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Monday, February 9, 2015

Review: Shadow of Night (All Souls Trilogy #2)

Shadow of Night (All Souls Trilogy #2)
Author: Deborah Harkness
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Penguin Audio
Release Date: July 10, 2012
Audiobook: 24 hours and 30 minutes
Narrator: Jennifer Ikeda
Source: Purchased from

Book Description

"Together we lifted our feet and stepped into the unknown"—the thrilling sequel to the New York Times bestseller A Discovery of Witches
Deborah Harkness exploded onto the literary scene with her debut novel, A Discovery of Witches, Book One of the magical All Souls Trilogy and an international publishing phenomenon. The novel introduced Diana Bishop, Oxford scholar and reluctant witch, and the handsome geneticist and vampire Matthew Clairmont; together they found themselves at the center of a supernatural battle over an enchanted manuscript known as Ashmole 782.
Now, picking up from A Discovery of Witches’ cliffhanger ending, Shadow of Night plunges Diana and Matthew into Elizabethan London, a world of spies, subterfuge, and a coterie of Matthew’s old friends, the mysterious School of Night that includes Christopher Marlowe and Walter Raleigh. Here, Diana must locate a witch to tutor her in magic, Matthew is forced to confront a past he thought he had put to rest, and the mystery of Ashmole 782 deepens.
Deborah Harkness has crafted a gripping journey through a world of alchemy, time travel, and magical discoveries, delivering one of the most hotly anticipated novels of the season.


I am going to try my best to write this review without any spoilers.  Well maybe one small one.  London.  There it is.  That is all I am going to say about it.  The second book in the All Souls Trilogy takes place mostly in London with Diana and Matthew meeting a lot of new and interesting characters as the journey to find Ashmole 782 continues.   Along with several other big and small adventures.
So now to make this a spoiler free review I will tell you mostly about my thoughts on the book and I won't divulge any details, just generalizations.
I like historical reads but I think the time period determines if I like a particular historical read.  This period of time is not very interesting to me so it was not a big pull for me.  The author did do a lot of great references to the time period in regards to clothing, travel and food.  But I think I was just not thrilled about that period of European history.
Where this story left off in book one gets convoluted and messy because there are so many new characters, plot points and story lines here and there that you kind of forget the purpose of book two.  I felt like there were about 10 characters toooooo many in this book.  And every new character tells a story of their past and there are character names in there too.  I was getting a bit over loaded with new characters and back stories with back stories.  I mean by the middle of the book I was thinking of pulling out a notebook and creating a character tree to keep everyone and their relationships straight.  There were a few characters that I felt did nothing at all the help the story along and was asking myself why are they even there.  Every single time there is a conversation there seems to be three to four people in the room with more coming in.  It was a bit overwhelming.  
As for the narrator, she is the same as in the first audiobook and I think she sounds a bit more breathy than she did in book one.  She has this incredibly soft, wispy voice that works for Diana but seems a bit too dreamy at times.  She did really well with the various characters and their accents.
Overall, I was not impressed with this book in the series but I will read/listen to book three to see if it gets better and if all of these issues get resolved some way or some how.         

Reviews by Other Bloggers


I recommend this book to readers over 18 years old due to a few sexual scenes.


This book is number 3 in my Goodreads Reading Challenge
This book is number 3 in my Audiobook Reading Challenge
This book is number 1 in Book Set in Another Country

Other Books in the Series

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