Shadow Of Night: A Novel by Deborah HarknessShadow Of Night: A Novel by Deborah Harkness

Shadow Of Night: A Novel

byDeborah Harkness

Hardcover | July 10, 2012

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The #1 New York Times–bestselling sequel to A Discovery of Witches, book two of the All Souls Trilogy—“as enchanting, engrossing, and impossible to put down as its predecessor” (Miami Herald).
Look for the hit series “A Discovery of Witches” streaming on Sundance Now and Shudder, and coming to television this April on AMC and BBC America.

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.

Deborah Harkness made her fiction debut with book one of the All Souls trilogy, A Discovery of Witches, which was a New York Times bestseller and has been translated into more than thirty languages. A professor of history at the University of Southern California, Harkness has received Fulbright, Guggenheim, and National Humanities Cent...
Title:Shadow Of Night: A NovelFormat:HardcoverDimensions:592 pages, 9.31 × 6.25 × 1.83 inPublished:July 10, 2012Publisher:Penguin Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0670023485

ISBN - 13:9780670023486

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Rated 2 out of 5 by from Unnecessarily Long I would have enjoyed these books more if they weren't so bloody long and drawn-out. I have nothing against thick books - quite the opposite, in fact - but there's a difference between a book being thick because of its story, and being overly thick because the author doesn't know how to curb a scene and prevent it from becoming filler. I greatly enjoyed parts of this book, but others seemed to me to serve no purpose other than to fill pages and jerk the reader back and forth between time periods. Also, I'm not sure when possessiveness became a sign of attraction or a suitable partner. Every time Matthew made decisions for Diana or prevented her from speaking, I wanted to reach through the pages and strangle both of them. Even with the reasons provided by the author, I felt his protectiveness could and should have been handled better without turning him into an overly protective/possessive spouse. I was not impressed and found myself skimming through the last chapters just to be finished with the book.
Date published: 2017-11-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing follow-up to ADOW I was a little hesitant going into the second book of the All Souls trilogy because of the strong historical element - I was afraid it was going to be more like a history book than a novel. But again, Harkness blew me out of the water with the way she weaved together the history of Elizabethan London with magic and her rich characters, some old and some new. Originally a history professor, you can tell Harkness knows her stuff inside and out and uses her in-depth knowledge to transport the reader to an entirely new world without letting it overpower the story.
Date published: 2017-07-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Just ok. Wow, goes on forever. I like the story but the author has a tendency to use filler just to drag out the story, obviously paid by the word!
Date published: 2014-12-30
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Thumbs up Much better than the first. Good read.
Date published: 2014-11-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Reader I love this series. A mixture of adventure, history, and romance.
Date published: 2014-10-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Second Times a Charm Just finished reading this book for the second time, finding it more enjoyable this time around. The first time reading I felt overwhelmed with all the new characters thrust upon me at once and didn't enjoy some of the historical references and details so much. This time it wasn't so bad. Cannot wait to read the third book!
Date published: 2014-10-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Shadow of Night Absolutely love this series! Will be very sad when it ends.
Date published: 2014-10-05
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Shadow of night Great read so many twists and turns can't wait to dive in to book 3.
Date published: 2014-09-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Shadow of Night Loved the first two now on to the third :)
Date published: 2014-08-30
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Disappointed I didn't enjoy this one as much as the first one. I'm hoping the third book will be more like the first!
Date published: 2014-08-29
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Disappointed I didn't enjoy this one as much as the first one. I'm hoping the third book will be more like the first!
Date published: 2014-08-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Shadow of Night A good read:-) :-) :-)
Date published: 2014-08-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Shadow of Night I loved this sequel. The main character is a strong female, the premise is quite unusual and I can't wait to read Harkness's third novel in the series.
Date published: 2014-08-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enjoyed this book as well A little more history in this book. A slower read just to try and take everything in. I still really enjoyed it. Can't wait to read the final book!!!
Date published: 2014-08-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Enjoyed this book as well Shadow of the Night was a very good installment in the lives of Diana and Matthew. I liked the character development, good twists and turns to the story. The travel back in time was well done, descriptive and made the reader feel you were possibly there. I am looking forward to the third chapter in their lives and to see what the future holds for them. Deborah Harkness is a good author, well written book, definitely worth a read.
