**Notice** Due to transfering back from a godaddy hosted wordpress blog back to blogger, reviews published before june 2017 don`t all have a pretty layout with book cover and infos. Our apologies.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Giveaway: The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness + Swag

PB boxed set image

To celebrate the trade paperback release of The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness, the final book of the All Souls Trilogy, Penguin is offering one lucky winner a copy of the book and some wonderful swag! Tomorrow, May 26th, 2015 is the release of the trade paperback. It's also the release date of the paperback box set. If you haven't had the chance to check out The Book of Life or the trilogy, tomorrow is your chance!

More about The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness
the book of life

The #1 New York Times bestselling series finale and sequel to A Discovery of Witches and Shadow of Night

Fans of the All Souls Trilogy sent this highly anticipated finale straight to #1 on the New York Times hardcover bestseller list. Bringing the series’ magic and suspense to a deeply satisfying conclusion, The Book of Life is poised to become an even bigger phenomenon in paperback.

Diana and Matthew time-travel back from Elizabethan London to make a dramatic return to the present—facing new crises and old enemies. At Matthew’s ancestral home, Sept-Tours, they reunite with the beloved cast of characters from A Discovery of Witches—with one significant exception. But the real threat to their future has yet to be revealed, and when it is, the search for Ashmole 782 and its missing pages takes on even more urgency.

Read Stéphanie's review

Amazon | Book Depository | Goodreads

Selected questions from a conversation with Deborah Harkness

Q: Much of the conflict in the book seems to mirror issues of race and sexuality in our society, and there seems to be a definite moral conclusion to THE BOOK OF LIFE. Could you discuss this? Do you find that a strength of fantasy novels is their ability to not only to allow readers to escape, but to also challenge them to fact important moral issues?

A. Human beings like to sort and categorize. We have done this since the beginnings of recorded history, and probably well back beyond that point. One of the most common ways to do that is to group things that are “alike” and things that are “different.” Often, we fear what is not like us. Many of the world’s ills have stemmed from someone (or a group of someones) deciding what is different is also dangerous. Witches, women, people of color, people of different faiths, people of different sexual orientations—all have been targets of this process of singling others out and labeling them different and therefore undesirable. Like my interest in exploring what a family is, the issue of difference and respect for difference (rather than fear) informed every page of the All Souls Trilogy. And yes, I do think that dealing with fantastic creatures like daemons, vampires, and witches rather than confronting issues of race or sexuality directly can enable readers to think through these issues in a useful way and perhaps come to different conclusions about members of their own families and communities. As I often say when people ask me why supernatural creatures are so popular these days: witches and vampires are monsters to think with.

Q: From the moment Matthew and a pregnant Diana arrive back at Sept-Tours and reinstate themselves back into a sprawling family of witches and vampires, it becomes clear that the meaning of family will be an important idea for THE BOOK OF LIFE. How does this unify the whole series? Did you draw on your own life?

A. Since time immemorial the family has been an important way for people to organize themselves in the world. In the past, the “traditional” family was a sprawling and blended unit that embraced immediate relatives, in-laws and their immediate families, servants, orphaned children, the children your partner might bring into a family from a previous relationship, and other dependents. Marriage was an equally flexible and elastic concept in many places and times. Given how old my vampires are, and the fact that witches are the keepers of tradition, I wanted to explore from the very first page of the series the truly traditional basis of family: unqualified love and mutual responsibility. That is certainly the meaning of family that my parents taught me.

Q: While there are entire genres devoted to stories of witches, vampires, and ghosts, the idea of a weaver – a witch who weaves original spells – feels very unique to THE BOOK OF LIFE. What resources helped you gain inspiration for Diana’s uniqueness?

A. Believe it or not, my inspiration for weaving came from a branch of mathematics called topology. I became intrigued by mathematical theories of mutability to go along with my alchemical theories of mutability and change. Topology is a mathematical study of shapes and spaces that theorizes how far something can be stretched or twisted without breaking. You could say it’s a mathematical theory of connectivity and continuity (two familiar themes to any reader of the All Souls Trilogy). I wondered if I could come up with a theory of magic that could be comfortably contained within mathematics, one in which magic could be seen to shape and twist reality without breaking it. I used fabric as a metaphor for this worldview with threads and colors shaping human perceptions. Weavers became the witches who were talented at seeing and manipulating the underlying fabric. In topology, mathematicians study knots—unbreakable knots with their ends fused together that can be twisted and shaped. Soon the mathematics and mechanics of Diana’s magic came into focus.

