Mark of the Witch

( 27 )

Overview

She was born to save what he is sworn to destroy

A lapsed Wiccan, Indira Simon doesn't believe in magic anymore. 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 Thomas. Emerging from the secrecy of an obscure Gnostic sect, he ...

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Mark of the Witch

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Overview

She was born to save what he is sworn to destroy

A lapsed Wiccan, Indira Simon doesn't believe in magic anymore. 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 Thomas. 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.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
"Hunky" priest Father Tomas makes an underwhelming first impression as the initial romantic focus of Shayne's paranormal Portal trilogy launch. Nervous, hypocritical, and somewhat cowardly, Tomas is very much the beta male, and his lust for Indira Simon, a dynamic lapsed Wiccan, only underscores his weakness. On such shaky ground, the love story that is supposed to develop in the face of imminent demonic apocalypse gains little traction. Indy has recurrent visions involving gruesome mutilations and death; the descriptions are not for delicate stomachs. A convoluted yet superficial apparatus of Gnosticism, Wiccan ritual, reincarnation, and Babylonian culture props up the action/adventure plot but never comes together convincingly. Shayne offers thrills and chills with pretty people, but fails to knit characters and events together into a plausible narrative. Agent: Eileen Fallon, Fallon Literary Agency. (Oct.)
From the Publisher
"A tasty, tension-packed read."
--Publisher's Weekly on Thicker Than Water

"Shayne's haunting tale is intricately woven.... A moving mix of high suspense and romance, this haunting Halloween thriller will propel readers to bolt their doors at night!"
--Publisher's Weekly on The Gingerbread Man

"Shayne crafts a convincing world, tweaking vampire legends just enough to draw fresh blood."

-Publishers Weekly on Demon's Kiss

"Maggie Shayne demonstrates an absolutely superb touch, blending fantasy and romance into an outstanding reading experience."

--Romantic Times on Embrace the Twilight

"Maggie Shayne is better than chocolate. She satisfies every wicked craving."

--New York Times bestselling author Suzanne Forster

"Maggie Shayne delivers sheer delight, and fans new and old of her vampire series can rejoice."

--Romantic Times on Twilight Hunger

"Maggie Shayne delivers romance with sweeping intensity and bewitching passion."

--New York Times Bestselling author Jayne Ann Krentz

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780778313335
  • Publisher: Harlequin
  • Publication date: 9/18/2012
  • Series: Portal Series
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Pages: 400
  • Sales rank: 603,572
  • Product dimensions: 4.10 (w) x 6.60 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

NY Times bestselling author Maggie Shayne has published more than fifty novels & is best known for her "Twilight" vampire series, "Wings in the Night," & her chilling romantic suspense. Wiccan High Priestess, legal clergy, tarot reader, advice columnist, former soap opera writer, & RITA Award winner, the author lives in rural Cortland County NY with her partner Lance, 2 mastiffs, a bulldog, cat, bearded dragon & reef aquarium.
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Read an Excerpt

Dammit straight to hell, I was being sacrificed again.

I stood on the edge of a precipice, the hard ground under my bare feet already warming beneath the rising, scorching sun. The unblinking redorange eye of an angry god rose slowly over distant desert sands, beyond endless dunes, watching as I paid for the sin of practicing magic without a license.

Just as I had been at every execution before, I was dressed in almost nothing. A white scrap of fabric tied at my hip, covering one leg and leaving the other bare below the knot. Another length of the same stuff was draped around my neck, crossed in front to cover each of my humongous boobs, and then tied behind to keep it there. My hands were tied behind my back. I wore no jewelry. Resentment rose up in me at the notion that Sindar, High Priest of Marduk, had stolen it. And then I wondered how I knew that.

This isn't me. I mean, it feels like it's me, but it can't be me. She's olive-skinned. She's gorgeous. Her boobs are huge. I'm pale and blonde and too thin. No curves here. Not like those, anyway.

And yet it was me. I was there. On that cliff. In that body. No denying it.

There were two other women, dressed pretty much the same way I was, one standing on either side of me. I felt close to them. I loved them.

Three men stood behind us. I felt the one behind me, his hands, warm and trembling, resting softly on my back, low, near my waist, where the skin was bare. My back was screaming with pain I didn't understand, but that man's touch was good. Soothing. I tried to relish it, thinking it was the last time I would feel it or anything good. Ever.

I wanted to turn my head, to look back at him, to see his face, but somehow I could not convince my dream self to do that. It didn't matter, though. I knew what he looked like. In my mind, I saw him clearly: his long black hair, his fine white tunic with a sash of scarlet, the fat gold torque around his corded neck. His arms were banded with steel and coated in fine dark hair. He was strong, and he had ebony eyes.

