Please enjoy this excerpt from A Discovery of Witches by debut fantasy author Deborah Harkness, on shelves this month from Viking. In A Discovery of Witches, a centuries-old vampire and a spellbound witch find themselves drawn together by the discovery of a mysterious manuscript….
The leather-bound volume was nothing remarkable. To an ordinary historian, it would have looked no different from hundreds of other manuscripts in Oxford’s Bodleian Library, ancient and worn. But I knew there was something odd about it from the moment I collected it.
Duke Humfrey’s Reading Room was deserted on this late-September afternoon, and requests for library materials were filled quickly now that the summer crush of visiting scholars was over and the madness of the fall term had not yet begun. Even so, I was surprised when Sean stopped me at the call desk.