Date published: 2014-08-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Enjoyed this book as well I have been waiting for this book for almost one year and it did not disappoint. I absolutely loved this triology.
Date published: 2014-08-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Enjoyed this book as well I really enjoyed this second installment in The All-Souls Trilogy. The characters are well written as is the story. I love the drama, suspense, intrigue, romance and magic. Read A Discovery of Witches first.
Date published: 2014-08-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great follow through Can't wait to read the last of the series.
Date published: 2014-08-02
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Shadow of the first novel. I liked this one even though some other readers may have found it slow.
Date published: 2014-08-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Trilogy Hope this series is made Inrt Hope this series is turned into a movie!
Date published: 2014-07-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Shadow of Night Enjoyed this more the second time around. Now on to The Book of Life!
Date published: 2014-07-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Shadow of Night Lagged at times, but overall not bad. I will read the next one, after all, it's good entertainment!
Date published: 2014-07-23
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Disappointing sequel! Shadow of Night was long and tedious. At first I was excited to see where the story was going. We left our demonic duo going back in time to look for the mysterious book that holds the secrets to all things other-worldly. But the more I read the more frustrating it became. I was hoping the story would not only have our heroes, Diana and Matthew on the quest for the book but battle real danger with the witch trials and encounter the disease and poverty of the 16th century - these elements were pushed to the background and we were spared the real trials and tribulations of Elizabeth times and instead got lessons in fashion, castles, grammar and the inherent moodiness of vampires. I’d pass.
Date published: 2014-02-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved it I love this series stayed up all night reading both books in the trilogy that have been published without even realizing it. One minute it was 10 pm and the next thing I knew it was 6:30 am and the sun was starting to come up. I can't wait for the next book to come out.
Date published: 2013-07-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Terrific second book! Started this book right after finishing the first one! Was expecting a novel along the same vein as the first. But this one is different in style, tempo and form. There is history spun out in front of you like a beautiful tapestry in such a way that you feel like you could actually be there! Fantastic reading! Enjoyed it every bit as much as the first book. The author has succeeded where so many first time authors have failed, in that her second book continues to enthrall the reader. She shows more imagination and thoroughness with her historical details than anyone else I have read in the last many years. She doesn't just grind out the same preconceived dry garbage that most historical authors use. Loved it! The author twines details into a complex story. Love the writing style! Not just another boy girl, girl boy, conflict, reconcile, the end type of story. Definitely a keeper, and will be re-read again in the future.
Date published: 2013-07-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from AMAZING! A really great adventure - so much detail that it times it can seem overwhelming - but keep going becasue its all worth it and adds so much to both the plot and the character development. Almost all of your questions from the first book are answered here - and we get a few new ones as well. LOVED IT.
Date published: 2012-12-20
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Biggest Disappointment after a great first book Shadow of the Night (sequel to Discovery of Witches) by Deborah Harkness book. Book two of a Trilogy. This book did not work for me because of the following reasons.. 1) Endless dialogue of no value to the plot. 2) Boring useless characters with no dimension. 3) Christopher Marlowe the most annoying crharacter ever! I wanted to strangle him, from the first moment we hear him speak, not speak Whine!! 4) Matthew's Character was too wishy-washy! Not the intelligent, strong, determined character he was n the first book, 5) What happened to the well educated Historian Diana, who now seemed " dumbed down " for a lack of a better word. 6) Plot drags on and on, like the author is not sure of where to go. Plot was meaningless most of the time. Did not keep my attention as it should have. I found myself skipping over large sections of the book, because of the lack of substance. It seemed to be merely filler. 7). BIG, BIG disappointment when, I loved Discovery of Witches so much that I couldn't put it down. Yet, I struggled ( and I do mean struggled!) to continue to read the Shadow of the Night. In fact, I read three or four others books while I struggled to get this one finished. 8) I was really disappointed when the book Discovery of Witches ended as I was enjoying it so much, but I couldn't wait for Shadows of the Night to end!! 9) The book felt like Deborah Harkness, rushed through it with no goal in sight. As if she too were disappointed with the characters personalities and tired of them. 10) I am no longer looking forward to finishing this Trilogy :-( Having said the above, I will possibly give the third book a chance, in hopes that it is as entertaining and enjoyable as the first book. Sorry to be negative, but I was really disappointed in the follow-up to a really great read Discovery of Witches!
