Tankborn by Karen Sandler is the first book in a young adult science fiction trilogy by the same name. The second book, Awakening, is available now with the final book, Rebellion, to follow in spring 2014.

On the planet Loka, the people who fled there from Earth are divided into groups with different amounts of land, wealth, and power depending on their social status. Whether high-status or lowborn, they all have one commonality: they are trueborn, making them much better off than the tankborn.

The tankborn, or GENs (Genetically Engineered Non-humans), are created by humans and gestate in a tank. GENs are developed with a little bit of animal DNA, used to give them their skets, or skill sets. Until they reach the age of 15, GENs live with a nurture mother, another tankborn made specially for caretaking, and perhaps some nurture siblings. Once a GEN turns 15, he or she is given an assignment that requires leaving one’s family behind, sometimes forever. A GEN has no control over their assignment, but it’s supposed to keep them safe and it’s supposed to make them happy since they are doing a task that matches their sket. If they perform their task well and avoid conflicts with the trueborn, they have nothing to fear; however, a tankborn who leaves their assigned area, uses advanced technology, or raises their voice to a trueborn can be reset—becoming an empty shell without a trace of their memories and personality.

As Kayla nears her fifteenth birthday, she wonders what type of assignment she’ll be given and if it will take her far away from her family or bring her closer to her friend Mishalla, who was recently assigned. Shortly before Kayla’s birthday, an enforcer in the Brigade brings her the clothing she’ll need for her assignment and a data upload with a message Kayla is not expecting: Your help is required, Kayla 6982, nurture daughter of Tala. Hidden with her new clothes is a package that she is asked to hide from everyone and bring with her to her assignment. She decides to embark on this mysterious mission and cleverly avoids all searches of both her belongings and herself to bring this item with her on her new assignment as caretaker to an elderly trueborn man.

Tankborn was an entertaining story, and I enjoyed reading it immensely. Taken individually, the science fiction elements were not all that unique—humanity settling on another planet when Earth became uninhabitable, genetically engineered people and questions about their humanity, and some advanced technologies. However, the additional details, such as the societal structure with the various degrees of status and the religious beliefs of the GENs, were well done and made the book seem unique as a whole. Besides being a science fiction story, there’s also some mystery/suspense and a little romance, though I did think that the world and story were the strengths of this novel. I felt that some of the revelations were predictable, the characterization could have been stronger, and that the two romantic subplots seemed underdeveloped and rather rushed—but none of those criticisms kept me from eagerly turning the pages or wanting to read the second book!

Of course, the main science fiction element explored in Tankborn were the GENs, the easily identifiable people with tattoos on their cheeks for neural transmission of data who were viewed as non-human. The two most prominent viewpoint characters, Kayla and Mishalla, are GENs and this provides a glimpse of their everyday lives and struggles—from Kayla’s mistreatment by trueborn boys merely for being tankborn to Mishalla’s inability to be seen in public with a trueborn boy, even one who is lowborn. Through these two characters, readers are shown what tankborns face through firsthand encounters. I also found it interesting that there was a religious component to the story, and GENs believe that the Infinite spoke to the prophets about how to create them. Kayla’s perspective has some focus on her religious beliefs and her complex relationship with religion. She resents having to follow a set path in life, but at the same time she has faith in the Infinite and truly believes what she has been taught: the Infinite designed GENs for a purpose and when their task is completed they return to the Infinite, an experience solely belonging to those who are tankborn. Throughout the story, more about the origin of the GENs and Kayla’s past are revealed and while aspects of these (particularly Kayla’s history) were rather predictable, I remained engaged in the book from start to finish.

Kayla is attracted to Devak, a handsome high-status trueborn who stops some boys from throwing rocks at her brother in the first chapter (and of course turns out to be the great-grandson of the man she is assigned to care for!). There are some sections from Devak’s point of view, and out of all the characters, he is the one who changes the most throughout the story as he works through his own beliefs about the humanity of GENs. In the first scene with Kayla, Devak shows kindness but it’s also clear he doesn’t see GENs as equals. He believes himself to be decent to GENs, but as he spends time with Kayla, he finds himself constantly thinking or saying things that show he does in fact believe he’s superior to GENs. The more he talks to Kayla, the more he questions his beliefs about humanity, which he has questioned somewhat due to the influence of his great-grandfather, who treats tankborns the same way he would anyone else. I thought Devak was believable as a character who has had some good influences but also has to deal with some prejudices he’s learned from society and the rest of his family. His mother is just plain rude to GENs, but his father has taught him everything they do is for the good of GENs or even lowborns, which is easy to believe until Kayla asks him if he’s ever asked any of these people how they actually feel. I thought Karen Sandler did an excellent job of showing Devak as a generally decent person who has soaked up what the world around him is constantly teaching him.