I didn't need to see him, nor the poor, half-dead man being held captive by soldiers a bit farther away. He'd already been beaten bloody, but he was struggling to break free as they forced him to watch. I'd glimpsed his face as they'd marched us up the cliff, far from our city gates. He barely looked human. His own mother wouldn't have known him.

And Sindar, the High Priest, he was there, too. I knew his face, as well. Eyes lined with kohl, lips darkened with the juices of rare desert berries. The rolls of fat at his neck, sporting layer upon layer of gold. His robes of the finest fabric, imported from the East. His belly so big that the golden cords of those robes had to be tied above the bulge, making him look like a mother about to give birth. I knew he was there, knew the secret lust in his eyes for what was about to happen to us. He was twisted, turned on by violence. Or maybe just by the rush of knowing he held the power of life and death in his hands.

I was going to have to kill him one day.

I tried to look at the other women, because, aside from the touch of those large male hands on my skin, they were the most interesting part of this whole thing. They had dark hair and dark eyes, just like I did. But as I looked at them, they changed, the way a reflection in still water will change when a stone is dropped into it. One briefly became a blue-eyed platinum blonde, the other a fiery redhead, modern women in modern clothes. It was brief, the illusion, and then the High Priest was speaking in some long-dead language, and the hands at my back began trembling harder than before—kneading my waist, I thought—and I closed my eyes in bittersweet anguish.

"Remember, my sisters," said the raven-haired woman who had so briefly been a blonde. "Remember what we must do. We cannot cross over until it is done."

Oddly, the words I heard were spoken in an exotic language I knew I didn't know, yet I understood every word.

I tugged at the ropes that bound my wrists, tugged so hard I felt new blood seeping from the welts already cut into my flesh from my struggling. My gaze strayed to the jagged rocks far, far below, and my toes dug into the hard earth as my body instinctively resisted.

But, as always, it was futile—and I knew it. So I relaxed and reminded myself of the plan.

An instant later, my body was plummeting.

There were no screams, not one, not from any of us, as we arrowed downward like hawks diving onto their chosen prey. Our own weight propelled us as our feet pedaled uselessly. The only sounds were the soft flapping of our garments and the arid wind rushing past my face, whipping my long black hair above me. I smelled that wind, sucking it in deeply, tasting every flavor it held in my final breath. I closed my eyes, and awaited my fate. Then I heard the others, their voices chanting a familiar verse, and I joined them. My heart raced faster and faster as I waited to feel the impact of the already bloodstained rocks below.

I felt a sudden jarring blow, like the hit of a powerful electric jolt, in every cell of my body. And then nothing. Blackness.

I opened my eyes and stared through the darkness at the ceiling of my tiny Brooklyn apartment, willing my heart rate to drop back to normal. It was running like a late bicycle messenger on deadline, banging so hard against my rib cage that I thought for a second I might be having a heart attack. I lay very still, afraid to move and make it worse, my eyes wide, blinking at the ceiling.

I'm not in some fucked-up desert. I'm not wearing an I Dream of Jeannie Halloween costume. I have little boobs. Nice, firm, little boobs. And blond hair.

I moved my hand carefully, as if I was afraid to set off some unseen trap, and lifted a lock of said hair, so I could see it for myself by the glow of my plug-in night-light.

Yep. Blond. Perfectly blond. Or amber-gold, as my stylist calls it. Crimp curled, only without need of a crimper. And hanging just below my ears, right where it belongs. No long, flowing, ebony tresses in sight.

I took a deep, cleansing breath, inhaling till my lungs wanted to burst, then holding it for a beat or two, before blowing it all out, real slow. And then I did it again. And again. It was a technique I'd learned in the open circles I used to attend, led by my friend Rayne—Lady Rayne, that is—back when I used to believe in magic and shit. Which I didn't anymore.

When I felt it was safe to move again, I turned my head to look at the clock on the nightstand. Midnight. Again. It was always midnight when I woke from the damned recurring dream—

The Witching Hour. And on the night before Halloween, too.

Shut up. I'm not a witch anymore.

—and I could almost never get back to sleep.

The adrenaline rush of being shoved off a cliff tended to get a person's blood flowing, I supposed. Sitting up in bed, I pushed both hands through my hair. My spiky bangs were sideswept and tended to fall into my eyes. I thought it made me look mysterious.

My heart was still hammering. I needed a smoke, but like a jackass, I'd quit again, so there wasn't a cigarette in the entire place. No, wait, maybe—I'd switched out handbags just before my latest attempt to go healthy. I might have missed one.

