Series: All Souls Trilogy,
Published by Penguin on May 26th 2015
Genres: Fantasy, Fiction, Paranormal, Romance, Suspense, Thrillers
Buy on: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks
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.
After a book-long time jump, Diana Bishop and Matthew Clairmont return to the present to face their enemies and continue the search for Ashmole 782. While their trip to the past was fun, it was great to see the all characters we’ve met in the previous two books interact with one another. Like the other books in the series, some lingering questions were answered while the overarching mystery of the enchanted manuscript was finally solved in a satisfying way.
Harkness continues to explore her theme of past deeds carrying their consequences into the future, and how family can mean more than blood. Through her writing, Harkness created a vivid world in which her characters live and uses actual history to make it seem very real.
What I loved about this book (as well as the other two) is the relationship between Claire and Matthew. The two of them care a lot for each other, and it was great to see how much they’ve grown over the course of the trilogy. Matthew allowed Claire the latitude to be who she is and had faith in Claire’s possession of her power. Claire realized that Matthew needed to feel needed, and didn’t fight his protective urges unnecessarily. I also loved how likable many of the other characters were. By the end of the series, Gallowglass and Philip were two of my favorites as I loved how their connections to Claire and Matthew took the story in a different direction than anticipated.
As for what I didn’t like, I don’t have much to say on that front. Harkness did a wonderful job designing the mystery of the manuscript and Diana and Matthew’s connection to it. In fact, she did such a good job that it seems obvious that Harkness must have planned out the entire story arc before ever writing the first word in the first book. All of the pieces connected well, and no loose ends were left dangling. A wonderful ending to a great series!