I especially appreciated that Devak learned and changed through the story because he’s the only character who wasn’t black or white in viewpoint. He was the only character who didn’t fall into an extreme since most were either rude to or ignored GENs or treated them as equals. His great-grandfather, Zul, is also an interesting character: he’s 102 years old and bed-ridden but he doesn’t let that stop him from being a force to be reckoned with!

Despite containing a couple of interesting characters, this was more of a plot-driven book and I did feel like Kayla and Mishalla had interchangeable personalities and voices. Neither stood out as a unique person and they seemed more like vehicles for the story than characters with a life of their own, swept up by the story and driven by the plot. As long as they were also courageous enough to embark on mysterious missions, it seemed as though any GEN character could have been in the place of Kayla or Mishalla. Most of the unique traits they had came from their particular makeup as a genetically engineered person, such as the way Kayla felt like a freak because of her strength and her unusually marked arms. They’re both perfectly likable characters (though Kayla’s story was more interesting than Mishalla’s), but neither came alive. While it makes some sense since both their lives were planned out for them, neither seems to have unique hopes, dreams, or interests aside from their respective love interests.

On the subject of the romantic interests, both relationships seemed very rushed and I never really understood what brought either couple together. There’s at least some time for Kayla and Devak to get to know each other, but there are very few scenes with Mishalla and Eoghan (to be fair, Mishalla’s storyline has fewer pages overall).

All complaints aside, I did truly enjoy Tankborn and found it a very engaging book. It kept me turning the pages, wanting to find out the truth about tankborns and how Kayla and Mishalla’s stories ended. Even if I would have liked to see more to her character than being tankborn, I could sympathize with Kayla from the very first chapter, which showed just how poorly tankborns were treated for simply being tankborn. I appreciated that there were at least some nuances in how the characters viewed GENs and dealt with their own prejudices and views on humanity, and I thought the social structure and beliefs came together very well in this story. I definitely plan to continue this series (and even considered reading the next book immediately after this one before deciding to try to fit in some books by different authors for Sci-Fi Month!).

My Rating: 7.5/10

Where I got my reading copy: Review copy from the publisher.

Other Reviews:

Sci-Fi Month
Sci-Fi Month

It’s now Sci-Fi Month, and I’m thrilled that the first official post is science fiction reading advice from Max Gladstone! He is the author of Three Parts Dead, a novel so well received that he was one of the 2013 finalists for the John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer. His second novel, Two Serpents Rise, was just released on October 29 (read an excerpt).

Two Serpents Rise by Max Gladstone Max Gladstone

The Best Science Fiction Reading Advice I’ve Ever Received
By Max Gladstone

Science Fiction is a hard genre to learn without help.  It’s big, it’s old, and metric tons of new books come out every year.  The great lights of modern litfic produce one novel a decade, if that, while genre writers write an order of magnitude faster.  Even worse, science fiction is intertextual and referential—great writers tend to be great readers, and incorporate other writers’ concepts.  As a kid I strained my brain trying to reconcile the Ender universe with LeGuin’s Hainish books—they had to take place in the same universe, since obviously both had ansibles!

In my experience the genre is best passed down by word of mouth—more knowledgeable friends, parents, teachers, and librarians introduce us to the key works, and help us expand.  “If you liked x, you’ll probably like Y!”  My uncle Danny got me started with boxes of old paperbacks, from Asimov to Zelazny.  But if you’re not lucky enough to have someone drop off boxloads of awesome old books, where should you start?

To which end I pass on the advice I received from my uncle, as I stared gobsmacked at piles of paperbacks: start with the books that won both the Hugo and the Nebula Awards.  The Nebula’s awarded by professional science fiction writers, while the Hugo—even though it isn’t awarded by straight-up popular vote—is open to all fans who have the money to pay for a supporting membership at the last WorldCon.  Both awards have their advantages, and books that win both wowed professionals and fans alike, and tend to have real staying power.

Here’s the list, shamelessly culled from Wikipedia:

Starting with Dune, you work your way up to get a sense of where the genre has been, and where it’s going.  Themes emerge and fade with the decades.

