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.
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Not convinced it's for you? See what others are saying about it.
Margaret Stohl (author of Beautiful Creatures)
"Really, this is the Da Vinci Code of all Twilights -- and what could possibly be wrong with that? I read it through in one sitting and would have kept on through the entire series, back to back, if only it had been written already. It's not YA but it very well could be -- more like YA for grown ups. YA with wine and supernatural yoga and rare book archives and the occasional body part. Like a PG-13 Outlander, but still with some of that true-love-real-man Gabaldon vibe. And an old time supernatural scope, more Witching Hour than Twilight, actually. Book crack. :)"
The Hungry Reader
"Although over the top of Sir Christopher Wren’s Tom Tower, A Discovery of Witches is a great academic fantasy in which readers will feel Deborah Harkness put a spell on us. Fast-paced with an underlying social theme and a nod to Darwin, a world of four sentient species sharing the famous library and fragile peace makes for a fun start to an engaging tale. Diana the intellectual witch and her undead protector are a fine team escorting the audience through lethal maize of paranormal who want them dead."