Dark Witch by Nora Roberts

WITCH
Dark Witch by Nora Roberts
Publisher: Berkley
Genre: Contemporary, Paranormal
Length: Full Length (342 pgs)
Heat Level: Spicy
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by Cholla

With indifferent parents, Iona Sheehan grew up craving devotion and acceptance. From her maternal grandmother, she learned where to find both: a land of lush forests, dazzling lakes, and centuries-old legends.

Ireland.

County Mayo, to be exact. Where her ancestors’ blood and magic have flowed through generations—and where her destiny awaits.

Iona arrives in Ireland with nothing but her Nan’s directions, an unfailingly optimistic attitude, and an innate talent with horses. Not far from the luxurious castle where she is spending a week, she finds her cousins, Branna and Connor O’Dwyer. And since family is family, they invite her into their home and their lives.

When Iona lands a job at the local stables, she meets the owner, Boyle McGrath. Cowboy, pirate, wild tribal horseman, he’s three of her biggest fantasy weaknesses all in one big, bold package.

Iona realizes that here she can make a home for herself—and live her life as she wants, even if that means falling head over heels for Boyle. But nothing is as it seems. An ancient evil has wound its way around Iona’s family tree and must be defeated. Family and friends will fight with each other and for each other to keep the promise of hope—and love—alive…

It’s the opportunity of a lifetime and Iona Sheehan has made it happen. All she has ever wanted to do is go to Ireland and find her roots… and learn more about the witch that she is. What she isn’t prepared for, however, is the dark force lying in wait for the return of the three. Can she and her two newfound cousins defeat this ancient evil and bring peace to their family?

Iona Sheehan is quite a character. Exuberant, young, and eager, she makes me laugh out loud throughout the book. Her love of horses and family is very endearing and sweet. I loved the way she embraced her heritage – lurking evil force or not – and dove in head first in order to be ready in time to face off with Cabhan with her cousins.

Boyle McGrath is the embodiment of all I’ve ever expected an Irishman to be. He’s surly, he’s stubborn, and he’s one hundred and ten percent lovable. His gruff reluctance to give in to his emotions is adorable and amusing because we know that Iona will find a way to worm her way into his heart, right? Once she does, they become the closest thing to a perfect couple. They don’t always agree or get along, but they find a way to stick it out in the end.

In addition to the main couple, you are treated to an entertaining cast of characters. Branna and Conner, Iona’s cousins, are like night and day, and yet so much alike sometimes that it’s scary. Maera and Fin, co-workers of Iona’s and friends of the cousins, only add humor, friendship, and love to the mix. I’d love to sit in on a night with this group, whether in Branna’s home or at the local pub, either way you know you’d be in for a night you wouldn’t forget.

Set in picturesque Ireland, a place I’ve dreamed of visiting, the story takes off from the very first page, whisking you off on adventure and into a romance you can’t help but root for. With its rich storytelling, loveable characters, and intense plot, I had a hard time putting this one down. For my first Nora Roberts novel, it was a giant win.

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