I doubt you’d find a single person to claim that this list represents all the best books of the field.  Zelazny’s work doesn’t appear here, for example, nor does Bruce Sterling’s, and Hyperion is nowhere to be seen.  There’s a shortage of Fritz Leiber and Samuel Delaney and Kim Stanley Robinson. But if you’re looking to expand your foundation, this is a good way to go!

And, as a special bonus, this list is somewhat fractal.  When you reach the end, you encounter Among Others, a brilliant reading list woven through an equally brilliant novel.  Write down all those titles, and continue.

If you’re new to the genre, I hope this helped!  If you’re not: what reading list do you use to help people find their feet in science fiction?

Sci-Fi Month

Today marks the beginning of Sci-Fi Month, a month-long celebration of all things science fiction organized by Rinn of Rinn Reads. She’s put together quite an event: 50 bloggers and 25 authors are participating in Sci-Fi Month festivities! With so many different contributors, there will be quite a variety of posts on books, TV shows, films, and games throughout the month. To see what’s happening, check out the schedule of blogs and topics.

For those who are visiting for the first time because of Sci-Fi Month, welcome! I’m Kristen, a website developer/programmer from Maine and an avid fan of speculative fiction. I have my husband, who occasionally blogs here, to blame for making me into a fan of speculative fiction about ten years ago. Before I met him, I don’t think I’d read anything that was science fiction or fantasy since reading A Wrinkle in Time and The Chronicles of Narnia in elementary school, even though I’ve always liked reading and loved those particular books as a child. Then he got me to read books like Beggars In Spain by Nancy Kress, a fascinating book about society and politics focused on the creation of people who don’t need to sleep, and I ended up hooked on speculative fiction. I went on to read more of his recommendations for SFF (like Taliesin by Stephen Lawhead and Dogsbody by Diana Wynne Jones) and went on to discover a couple of authors I got him to read in turn (like Robin Hobb and George R. R. Martin, and more recently, Iain M. Banks and Lois McMaster Bujold).

I like reading good books, and a lot of the things that make a book special to me—great characters, writing, and storytelling—are not limited to speculative fiction. However, I do find myself coming back to both fantasy and science fiction books again and again because there is no limit to the imagination. There’s no boundary to where the story can take place or the ways the world(s) can operate. I can’t really think of a specific reason I like my favorite science fiction books that can’t be applied to my favorite fantasy books—I like interesting worlds, and I like well-written books that make me connect with and empathize with the characters. There is something about being able explore the future and visit different planets that’s very appealing, though, and I am partial to space opera for that ability to travel to different parts of the galaxy. Some of my favorites are The Last Hawk and Primary Inversion by Catherine Asaro, The Player of Games by Iain M. Banks, and Barrayar by Lois McMaster Bujold.

As for more favorite science fiction books, I’ll be talking about those later this month (and I’m going to try to pull my husband away from grad school, work, and NaNoWriMo long enough to contribute his own list!). Speaking of which, here’s what I have planned for Sci-Fi Month:

Tankborn by Karen Sandler The Merro Tree by Katie Waitman Warchild by Karin Lowachee

November 2    Guest Post by Max Gladstone: The Best Science Fiction Reading Advice I’ve Ever Received
November 6    Book Review: Tankborn by Karen Sandler
November 13  Book Review: The Merro Tree by Katie Waitman
November 20 Book Review: Warchild by Karin Lowachee
November 29 Science Fiction Book Recommendations

I’ve been having a great time picking up some science fiction books from my to-read pile so I may try to fit in some book reviews, but it will depend on spare time available, especially since I have some fantasy reviews I still need to catch up on this month! But there are a bunch of books on my “if I have time” pile that sound really good that I’d love to read this month. Any advice on where to start if I have time? I’m considering Up Against It by M. J. Locke, A Confederation of Valor by Tanya Huff, City of Pearl by Karen Traviss, and Biting the Sun by Tanith Lee.

Book of Iron is a novella-length prequel to another one of Elizabeth Bear’s novellas, Bone and Jewel Creatures. These books are set in the same world as her Eternal Sky trilogy consisting of Range of Ghosts, Shattered Pillars, and the upcoming Steles of the Sky. Book of Iron is a self-contained story and it is not necessary to read any of these other books first.

