Sunday, November 10, 2013

Love and Magick: Review of Dark Witch

Nora Roberts is my all-time favorite author. I've been reading her books since high school, and now that I'm caught up (sorta), I've been waiting for a new release from her. And imagine my excitement when I found out she had a new fantasy/paranormal series coming out, the first one to be released in October. Ireland. Witches. Romance. Classic Nora. I had to have it! Her fantasy series are, by far, my favorite genre of hers to read. The Circle Trilogy is still my absolute favorite series ever, the only series I've ever reread completely. So, when I found Dark Witch at Target, I bought it. And I started reading it that same day.

5+++ Magical Stars!
There is just something so enchanting about Nora Roberts' writing. The way she weaves together a story always has me captivated. It'd been awhile since I read one of her books, but nothing had changed about her writing style. It, and the magical story-line, still had the power to enchant me.

The prologue excellently brought me into the story, and I was immediately intrigued to see where this magical story-line went. Sorcha the Dark Witch was renowned for her power, and her three children would have that power for their own someday. But with that kind of power comes greed and lust. Someone wants her power and will kill for it. To protect her babies, she gives them each a third of her power. They, with their guides (the horse, the hawk, and the hound) will defeat Cabhan. Whether it takes a thousand lifetimes and the burden passes down to their descendants, they will defeat him. 

Present-day Ireland is where we meet Iona, the main character and the descendant of Teagan. She's sold off almost all her possessions and moved to this beautiful and magical country to learn her ancestry and find who she is and where she belongs. And she realizes that this country, being surrounded by friends and family, is exactly where she belongs. She's found her dream job of working with horses; she's moved into her cousins', Branna and Connor's house. They've been waiting for her arrival, waiting for them to become three. With Iona's arrival, the time is near. And they have a lot of work to do.

But the work and magick doesn't stop Iona from living her life. She came here to find a place to belong, and it's where she'll fall in love. Iona's boss, Boyle, is her fantasy. Besides an insane attraction, they also share close friends and work in the stables. It's that employer-employee relationship that has Boyle reluctant to let anything happen between them. Even if they shared two hot and passionate kisses. Boyle is afriad to get too close, which he does anyway. And Iona is afraid to get hurt, though she does anyway. 
"Love shouldn't be hard." -Iona
 "There I think you're wrong. I think it should be the hardest thing there is, then it's not so easily given away, or taken away, or lost." -Branna 
Nora Roberts is amazing when it comes writing strong heroines and totally swoon-worthy men. And that's what she did with Iona and Boyle (as well as the rest of the characters). I loved Iona's strength, her wit, and her incurable disease of the mouth. I loved Boyle's protectiveness, his total understanding of her craft and the magick, and his alpha-male gruffness. Her sex scenes are never overtly explicit; there is always an underlying passion and fire. Her characters, though they may fight and argue, make mistakes and hurt each other, always end up finding each other in the end. Always end up with a fairytale kind of romance, and I just adore watching them fall in love.
"You can't just hope for happy endings. You have to believe in them. Then do the work, take the risks. Slay the dragon–though I really think dragons get a bad rep–kiss the princess, or the frog, and defeat the bad witch." -Iona
I loved the relationships between the characters. From the strong, familial bond with Branna and Connor to the deep, passionate love between Iona and Boyle, I loved watching all of them interact with each other. I love reading about close friendships and circles, and they each had their own personalities and strengths, their own mishaps and weaknesses. They all formed this tight bond of friendship. This circle. It's strong, unbreakable. However, there are chinks in the armor, breaks in the bubble. They'll all have to learn to set aside their differences and do what must be done to make sure that Sorcha's work did not go to waste, that her sacrifice for her children was not for nothing.

What an engrossing, enchanting, and downright magical beginning to another soon-to-be favorite series of mine. I've no doubt the next two books will be just as captivating, be just as heartwarming and suspenseful. Dark Witch is classic Nora Roberts. The perfect blend of true love, friendship, and undeniable courage in the face of evil. 


  1. I agree with everything. Well said. Can't wait for book 2!

    1. Me either! Thankfully, we don't have to wait too long! :)


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