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Dark Witch (The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy, #1)
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Dark Witch (The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy #1)

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  41,878 Ratings  ·  3,546 Reviews
With indifferent parents, Iona Sheehan grew up craving devotion and acceptance. From her maternal grandmother, she learned where to find both: a land of lush forests, dazzling lakes, and centuries-old legends.


County Mayo, to be exact. Where her ancestors’ blood and magic have flowed through generations—and where her destiny awaits.

Iona arrives in Ireland with nothi
Paperback, 342 pages
Published October 29th 2013 by Berkley
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Caitlyn "Books Are My Life" Baker I love Nora Roberts. She's kind of an escape from the natural and normal. While her books keep things tied to reality enough so that it doesn't get…moreI love Nora Roberts. She's kind of an escape from the natural and normal. While her books keep things tied to reality enough so that it doesn't get too outlandish, she delves into magic in this series and a couple of others. I love her writing because she's so great at characterization and description. Yes, her books are very predictable in terms of who gets with who, but the unexpected twists in her novels and her surprises in her trilogies keep me entertained. But I think it's kind of nice to have that predictability in books. It's in life where we get thrown all the hurdles and I find it comforting to know that some things never change. (less)

Community Reviews

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Oct 30, 2013 Marina rated it liked it
Well, as a Nora Roberts fan, this is going to be really painful to write…

When I found out that the new work of one of my favorite authors of all time was a trilogy placed in the magic green mountains of of Erin (Ireland), I was sooo excited! My favorite trilogy by Nora is “Gallaghers of Ardmore” where I first met the amazing Ireland setting, and those who know Nora’s work can tell that she have a talent for portraying scenarios. Obviously I was anxious to get my hands on “Dark Witch”. But the No
I'm clearly not with the majority on this. I thought this book was boring as hell. I've never struggled so much to get through a Nora Roberts book before in my life, but this took me a week to finish. The beginning was awesome...when we looked back at Sorcha and her children and their life together, I loved that part. It was different, and had high hopes for the rest of it. But, after we got back to the present time, and met Iona and all the rest of the gang, I just kept feeling that I'd read it ...more
Nov 12, 2013 Raman rated it did not like it
This book was a mess, in my opinion. The writing was sloppy, there was barely any plot, and the characters were all flat.

Iona, the female lead, literally says anything and everything she thinks! She has no inner thoughts, no personality of her own. She seems to exist solely to provide exposition and is not very good at that either. The male lead is... who knows? He has no characters traits other than he seems to be the silent brooding type, but even that is never really shown or understood. He h
Full review can be found here:


My Review:

5 Magickal Stars!

There is just something so enchanting about Nora Roberts' writing. The way she weaves together a story always has me captivated. It'd been awhile since I read one of her books, but nothing had changed about her writing style. It, and the magical story-line, still had the power to enchant me.

The prologue excellently brought me into the story, and I was immediately intrigued to see where this mag
Ashley Christensen
Aug 25, 2013 Ashley Christensen rated it really liked it
The first book of the cousins O'Dwyer series, Dark Witch, reminded me a lot of two other "firsts" of her trilogies- the Gallaghers of Ardmore, and the Three Sisters Island. If you've read both, you know they both involve "outsiders" coming into a life already in progress for the others, but quickly being accepted into the fold. In the Gallaghers, it's Jude going to Ireland to reevaluate herself. And in the Three Sisters Island, it's Nell fleeing an abusive husband, and unlocking her witch powers ...more
Deb Moran
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
♡Karlyn P♡
Jan 11, 2014 ♡Karlyn P♡ rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2014
4 stars. Great world-building, weak romance, but still worth the read.

I hesitate to describe this book as a 'romance' novel simply because the book spent little time actually exploring the romance between Iona and Boyle. Sure, there IS a romance in this novel. Sprinkled throughout the book are a few scenes where Iona and Boyle meet, chat, wink at each, flirt some more, sleep together, have a misunderstanding, make up, and then profess their undying love. Very formulaic stuff, and all woven arou
Oct 29, 2013 Alison rated it it was ok
One word describes this book. WEAK. The characters were weak, the storyline was weak. The book started out GREAT, then boom just fell apart and reading it was like watching paint dry! I've always been a huge fan of the authors trilogies but wow, this book was just a mess. It seemed rushed and just a rewritten version of 2 other trilogies shes written. Never read a Nora Roberts book where I didn't connect with the characters, UNTIL NOW. Sad this book was such a let down after waiting months for i ...more
The set up
Iona Sheehan risks everything when she quits her job, sells everything she owns and moves from Baltimore, Maryland to County Mayo, Ireland, her ancestral homeland. She seeks out her cousins, Branna, a Dark Witch, and Connor O'Dwyer, who her grandmother has told her so much about, determined to find that connection she's craved all her life. Iona gets more than she ever hoped for when her cousins embrace her and help her get a job with their friend Boyle McGrath, doing what she loves...
Emsy Van Wyck
Oct 29, 2013 Emsy Van Wyck rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed-at-fff
Five magickal stars for Dark Witch, the first book in Nora Roberts' The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy
Curling up with a Nora Roberts' novel has the same effect on me as nibbling on a chocolate bar: I go into a state of bliss. This summer I read through all of her series titles and fell in love with her writing once again. Now Ms. Roberts has released the first book, Dark Witch, in a new series, The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy, and I feel like someone just gave me a bar of fabulous and sinfully rich French
Jami Montgomery
Apr 15, 2013 Jami Montgomery marked it as to-read
Finally! Nora Roberts' paranormal trilogies are my favorite books of hers. I've been waiting for another.
Whitney Millirons
Nov 28, 2013 Whitney Millirons rated it did not like it
Currently, I have at least 40 Nora Roberts books. (I'm a re-reader of books I love). I was eagerly looking forward to Dark Witch, and though there have been hints that her writing is slipping, I can't believe how bad this book is.

