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Sunday, June 15, 2014

Dark Witch by Nora Roberts

I've read many Nora Roberts novels but I've never written a review here on Tynga's Reviews. Usually, Roberts sticks to contemporary romances, but once in a while, she'll dabble with the supernatural and come out with a wonderful trilogy about love, magic and defeating a paranormal evil. Honestly, I usually wait until the whole Nora Roberts trilogy is published before diving into it, but in this case, I couldn't resist. With it's magical setting of Ireland and characters that sounded genuine and magical, I thought I was in for a treat. While I enjoyed DARK WITCH, I feel like the book was missing a bit of that typical Nora Roberts charm that I've become so fond of.

The setting couldn't have been more perfect. If you want to read a good witch book, personally I find the best ones always have some sort of link to Ireland. It's almost as if the Irish countryside has this inherent magic and mysticism that translates into the characters. It really helps that Nora Roberts has a penchant for Ireland as so many of her books are either set in Ireland or have Irish characters. I think Nora Roberts might be one of the most published author of our time but it's her Irish and magical books that are some of my favorites.

My main issue with DARK WITCH is the main character, Iona. Although she did have likable qualities, I think it's her naivety about love that put me off. Her desire for perfect and true love made me doubt her authenticity. Sure everybody wants to be loved in some way and everyone has the right to search for that special one, no matter how they go about finding him or her. It's a little ironic that Iona's love interest, Boyle, comes waltzing into her live, brooding on a horse when she has such a strong connection with horses. Actually, I find Iona's connection with horses more believable than her love at first sight feelings for Boyle. We definitely don't have enough background information about Iona, especially since her past is really the main reason why she finds herself in Ireland at the beginning of this story. The lack of interest from her parents when she was a child, has apparently made her the way she is, but I feel her history could have been a little bit more detailed in order to understand her intentions and her immense need to be accepted and loved. I'll admit with the other characters of the book that her incessant need to apologize for everything is a little annoying, but it's something I'm willing to overlook since it makes her so likable. And personally, I do it all the time.

I admire Iona's relationship and connection with horses and probably so many young girls would love to have only a portion of her talents. Her link with horses is something magical that she inherited from her ancestors, and it's that link that makes her a stronger witch. We are also introduced to Branna and Connor, Iona's cousins that accept her the way she has always wanted to be accepted by family. With these two other witches, they form a trio that has been legend in the small town of Ashford, and they're stronger together. Iona with her horse, Connor with his hawk, and Branna with her hound. Together, with three other friends, they form a circle that might just once and for all defeat a dark spirit that has been haunting Iona's family for centuries.

Nora Roberts is known for her great characters and while I do have a few minor issues with the ones from this book, I do find them genuine and likable. My other issue with DARK WITCH is the story line. The battle between good and evil magic is obviously the main conflict in this book, and while we do have quite a bit of information about how the war began, I just don't find the "fight scenes" in this book are that engaging. They're very typical and lack in a bit of imagination. The lure of the dark side is obviously interesting but overall, the main conflict left me wanting more.

I might have been a little harsh with this review, but I think it's because my expectations might have been a little bit too high. This is the first book of the trilogy so I have high hopes that things will only get better from this point on. Personally, I have faith in Nora Roberts and I think DARK WITCH might simply be her way of setting up one of her epic trilogies.


Tynga is a 32 years old mom of two, from Montreal, working as a lab technician in an hospital specialized in heart disease. In her free time, she enjoys reading all things Paranormal and photography.

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4 People left their mark' :

  1. Great review. I've read a few of the supernatural books by Nora Roberts and love them. I will wait with this trilogy until the last book has come out. I'm curious to find out what I'll think about it. And consider myself warned to not have super high expectations when I start the books.

  2. Nora Roberts fan here!!! Though I must admit I've never read any of her paranormal books. I stuck with her contemporary and historical romances. If I do try one of her Paranormal novels, which would you highly recommend? :)

  3. Hmm I guess I will not be getting this one. I have read some of Roberts books in the past and liked them so I wanted to try this but if the main character is unbelievable about love and life then I don't think I could put up with this.

    Thanks for the great review!

  4. I'm a big Nora Roberts fan, too, although I don't keep up as much as I used to. I should give this a try, though, even though it wasn't as amazing as you were hoping for.