Date published: 2012-09-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Does Not Disappoint I read DOW on a whim after reading a review of it a year ago and fell in love with the story. I eagerly anticipated the arrival of SON and was not disappointed. Deborah Harkness once again weaves a magical, and historical, tale of the love, happiness and some heartbreak that transpires between Diana and Matthew. The book also houses a few surprises that I did not see coming which added unexpected weight to the story. I now eagerly anticipate the third and final volume of this enchanting trilogy. SON is a must read if you read DOW and if you have not read DOW I urge you to pick it up and join the millions that have become enchanted by this series.
Date published: 2012-09-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Won't disappoint! As a fan of the first book in this series, I looked forward to the release of Shadow of Night with anticipation, and it didn't disappoint. As a reader, I always find it interesting to watch how a new author develops their skill and becomes more accomplished as they gain more experience and confidence. One of the issues with the first novel in the trillogy, Discovery of Witches, was the rather slow pace at the beginning of the novel, as Ms. Harkness established the background and characters of her story. It was here that she most clearly demonstrated her lack of experience as a novelist. By contrast, there was none of that same awkwardness with the current work. Ms. Harkness jumps right in where she left off and the novel is able to flow easily, continuing the story of Matthew and Diana and further developing their characters without interrupting the flow of the plot. Diana and Matthew land in Elizabethan England, and this is where Ms. Harkness' skill in weaving together fact and fiction is best demonstrated. Like the best historical novelists, she manages to weave historical detail into her story without doing so in an obvious and obnoxious way. Like the best fantasy novelists, she skillfully weaves in unlikely creatures such as vampires, witches and daemons among the poor ordinary humans, cheekily suggesting historical persons like Kit Marlowe and Thomas Harriot may have been more than they appeared. The result is a rich reading experience, an intelligently entertaining love story and an exciting continuation of the trilogy.
Date published: 2012-08-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic continuation!!!!! Its a very emotional continuation to the series. We really go into depth of the emotions of the characters and the story line is filled and action and suspense. The story picks up right where u left off!. awsome awsome awsome!!!!!
Date published: 2012-08-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Book two is just as wonderful as the first, get it asap! I adored the first book in this trilogy, "A Discovery of Witches" and waited impatiently for this second part. It in no way let me down, as it was completely as intelligent, intriguing, expansive and wonderful as the first. After realizing that all the creatures want Diana, and that there is nowhere they can be safe in the present while Diana learns to use her magic, she and Matthew time-walk back to 1591, where Matthew is close with the erudite movers-and-shakers of the day: Sir Walter Raleigh and Kit Marlow, among others, and a courtier to Elizabeth I. They create a new life in London, while Diana searches for a teacher, and Matthew continues to try to come to terms with his own internal demons. They also continue to search for Ashmole 782, and try not to do anything that will materially change the future, which is a big challenge, given who they are. This book focuses more directly on Diana and Matthew's love story, as they both slowly and with many difficult missteps, become more capable of trusting one another and accepting that despite the fact that they *shouldn't* be together, they are together, and both of them want to be together. That doesn't, of course, change the fact that many, maybe even most of the rest of the world, present, past and future, would rather they weren't, and many of the characters from the first book as well as new ones here show up in the story making various attempts to rip them apart. But the story isn't just about Diana and Matthew in love, anymore than the first book was. Deborah Harkness is quite obviously a devoted lover of history, philosophy, art, science, politics and many other things, and all of these are woven skillfully into the larger story in such a natural way, you might almost forget that you are reading fiction. That makes this so much more than just a paranormal fiction or romance story. I consider this as much historical fiction as many other books I've read, even though, yes, it has witches, vampires and daemons in it. Both Diana and Matthew are able to come to terms with things in their lives that have created scars in their present, and the reader really feels a sense of vicarious closure for both of them as we watch them heal past wounds so they will be strong enough - both on their own and together - to face the battle they know lies ahead. I utterly loved this book! Many times, I went back and re-read passages because they were so wonderful. If you read "A Discovery of Witches" and liked it, you must go get book two immediately. The only down-side is that we now have to wait however many months it will take for Harkness to write and publish the final installment in Diana and Matthew's story. I can't wait!!
Date published: 2012-07-19

