The Flooze's Reviews > A Local Habitation

A Local Habitation by Seanan McGuire
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Jan 03, 11

bookshelves: owned, urban-fantasy-paranormal, vanquished_2011, glutton_for_punishment
Read on January 02, 2011, read count: 1

ETA: I've continued reading this series and want to point out I gave books four and five considerably higher ratings. Four stars each.
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** Almost a 3 **

Seanan McGuire is talented. She’s just useless at crafting mysteries.

Unlike the first book, A Local Habitation resulted in me liking Toby. She is strong-minded and determined. She’s also quite amusing in her interactions, particularly when conversing with Quentin or Tybalt. She’s fiercely loyal, holds duty in high regard, and cares deeply for her friends.

That said, she’s a terrible investigator. Most of this book takes place on one compound, and yet Toby is still running from place to place, finding more bodies than clues, and frequently damaging herself in the process. It’s almost comical. When she does come across a clue, she seems to dismiss examining it further. She’s always allowing something else to take precedence rather than stopping to think things over. Her investigation includes little more than sifting through paperwork and conducting a few spells. It’s tiresome, watching people get killed while perfectly good hints go to waste. At the end, the case is solved primarily through the process of elimination. No wit, no intuition necessary.

And yet I admit McGuire has talent. Her skill at world-building is evident, as showcased in her manipulation of fae lore to create a believable, varied cast of characters and an understandable magic system. She is adept at humorous dialogue, made clear by the opening scenes between drunken Toby and sober Tybalt. So I’m not sure why she fails so spectacularly at weaving together plot threads to form an intriguing mystery. I want so much to like these books, but the investigations are so haphazard and pointless that it’s hard to be satisfied. Toby is supposed to be a professional PI, but apart from her skill with blood magic she lacks the necessary tools to solve anything. While I might like her as a friend, I certainly wouldn’t assign her any work.

Liking October Daye and the rest of the characters, I’m willing to read the next book. However, I don’t know how long I’ll stick with this series unless there’s a marked improvement in Toby’s sleuthing.
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Quotes The Flooze Liked

Seanan McGuire
“October—

You were sleeping so peacefully that I was loath to wake you. Duke Torquill, after demanding to know what I was doing in your apartment, has requested that I inform you of his intent to visit after ‘tending to some business at the Queen’s Court.’ I recommend wearing something clinging, as that may distract him from whatever he wishes to lecture you about this time. Hopefully, it’s your manners.

You are truly endearing when you sleep. I attribute this to the exotic nature of seeing you in a state of silence.

—Tybalt

Seanan McGuire, A Local Habitation

Seanan McGuire
“Repetition is sometimes the best way to deal with the Luideag: just keep saying the same thing over and over until she gets fed up and gives you what you want. All preschoolers have an instinctive grasp of this concept, but most don’t practice it on immortal water demons. That’s probably why there are so few disembowelments in your average preschool.”
Seanan McGuire, A Local Habitation

Seanan McGuire
“That's the nice thing about insanity: evil people kill you, but crazy ones try to make you understand.”
Seanan McGuire, A Local Habitation


Reading Progress

01/02/2011 page 9
2.0% "Very amusing start. Oh, that Tybalt in his tight pants." 4 comments
01/02/2011 page 145
38.0% "For heaven's sake. When is she going to cop on to the Alex/Terrie presto change-o act?" 2 comments

Comments (showing 1-8 of 8) (8 new)

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The Holy Terror So I’m not sure why she fails so spectacularly at weaving together plot threads to form an intriguing mystery. I want so much to like these books, but the investigations are so haphazard and pointless that it’s hard to be satisfied.

Yes to this - my thoughts exactly. It's just so frustrating.


message 2: by The Flooze (last edited Jan 03, 2011 05:48AM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

The Flooze Yup.

In the next book, Tybalt says something like "You're good at this." Imagine my derisive snort.

Btw, there only seems to be a three month gap. Typo on the 2014?


CJ - So, you wanna play with magic? I think when he said that he had to be talking about the blood thing. Or at least that what's I tell myself.


CJ - So, you wanna play with magic? And yet I admit McGuire has talent. Her skill at world-building is evident, as showcased in her manipulation of fae lore to create a believable, varied cast of characters and an understandable magic system. She is adept at humorous dialogue, made clear by the opening scenes between drunken Toby and sober Tybalt. So I’m not sure why she fails so spectacularly at weaving together plot threads to form an intriguing mystery. I want so much to like these books, but the investigations are so haphazard and pointless that it’s hard to be satisfied. Toby is supposed to be a professional PI, but apart from her skill with blood magic she lacks the necessary tools to solve anything. While I might like her as a friend, I certainly wouldn’t assign her any work.

Yes, Yes Yes, a thousand times yes!

The next book is better; less sleuthing and more Toby being kickass-ish.


message 5: by The Holy Terror (last edited Jan 03, 2011 08:11PM) (new) - rated it 2 stars

The Holy Terror The Flooze (Michelle M.) wrote: "Btw, there only seems to be a three month gap. Typo on the 2014?"

That's a really bad typo, if it is.

edit -

Looks like it is a big fat typo!

Q: Why is there such a large discrepancy between the dates of A Local Habitation and An Artificial Night?

A: It's a typo. Unfortunately, we all somehow missed the fact that the date at the beginning of An Artificial Night was incorrect. The book takes place in 2010, only a few months after the events of A Local Habitation. This is supported by the text of the book, and the date at the beginning of Late Eclipses is correct.


The Flooze Sigh. I just finished and I was still really frustrated by certain things. Review tomorrow!


The Holy Terror Ahhh, so that's where you've been.


The Flooze Yeah. I had my phone on airplane mode since I was reading it through my nook app. :P

That is a CRAZY typo. You'd think it would've been fixed at least in the ebooks by now.


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