Review: A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness


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.

Favorite Lines:

“Just because something seems impossible doesn’t make it untrue.”

“As fast as I can tell there are only two emotions that keep the world spinning year after year…One is fear. The other is desire.”

“It is a blessing as well as a burden to love so much that you can hurt so badly when love is gone.”

“And happiness is always louder than sadness.”

My Opinion:

This book was the first time I broke my number one book/movie/tv show rule. Normally, I won’t read something after I have already seen the movie or tv show because I feel like it takes away the opportunities for me to be creative and imagine the characters and the worlds how I want to. Instead, you usually see things in your head like how they are presented to you in the movie or tv show. It’s different if you read the book and then watch it on the screen and then return to the book again later because, I feel like you still have the original version of how you imagined everything in your head.

For this book series, I had actually seen an advertisement for the TV show on Facebook and Instagram first and decided to give it a chance. I didn’t really even realize it was a book until I was about halfway through the tv show. I must admit, I really enjoyed the TV show and am excited for it to continue. Because I liked the TV show so much, I decided to give the books a try and I must admit, I was a bit skeptical at first and I will tell you why. 

I had tried reading the Outlander series, I love the TV show and wanted to read the books but they were too dense with history, I just couldn’t get through them. I was worried this series would be much the same way but I was pleasantly surprised when it wasn’t. The series is full of history don’t get me wrong. Both characters are college professors, one being a history professor the other being a 1,500 year old vampire and Harkness is a history professor herself if I am not mistaken. But the history in this story is kept to a semi-minimum and flows nicely. I didn’t feel like I was bogged down with so much dense information that I couldn’t enjoy the story as it unfolded.

Follow Diana as she is sucked deeper into the world of creatures than she ever thought possible and finds love along the way. This book is full of mystery, intrigue, history, romance, the paranormal, and even a bit of action. If you’re a fan of any or all of these then this book could be for you.


Overall, I really liked this book and I am excited to read the next one and see where the story takes us next! Happy reading!


A Discovery of Witches