Bijou the Artificer and her two companions, Prince Salih and Kaulus the Necromancer, have made a name for themselves in the city of Messaline and are often sought after for assistance with special problems. However, the reputation of the three adventurers has spread beyond Messaline, particularly tales of their time spent in Ancient Erem. When three foreign adventurers come seeking Erem, they first approach the prince and the two Wizards to ask permission to continue their journey.

Led by the legendary 600-year-old necromancer Maledysaunte, the travelers have come seeking the mother of one of the other party members, the Wizard Salamander. Salamander’s mother is a rare wizard with a gift for order, permanence, and resistance to change. She has gone into Erem, and the consequences of a Wizard with her power mastering the artifacts in this ancient place could be disastrous. Once Bijou and her associates hear their story and learn the importance of their mission, they decide to accompany them: after all, six are better than three, especially when three of them have lived to tell the tale of their experiences in dangerous Erem.

While Book of Iron has a lot in common with Eternal Sky in addition to the setting, it is also quite different from this series. Like Eternal Sky, it’s beautifully and intelligently written, engaging, and populated by an intriguing cast of characters. Due to its much shorter length, Book of Iron doesn’t share the same rich detail yet it manages to have a lot of impact despite being a short book. It’s largely an adventure story, and it’s more straightforward and fun than any of Elizabeth Bear’s other books I’ve read, yet it also has depth, particularly in Bijou’s characterization.

One aspect of the setting that I particularly enjoyed were the combinations of traditional epic fantasy with technology and magic with science. Book of Iron is a quest adventure story with wizards and princes, but Bijou and her fellow adventurers get to their destination by automobile… and then ride into dangerous Erem astride the bones of horses, an ass, and a camel. Aeroplanes and pistols also exist in this world, and while it’s not unusual to combine even more modern technology than in this book with a fantasy setting, I haven’t read many books that do so as naturally as this one (though, admittedly, there’s very little technology other than what I just mentioned).

One of the things I loved so much about Eternal Sky was that the wizards used scientific knowledge together with magic, in a complete reversal of the science vs. magic trope. The wizards who were healers didn’t just concentrate hard and magically cure their patients but used their powers in combination with their knowledge of human anatomy. Since it is shorter, Book of Iron doesn’t have as much detail on Wizardry or as clear a picture of the scientific thinking involved, but magic and science are still intertwined. There’s a lot of thought and hard work that go into magic, and Bijou thinks of her Wizardry as science when she’s pondering what dissection could teach her about fate and necromancy:


This is not the time for science, she told herself, knowing it for a lie. As far as she was concerned, thinking about Wizardry was a constant. [pp. 39]

A couple of the Wizards are Necromancers, but there are some unusual schools of Wizardry as well. Bijou is an Artificer gifted at animating bones. She can simply animate them with her will, or she can make her own amazing creations like Ambrosias. Ambrosias was crafted into a bejeweled centipede from the bones of horses and cats and the skull of a ferret and given a personality. There are also wizards of chaos and order, and the Wizard sought by Bijou and her companions is one of the latter, a precisian. Precisians are rare and dangerous because their gift is making permanent creations that are stubbornly resistant to change.

Other than Bijou, whose personal journey is a significant part of the story, the characters are not terribly deep, which is not surprising given the length of the book. However, I’d love to read more about some of the other characters given the glimpses I did get from this novella. I suspect Kaulus, a necromancer who is afraid of death, may have an interesting history. Maledysaunte, an immortal who looks nothing like the rumors of the “Hag of Wolf Wood” made her sound, also seems like a character with potential for an intriguing backstory. I’m now hoping for more books about the different characters, but I’m also quite happy to know that I can read more about Bijou in Bone and Jewel Creatures.

Book of Iron is both thoroughly entertaining and thoughtfully written. While it’s largely a quest adventure, it doesn’t ignore the setting and characterization, and I especially liked that Bijou learned throughout the book and had a different outlook by the time the book was over. My only complaint about it is that the book is too short, but such is the nature of novella length fiction, and I don’t really find wanting more stories about these characters to be a terrible reaction (it’s certainly better than the opposite!).

My Rating: 8.5/10

Where I got my reading copy: I purchased it.

Read an Excerpt

The Leaning Pile of Books is a feature where I talk about books I got over the last week – old or new, bought or received for review consideration. Since I hope you will find new books you’re interested in reading in these posts, I try to be as informative as possible. If I can find them, links to excerpts, author’s websites, and places where you can find more information on the book are included.

