Many years ago a dear friend told me there was a book series that I -had- to read. This friend was an avid reader of many genres. I was skeptical that I would enjoy whatever he was suggesting I read. But, he was so passionate that this series would mean the world to me.
I trusted my friend and read the series. The series in question was the "All Souls Series" by Deb Harkness. I had no idea that the story would come to mean so much to me personally and to my friendship.
The writing was so intelligent, compelling and magical. The characters came to life in my imagination in a way that was so different from other novels I have read. I am an avid reader myself and really enjoyed the magical world that Deb created for us.
It amazed me to learn that not only was she a gift author but also a professor! I wished I lived closer to her university and had the chance to take one of her classes. Although, I confess it was probably for the best that I wasn't. I am not sure that I would do well in her class considering the subject matter is not entirely my area of talent.
Next I learned that she was going to working closely with Bad Wolf Studios (One of my very favorite UK based studios) to create "A Discovery of Witches" the show. I was so excited. The characters that I had come love so dearly would be made real. And with the casting of Alex Kingston and Matthew Goode I -knew- it would be amazing.
And it was/is! I have watched each season more than once. I have enjoyed seeing the places, the characters and all of the magic come to life. I literally cried like a child when the series came to a close. I never wanted it to end.
Several years ago there was a book signing in a city not far from my own. I was so excited to go and hear Deb talk. I went totally unprepared. I forgot to pre-order a book, I did not bring anything to have her sign and I was unprepared for the fangirl feelings I would have.
Thankfully, I was in good company and had a book for her to sign before that portion of the evening started. And I had her sign my book, the bookmark we were given for my friend and even got to take a photo and hug her! It was one of the best experiences of my entire life.
Deb Harkness is such a hero. She has been since the moment she was born and will be forevermore. I am not alone in my love of her series or her in general. (I also own Times Convert in case you were wondering why it was not given a shout out. That was the book in question during the signing.)
It breaks my heart to know that Deb is now fighting cancer. But, I am forever inspired by her strength as she remains positive, reaches out to her community despite her illness and as always leads by example.
Are you a fan of Deb's work? Do you love her series? Have you read her more scholarly writing?