lady under the lake audio cover Story Rating: 4 stars
Audio Rating: 4.5 stars

Narrator: Greg Boudreaux
Length: 4 hours, 54 minutes

Audiobook Buy Links: Amazon/Audible | iBooks
Book Buy Links:  Amazon | iBooks

Matt and Lachlan finally have a real lead about where they can find Lachlan’s missing husband, Wyn. Herne the Hunter has pointed them to a lake where Wyn has apparently been hiding out, and so the guys head there to see if they can magically call Wyn forth and let him know the coast is clear. Unfortunately, rather than tracking down Wyn, they end up connecting with another of the lake’s supernaturals, Cerys Glynn.

Cerys is a lady of the lake (though apparently, they aren’t all ladies), as well as the long-lost mother to the current Faerie King. She wants to hire Quest to help her track down a missing child. Unfortunately, due to Cerys’ presumed abandonment of her son the king — who happens to be the half-brother of Matt’s boss — the situation is complicated and no one else at Quest wants to touch it. This means Matt gets to take the lead on the case, but also, there is an awful lot of pressure to get it right.

Finding the missing child is much more difficult than expected, as there are virtually no leads. Things get even more complicated when Wyn finally shows back up. Matt had been confident that things were on track between him and Lachlan and they could move forward once Lachlan and Wyn could legally split. But once the men are reunited, Matt can’t help but worry he may be losing his chance with Lachlan. As the investigation into the missing child heats up, the mystery gets increasingly complex. But Matt is determined to get to the bottom of the case, and to walk away with the man he is growing to love.

The Lady Under the Lake is the third book in E.J. Russell’s Quest Investigations series. As with the others, the story has dual tracks focusing on the current mystery, as well as on the series-long plot arc. As always, Russell does a nice job tying the two threads together in ways that aren’t immediately obvious, but connect the mystery nicely with the larger story. The mystery here focuses on Cerys and her missing child. We get some nice world building as we learn about the ladies (and men) of the lake, a supernatural being the series hasn’t delved into yet. Russell has done such a nice job in this series, and in this larger world, creating all kinds of beings and weaving them together into one universe and we get some nice added lore here. The mystery gets complicated by assorted family politics. Cerys left her son, the king, as a child (for good reasons that get explained), but until all that gets cleared up, the situation is tense. I liked how the mystery came together here, and I am really having fun with Herne as a new sidekick. He is kind of the straight man as he doesn’t seem to socialize much, nor know much about the modern world, so he takes a lot literally and provides some comic relief. Along with Jordan and Eleri, Matt’s “team,” it makes for a fun group to watch interact as they dig into the case.

The other plot focuses on the larger arc with regard to Matt and Lachlan and when they can be together. So here we finally find Wyn, learn where he has been, and have a chance for Wyn and Lachlan to sever their mating. This series is not a traditional romance, so Matt and Lachlan’s relationship definitely is not at the forefront of any of these books and it has been a very slow build. But it was nice to see things moving forward here in this penultimate book, and things are set up well for the conclusion.

As always, Greg Boudreaux is just excellent at the narration. This series is light and playful, a little snarky, and humorous, and Boudreaux really gets the tone right. There are so many characters here and he carries them through well across the books. There are also so many non-English names and words, not to mention a variety of accents to manage. I can’t speak to authenticity, but I was able to clearly distinguish that different people had different accents, so it all worked well for me. I really think Boudreaux was a great choice for this series and it is definitely worth checking out the audio.

This story sets things up nicely for the final book and I am really looking forward to seeing how it all comes together.