Ciska's Book Chest

I am an eclectic reader with preferences for crime/thriller/suspense, historical fiction, literature and contemporary fiction. For more books and other bookish posts visit my blog at Ciska's Book Chest

Shadow of Night

Shadow of Night  - Deborah Harkness The authorDeborah Harkness is a student and scholar of History. She has two non fictional works in her name and is the founder of the Good Wine Under $20 blog. A discovery of Witches is her first novel. The synopsisHistorian Diana Bishop, descended from a line of powerful witches, and long-lived vampire Matthew Clairmont have broken the laws dividing creatures. When Diana discovered a significant alchemical manuscript in the Bodleian Library,she sparked a struggle in which she became bound to Matthew. Now the fragile coexistence of witches, daemons, vampires and humans is dangerously threatened.Seeking safety, Diana and Matthew travel back in time to London, 1590. But they soon realise that the past may not provide a haven. Reclaiming his former identity as poet and spy for Queen Elizabeth, the vampire falls back in with a group of radicals known as the School of Night. Many are unruly daemons, the creative minds of the age, including playwright Christopher Marlowe and mathematician Thomas Harriot.Together Matthew and Diana scour Tudor London for the elusive manuscript Ashmole 782, and search for the witch who will teach Diana how to control her remarkable powers... The reviewThis book is the second of the All Souls trilogy. I reread the first book before starting this one cause though I did enjoy it very much I was aware I forgot a lot of details and might need them to not miss out on them in this book. This book is a very well written sequel. It is clearly a story of its own and is not disturbed by the fact it has a past and needs a future. The two main characters get more body in this book. I liked that a lot cause I kind of missed out on that in the first book (even the second time) As they are traveling to a whole different time we meet new people and the author used some well know historical figures to make their appearance. I loved this detail and spend a significant amount of time on the internet looking up information. It did give me the feeling the author used this way to be able to skip further details on the characters, but that might be personal cause I was not very much impressed with the depth and building of characters in the first book. The storyline picks up where the first book ended. There are a few situations from the first book mentioned in the second book and not all are explained well enough to understand their impact which means you will have to read the first book if you want to fully comprehend their meaning. Still the story has clear boundaries and could be read as standalone book. Though I am convinced you want to read the first book after it.I very much enjoyed the story. The struggle Matthew has to go trough knowing what he knows now but also carrying all the experiences he had back then, knowing his wife has to learn things but hardly willing to let her go. The author did a good job describing that. I also love the way Diana's witchcraft is developing. The end of the book is shocking though and I hope we will find out more what happened at Sept-Tours during the time Diana and Matthew where in London in the third book. I gave the book three stars cause I find it a very entertaining read. It is a very steady sequel, not rushing forward to the third book or hanging back in the first. There are a few little mistakes with names being swapped out (did not note the pages though) and the story is not life changing or a must read for everybody. I do think people who like the regular vampire stories will enjoy it.