Author: Deborah Harkness
Series: All Souls Trilogy #1
Publication: February 8th 2011 by Penguin
Genre: Adult ~ Urban Fantasy ~ Romance
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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. This smart, sophisticated story harks back to the novels of Anne Rice, but it is as contemporary and sensual as the Twilight series-with an extra serving of historical realism.
I'm still a bit surprised by how this book basically sucked me into the story and didn't let go. I really liked Diana because she's a historian and I happen to be crazy about history and there was a lot of talk about history in this book so that was a huge part of me liking it. Matthew kind of sneaked up on me like he did Diana and got me to love him. It's not just because I adore vampires. I don't know, there was something about him.
There were a few teeny tiny things that I didn't like completely which made me give this book four stars instead of five. I liked how this was a story that moved slowly and build everything up except for the romance. When that was introduced it started happening fast. It was maybe a little too fast for my liking. There was also a bit over overuse with characters saying "it's not my tale to tell".
And also towards the end there was a lot of new information and things started getting really crazy, also a little too much. Don't let this scare you off because other than this it's been one of the best books I have read!
A lot happened in this book and I think I'm forgetting to say a billion things but yeah, I really liked this book and I think everyone should give it a try. I also heard BBC is going to make this into a tv series, which is making me all kinds of excited. I can't wait!
If you like urban fantasy, vampires, witches and well-written stories as well as forbidden love, A Discovery of Witches is the one you should read!
About the Author:
Deborah Harkness is a professor of history at the University of Southern California. She has received Fullbright, Guggenheim, and National Humanities Center fellowships, and her most recent scholarly work is The Jewel House: Elizabethan London and the Scientific Revolution. She also writes an award-winning wine blog.