Read from the Book

“Why no beard? Have you been ill?” Marlowe’s eyes flickered when they spotted me, nudging me with the insistent pressure that marked him unmistakably as a daemon.I suppressed an urge to rush at one of England’s greatest playwrights and shake his hand before peppering him with questions. What little information I once knew about him flew from my mind now that he was standing before me. Had any of his plays been performed in 1590? How old was he? Younger than Matthew and I, certainly. Marlowe couldn’t yet be thirty. I smiled at him warmly.“Wherever did you find that?” Marlowe pointed, his voice dripping with contempt. I looked over my shoulder, expecting to see some hideous work of art. There was nothing but empty space.He meant me. My smile faltered.“Gently, Kit,” Matthew said with a scowl.Marlowe shrugged off the rebuke. “It is no matter. Take your fill of her before the others arrive, if you must. George has been here for some time, of course, eating your food and reading your books. He is still without a patron and hasn’t a farthing to his name.”“George is welcome to whatever I have, Kit.” Matthew kept his eyes on the young man, his face expressionless as he drew our intertwined fingers to his mouth. “Diana, this is my dear friend Christopher Marlowe.”Matthew’s introduction provided Marlowe with an opportunity to inspect me more openly. His attention crawled from my toes to the top of my head. The young man’s scorn was evident, his jealousy better hidden. Marlowe was indeed in love with my husband. I had suspected it back in Madison when my fingers had traveled over his inscription in Matthew’s copy of Doctor Faustus.“I had no idea there was a brothel in Woodstock that specialized in over-tall women. Most of your whores are more delicate and appealing, Matthew. This one is a positive Amazon,” Kit sniffed, looking over his shoulder at the disordered drifts of paper that covered the surface of the table. “According to the Old Fox’s latest, it was business rather than lust that took you to the north. Wherever did you find the time to secure her services?”“It is remarkable, Kit, how easily you squander affection,” Matthew drawled, though there was a note of warning in his tone. Marlowe, seemingly intent on the correspondence, failed to recognize it and smirked. Matthew’s fingers tightened on mine.“Is Diana her real name, or was it adopted to enhance her allure among customers? Perhaps a baring of her right breast, or a bow and arrow, is in order,” Marlowe suggested, picking up a sheet of paper. “Remember when Blackfriars Bess demanded we call her Aphrodite before she would let us—”“Diana is my wife.” Matthew was gone from my side, his hand no longer wrapped around mine but twisted in Marlowe’s collar.“No.” Kit’s face registered his shock.“Yes. That means she is the mistress of this house, bears my name, and is under my protection. Given all that—and our long-standing friendship, of course—no word of criticism or whisper against her virtue will cross your lips in future.”I wiggled my fingers to restore their feeling. The angry pressure from Matthew’s grip had driven the ring on the third finger of my left hand into the flesh, leaving a pale red mark. Despite its lack of facets, the diamond in the center captured the warmth of the firelight. The ring had been an unexpected gift from Matthew’s mother, Ysabeau. Hours ago—centuries ago? centuries to come?—Matthew had repeated the words of the old marriage ceremony and slid the diamond over my knuckles.With a clatter of dishes, two vampires appeared in the room. One was a slender man with an expressive face, weather-beaten skin the color of a hazelnut, and black hair and eyes. He was holding a flagon of wine and a goblet whose stem was shaped into a dolphin, the bowl balanced on its tail. The other was a rawboned woman bearing a platter of bread and cheese.“You are home, milord,” the man said, obviously confused. Oddly enough, his French accent made him easier to understand. “The messenger on Thursday said—”“My plans changed, Pierre.” Matthew turned to the woman. “My wife’s possessions were lost on the journey, Françoise, and the clothes she was wearing were so filthy I burned them.” He told the lie with bald confidence. Neither the vampires nor Kit looked convinced by it.“Your wife?” Françoise repeated, her accent as French as Pierre’s. “But she is a w—”“Warmblood,” Matthew finished, plucking the goblet from the tray. “Tell Charles there’s another mouth to feed. Diana hasn’t been well and must have fresh meat and fish on the advice of her doctor. Someone willneed to go to the market, Pierre.”Pierre blinked. “Yes, milord.”“And she will need something to wear,” Françoise observed, eyeing me appraisingly. When Matthew nodded, she disappeared, Pierre following in her wake.“What’s happened to your hair?” Matthew held up a strawberry blond curl.“Oh, no,” I murmured. My hands rose. Instead of my usual shoulder-length, straw-colored hair, they found unexpectedly springy reddish-gold locks reaching down to my waist. The last time my hair had developed a mind of its own, I was in college, playing Ophelia in a production of Hamlet. Then and now its unnaturally rapid growth and change of hue were not good signs. The witch within me had awakened during our journey to the past. There was no telling what other magic had been unleashed.

