Title: The First Fall
Author: Seanan McGuire
Series: InCryptid #0.07
Rating Out of 5: 4 (Really good read!)
My Bookshelves: Paranormal fantasy, Strong women, Urban fantasy
Dates read: 16th August 2020
Format: Free online short story
Publisher: Seanan McGuire
5th sentence, 74th page: “Yes, sweetheart,” she said.
It has been three years since the marriage of Jonathan and Frances Healy; three years since the birth of their son, Daniel, who has been the light of their lives for that entire time. And now, due to circumstances beyond their control, the family has come together to do the one thing that none of them has ever wanted to do.
They have come together to bury Daniel.
Shattered by the death of their little boy, Jonathan and Frances set out to find the Campbell Family Carnival, where Fran’s old friend Juniper’s talent for talking to ghosts may allow her to believe that her child is truly at rest. Jonathan has no such hopes; he just wants to there’s a chance his wife will survive the labyrinth of her grief.
This is not a happy story, and it does not chronicle a happy time in the annals of the Price family. But this is what happened, and when it happened, and it shaped so very much of what came after.
Rest well, Daniel Healy. You never had a chance.
This short story kind of hurt my poor heart. It even made me cry a little. Nothing too intense, just a few spots on my cheeks and a little brightness in my eyes. This was also just at the very beginning of the story. So you can imagine that it just went downhill from there for my poor emotions…
I seriously can’t believe that the beautiful child that you barely get to meet dies. And the way that he dies. It’s truly horrible. It seriously made me rethink my love for McGuire for a little while. But it didn’t take me long to feel more comfortable with her writing again. Even when she kills off a small child, she manages to do so in a way that is both serious and heart rending and kind of beautiful.
I also loved how Juniper is able to start the process of healing in this story. Sometimes we need to lean on the people that we love the most and find our way towards healing. Even if it is a little difficult to find the words…