Buffy's Reviews > A Discovery of Witches

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness
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's review
Feb 29, 12

Read in January, 2012

I didn't love this book. I thought flow of the narrative was bogged down with too much extraneous scholarly information. Don't get me wrong, it was all incredibly interesting information that I really did want to have, but I really did slow the story down. Harkness should take a page from children's author Mary Pope Osborn's guide and write her books with companion compendiums. In one of my fluffy mystery series in which the main character is a neophyte writer of mysteries herself, she gets the advice from other authors to: Do extensive research, but to only include one or two of the most interesting bits. I agree with that whole heartedly. It really was interesting information, she just needs to put it in a different type of book.

Also, there were annoyingly similar Twilight juvenile fantasy...overly protective all powerful vampire who refused to have sex with the love of his life despite her constant urging and her intoxicating aroma that he, more than other vampires, is particularly susceptible too. The overly protective flaw did redeem itself however at the end when we the vampire comments that he no longer needs to protect her once she demonstrates how well she can protect herself.

Also, the heroine was a little Supermany for my taste...too much power. I have always preferred the Spider-Man type superhero over the Superman. It is much easier to identify with and empathize with a hero that has flaws and weaknesses despite being super awesome. Plus the action scenes are so much more harrowing. Superman just had too many powers...too impervious.

This was also way too long of a book for me. I was about 100 pages from the end when I had the sinking realization that there was no way this could be a stand alone book given how much more of the plot needed to unfold. I immediately went to the cover and saw there in tiny writing that is was indeed the first of a currently unfinished trilogy. Bummer. Although I am interested in knowing what happens, a 1000 pages per book is just too much for this type of story.

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