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Imaginary Numbers

(InCryptid #9)

4.25  ·  Rating details ·  2,457 ratings  ·  331 reviews
The ninth book in the fast-paced InCryptid urban fantasy series returns to the mishaps of the Price family, eccentric cryptozoologists who safeguard the world of magical creatures living in secret among humans.

Sarah Zellaby has always been in an interesting position. Adopted into the Price family at a young age, she’s never been able to escape the biological reality of her
Mass Market Paperback, 437 pages
Published February 25th 2020 by DAW Books
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Thanks to Netgalley and Berkley for providing me with an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.

I don't know how to write this review. I'm just in awe of Seanan's ability to change up the main character so often and still keep all the storylines straight and the character voices so strong.

CUCKOOS. That's right, what we've all been waiting for. More lore, more interactions, more HOLY CRAP CUCKOOS. More Sarah, who, after the events of the beginning of the series, has been mostly sitting o
Robin (Bridge Four)
I’ve been waiting for Sarah’s story for FOREVER it seems. The only story I’m more interested in is Alice and Thomas’s which I can tell should be coming soon. Still Sarah has been a little bit of a broken mess since she saved Verity over five years ago. Now she has picked up most of the pieces and put herself together. It is time to take the last test, travel on her own to the Price compound in Oregon. If she can do that, she will prove to everyone including herself that she is back.
Imaginary Numbers, book 9 in the InCryptid series, marks the start of a new arc; and we're on to Sarah, cuckoo and gateway to an exceptionally intriguing mystery.

The cuckoos have appeared in plenty of the forty-something Incryptid works, and not just because the Price family are willing to adopt just about anyone. No, usually they're a The Silence-esque threat that pops up where least expected, because just like a black hole you usually have to spot them using the vacant places they leave behind
Lisa Wolf
It makes me so happy to have a new InCryptid book in my hands, especially since I won this one in a Goodreads giveaway, which pretty much never happens for me! THANK YOU, GOODREADS!

In Imaginary Numbers, the ongoing InCryptid series turns to two new point-of-view characters, Sarah Zellaby and Artie Harrington. Sarah and Artie are both members of the sprawling Price-Healy clan, a group of cryptozoologists dedicated to protecting non-human species from the persecution of the deadly Covenant, and eq
Part of my 2020 Social Distancing Read-a-thon

Holy cliffhanger, Batman! I don't think we have to wonder if there will be a next volume in this series. In fact, if there isn't one forthcoming I will be mightily miffed.

I was looking forward to this, the latest installment of a favourite series by a favourite author, someone who almost always charms me with her stories. The interesting thing that McGuire has done with this series is to vary the main narrator from book to book. This time out, two for
From the blurb: But there are cuckoos everywhere, and when the question of her own survival is weighed against the survival of her family, Sarah’s choices all add up to one inescapable conclusion.

This is war. Cuckoo vs. Price, human vs. cryptid…and not all of them are going to walk away.

Well now I’m nervous! I love this series and I definitely don’t want any of the family to die
Feb 07, 2021 rated it it was amazing
Reading this is like getting a memory wipe with a full, fresh download of someone else's operating system.

Considering that this is ostensibly an Urban Fantasy series and not a Science Fiction, it gets even more cuckoo because it's officially about CUCKOOS. Sarah, a beloved cuckoo in the Price family, is the main character in this particular novel and she's rather fascinating.

We've got the whole growing up in love with another of the adopted family members in the household, neither of them ever
Mar 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audio-2020
This is Sarah’s story and I’ve been dying for it. Sarah Zellaby was adopted by the Price family and they’ve dealt with her unusual origins. Sarah is a cuckoo. A telepath with insane math skills and a natural born predator.

She saved her sister in New York against the Covenant but it broke something in her mind. She has been living with their grandparents, but is ready to return to the nest and Artie, her best friend.

I’ve had so many question about Sarah, and holy bee hives, Mcguire delivered an i
Sarah is a Cuckoo, raised as a member of the Price family. As a member of the family she was taught to be cautious of her Cuckoo nature to manipulate and cause chaos. Recovering from what we discover as a metamorphosis, Sarah leaves her parents’ home to return to a family compound on the west coast. When she arrives, Sarah discovers other Cuckoos have taken up residency close by…which is never good for anyone, especially Sarah.

Artie has always had a thing for Sarah, they just get each other. Whe
Feb 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc-paper
4.5 Stars bumped to 5 Stars because Math and Xenobiology are just my jam and both have starring roles in this one.

