A Discovery of Witches – Deborah Harkness

A Discovery of Witches – Deborah Harkness

a discovery of witchesSynopsis

A richly inventive novel about a centuries-old vampire, a spellbound witch, and the mysterious manuscript that draws them together.

Deep in the stacks of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, young scholar Diana Bishop unwittingly calls up a bewitched alchemical manuscript in the course of her research. Descended from an old and distinguished line of witches, Diana wants nothing to do with sorcery; so after a furtive glance and a few notes, she banishes the book to the stacks. But her discovery sets a fantastical underworld stirring, and a horde of daemons, witches, and vampires soon descends upon the library. Diana has stumbled upon a coveted treasure lost for centuries-and she is the only creature who can break its spell.

Debut novelist Deborah Harkness has crafted a mesmerizing and addictive read, equal parts history and magic, romance and suspense. Diana is a bold heroine who meets her equal in vampire geneticist Matthew Clairmont, and gradually warms up to him as their alliance deepens into an intimacy that violates age-old taboos.

My Thoughts

I really enjoyed this book. Akin to the Women of the Otherworld series by Kelley Armstrong, we have a strong, stubborn, determined witch who refuses to be pushed around by her enigmatic, frustrating vampire counterpart. Their relationship ebbs and flows much like any other romantic relationship does – giving the whole book a romantic feel, which also makes it easier to relate to.

Where things become more fantastic is the very fact that she is a witch, and he is a vampire – and there is an organization put in place to ensure no creature outside their own species fraternize. While their relationship faces hardships that are not so easy to relate to, the very taboo nature of it seems quite appealing.

While some parts felt like they dragged on, it was a very good read. There was a part of me that really didn’t want to see it end (knowing that there are two more coming my way helps ease things). All in all, it was a fantastic story to get lost in – and get lost I did. Once I started reading, very little could take me away from it (except wine, but I have a very special relationship with wine). I’m quite looking forward to reading the following two books in the trilogy, one of which is already available, while the last will be published in July.

At the end of the day, reading this book was a great way to start off the new year!


~ by Aubrey Smith on January 1, 2014.

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