Seasonal Fears by Seanan McGuire

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Seasonal Fears by Seanan McGuire is the second novel in the Alchemical Journeys Series, and it was a thrilling tale that pulled me in and never let go. Science, alchemy, and magic blend together in this delightful fantasy. Come meet new and old characters as the battle for Summer King and Winter Queen begins….

Seasonal Fears
by Seanan McGuire
Series: Alchemical Journeys #2
Genres: Fantasy
Source: Publisher
Purchase*: Amazon | Audible *affiliate

Rating:

Melanie has a destiny, though it isn’t the one everyone assumes it to be. She’s delicate; she’s fragile; she’s dying. Now, truly, is the winter of her soul.

Harry doesn’t want to believe in destiny, because that means accepting the loss of the one person who gives his life meaning, who brings summer to his world.

So, when a new road is laid out in front of them—a road that will lead through untold dangers toward a possible lifetime together—walking down it seems to be the only option.

But others are following behind, with violence in their hearts.

One must maintain a little bit of summer even in the middle of winter.” —Thoreau

Sean McGuire dazzled me with the Middlegame where we met Roger and Dodger (language and math) and this time, she tells us about the Summer and Winter courts. Her lyrical prose begins with the fall of the current king and queen.

This is a story best savored as we learn about the seasons and kingdom when the summer king sleeps and the winter queen reigns. We learn about candidates who awaken when a new king or queen is needed. There are Jack Frosts and Corn Jennies who aid these contenders for the throne. This science fiction fantasy is brilliant, complex, well developed, and downright magical. I am always left in awe of McGuire’s mind and her magic with the written word.

As we learned in Middlegame, there are always those who hope to take advantage and bend the outcomes in their favor. In Seasonal Fears we meet Melanie Cosgrove, a fragile teenage girl with a weak heart and protective father who shelters her even from the Jack Frosts who seek her out. We also meet Harry March, a young boy who is as drawn to her as he is to the summer sun.

He is a football player, and she is his biggest fan. The two are in love but as winter falls, so does Mel and to save her, Harry will have to believe the impossible and accept his fate.

I loved the race, battles and folks we met along the way as Harry and Mel run away or perhaps towards their destiny. They are traveling with Mel’s Jack Frost, but where is Harry’s Corn Jennie? A wicked game is a foot, one without rules until they reach the court. They aren’t the only ones hoping to fulfil their destiny and for the losers; it means the end of the road.

Our young couple will be tested as the seasons call to them, but a little help from Roger and Dodger will steer them in the right direction. From the world-building to the outside threats, I was enthralled. We learn about Mel’s parents and their intentions. We meet those involved in the courts and the rules of who reigns and how. Someone wants to be Mel’s partner on the throne and will stop at nothing to succeed.

There is so much I want to discuss, but will leave you to unfold the story on your own. I confess I re-read a few chapters before moving on just to be sure I understood this complex world. McGuire writes stories that are original and ones you’ll want to read again and again. I have already grabbed the audio versions as this is a series I will want to revisit.

If you love McGuire’s Wayward Children series, you’ll want to devour the Alchemical Journals. You’ll discover romance, suspense, magic and a world as intriguing as the characters who reside there.

Amazon | Audible

Seasonal Fears by Seanan McGuire was brilliant as Mel and Harry find themselves in a race for their lives. #AlchemicalJourneysSeries #Fantasy #mustread #NewRelease
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About Seanan McGuire

Seanan McGuire is a native Californian, which has resulted in her being exceedingly laid-back about venomous wildlife, and terrified of weather. When not writing urban fantasy (as herself) and science fiction thrillers (as Mira Grant), she likes to watch way too many horror movies, wander around in swamps, record albums of original music, and harass her cats. Seanan is the author of the October Daye, InCryptid, and Indexing series of urban fantasies; the Newsflesh trilogy; the Parasitology duology; and the “Velveteen vs.” superhero shorts. Her cats, Lilly, Alice, and Thomas, are plotting world domination even as we speak, but are easily distracted by feathers on sticks, so mankind is probably safe. For now.

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