Q: Did you know back when you wrote A Discovery of Witches how the story would conclude in THE BOOK OF LIFE? Did the direction change once you began the writing process?

A. I knew how the trilogy would end, but I didn’t know exactly how we would get there. The story was well thought out through the beginning of what became The Book of Life, but the chunk between that beginning and the ending (which is as I envisioned it) did change. In part that was because what I had sketched out was too ambitious and complicated—the perils of being not only a first-time trilogy writer but also a first time author. It was very important to me that I resolve and tie up all the threads already in the story so readers had a satisfying conclusion. Early in the writing of The Book of Life it became clear that this wasn’t going to give me much time to introduce new characters or plot twists. I now understand why so many trilogies have four, five, six—or more—books in them. Finishing the trilogy as a trilogy required a lot of determination and a very thick pair of blinders as I left behind characters and story lines that would take me too far from the central story of Diana, Matthew, and the Book of Life.


Thanks to Penguin, one (1) lucky winner will win a paperback copy of The Book of Life, a small Book of Life mirror with ouroboros, a signed copy of Diana’s commonplace book, and All Souls alchemical buttons. US only. Giveaway ends June 1, 2015. Enter with rafflecopter.

giveaway book of life_edited-1

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the author

Deborah Harkness is the number one New York Times bestselling author of A Discovery of Witches, Shadow of Night,and The Book of Life. A history professor at the University of Southern California, Harkness has received Fulbright, Guggenheim, and National Humanities Center fellowships. Her publications include works on the history of science, magic, and alchemy.  Her most recent scholarly book is The Jewel House: Elizabethan London and the Scientific Revolution.  She lives in Los Angeles.stephsig moon


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.

Follow Tynga on: Facebook | Twitter

15 People left their mark' :

  1. I'm actually a little over halfway done with the second book, Shadow of Night. And so far I love it and I'm really excited for The Book of Life. Thanks for the chance to win! :)

  2. I am dying to read The Book of Life. I loved the first two books and can't wait to see how it ends! Thanks for hosting this giveaway!

  3. I've read and love the All Souls Trilogy. I'd be thrilled to win The Book of Life paperback and extras! Thanks for the chance to win!

  4. I've read the series mutliple times because it's just that good. I'd love to win The Book of Life so I can read it again as a beach read!

  5. I haven't read any yet, but I really want to. Soon hopefully!

  6. never read this series

  7. I liked the first book and I need to catch up :) thanks for the awesome giveaway! Eh... I say live and let live. As long as nothing goes grr and hurts people to take over the world, I'm all for anyone having the chance to be with whomever they want.

  8. I absolutely love this series! I'm currently listening to the audiobook version of book two. Between the narrator, Jennifer Ikeda, and Deborah Harkness’s words,I cannot wait to get into the car, turn it on, and slip into Elizabethan England to see what's about to happen next. Great giveaway! *crosses fingers in hopes of winning*

  9. Haven't read the series but I totally think they should intermarry!!

    I have a US address but rafflecopter might show my location outside US because I’m doing a semester abroad

    thank you so very much :)

  10. I finished the first book and loved it. I definitely have to catch up. I think it's an amazing series. Thanks for the post and the opportunity. Good luck everyone.
    Carol L

  11. Stacy Channell27 May 2015 at 12:03

    I would say in answer to the question, that if paranormal creatures did exist, I would not be against them intermarrying. It is not as if I am going to go out there and tell them no! Fell in love with the characters and can't wait to see how it all comes together in the end.

  12. I've read the first 2 books in the series, getting to the 3rd soon...

  13. Maria Malaveci29 May 2015 at 08:57

    I have not yet read them, but I am very excited to get started!

  14. a series that I have been dying to read!!
    thank you for the giveaway!!!

  15. Great giveaway, thank you for having it! I cannot wait to read this last installment!