October "Toby" Daye. But somehow, this book just never got a hold of my interest. I blame the world building ~ there is a lot of background information given. A lot. And frankly Toby Daye isn't all that different from so many other female protagonists found in UF books.

Author Seanan McGuire obviously put quite a bit of thought and time into constructing the world in which Toby liv
Oct 16, 2011 Kim rated it it was amazing
Urban fantasy is one of my favorite genres to read these days, but my love for it really began in the '80s, when I was reading Charles de Lint, Emma Bull, and the fabulous Bordertown anthologies. I love a good vampire story, and werewolves are growing on me as well (peculiar image, right?), but my true favorites are the stories of the fey, not the itty bitty cutesy faeries, but the elegant and dangerous ones found in the ballads of Thomas the Rhymer and Tam Lin. I've simply had a harder time fin ...more
Jan 26, 2016 Ashley rated it really liked it
I quite liked this! I had some relatively minor issues, first being October making typical "dumb protagonist" decisions more often than I would have liked.

Second being (view spoiler)
3.5 stars

Bumping this up half a star for this reread. So many things make more sense to me know. It's almost jarring to see how isolated Toby was in this first book. Tybalt and the Luidaeg are just as intriguing as ever, meanwhile Connor is even more insufferable than he was the first time through. He really is such a boy, and a bland one at that, that I have a hard time understanding what Toby ever sees in him.
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Hi! I'm Seanan McGuire, author of the Toby Daye series (Rosemary and Rue, A Local Habitation, An Artificial Night, Late Eclipses), as well as a lot of other things. I'm also Mira Grant (, author of Feed and Deadline.

Born and raised in Northern California, I fear weather and am remarkably laid-back about rattlesnakes. I watch too many horror movies, read too many comic books, and
More about Seanan McGuire...

Other Books in the Series

October Daye (1 - 10 of 13 books)
  • A Local Habitation (October Daye, #2)
  • An Artificial Night (October Daye, #3)
  • Late Eclipses (October Daye, #4)
  • One Salt Sea (October Daye, #5)
  • Ashes of Honor (October Daye, #6)
  • Chimes at Midnight (October Daye, #7)
  • The Winter Long (October Daye, #8)
  • A Red-Rose Chain (October Daye, #9)
  • Once Broken Faith (October Daye, #10)
  • The Brightest Fell (October Daye, #11)

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