A Discovery of Witches - Deborah Harkness

A Discovery of Witches

By Deborah Harkness

  • Release Date - Published: 2011-02-08
  • Book Genre: Fiction & Literature
  • Author: Deborah Harkness
Our rating: 5/5 stars

4.5 Score: 4.5 (From 7,536 Ratings)

A Discovery of Witches Deborah Harkness read online review & book description:

Book one of the New York Times-bestselling All Souls trilogy—"a wonderfully imaginative grown-up fantasy with all the magic of Harry Potter and Twilight” (People).
Now “[a] hot show that’s like Twilight meets Outlander” (Thrillistairing Sundays on AMC and BBC America, as well as streaming on Sundance Now and Shudder.

Deborah Harkness’s sparkling debut, A Discovery of Witches, has brought her into the spotlight and galvanized fans around the world. In this tale of passion and obsession, Diana Bishop, a young scholar and a descendant of witches, discovers a long-lost and enchanted alchemical manuscript, Ashmole 782, deep in Oxford's Bodleian Library. Its reappearance summons a fantastical underworld, which she navigates with her leading man, vampire geneticist Matthew Clairmont.

Harkness has created a universe to rival those of Anne Rice, Diana Gabaldon, and Elizabeth Kostova, and she adds a scholar's depth to this riveting tale of magic and suspense. The story continues in book two, Shadow of Night, and concludes with The Book of Life.

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A Discovery of Witches book review A Discovery of Witches ePUB; Deborah Harkness; Fiction & Literature books.

Posted Reviews

  • This book made me so mad

    By JayGray14
    Why build up a powerful and interesting protagonist only to have her give up everything empowered about her the moment a chauvinistic and controlling vampire shows up to tell her what to do? So frustrating
  • Meh...

    By KV22X
    This is like Twilight for a middle aged cat lady. I thought it would be more of an adventure story but it is mainly an irritating romance story. A really controlling and moody vampire falls in love with a narcoleptic witch - I guess because she smells good or is really powerful despite not knowing how to use her magic yet? I mean it isn’t ever clear why they fall in love - it is clearly more a fantasy about some handsome, tall guy finding someone similar to the author irresistible at first site. And then carrying her around because she is always so exhausted or fainting. The weirdest part is is that the supposedly strong main female character is perfectly contented to let the vampire plan and direct her in practically everything, not even including her in their grand escape plan. There is never a reason given for this and it just seems super odd. I didn’t like either of the main characters- they were just selfish and annoying. And not nearly enough action, intelligence, etc. in the plot. Not even enough of a history lesson! So boring. Will not bother with the rest of the series.
  • Twilight and Shadowhunters in the mix!

    By writer4you
    This book will receive 5 stars. Not because I feel it deserves that rating. The love story between Diana Bishop and Matthew Claremont is so like the twilight saga it’s scary. One chapter Deborah mentions that vampires can’t sleep. In a few chapters later Matthew is sleeping. The plot of having witches, daemons, and vampires thrown together in a 21st century world. Sounds like Shadowhunters with Nephilim, Vampires, Warlocks, and Wolves living among one another. The only thing that makes this book stand out from Twilight and Shadowhunters is this Alchemy manuscript. If you are a historian then you will connect with this because a lot of history and mythology was thrown into the story. What I didn’t like was the connection of the Bishop bloodline to mythology tales. It made no sense what-so-ever and I preferred the Bishop family story deriving from the Salem Witch Trials. There were some chapters where I felt things were kind of slow. The chapters that were exciting were the ones that the show pulled. I am a huge twilight fan and the fact that this book made me turn the page, fall asleep while reading, and make me go “okay?!”. Prompts me to read the next book in the series. If a book is that good having an effect on me like twilight did and Harry Potter. There is a chance I’ll read the next two books in the trilogy. I didn’t know about this book till this year when my book club started to read it. I watched the show first before I read the book. If you want a mystery/passion romance then this book is for you. If you are wanting to learn of historical stuff by all means have a go at reading this series. But die hard critics will judge this book based on its similarities to other fiction novels out there. I’m not one of those critics I’m just stating my review on it. I give this book 5 stars and only leave reviews if I feel bothered.
  • Review: All Souls Trilogy 1: A Discovery of Witches

