Book Review: A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

 
A Discovery of Witches
by Deborah  Harkness
592 pages
Available for purchase here

I do love me some witch/vampire love stories. And boy oh boy does A Discovery of Witches deliver

Diana Bishop comes from a distinguished and powerful line of witches, but wants nothing to do with her skill set. Absolutely nothing. She has spent her life denying her powers, focusing on her career as a scholar. But all that changes amongst the stacks of Oxford’s Bodleian Library, where she unwittingly stumbles upon a bewitched alchemical manuscript while doing research. This discovery stirs up the fantasy world, bringing forth daemons, witches and well, one particularly good looking vampire — all interested in finding out more about Ms. Bishop, the only person who can break the spell on the manuscript.

I read this book back in January, began this review and well…just stopped blogging. I feel like I need to post this review even if it’s SUPER late, because the book really was that good. This isn’t your typical romance novel. Harkness does a great job weaving in suspense and mystery, and throws the readers quite a few curve balls with the different mystical elements. I would say the 2nd half of the book whips the floor with the first half, but that’s just because you’ve gotten through all the “setting of the stage” and background and are finally totally immersed in the rich history – and mystery – of the supernatural world.

This book is the first in All Souls Trilogy. The second book is actually out now, but I haven’t read it just yet (soon, soon!) If you enjoy books about magic and forbidden love, I’m telling you – this series is for you!

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I’m big time behind on writing book reviews (that’s what happens when you go on a 9 month blogging break!), but if you want to check out the books I have recently read – please become my friend on Good Reads! My username is Ajanelewis. Hope to see you on there!

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Book Review: Witches of East End by Melissa de la Cruz

Remember when I said that I was going to start posting book reviews? Well, ladies and gents…here we go!

Witches of East End
by Melissa de la Cruz
272 pages
Available for purchase here
Witches Of East End by Melissa de la Cruz is the first book in a slated series. The novel has a few noteworthy themes: magic, romance (sexy-time!) and mystery. Pretty standard themes for a good story.

The novel follows the lives of two sisters, Ingrid and Freya Beauchamp, and their mother Joanna. The Beauchamp’s are not just regular Long Islanders (yes, my stomping ground) — they are witches, each with their own particular set of powers.  They are banned from using their skills (by the ominous “counsel”), but slowly each woman begins using magic on their own, despite the potential consequences.

Not going to lie, while the book moved quickly and was amusing, I couldn’t help but feel like it fell on the cheesy side. I felt like de la Cruz rushed through the storyline, and you never really got to “know” the characters. More than halfway through the book she began weaving in characters from a previous series of hers (Blue Bloods), while introducing other supernatural forces and tying it with a bizarre Norse Mythology-bow, right at the end. Needless to say, the book teased a lot, but didn’t flesh out much of anything.

The next book in The Beauchamp Family series is slated to come out in June 2012. While this book was certainly not the best thing I have ever read, it was entertaining and a really easy, quick read. Perfect for a summer beach day when you don’t want to concentrate that hard.

My rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

She really is a funny girl…

When I decided to finally start this blog, I read a lot of “blogging tips.” The most common? Write what you are passionate about.
 
I’ve noticed my blog posts over the last few months have primarily focused on getting my bearings as a newlywed. Making our apartment a home, learning to cook, and even some emotional high’s and low’s. Those things are 100% me.
 
But those things aren’t EVERYTHING I’m passionate about. If you asked any of my friends or family what I could talk all day about, I think the top answer would…reading (or books). 
 
I’m a HUGE book-worm. I constantly say that I don’t just read books, I devour them.  So I’m going to start talking about what I’m reading here, on my blog.
 
Blame it on Disney’s Beauty & the Beast, but I’ve always identified with dreamer Belle and her “nose stuck in a book.” I dream of a house with a library like the one she had in the castle, or one maybe slightly less grand, but still magnificent, like these:

via Houzz

via Pinterest

via Diary of a Renovation

via Jean-Loup Daraux

 

Don’t worry, this isn’t going to become a book blog. But I figured the blog’s called Lewis in Love, so I should post more about the things I really do love, right?

So stay tuned for some fine-tuning around here,  hopefully resulting in a new “What’s on our Shelf?” page.

Because what’s more homey than snuggling up on your couch, in your [perfectly designed, DIY, and blogged about] living room? I can’t think of much.

Thursday Thanks

Why hello, Thursday! Seeing you here is fantastic…it means only one more day [this week] of getting up to the sounds of an alarm clock.

Today I am thankful for books. Is that silly? For anyone who is reading this blog that actually knows me “in real life,” you know what a book-worm I am. I don’t just read books, I devour them. ‘

And then once I devour them, I will talk your ear off about the book if you allow me. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

What I love about reading is that it let’s me escape to a whole new world (yes, Aladdin and Princess Jasmine style). I love learning about new cultures and places, commiserating with all-too-real characters and transporting myself into their world. I find myself becoming very invested in their “life,” which is probably why I prefer series novels over stand-alone books.

I’m currently reading World War Z (all about the zombie apocalypse…awesome), and once I’m finished will switch gears completely with Gone With The Wind. Since my commute is so long, it allows for me to read a LOT. So if you have any suggestions, please pass them my way. I’m always looking for a new good read!

I’m participating in Paisley Print Shoes‘ Thankful November challenge. Feel free to join us this month as we share on a daily basis what we are thankful for.