Editorial Reviews

 Praise for Shadow of Night“A captivating and romantic ripping yarn.”—E. L. James, “Books of the Year 2012: Authors Choose Their Favourites,” The Guardian“The joy that Harkness, herself a historian, takes in visiting the past is evident on every page. . . . A great spell, the one that can enchant a reader and make a 600-page book fly through her fingertips, is cast. . . . Its enduring rewards are plenty.”—Entertainment Weekly“Fans of Harkness’s 2011 debut A Discovery of Witches will be delighted. . . . Harkness delivers enough romance and excitement to keep the pages turning. Readers will devour it.”—People“Deborah Harkness takes us places we’ve never been before. . . . Shadow of Night isn't just about wonderfully detailed descriptions of England in 1591, it's about being there. Readers time-travel as precisely and precariously as Diana and Matthew do. . . . Shadow ends as Discovery did with promises of more to come. Lucky for us.”—USA Today“Harkness exudes her own style of magic in making the world of late 16th century England come alive. . . . Enchanting, engrossing and as impossible to put down as its predecessor, Shadow of Night is a perfect blend of fantasy, history and romance. Its single greatest flaw is, after almost 600 pages, it’s over. If you’ve already read and enjoyed A Discovery of Witches, picking up Shadow of Night is an absolute requirement. Otherwise, pick up both, and consider your reading list complete.”—Miami Herald“Picking up where she left off in last year’s A Discovery of Witches, Harkness proves she’s not suffering from a sophomore slump with this addictive tale of magic, mayhem and two lovers.”—Chicago Tribune“Rich, period fun, particularly delightful in its witty characterization of historical immortals . . . Shadow ramps up the supernatural suspense.”—New York Daily News“This novel is as much a love story about a bygone era as it is about Matthew and Diana. It overflows with a colorful cast of characters, many of whom Harkness has plucked straight from the history books, and Harkness renders the late 1500s in exquisite detail. . . . The writing is so rich, the characters so compelling . . . and best of all, Harkness manages to execute with aplomb the act of answering old questions while posing new ones that will intensify anticipation for the final installment. Readers who have been counting down the days, take heart: The wait was most assuredly worth it.”—BookPagePraise for A Discovery of Witches:   “A wonderfully imaginative grown-up fantasy with all the magic of Harry Potter or Twilight. . . . An irresistible tale of wizardry, science and forbidden love.”—People    “Romantic, erudite, and suspenseful . . . Harkness attends to every scholarly and emotional detail with whimsy, sensuality, and humor.”—O, The Oprah Magazine    “A thoroughly grown-up novel packed with gorgeous historical detail and a gutsy, brainy heroine to match. . . . Harkness writes with thrilling gusto about the magical world.”—Karen Valby, Entertainment Weekly    “Harkness conjures up a scintillating paranormal story. . . . Discover why everyone’s talking about this magical book.”—USA Today  “Delightfully well-crafted and enchantingly imaginative . . . It has some of the same ineluctable atmosphere that made Anne Rice’s vampire books such a popular success.”