Book Review: The Book of Life | Deborah Harkness

16:37 Daniel Riding 0 Comments

The third and final book in the All Souls Trilogy from the super talented author Deborah Harkness is a wonderful finale to the story of Diana and Matthew, a powerful witch and a powerful vampire united by love, magic and destiny.

I originally went looking for fictional books about witches because I have a fondness for magical stories, adventure and happy endings. I came across the first book in the All Souls Trilogy 'A Discovery of Witches' and fell in love with the story and it's wonderful cast of characters. Then came the second in the series 'Shadow of Night' in which we see the romantic pair time travel to Elizabethan England. The end of the second book left me with such an urge to carry on the story so you can imagine my excitement when the third book finally made it into my hands.

I received this book as a proof copy for my kindle from 'Headline' via 'NetGalley.com' for an honest review. The minute it arrived I let this book consume me for I knew even before I read this book that it was going to wonderful.

Despite the fact that every single book in this trilogy is wonderful, the third book is easily the best because it finally ties up all lose ends and we learn so much of what we have all been trying to discover about the 'Book of Life'. The elusive manuscript Ashmole 782 and its missing pages that has had Diana and Matthew going all over the world across different time zones and even into the past to discover its hidden meaning. I am finding it very hard not to gush about the third book without giving away any spoilers because this book is not only magical in its subject matter, it is also magical in the way the story has been told.

After historian and witch Diana Bishop and vampire scientist Matthew Clairmont return to the present day, Diana's powers have advanced considerably and she is finally coming into her own as the great witch she is destined to be. They return home to more drama and heart break and the pace rarely slows down for we are taken through a wonderful set of exciting events that will eventually lead Matthew and Diana to the ancient knowledge of what the witches discovered many centuries ago.

The race is now on to also discover the true enemy and reach him before he can get to Matthew and Diana and the people they hold dearest. This enemy is not your run of the mill villain for he is a very intelligent and psychopathic killer. What will the Clairmont's have to do to overcome the evil that is coming for them? What dramatic twists will be unveiled? This is the most intense book of the three and it can most definitely be classed as a thriller because you become more than willing to sacrifice sleep to continue on with this addictive tale of love, betrayal and ultimately powerful magic.

I was very satisfied with how this book ended but ultimately I am disappointed to say goodbye to the characters that I have become very find of. Deborah Harkness is a very talented writer and I am hoping that she continues to create wonderful stories for us to enjoy. I would love it if we got to hear from this incredible cast of characters again in the future, for I feel there is plenty of room to tell the stories of some of the other wonderful characters that Deborah has created. I would love to see what happened to the newest additions to the Clairmont clan, and I would love to read about Ysabeau de Clermont: mother of Matthew Clairmont and wife of Philippe de Clermont. I loved her character throughout all of the books and it would be wonderful to have a look into her past, or even her future.

Overall a wonderfully addictive and satisfying read, and that goes for the entire trilogy not just 'The Book of Life'. I urge everyone to read this book if they haven't already but you must read this trilogy from the very beginning. I must warn on how addictive this story is, prepare to find yourself lost amongst the trials and tribulations of Diana and Matthew.
I adore Deborah Harkness and her stories and I am waiting with breath that is baited for what she will do next.

I give this book and the entire trilogy a magical 5/5

This book is currently available in hardback:


And will be released in paperback on the 9th April 2015, you can pre-order it at the link below:


The All Souls Trilogy is also currently being developed by the BBC to be turned into a TV series. According to the quote from Deborah on her Website:

I’m delighted to share that the All Souls Trilogy is now in development with the BBC, who hope to adapt it for television. I am confident that they will be careful custodians of the characters you love, and have every expectation that the BBC will produce something fantastic. That’s all that I can say about the project at the moment, but stay tuned for further details as they become available.

For further information about the author, you can head over to Deborah's official website:


You can follow me on the following social media platforms:

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Deborah is also doing a UK Book tour to coincide with the paperback release of 'The Book of Life', for details check below.


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