    By @LisaHines711
    A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness is the first book in her All Souls Trilogy . The sensationally magical story of an American witch with no desire for her powers and the centuries old vampire that irrevocably changes her life. Diana Bishop is a witch with limited skill and prefers to think of herself as the scholar she is. Focused on historical Alchemy, she journeys to Oxford for work and somehow manages to get her hands on a magical manuscript. Unbeknownst to her at the time, it is a highly coveted, most sought-after, and elusive tome that no one has seen in centuries only to have her call it from the archives of the Bodleian with ease. Matthew Clairmont has been searching for this book for centuries believing it to be a book of origins of the vampire, witch and daemon species and hoping it has answers to why all the species are dying out and losing power. Learning that a young and inept witch has managed to call the text forth from the archives and going to investigate is a life-changing event for him. Diana Bishop is everything his ancient soul never knew it needed and despite how badly he tries to deny his attraction to her their relationship evolves. But with an ancient like Matthew there are secrets - he has lived a hundred lifetimes and has a hundred lifetimes of secrets - but the depth of some of what he keeps from Diana may break them before they even have a chance to explore the bizarre dynamics of a witch and vampire relationship. Addictive! This series is quite possibly as addictive as Matthew's attraction to Diana! Now also a wonderful TV series on Sundance Channel, I was blown away with how entranced I was with these characters. The main characters, the secondary characters, the world-building. Definitely one of my best reads of 2019! Enjoy!
  • Lame

    By MJW6506
    I’ll never get those hours of my life back! 😒
  • A Discovery of Witches

    By Jbald1
    I don’t know how I would of felt if I read this before starting the series on television. Teresa Palmer epitomizes Diana Bishop and together, they brought the whole story home. I have read all three books of the trilogy and almost finished Time’s Convert. The story and its’ telling in written and visual form is compelling and I couldn’t put them down. The second film series has started production this summer 2019 and I can’t wait for more.
  • A perfect mix

    By KellyYuma
    This book is a cross between Harry Potter, Twilight, and Outlander - seriously, just as written in a previous review. It has the magical elements of HP and the vampires of Twilight that are almost unbreakable, odd, and beautiful at the same time. The historical components of this book are what really tie this book together. The author uses a wealth of information about the past and some serious alchemy knowledge to create a book that’s wonderful and keeps you up at night just to finish! Purchasing it in the iBooks format was perfect because it allowed you a chance to review what some of the words mean (some of them are archaic, considering it was about alchemy, and needed some further clarification) while still within the book. I absolutely loved the Outlander series and had a hard time finding something comparable, but this comes close! Excited to dive into the next part of this series which I’m sure is bound to consist of more of the elements that really drew me to Outlander. This is a MUST READ.
  • Eh

    By IMightBeATaco
  • “A Discovery of Witches” earns 5+/5 Grimoires…Compelling!

    By Kat Costa
    If you are watching the mini series based of Deborah Harkness’s “A Discovery of Witches” and believe there is no reason to then read the trilogy, you are so terribly mistaken. You will miss out on so much history of the various creatures, insights into the characters background, and descriptions of the various scientific and historical research, buildings and castles, food, and wine…oh, the tastes and fragrances of wine. If you're watching and desire more, or you've not seen the mini series and are just interested, this is the perfect place to begin! After having mysteriously called up Ashmole 782, an old book sought by many over the centuries, Dr. Diana Bishop, descended from an ancient and distinguished family of witches, meets Professor Matthew Clairmont, descended from an ancient and distinguished family of de Clermont vampires. There connection is undeniably strong, but their association is strictly, if not dangerously, forbidden. The complex emotional journey of Diana and Matthew brings to mind the conflicts found between the Capulets and the Montagues...without the blood and magic. Their efforts to uncover the origins and future of their species takes the reader from England to France to Italy pitting family against family and species against species. Watching the mini series together with reading the book has strengthened the visuals in my mind’s eye. It is an extraordinary experience I highly recommend.
  • Fantastical

    By scwill22
    A wonderfully spun story that was over detailed at times, but overall an entertaining read.

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