The Book: I'm not sure why I waited so long to read A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness, considering I've had a copy of the book for more than a year. I finally took the advice of one of my best friends (not a blogger) and downloaded the audio and started listening. I was immediately hooked.
I really loved the story about Diana Bishop (historian and reluctant witch) and Matthew Clairmont (geneticist and vampire) and the ancient book Diana finds in the Bodleian Library. Although I wanted Diana to be a bit stronger and more self-assured, I didn't let that stop me from being swept along in this tale of mystery, action, and love.
Harkness's take on the nature of vampires, witches, and daemons is refreshing and fun. Diana, for reasons I'll not reveal here, doesn't understand her past or the power of her family and so we learn right along with her. Matthew, on the other hand, has lived for almost two thousand years and knows very well who he is. I especially liked to see the historian in Diana light up when she realizes that Matthew actually met the people she has only read about or was a firsthand witness to events that she is studying.
The audio edition was read by Jennifer Ikeda, who did a wonderful job with the accents and characterizations. She was equally at home with the action scenes and the more tender moments between our two heroes.
For more about A Discovery of Witches, watch this short video of Deborah Harkness on a walking tour of Oxford:
The Tea: Although Diana and her aunts would prefer a pot of tea, I took a tip from Matthew and chose wine instead. One of our favorite wines of late is a red blend by Rex Goliath called Free Range. Here's the producer's tasting notes: "With big and juicy red fruit flavors, this wine is smooth and easy to share with your fellow red wine adventurer." It's all that and still on the dry side and fairly inexpensive. We've been buying it by the big bottle.
The Assessment: I'm going out on limb that Matthew would tolerate this wine. But considering that he has wine from the year of the comet in his cellar, I doubt this is going to become a big favorite of his. Diana might go for it, however. One of her aunts prefers scotch, which is fine by me; I'd be happy to join her in a wee dram. In keeping with the original theme of this feature, I need to say there are plenty of tea lovers in A Discovery of Witches, but I think I'm going to hang out with Matthew.
What About You? What would I find in your mug or glass? And do tell me what you're reading this week.
Buy A Discovery of Witches at an Indie, Powell's, Book Depository, or a bookstore near you. These links lead to affiliate programs.
Thursday Tea was the brainchild of Anastasia at Birdbrain(ed) Book Blog.
Published by Penguin USA / Viking 2011
Source: audio = bought; hardback = review (see review policy)
Copyright © cbl for Beth Fish Reads, all rights reserved (see review policy)
FTC: I buy all teas (and wine!) myself, I am not a tea reviewer (but would be happy to become a wine reviewer).