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The Book of Life (All Souls) Hardcover – July 15, 2014
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“Weaving an extraordinarily rich story of magic and science, history and fiction, passion and power, secrets and truths, Harkness delivers an unforgettable and spellbinding finale that's not to be missed.”—USA Today
“Juicy and action-packed . . . Even at 561 pages, this is one hardcover no one will mind lugging to the beach.”
“Pure escapist summer fun.”
—Jodi Picoult, Parade
“The epic and erudite vampire-witch romance comes to a thoroughly satisfying conclusion in the action-packed All Souls trilogy ender.”
“A stirring, poignant saga.”
“The charm in Deborah Harkness’s wildly successful All Souls trilogy lies not merely in the spells that its creature characters cast as they lurk pretty much in plain sight of humans, but in the adroit way Harkness has insinuated her world of demons, witches, and vampires into ours. . . . From the novel’s poignant opening, Harkness casts her own indelible spell of enchantment, heartbreak, and resilience. . . . She is terrific at bringing her magic world to life, maintaining a fast-paced, page-turning narrative.”
—The Boston Globe
“This trilogy is a superlative example in a subgenre you could call realistic fantasy—think Harry Potter but for grown-ups or Susanna Clarke’s Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell. Witches, vampires, and daemons exist, along with time travel. But this world also is recognizably ours, not a wholly made-up setting like George R.R. Martin’s Westeros. When done well, as it is here, this sort of fiction provides characters who are recognizably human in their desires and actions even if most of them are creatures with supernatural powers. Through them Harkness succeeds at the hardest part of writing fantasy: She makes this world so real that you believe it exists—or at the very least that you wish that it did.”
“Harkness has immersed and spellbound readers with her alternative universe. . . . Her ambitious melding of scientific and historical detail is inventive and brings surprising depth. . . . The Book of Life brims with sensuality, intrigue, violence and much-welcome humor.”
—Los Angeles Times
“There is no shortage of action in this sprawling sequel, and nearly every chapter brings a wrinkle to the tale. The storytelling is lively and energetic, and Diana remains an appealing heroine even as her life becomes ever more extraordinary. A delightful wrap-up to the trilogy.”
“Harkness herself proves to be quite the alchemist as she combines elements of magic, history, romance, and science, transforming them into a compelling journey through time, space, and geography. By bridging the gaps between Harry Potter, Twilight, and Outlander fans, Harkness artfully appeals to a broad range of fantasy lovers.”
“The witch Diana’s and the vampire Matthew’s quests to discover their origins and confront the threats to their star-crossed union tie up as neatly as one of Diana’s magical weaver’s knots. . . . It’s still satisfying to travel with these characters toward their more-than-well-earned happy ending.”
“The adventure never lets up. . . . History, science, and the unpredictable actions of paranormal characters with hidden agendas all swirl together to create a not-to-be-missed finale to a stellar series.”
Top Customer Reviews
I was a big fan of the first two novels in this series, A Discovery of Witches: A Novel (All Souls Trilogy) and Shadow of Night (All Souls Trilogy) and waited with exciting anticipation for The Book of Life: A Novel (All Souls Trilogy) to be released. I was fortunate enough to receive an advanced readers copy from the publisher last week and was not disappointed.
I'm not going to rehash the publisher's summary by restating the plot of Book of life, but believe me - the journey Deborah Harkness takes us with Diana and Matthew is wholly amazing. Their search for Ashmole 782 and its missing pages becomes tantamount into understanding what the witches have known for centuries and how to save their future. Although it has been two years since Shadow of Night (All Souls Trilogy) was released, you will find it very easy to get back into Matthew and Diana's storyline. And seeing how things are settled with Benjamin was definitely worth the wait. There was plenty of action and suspense to keep you turning the pages.
For all of us who were disappointed in how Veroicia Roth ended the Divergent series with ...Read more ›
First of all, I am shocked at all the positive reviews I'm seeing. I feel like we didn't read the same book.
A Discovery of Witches was one of my favorite reads of 2011. I wasn't as much into reading then, and I stumbled across this one while randomly perusing my library for books. I fell in love with the story, the characters, and the magic of it all. I felt like the story was building up for something important, something powerful.
The second book was also pretty successful for me. It was lovely in the way that historical fiction is pleasurable for me. I also have a deep love of time-travel books, so I was practically guaranteed to fall head over heels.
A lot of time has passed since the second, and my expectations were sky high for the third. Unfortunately, the careful world-building fell to crap in the final installment. I'll try to break down my main issues with the story without giving away any spoilers.
1) The POV switches: I have very specific opinions about lots of POVs in the a story: Namely, I hate them. This book had at least 5 different points of view, which irritated me to no end. Why not just two? Those extra points of view just seemed lazy to me, just a way for the author to do some "telling" and less "showing" about the characters. To make matters worse, the author switched from 1st to 3rd person throughout the book! Talk about a headache. It was a terrible choice, in my opinion.
2) The number of characters: This book was like a who's who from the previous two books. I swear, no one was left out. There were so many people re-introduced that I had a hard time keeping track of everyone. The story felt so... cluttered.Read more ›
That said, there's a reason Twilight made Stephanie Meyer rich, and there's a reason all of these books are bestsellers. Mock all you want, with good reason (and even Harkness mocks, when her vampires haughtily insist they don't sparkle), but the fact is, these books are entertaining. Twilight lets you shut off your brain and get carried away in the fantasy of forbidden attraction; All Souls takes you on the same journey without shutting off your brain.
I read A Discovery of Witches in February 2011, with no idea it was the start of a trilogy, and when I got to the cliffhanger ending, I was so gobsmacked it took me several days before I could sleep again. When Shadow of Night came out in 2012, I got an ARC copy and took a week's vacation so I could savor it properly. But since then, I've moved house, had a second baby, weathered a lot of changes at work, and I'm generally a lot busier, and so when the long-awaited final book in the All Souls Trilogy showed up on my Kindle, while I was excited to see it, I didn't have time to drop everything and devour it.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
As a historian and a lover of urban fantasy, I couldn't ask for more. Except for more books about the Bishop Clermont family!Published 2 days ago by Marjo Meriluoto
Great story line in all three books but it sometimes feels like I am reading a history text book in school rather than a novel.Published 2 days ago by JEN
I really enjoyed this series. I've read it three times and would recommend it. I decided to get the audio version for my long commute and have found that I can NOT listen to... Read morePublished 4 days ago by Amazon Customer
I didn't like it as much as the first but better than the second. The characters are engagingPublished 5 days ago by Kimberly Geeza
Good story, i like the series a lot. It was like Harry Potter but for adults.Published 8 days ago by KRB