October “Toby” Daye, changeling knight in the service of Duke Sylvester Torquill, finds the delicate balance of her life shattered when she learns that an old friend is in dire trouble. Lily, Lady of the Tea Gardens, has been struck down by a mysterious, seemingly impossible illness, leaving her fiefdom undefended. Struggling to find a way to save Lily and her subjects, Toby must confront her own past as an enemy she thought was gone forever raises her head once more: Oleander de Merelands, one of the two people responsible for her fourteen-year exile.
Time is growing short and the stakes are getting higher, for the Queen of the Mists has her own agenda. With everything on the line, Toby will have to take the ultimate risk to save herself and the people she loves most—because if she can’t find the missing pieces of the puzzle in time, Toby will be forced to make the one choice she never thought she’d have to face again…
Late Eclipse is the fourth installment of the highly praised Toby Daye series.
Warnings: poisoning, death of loved ones,
After the death of Blind Michael, the response to Toby has been mixed. While she had broken Oberon’s law to free the kids, most fae are just relieved to be rid of him. However, the fact that she was able to do what was considered an impossible task means that she has a target on her back. When Lily and Luna both get sick one after another, in ways that should be impossible considering how pure blooded they are, the Queen of the Mists targets Toby as a suspect. And when the court of Cats also falls sick from poisoned meat, Toby begins to wonder if Oleander is involved.
Toby has a fair number of challenges in this book – she alone can somehow see and sense Oleander while no one else can, and if she is hallucinating, she worries if she has finally succumbed to the madness that occurs among changelings. Further, with Slyvester occupied with his ailing wife, Rayselline is all too happy to take charge and exile Toby, which means she doesn’t have the support of Slyvester’s court as a shield against the Queen’s readiness to punish her, if only to get rid of Toby.
Short on allies, she tries to solve the case on her own, but even if her allies can’t openly help her, they can do so in more stealthier ways. Tybalt helps her out since he doesn’t have to listen to the Queen, and she has a new ally in a fae who works in alchemy at the University. The book also brings a big reveal of Toby’s changeling heritage, and raises more questions about Amandine’s lineage.
The plot doesn’t have many twists per se, and you can pretty much guess who is gunning for Toby considering the events in the past books. Still it draws you in, and keeps you invested in the storyline, and what comes for Toby next.
Previous books in the October Daye series