Author: Seanan McGuire
Genre: Urban fantasy
Pages: Paperback, 328
Publisher: Daw Fantasy, March 5, 2013
Opening Lines: "Verity stood with her hands folded in front of her and her feet turned out in first position, watching her father read her report card."
"Telepathic mathematicians. Chess-playing dragons. Bogeyman nightclub owners. Talking mice. The Price family has spent generations studying the monsters of the world, working to protect them from humanity—and to protect humanity from them. Verity Price is just trying to do her job, keeping the native cryptid population of Manhattan from getting into trouble, and doing a little ballroom dancing on the side. But her tenure on the East Coast is coming to an end, and she's still not sure what she wants to do with her life.
"Enter Dominic De Luca, an operative for the Covenant of St. George, and Verity's on-again, off-again boyfriend. When he tells her that the Covenant is sending a full team to assess how ready the city is for a purge, Verity finds herself between a rock and a hard place. Stay, and risk her almost-certain death, for flee, and leave the cryptids of New York with nothing between them and the Covenant.
"It's not the kind of choice that ever comes easy. With allies and enemies on every side, and no safe way to turn, it's going to take some quickstepping for Verity to waltz out of this one. There's just one question on everyone's mind. Is this the last dance for Verity Price?"
~ Jacket copy
This book is the second in the InCryptid series, so it was the next logical choice after finishing Discount Armageddon!
After the aftermath of the last book, Verity is finally settling into her new role at the Freakshow, her ever-changing relationship with the cryptid population of NYC, and trying to discover the true nature of her budding romance with Dominic. However, even though everything seems as though it is finally falling into place, Dominic tells her that the Covenant is coming into town to assess his work and field reports. He has been lying on them, and the Covenant is not convinced that he is going to reach a decision about a possible Purge.
Wanting to keep Verity safe, Dominic begs her to leave town and take any cryptid she can with her. But, being a Price girl, Verity is determined to keep the population of cryptids safe from the Covenant and try to convince them that a Purge is unnecessary. However, she questions where Dominic’s true loyalties lie, whether she can make it through this storm on her own, and keep the city safe.
This book was just as awesome, fun, and hilarious as the first book. McGuire was able to keep up the momentum and pace set in the previous book. Reading them one right after the other, I felt as though the transition was seamless between the two. Granted, time had passed; however, I didn’t feel as though I was lost or that she was skipping a lot of important stuff.
Verity did a lot of growing in the book. She was finally faced with making the decision between her dance career and following in the family business. While I will not tell her choice, it was definitely an adult and defining moment in her life. Further, she is starting to see that her cavalier attitude isn’t always a wise choice. Her actions—while surely that of a twenty-three-year-old—need to be thought out. I also appreciated seeing her inner turmoil concerning her relationship with Dominic. Even though she loved it, she was really forced to find her priorities.
It was interesting to add the familial element in this book. I really thought Uncle Mike’s character was neat. I will like to see him and her adopted grandmother in later books. He was needed to push the plot on; however, his role wasn’t huge.
I loved Istas! She was a neat minor character in the previous book; however, she really took on more of a major role in this one. Her talk about carnage, rat casserole, and her Gothic Lolita threads is absolutely priceless! I hope she is in future books, and that her character continues to develop.
The one thing I really didn’t like was when Sarah took over the narration. Granted, I understand the circumstances that brought it about; however, I didn’t like the plot device. For me, Sarah has always been a rather weak and boring character. In the first book, she had a few funny lines and unique quirks, but she never held my attention. I wish that McGuire had found some other way to tell that side of the story, or just didn’t include it. For a cuckoo especially, Sarah is just too damn whiny and annoying. That being said, in the end, she got a tiny bit neater.
The continued romance between Dominic and Verity should prove to be an interesting story. With her grandmother’s past, it was easy to see it coming. However, it didn’t take away from the romantic and “awww” factor!
For me, this book was another hit right out of the ballpark! Seanan, I need the next books STAT! If you haven’t read the first book, GO DO IT! These books take all of the best elements of the October Daye and Newsflesh series and combine them in an awesome, funny package.
Current Pages: 6379