Review: Mark of the Witch by Maggie Shayne ★★★★

Mark of the Witch by
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Series: The Portal Trilogy #1
Publication Date: September 18, 2012
ISBN: 978-0778313335
Page Count: 400 Rating: ★★★★
Review Copy: Advance Readers Copy
Synopsis: From New York Times bestselling author Maggie Shayne comes the first novel in her thrilling new trilogy, THE PORTAL She was born to save what he is sworn to destroy...

A lapsed Wiccan, Indira Simon doesn't believe in magic any more. But when strange dreams of being sacrificed to an ancient Babylonian god have her waking up with real rope burns on her wrists, she's forced to acknowledge that she may have been too hasty in her rejection of the unknown. Then she meets mysterious and handsome Father Tomas. Emerging from the secrecy of an obscure Gnostic sect, he arrives with stories of a demon, a trio of warrior witches-and Indira's sacred calling. Yet there's something even Tomas doesn't know, an inescapable truth that will force him to choose between saving the life of the woman he's come to love-and saving the world.


REVIEW

Forgive me, readers, for I have sinned. I'm a little tiny bit in love with Father Tomas!

This was my first book by Maggie Shayne. She's a rather well-established author, however, so even though it was my first time reading her, I felt I was in safe hands hands.

Her writing style—at least in this instance—was quite interesting in that she switched from first person narrative for the heroine, Indira's, POV, and then to third person for the hero, Father Tomas'. That's 'Toe-MAAHS', not 'Thomas'. A distinction made by the author several times.

The main themes of the story are those of lost or broken faith, self-doubts, guilt, beliefs, convictions, all wrapped around a wonderful story of three sisters from Babylonian times, and their connection to our current-day heroine, Indira.

Indira's character was likeable—she's smart, attractive, kinda quirky—but I couldn't help but notice that sometimes her light-hearted "voice" was often in direct contrast to the overall feel of the story. Her misplaced humour and flippancy grated initially, until I recognised it for the defence mechanism that it was. In times of trouble, she uses bad jokes or that old faithful 'denial', that so often comes in handy. But until I came to that realization, it was just annoying. And I also felt it lessened the impact of what was being revealed in the dreams, because if Indy wasn't taking things seriously, then why should I?

However, the second half of the book seemed to change Indy's character once the straits got considerably more dire, and once Father Tomas became that much more of a distraction.

He's a priest. A really good looking and somewhat tormented priest, just to make things more complicated. And that's not all he is, either, but you'll have to read it yourself to find out the rest.

I really enjoyed the slowly drip fed back story of the three sisters. We got a little nugget more each time. I also enjoyed reading about the Wiccan practices and rituals. And of course, the other issues of faith, the dangers of extremists and close-minded people in any religion, was all interesting to explore.

It did, unfortunately for me, utilise a plot device that I personally don't care for very much, and this is probably why I was unable to rate it quite as high as others have. But, overall, I thought it was an interesting, mostly fast-paced, read, with a nice romance and some good twists and turns. It was quite suspenseful and thrilling, and I'm interested enough to read the next two books in the trilogy.

4 Stars ★★★★
ARC provided for an honest review.

2 comments:

  1. I also gave Mark of the Witch 4 stars! Great review.. Oh and you will have to fight me over Tomas. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. LOL, Fighting over a priest, I never would have thought....... :)

    ReplyDelete

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