This week brought four books, two of which I’ve talked about in one of these features before. These two books are:

Before continuing on to the other books, a quick update: It’s almost November, which means it’s Sci-Fi Month! It’s a month-long event celebrating science fiction organized and hosted by Rinn from Rinn Reads. I’ll be discussing plans for that on Friday. I only have a few things planned right now, but I might end up doing more science fiction book reviews if there’s time. It was tough to pick just a few books from my to-read stack, and I’d like to read more of them.

For other reviews, I’m currently working on one of Book of Iron by Elizabeth Bear (which was awesome!). I’m hoping to get that up next week.

On to the books!

Copperhead by Tina Connolly

Copperhead (Ironskin #2) by Tina Connolly

Copperhead, the second book in a trilogy, was released earlier this month (hardcover, ebook, audiobook). It’s a sequel to 2012 Nebula Award nominee Ironskin, which I’ve heard was a steampunk retelling of Jane Eyre. The next book, set about 18 years later, is scheduled for release in fall 2014.

An excerpt from Copperhead is available on Tor.com.


The sequel to Tina Connolly’s stunning historical fantasy debut.

Helen Huntingdon is beautiful—so beautiful she has to wear an iron mask. Six months ago her sister Jane uncovered a fey plot to take over the city. Too late for Helen, who opted for fey beauty in her face—and now has to cover her face with iron so she won’t be taken over, her personality erased by the bodiless fey.

Not that Helen would mind that some days. Stuck in a marriage with the wealthy and controlling Alistair, she lives at the edges of her life, secretly helping Jane remove the dangerous fey beauty from the wealthy society women who paid for it. But when the chancy procedure turns deadly, Jane goes missing—and is implicated in the murder.

Meanwhile, Alistair’s influential clique Copperhead—whose emblem is the poisonous copperhead hydra—is out to restore humans to their “rightful” place, even to the point of destroying the dwarvven who have always been allies.

Helen is determined to find her missing sister, as well as continue the good fight against the fey. But when that pits her against her own husband—and when she meets an enigmatic young revolutionary—she’s pushed to discover how far she’ll bend society’s rules to do what’s right. It may be more than her beauty at stake. It may be her honor…and her heart.

Generation V by M. L. Brennan

Generation V (American Vampire #1) by M. L. Brennan

Generation V came out earlier this year (mass market paperback, ebook). The second book in the series, Iron Night, is scheduled for release in January 2014.

An excerpt from Generation V is available on the publisher’s website. I’ve heard that Generation V is quite good, so I’m excited to read it.


Reality Bites

Fortitude Scott’s life is a mess. A degree in film theory has left him with zero marketable skills, his job revolves around pouring coffee, his roommate hasn’t paid rent in four months, and he’s also a vampire. Well, sort of. He’s still mostly human.

But when a new vampire comes into his family’s territory and young girls start going missing, Fort can’t ignore his heritage anymore. His mother and his older, stronger siblings think he’s crazy for wanting to get involved. So it’s up to Fort to take action, with the assistance of Suzume Hollis, a dangerous and sexy shape-shifter. Fort is determined to find a way to outsmart the deadly vamp, even if he isn’t quite sure how.

But without having matured into full vampirehood and with Suzume ready to split if things get too risky, Fort’s rescue mission might just kill him.…


Chimes at Midnight is the seventh book in Seanan McGuire’s October Day series. The first six books in this urban fantasy series involving Faerie are as follows:

  1. Rosemary and Rue
  2. A Local Habitation
  3. An Artificial Night
  4. Late Eclipses
  5. One Salt Sea
  6. Ashes of Honor

The book titles above are links to reviews, as I’ve become a big fan of this series and have reviewed all the previous books. I’d recommend skipping this review if you do not want any events from any of the previous books in this series spoiled. If you are starting with reading about the first book, I’d like to add that the series does keep getting better, and books 4-6 are particularly wonderful!

There are at least ten October Daye books planned. The next book in the series, The Winter Long, is scheduled for release in September 2014 with the next two to follow in September 2015 and September 2016.

Concerned about the increasing availability of goblin fruit on the streets, Toby investigates the situation and learns that at least a dozen changelings have died after partaking of the faerie drug. Toby determines to put a stop to the deaths and feels that the best way to accomplish this goal is to tell the Queen of the Mists about the deaths of her people—even though the Queen hates Toby and may not listen to her concerns for that reason alone.

