The Mount Holyoke News » » Discovery of a writer: alum pens a preternatural tale

Tags: alum, civilizations, science, mount, writer, book

"(...) The book, which ranks second on the New York Times bestsellers list for hardcover fiction, is of particular interest to Mount Holyoke students; Harkness graduated from the College in 1986. Last Friday, she spoke at the Odyssey Bookshop and signed copies of her novel. Andreea Bancila Harkness came up with the idea at an airport bookstore on a trip to Mexico. Noting the myriad books about vampires, werewolves and the like, she asked herself, “What do [supernatural beings] do for a living?” Witches, she decided, would be well suited for jobs that involve preserving tradition—they would make excellent historians, librarians and teachers. Diana Bishop also shares the world with vampires, who gravitate towards science and daemons, who excel at art. Harkness described the gift of humans as “the power of denial.” The human residents of Harkness’s world convince themselves that the supernatural is fiction despite all evidence to the contrary. No contemporary fantasy novel would be complete without a vampire romance, and Harkness does not disappoint. Her vampire stands apart from others in that the dashing Matthew Clairmont is 1500 years old, born around Clovis I’s conversion to Christianity. Harkness took advantage of her career in history to flesh out his life (or lack thereof) with admirable detail.and signed copies of her novel. Andreea Bancila Harkness came up with the idea at an airport bookstore on a trip to Mexico. Noting the myriad books about vampires, werewolves and the like, she asked herself, “What do [supernatural beings] do for a living?” Witches, she decided, would be well suited for jobs that involve preserving tradition—they would make excellent historians, librarians and teachers. Diana Bishop also shares the world with vampires, who gravitate towards science and daemons, who excel at art. Harkness described the gift of humans as “the power of denial.” The human residents of Harkness’s world convince themselves that the supernatural is fiction despite all evidence to the contrary. No contemporary fantasy novel would be complete without a vampire romance, and Harkness does not disappoint. Her vampire stands apart from others in that the dashing Matthew Clairmont is 1500 years old, born around Clovis I’s conversion to Christianity. Harkness took advantage of her career in history to flesh out his life (or lack thereof) with admirable detail. (...)"