—Miami Herald    “A debut novel with a big supernatural canvas . . . Its ambitions are world-sized, ranging across history and zeroing in on DNA, human and otherwordly. Age-old tensions between science and magic and between evolution and alchemy erupt as Diana seeks to unlock the secrets of Ashmole 782.”—Los Angeles Times     “Harkness, an eloquent writer, conjures this world of witches with Ivy League degrees and supernatural creatures completely—and believably—while maintaining a sense of wonder. . . . A Discovery of Witches is that rare historical novel that manages to be as intelligent as it is romantic. And it is supernatural fiction that those of us who usually prefer to stay grounded in reality can get caught up in. Pardon the pun, but Witches is truly spellbinding.”—San Antonio News-Express   “Readers who thrilled to Elizabeth Kostova’s 2005 blockbuster, The Historian, will note the parallels, but A Discovery of Witches is a modern Romeo and Juliet story, with older, wiser lovers. Blood will flow when a witch and a vampire fall for each other. Author Deborah Harkness, a UCLA history professor, brings vast knowledge and research to the page.”—Cleveland Plain-Dealer   “Harkness works her own form of literary alchemy by deftly blending fantasy, romance, history, and horror into one completely bewitching book.”—Chicago Tribune    “A Discovery of Witches becomes increasingly charming as it goes along. . . . A shrewdly written romp and a satisfying snow-day read for those of us who heartily enjoyed the likes of Anne Rice and Marion Zimmer Bradley. By the book’s rousing end . . . I was impatient for the sequel.”—NPR   “A captivating tale that will ensnare the heart and imagination of even the most skeptical reader. This fantastic first novel will leave you anxious for the next installment, and sad to leave the remarkable world Harkness has created. Simply put, A Discovery of Witches is literary magic at its most potent.”—Stephanie Harrison, BookPage  “Set in our contemporary world with a magical twist, this sparkling debut by a history professor features a large cast of fascinating characters, and readers will find themselves invested in Diana’s success at unlocking the secrets of the manuscript. . . . Harkness is an author to watch.” —Library Journal (starred review)  “Harkness creates a compelling and sweeping tale that moves from Oxford to Paris to upstate New York and into both Diana and Matthew’s complex families and histories. All her characters are fully fleshed and unique.”—Booklist (starred review)  “Harkness brings this world to vibrant life and makes the most of the growing popularity of gothic adventure with an ending that keeps the Old Lodge door wide open.”—Publishers Weekly  “A Discovery of Witches is a strange and wonderful novel of forbidden love and ancient spells that turns every preconception about magic on its head. Deborah Harkness has written one of the most exciting novels I’ve read in years. . . . I fell in love with it from the very first page.” —Danielle Trussoni, author of Angelology  “Deborah Harkness’s novel is a brilliant synthesis of magic and history. A gripping story of dangerous passion, intellectual intrigue, and fantastical beings.” —Ivy Pochoda, author of The Art of Disappearing  “A fleet-footed novel set in a vivid otherworld, richly peppered with scholarly tidbits. Huge fun—with serious underpinnings of history.” —Jane Borodale, author of The Book of Fires