Sarah Zellaby is a Cuckoo, or more correctly a Johrlac psychidolos. Johrlacs are similar to parasitic wasps and got called cuckoos for their habit of leaving their young for others (humans) to raise. How do humans get fooled by these baby Johrlacs? With their big blue eyes, soft, pale skin, and human-appearing features, Johrlacs are mammals but are literally heartless. All males look
Jan 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

Review to be posted closer to publication date

[EDIT]: Proper review aka what on earth was that ending? aka I am I supposed to survive the wait for the next one?

"Math is everywhere. Math is everything"

Going into this book I had zero expectations – you know, apart from it having cryptids and being an awesome story, it’s a Seanan McGuire book, so, some things are assumed.

But, I didn’t know what to expect. When we first switched to Alex, I was pouting because I loved
Feb 16, 2020 rated it really liked it
Sarah Zellaby never interested me much as a character, which is why I wasn’t looking forward to this book. Seanan McGuire proved me wrong. Sarah was much more interesting when seeing things from her perspective. Her situation in life is complex being a cuckoo and living with morals.

Sarah has been in a long recovery after severely injuring herself early on in the series. She’s finally well enough to start living a normal life again, so she decides to go visit the Price family. Problems arise befo
Apr 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I need the next book so bad!

Finally a new lead character again!

I absolutely adore Sarah, and I loved being inside her head. I didn't know Artie very well yet, but he is really cool as well. I didn't like the fact that Antimony once again had a big role though. She had three books already, can't she just go take a break?

That aside this is such a great read. The story is suspenseful and thrilling. What will happen? Will Sarah manage to keep herself and her adopted family safe? The cuckoos were alr
Maria Dimitrova
DNF at 45%

I can't believe I DNFed an InCryptid book! More over Sarah's book! I wanted a Sarah book for so long and now that it's out I just can't get into it. This really ruined my already bad mood. Maybe once the next book is out I'll force myself to finish so I know what happened.
Kari Marie
Apr 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
Seanan McGuire is becoming one of my favorite authors very fast. This is second book I have read of theirs and I cannot wait to pick up more. This was the first book I have read in the series (its book 9 by the way) and I cannot wait to go read the others. I was able to follow along without knowing the back history. The world was interesting, I liked the characters, the plot was interesting and fast pace. All things I want in a book. Yes there is special snowflake situation but it was not overly ...more
Mar 02, 2020 rated it really liked it
Mon avis en Français

My English review

This is a series that I like very much and I must admit that I was intrigued by the character highlighted in this volume, a character who did not yet have her voice presented in the previous ones: the cuckoo Sarah Zellaby.

After all the events that happened with Verity, our telepath took a long time to recover, but a few years have passed and she finally feels ready to face the world. As she tries to travel and visit Artie, Antimony and the whole gang, our y
Mar 03, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned
The first part of the publisher's blurb, reprinted at the head of this Goodreads page, sets this story up fairly well, though the end of the blurb is a bit misleading. Let's start with what's right and take it from there:
Sarah Zellaby has always been in an interesting position. Adopted into the Price family at a young age, she's never been able to escape the biological reality of her origins; she's a cuckoo, a telepathic ambush predator closer akin to a parasitic wasp than a human being. Frie
Mar 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
We've moved on to another viewpoint character in the InCryptids series, and this time it is Sarah Zellaby, cuckoo with a heart. Well, not an actual heart, her biology doesn't work that way. But a cuckoo with a conscience, as well as a long-standing crush on her not-really-cousin, Artie. Sarah has finally recovered enough from her confrontation with the Covenant of St. George to leave her room and go forth to visit her family out west. It's supposed to be a relatively easy test to see if she can ...more
Feb 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
*Source* Publisher
*Genre* Urban Fantasy
*Rating* 4.0


Imaginary Numbers is the Ninth installment in author Seanan McGuire's InCryptid series. If you have not started reading this series yet, InCrypid is a witty urban fantasy series featuring an eccentric family of cryptozoologists who act as a buffer between the humans and the magical creatures living in secret around us. The main focus is on the Price, Baker, and Nealy families who have vowed to protect peaceful crypid's from humanity an
Jun 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
This ninth volume in McGuire's InCryptid series shifts viewpoint to Sarah Zellaby, the nonhuman cousin who's been recovering from psychic injury she suffered in New York while she was in company of Verity, the middle of the three Price children, who have been the main characters in the series up to now. She's finally recovered enough, she thinks and hopes, to return to Portland, Oreegon, the location of the Price family compound. (Though why she would fly out of Cleveland to get there when she w ...more
Monica Hills
Mar 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: urban-fantasy
I love this author and every single one of her books! This series is one of my favorites. This novel was from the point of view of Sarah and Artie. A great premise and story line. I was just sad it ended and now I really need the next novel to come out.
Apr 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: daw, 2020-fav, grown-up
I had a great time, unlike anyone in this book.
Eclectisism Incarnate
Obviously, I loved this book. The day Seanan McGuire writes a book that I flat out don't enjoy is likely the day I'm not really me anymore, and everyone should know there's a changeling in your midst.