Truly, there is nothing new here. The characters are very poor imitations of those in her Three Sisters trilogy, with Kane from the Key trilogy thrown in as the evil Cabhan. I agree with the many reviewers that the characters have no depth, Iona is annoying, Boyle almo
Sep 15, 2013 Heller rated it did not like it
Shelves: mf-contemp-pnr
Maybe I've reached a time where Nora Roberts and I will part company. We've been companions for many years now but for me, especially with the PNR books, there's a staleness to the formula that I can't get past anymore. Perhaps I'd be in a more forgiving mood if I didn't feel like I paid for and read this story already as part of the Three Sisters trilogy Dance Upon the Air. This is very much a condensed version of that one.

Why bother with providing the MC with anymore than a cursory back story
Lakshmi C
Sep 04, 2015 Lakshmi C rated it it was ok
I'm an avid Nora Roberts fan, but it was a struggle to complete this book. The prologue was promising, but the rest of the book disappointed on several levels. The characters are flat with exaggerated traits and the lack of backstory makes it even more difficult to care. It is difficult to decide who was more annoying, Iona or Branna. Iona has no filters when she interacts with others, while Branna is locked in her rigid views of the past. Maybe Branna was meant to be portrayed as cautious but ...more
Dec 09, 2013 Elena rated it it was ok

Ughhh... where do I begin...
I am actually a "Nora fan" but this book was - pretty ridiculous when compared to her other stuff!

The plot started off really well with an interesting prologue, but as the story went on so much was left unexplained and the rest was silly. For example:

- Why did the "evil" wait for 800 years to resurface? Why wasn't he attacking the older generations of the O'Dwyers?!

- Then, Iona's witchcraft seems just soooo simple and - out of nowhere! She comes to Ireland as a
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
I received a free copy of this book from Piatkus in exchange for an honest review, thank you! I also want to thank Piatkus for inviting me to participate in the "The Dark Witch blog tour"! 

There lived a witch called The Dark Witch many centuries ago who gave her life in a bid to stop an evil witch called Cabhan. But she gave her powers to her three children before she died.  Now in the present time, Iona Sheehan, Connor and Branna O'Dwyer, descendants of the Dark Witch must try to stop the evil
The Window Seat
Nov 12, 2013 The Window Seat rated it it was ok
As a Nora Roberts fan, this review was extremely challenging to write. I fell in love with reading romance by reading my mom’s Nora Roberts’ books in my early teens and pretty much stayed faithful to her though the years. I actually prefer her trilogies to her yearly hardbacks she releases. However, I decided I was done reading her with the Inn Boonsboro series, which was basically an advertisement for the bed and breakfast she opened in her hometown. Well, when I saw she had a new trilogy comin ...more
Dec 06, 2012 Melodie rated it really liked it
I had taken a break from Nora Roberts' trilogies. I think this is what allowed me to so enjoy Dark Witch.Too much of the same writing style eventually turns me against an author. So I have found that taking a calculated break,reading other styles then eventually coming back has kept me interested and the reading fresh and entertaining.
I enjoyed Dark Witch.A wonderful Halloween month read with all the requisite witches,spells,romance, and family drama.The only thing standing in the way of a fiv
Nov 30, 2013 Susan rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. It had it all - location, family, friends, romance, magick, and a fight against evil. The story is set up in the first two chapters, where we have Sorcha, the original Dark Witch, and her three children. Her husband is off fighting and Sorcha is fighting illness. She is also fighting against an evil sorcerer, Cabhan, who wants her and her powers and is willing to do anything to get them. As the chapter ends she has split her powers among her three children and sent them away t ...more
Rounding up to 3 stars.

