Friday, June 28, 2019

The Invasion (Grey Land #2), by Peadar Ó Guilín

David Fickling Books, ISBN 9781338045628, March 2018

Ireland is still reeling, twenty-five years after the return of the Sidhe, or perhaps more correctly, the Grey Land, where the Sidhe were banished centuries ago. Our world, which they call the Many-Colored Land, and the Grey Land, move nearer to each other and further away, and now they are very close to each other, closer than in a very long time, and the Sidhe are able to Call the young of Ireland into the Grey Land. They stay only a day, but they don't always survive, or if they do, return unchanged.

Ireland is cut off from the rest of our world. Technology is dying. Society has changed drastically, with what were previously the secondary education years transformed into Survival Colleges, aimed completely at giving the young people who will be Called by the Sidhe their best shot at survival.

But the Sidhe have a plan, a plan to return to Ireland. To do that, they have to find a King for some part of Ireland to revoke the treaty that banished them.

Nessa Dhoerty, Anto Lawler, Aoife, Liz Sweeney, and other students of Boyce Surivival College are thrown into the conflict with the Sidhe, conflict with each other, and conflict with adults who may or may not really care anymore.

Ireland has become a grim place, but there are at least some prospects for those who survive the Call and return not too changed. The Grey Land is rather grimmer than the name might suggest, unless you remember that the fae, whatever they are called in any version of the mythology, are never nice or safe or good.

It's a solid, interesting book, with interesting and complex characters who make you care about them. On the whole, the world they live in is dark enough that I'd have preferred to not care enough to finish reading their story. That option wasn't available!


This book is a 2019 Lodestar Award Finalist, and I received it as part of the 2019 Hugo Voters Packet.

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