I've been looking forward to Sarah's book(s) for awhile. I'm dying at the ending, but can't wait to get my greedy, grubby little hands on the next one.
keikii Eats Books
Feb 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing
To read more of my reviews, check out my blog at keikii Eats Books!

Warning: Cliffhanger (I didn't know that was possible with Seanan McGuire...)
"Why would we chill, exactly?"
"Because you're the good guys," said Mark.
"Anyone who thinks good means chill needs to spend more time with my family," said Elsie."

New InCryptid, new perspective! This time it is Sarah Zellaby, and boy did my excitement for this book jump up like 150% when I found that out. This really was great. Mayb
Liz (Quirky Cat)
Feb 18, 2021 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2021-reads
Imaginary Numbers is the ninth novel (wow, has it really been that many already???) in the InCryptid series by Seanan McGuire, a thrilling series about all of the creatures that go bump in the night. I only recently picked up this series, and I am obsessed, thus I can't recommend it enough to everyone else out there.

Sarah Zellaby is what is commonly known as a Cuckoo, as well as being a Price by adoption. Being a Cuckoo means that she is a telepathic predator capable of making humans do whatev
Christina (A Reader of Fictions)
Ever since I found out this book would be starting a new arc about Sarah, I was thrilled. She's been a favorite since the first book, and I was excited to finally get the deets about her an Artie. Imaginary Numbers does not disappoint, and I would rank it among my favorite InCryptid books.

Sarah's such an interesting character, and this book really dives into what it's like being Johrlac/Cuckoo, both for a unique one like Sarah and for others. The Cuckoos have been creepy in the background for a
May 19, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, fiction
So now we begin another multi-book arc with a new point of view character. Two of them actually.

I enjoyed it quite a bit, as I usually do with any Seanan McGuire book. This one, however, has far more of a cliffhanger than the earlier ones in this series. Some of them left us hanging in various ways but not like this. I can’t say that I cared for that, especially now. The pandemic may not stop a person from writing but I wonder if it will interfere with the timing of getting the next book out. T
Holly Hand Grenade
The Sarah perspective! Yay! I know I'm not the only one that was waiting for this. It was pretty awesome to see her from her place in the family. She and Evie (Price) are much closer than I'd realized. Even though she's closer in age to Verity and Antimony, she's still Evie's sister and I enjoyed that.

And then, BAM. Well, the bam was in the beginning, really, but it was really amazing to find out all of the things we did about Sarah and her kind. AND TO GET THE MICE BACK. I really missed the mic
Colleen Corgel
The Prices are back in this new urban fantasy adventure novel set in the InCryptid universe. This story focuses on Sarah, who is back on her feet after feeling like she'd been broken for most of the five years (which is about the last 6 novels or so). She gets to confess to her adopted cousin, Artie, the reclusive half Incubus, and finally get's to see the rest of her favorite Prices. But of course, in the world of crypto-zoology, there's very little time to rest. When she realizes that the Port ...more
Mar 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Series Info/Source: This is the 9th book in the InCryptid series. I got an eGalley from NetGalley to review.

Story (5/5): I really enjoyed this a lot. This story focuses on Sarah and her race, the cuckoos. It was incredibly entertaining and I really loved getting to know more about the Price family and learning more about cuckoos. This also includes a novella at the end about how Antimony and crew got to Oregon to rejoin the family.

Characters (5/5): While I wasn't a huge fan of Antimony being fea
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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

Other books in the series

InCryptid (1 - 10 of 12 books)
  • The Price Family Field Guide (Incryptid)
  • Discount Armageddon (InCryptid, #1)
  • Midnight Blue-Light Special (InCryptid, #2)
  • Half-Off Ragnarok (InCryptid, #3)
  • Pocket Apocalypse (InCryptid, #4)
  • Chaos Choreography (InCryptid, #5)
  • Magic for Nothing (InCryptid, #6)
  • Tricks for Free (InCryptid, #7)
  • That Ain’t Witchcraft (InCryptid, #8)
  • Calculated Risks (InCryptid, #10)

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