this is part of as days pass by, by Stuart Langridge

Books I own by Mishell Baker

Borderline goodreads

Mishell Baker (Arcadia Project #1)

Well, that's an interesting book. A bit difficult to describe; it's urban fantasy, given that it takes place in contemporary Los Angeles, and the masquerade is plausibly carried off. Some of this might be because I'm prepared to believe almost anything of Hollywood types; that the good ones are good because they've found their fairy muse and work alongside them isn't even in the ten most unlikely things I could think of. This isn't an Erasmus-Fry-capturing-Calliope thing, though; the partnership is free and equal and mediated by the Arcadia project, who offer heroine Millicent Roper a job.

So far, so much like a whole bunch of other urban fantasy. The unusual thing is that Millie suffers from borderline personality disorder, "a pattern of impulsivity and instability of behaviors, interpersonal relationships, and self-image... [with] uncontrollable anger and depression." This is alarmingly convincingly described (and, after a bit of research, it seems that the author is also a sufferer, which explains why it's convincing). However... this makes Millie really quite unlikeable. At one point she screams a whole bunch of fairly unjustified hurtful abuse at the whole set of other characters, and is called out as having carefully stored up accusations in order to use them at the most wounding time. And that seems like a perfectly accurate description to me. Of course, then, I feel guilty about disliking Millie, because I should be sympathetic, and then ridiculous for feeling guilty... and all this gets in the way of enjoyment of the book, a bit. But I'll certainly read the next one; the worldbuilding here is interesting, and there are some truly neat touches such as a warlock being able to suppress her feelings by bundling them off into an invisible dragon construct. Emotionally complex story but without being all grim and gritty, which is a rarity and worthy of celebration by itself, but it's not very escapist, if escapism is what you're looking for.

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