When Nora Roberts is good, she's very, very good. And I think that once upon a time she had a quarter of a million** different ideas and ways to present them. The problem is that we're way past that now and the ideas and ways to present them continuously seem to be recycled.

Let me count the ways in just this book/series: there are witches (see also the Three Sisters Island trilogy, and the Key and Circle Trilogies, actually), and Ireland (see also the Born In Trilogy, and
May 28, 2016 Holly rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016
Well, this was my first Nora Roberts book that I've ever read. Which is something considering that she's written 200 books! In the end, I just found this to be ok. I enjoyed the beginning with the past and the set-up of good vs. evil. I liked the magical element to the story, it's different to other books I normally read. However, I really didn't care for the main character, Iona. She kind of grated on my nerves a little with her immaturity. Roberts never did mention how old she is but I just di ...more
Ashley Daviau
Nov 23, 2014 Ashley Daviau rated it really liked it
I always thoroughly enjoy anything by Nora Roberts and this book was no different. I loved that it was set in Ireland, it really was the perfect setting for this story. Add in some magic, witches and a cute love story and I'm sold! I also really loved the beginning that was set in the past and set up the rest of the story for us. And with the way it ended, I'm itching to start the second in the series because I need to know how it all plays out!
Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
May 01, 2013 Mlpmom (Book Reviewer) rated it really liked it
Shelves: kindle-books
Review to come!
Nov 04, 2013 Jen rated it liked it
Shelves: nora-roberts
Let me start by saying that I love Nora Roberts. She's written some of my absolute favorite books and her trilogies are usually the best of the best. The Dark Witch is a good book, the characters are likeable. The setting is gorgeous and the story is well-written. I have no doubt that I will read the two that follow to complete the trilogy. With that said, I can't help but feel that I've already read this book.

Let's start with the Dark Witch herself. I don't know if this is an homage to Juliet
Jan 07, 2013 Melody rated it it was ok
First off I wanna say I am a HUGE Nora Roberts fan. I love her books. So I was pretty excited to hear that she was starting a new trilogy, especially a paranormal one, because that's one of my favorite reading genres but.. The Dark Witch ended up being a big disappointment for me.Unlike all of her other novels I had a hard time getting through this one. I just wasn't feeling it at all. It read like alot of her other novels before and I felt like she just kinda rushed through this book and didn't ...more
Lisa Kay
★★★★ Audiobook has excellent narration, if a bit dramatic at times with the spells. Really enjoyed the book. A perfect March read. Lyrical and descriptive; made me wish I was in Ireland. ...more
Cristina Leitón
Jan 17, 2017 Cristina Leitón rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
¿Por dónde empiezo? Pues por el principio, claro. Esta novela ha cumplido su misión de entretenerme en los viajes de ida y vuelta al trabajo en tren, pero ésta no es mi Nora Roberts. Ya había leído en varias ocasiones que en los últimos años, al parecer, la Roberts ya no es lo que era e incluso recicla ideas usadas en novelas anteriores. Y yo lo siento muchísimo, pero tienen razón.

Mientras la leía no podía parar de pensar "dónde estás, Nora; aparece, Nora, por favor". A veces, sobre todo en las
Nov 21, 2013 Tracy rated it it was ok
Shelves: audible
This was my first Nora Roberts book, so I don't know how it stacks up to her others. I can't say I was overly impressed by this one. The story line was rather basic and the characters all seemed stock. The book starts off in Ireland in the 1200s (if Ireland was called Ireland that long ago) with the story of Sorcha, a dark witch, and how she defeats, but does not destroy, her nemesis, the sorcerer Cabhan. Then the story switches to present day Ireland, where newly-arrived American Iona connects ...more
Apr 25, 2014 Phrynne rated it really liked it
I am not a romance fan but I do like Nora Roberts when she includes the supernatural in her love stories. This one featured witches and magic and was thoroughly enjoyable. The author knows her Ireland well and I could feel myself there when she described the old castles and the beautiful countryside. And the rain. All of her characters were nicely drawn and Iona in particular was very appealing. I am happy to see this is the first of a trilogy and I will certainly be reading the rest.
Oct 03, 2013 Rachael marked it as to-read
Nora Roberts.....Witches. Ireland. Gorgeous cover. I'm in! Can't wait for this one!!
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Nora Roberts is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than 200 novels, including The Obsession, The Liar, The Collector, Whiskey Beach and coming in June 2017, Come Sundown. She is also the author of the futuristic suspense In Death series written under the pen name J.D. Robb. There are more than 500 million copies of her books in print.
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Other Books in the Series

The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy (3 books)
  • Shadow Spell (The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy, #2)
  • Blood Magick (The Cousins O'Dwyer Trilogy, #3)

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“You can’t just hope for happy endings. You have to believe in them. Then do the work, take the risks.” 15 likes
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