All Souls Trilogy Book Cover All Souls Trilogy
All Souls
Deborah Harkness
fantasy, ghosts, witches, occult
Penguin Books; Reprint edition
(26 May 2015)

It begins with absence and desire. It begins with blood and fear. It begins with a discovery of witches.

Fall under the spell of Diana and Matthew in the stunning first volume of the No.1 internationally bestselling ALL SOULS trilogy.

A world of witches, daemons and vampires.

A manuscript which holds the secrets of their past and the key to their future.

Diana and Matthew - the forbidden love at the heart of it.

When historian Diana Bishop opens an alchemical manuscript in the Bodleian Library, it's an unwelcome intrusion of magic into her carefully ordered life. Though Diana is a witch of impeccable lineage, the violent death of her parents while she was still a child convinced her that human fear is more potent than any witchcraft. Now Diana has unwittingly exposed herself to a world she's kept at bay for years; one of powerful witches, creative, destructive daemons and long-lived vampires.

Sensing the significance of Diana's discovery, the creatures gather in Oxford, among them the enigmatic Matthew Clairmont, a vampire genticist.

Diana is inexplicably drawn to Matthew and, in a shadowy world of half-truths and old enmities, ties herself to him without fully understanding the ancient line they are crossing. As they begin to unlock the secrets of the manuscript and their feelings for each other deepen, so the fragile balance of peace unravels...

You might be watching this on Sky One – A Discovery of Witches – or may never have heard of this series, but if you like Outlander, then you’ll like this set of 3 books.

I loved them and I’m going to list my reasons why:

  1. The historical accuracy – in clothing, sights, smell and books;
  2. Libraries and Books. The clear descriptions of old books, the way they were bound, the way they were printed, the colours and te illustrations;
  3. How difficult it is to write with a quill – and write clear and clean hand-writing;
  4. Descriptions of Alchemical experiments as described in the books, and as they are to be understood in modern chemistry terms;
  5. ‘Meeting’ historical characters in Elizabethan London. The philosophical discussions. The political intrigue;
  6. Details of Elizabethan witchcraft which ring very tue;
  7. Length of the books – like Outlander, the books are long and rich in descriptions and details. You feel that you are really obtaining full value for money;
  8. The move from country to country and time to time with all the different customs and languages.¬† And the reminder that Langue D’Oc was the language of most of Southern France and the Occitanie and the County of Toulouse, and that Paris was the capital of France which was not the ruler of this area, except by remote access.
  9. The author is an historian and has actually visited the places she writes about from the Bodleian to the Yale Library;
  10. And finally, they hooked me and I just couldn’t put them down. They were a very good read, well written and clean and clear stylistically, and engrossing. The characters grabbed you and you wanted to find out what came next….

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