The Queen is quick to dismiss Toby’s wish that something be done about the changelings dying from goblin fruit, as she believes those foolish enough to do so are getting what they deserve and Faerie is better off without them. When Toby continues to plea that she reconsider, the Queen loses her temper and banishes Toby from the Kingdom for her insolence. She gives Toby three days to leave.

Devastated, Toby goes to the Luidaeg in case the sea witch has some knowledge that can help her find a way to remain in the Mists. While the Luidaeg is not able to tell her the details, Toby is at least able to ask the question that points her in the right direction: to the history of the Mists and the suspicious circumstances surrounding the Queen’s ascension to her throne. There may be an heir with a legitimate claim to the throne who remains in hiding, but can Toby learn the truth—and find the heir and overthrow the Queen if this claim is true— before her time is up?

It was with some trepidation that I started Chimes at Midnight even though October Daye has become one of my favorite urban fantasy series. Since the books in this series have been getting better and better, I was worried that it would be difficult for book seven to live up to my expectations. However, I need not have worried: I enjoyed Chimes at Midnight very much. It’s not my favorite book in the series for reasons I’ll explain later, but it has all the great qualities that made me love these books—interesting characters, a sense of humor, and a distinct lack of dull moments.

One of the reasons I keep reading these books is Toby herself. She has amazing heart and spirit despite all the difficult situations she’s been in throughout the series. That’s not to say she hasn’t struggled (she was certainly in a bad place at the beginning of the last book), but she has a strong drive to help others and she doesn’t give up. When she sees the changelings endangered, she does what’s necessary to try to help them even though going to see the Queen is pretty close to the top of her list of things she’d least like to do. Even after being banished by the Queen (and going through many other things I won’t recount to avoid spoilers), she keeps moving toward her goals. No matter how dark things get (and they do get pretty dark), her narrative and her sense of humor make me smile. It was also a treat to see her and Tybalt together (finally!) and see how happy they were together before everything went wrong, but even after things became difficult they were adorable together.

As much as I love Toby, there are occasions where she is unbelievably dense, and this book did have one of those moments where her failure to notice the obvious struck me as unreal. When the Luidaeg gave Toby instructions to ask people about the previous king, she had Quentin and Tybalt fill her in on the history. The whole affair surrounding how the Queen of the Mists showed up out of the blue claiming to be the King’s daughter sounded incredibly suspicious, yet Toby seemed shocked when someone claimed she was not actually his daughter. Of course, Toby’s rather distracted with her worries about being banished and she’s probably not had much cause to think about it before since she wasn’t alive when the Queen took the throne, but it still seemed very unrealistic to me that she couldn’t put two and two together after being told that story—especially considering she had an ability that should have made her particularly wary of this claim.

As mentioned, this book was very dark at times, yet it manages to be fun in spite of that. There’s a magical Library, which while not uncommon, appeals to the reading geek in me. Plus there is an invisible bookstore! I also enjoyed learning a little more about Faerie and its history. Chimes at Midnight did seem to me a bit more like a stand alone volume than some of the previous books in the series, and I think that’s why I didn’t like it quite as much as some of the other books in the series. It certainly has familiar characters and references past events, and it also seemed to me to be hinting toward next volumes (and perhaps learning more about Amandine, but maybe that is wishful thinking on my part!). While a lot happened in Chimes at Midnight, it wasn’t quite as memorable or earth-shattering to me as events in the last three books. Late Eclipses followed up on information from previous installments to reveal that Toby’s mother was a Firstborn and Toby was actually a completely different and new Fae. One Salt Sea had a heartbreaking ending with both Toby’s daughter and Connor leaving her life forever in different ways. And, of course, there was much rejoicing when Toby and Tybalt finally got together in Ashes of Honor. While each book does have a basic plot of its own, I did think this one had less payoff for long-term readers than the last few installments. That’s not necessarily a bad thing and I have a suspicion this book may have set events in motion for future books; I just tend to prefer stories that have threads that carry over from book to book or events I’ve been waiting/hoping for.

While it is not my favorite installment in the October Daye series since I didn’t feel that it advanced Toby’s story much despite some pretty major events or contained any surprising revelations, I had a great time reading Chimes at Midnight. It’s entertaining with some interesting tidbits about Faerie, fun adventures that kept me turning the pages, and a main character whose heart and sense of humor I continue to love.

My Rating: 7.5/10

Where I got my reading copy: ARC from the author/publisher.

Other Reviews: