My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Very refreshing to read an investigator-in-the-aftermath-of-persona-trauma story that doesn’t rely on the classic tropes of alcoholism, a failed relationship due to emotional constipation, tragically-dead spouse/child(ren)/whole family, or accidentally-killed-someone-on-the-job as the cause or outcome of that trauma. Toby experiences long-term captivity and loss-of-self that skews her self-perception and how she relates to others, and we watch her work through the early stages of her recovery surrounded by supportive people trying to help, while she races to solve a friend’s murder before her time runs out. McGuire also takes on the second-coming-of-age/you can(‘t) go home again trope with an actual place called Home and a serious exploration of what it means for an adult to grapple with who they used to be, what they’ve learned since their adolescence, and how much of that version of their self they have or haven’t left behind. All of this AND a kick-ass take on faerie makes for one hell of an urban fantasy murder-mystery thriller. I can’t wait to read the rest of this series!