Review: Imaginary Numbers
Series: InCryptid #9
Published by DAW on February 2020
Genres: Urban fantasy
Also by this author: Over the Woodward Wall, Across the Green Grass Fields, Calculated Risks
Imaginary Numbers is the ninth book in Seanan McGuire’s urban fantasy InCryptid series. Following the efforts of the extended Price Healey family to protect cryptids – the creatures that normal humans think are legends like gorgons and dragons to those that we don’t know about like the alien cuckoos.
Seanan’s world-building is always incredible. Each book in this series gives readers a deeper knowledge of the cryptids sharing the planet with the humans. Creating entire ecosystems for mythical creatures based in real-world science is amazing. Mixing the zoological information with compelling plotlines is a true skill.
My thoughts about Imaginary Numbers
In this book, instead of focusing on the Price family’s generations-old battle with the Covenant of St. George, the story focuses on cousin Sarah, a secondary character from earlier books. Sarah’s a cuckoo, a telepathic species of apex predator cryptids from another dimension.
After rescuing her cousin Verity in an earlier book, Sarah’s mind was severely damaged. As a telepath who can take over human minds and impose her will on them, this made her incredibly dangerous. It’s been a long five years but Sarah and her adoptive parents think she’s recovered.
So the plan is that using her cuckoo powers, she’ll leave her parents’ home in Ohio and travel to Oregon to visit her extended Price family at their remote compound. She’ll be able to reconnect with her cousins, especially Artie, the half succubus that she’s been in love with forever.
While the test starts off well, Sarah doesn’t make it out of the airport before she’s attacked by another cuckoo. And things just get worse. As wily and prepared as Sarah’s family is, how do they survive let alone win against mind controlling aliens?
For fans of the series, Imaginary Numbers is a solid entry. For urban fantasy fans who haven’t read the InCryptid books, definitely give them a shot – fast-paced storytelling, stellar world-building, and snarky characters make it a total thumbs up recommendation.
Start at the beginning of the InCryptids series with Verity’s story, Discount Armageddon.
If you enjoy urban fantasy with a strong female lead and a bit of snark, try Burn for Me by Ilona Andrews. Read my review of the most recent book in the Hidden Legacy series, Emerald Blaze.
The Mercy Thompson books are another urban fantasy series featuring a strong female lead. Moon Called is the first book. Read my review of Smoke Bitten, the most recent book.
Thank you to NetGalley and DAW for the DRC.
Do you read the InCryptid series? Who’s your favorite character? Tell me in the comments below. I’m Team Verity because of the ballroom dancing although I feel more Antimony in temperament.