I swept off the covers and got up too fast, then pressed the heels of my hands to my eyeballs to make the room stop spinning. Hell. Another deep breath. Damn, I needed nicotine.

Okay, steady again. Good. I made my way across the bedroom to the halfway decent-sized closet that had been the apartment's one and only selling point—besides it being only two subway stops or a good brisk walk from work—and rummaged around in the darkness within. I stubbed my toe on my antique replica treasure chest and cussed it out for being in the way before I located my most recent handbag, a pretty little leopard print Dolce & Gabbana number that had cost two months' rent.

I had a weakness for shoes and bags, and killer good taste. There were worse things.

Yanking the bag off the shelf by its tiny silver handle, I opened it and had an instant rush of gratification at the whiff of stale tobacco that wafted out. I pawed inside until I felt a crumpled, cellophane-wrapped pack that still held one beautiful, stale menthol.

One. Just one. My precious.

Lighter? Junk drawer. I dragged a bathrobe off the foot of my bed on the way into the living room-slash-kitchenette, then rounded the Formica counter that separated one from the other. The junk drawer—official holder of anything I didn't know where else to put, size permitting—yielded a yellow Bic.

I smoothed the wrinkles out of the slightly bent cig and put it between my lips. It felt good there. Lighter in hand, I speed walked to the bedroom window and wrenched it open. Then, sitting on the sill, illuminated by the moonlight I used to dance beneath, one leg dangling outside, the other holding me firmly in, I cupped my hands at the far end of the cigarette, like any smoker does when there's likelihood of an errant breeze.

But before I could flick my Bic, I went very, very still, my eyes glued to my wrists, which, I suddenly realized, really hurt. They'd been quietly hurting ever since I'd awakened from that stupid nightmare. The pain had seemed like part of the dream, like the pain all over my back and the impact with those rocks. I'd been waiting for it to fade, like the rest, but clearly it wasn't going to.

Clearly. Because there were angry red welts on my wrists, welts that had been bleeding, and that still bore the twisted pattern of rough-hewn rope.

My jaw dropped…and my one and only cigarette fell from my lips and fluttered down, way down, to the sidewalk below, looking a bit like a girl in white, plummeting from a friggin' cliff overlooking the desert in Bumfuck, Egypt.

Not Egypt. Babylon.

I turned around so fast I almost fell, looking to see who had just whispered the correction. But that was stupid, because it had come from inside my own head.

Father Dominick St. Clair led the way, and Father Tomas, his chosen successor, followed with his heart in his throat. He was nervous, and not ashamed to admit it. It wasn't every day a man was asked to assist in an exorcism. So far, it had all the markings of a made-for-Hollywood production. Creepy old house sadly in need of a paint job, check. Careworn mother, old beyond her years, dressed in clean but faded clothes, check. Narrow staircase that creaked when you walked on it, check. Big wooden door with unearthly moaning coming from the other side, double check.

He stood there and told himself he was a twenty-nine-year-old man with a first-rate education—Cornell, for crying out loud—and a left brain that ruled him. Practical. Intelligent. That part of him did not believe this could be real.

And he suspected that was the part of him Father Dom was trying to stomp out. The doubting side. The doubting Tomas.

The older priest couldn't know it was already too late. Tomas had made his decision. He couldn't keep living something he didn't believe in. He was only waiting for the right time to explain that he couldn't keep living in service to vows that no longer meant to him what they once had.

Dominick paused outside the old wooden door. It had an oval brass knob that had probably been there for two hundred years. "The job I've been grooming you for is coming soon."

He was being "groomed" to keep a witch from releasing a demon from its Underworld prison. Great. He'd often wondered if the Church elders knew about Father Dom's obsession with the ancient legend of He Whose Name Must Not Be Spoken. All Tomas had wanted was to be an ordinary priest, to help the poor and hungry and misled, to offer faith to the faithless and hope to the hopeless, to pay back the kindness shown to him by the Sisters of St. Brigit and Father Dom himself, who'd raised him from the age of ten after his faithless, hopeless, addicted mother's suicide.

He'd studied. He'd excelled. College, then the seminary. But unlike every other seminarian, he'd been yanked out of school early and personally ordained by Father Dom. He'd been given special dispensation with regard to Tomas, the old man had said, because of the importance of the mission.

"Did you hear me, Tomas?" Dom asked, sounding impatient.

Tomas snapped out of his thoughts and looked the old priest in the eye. Dom's face was like a white raisin, his body stooped. Yet his eyes were sharp and his perception sharper. Sometimes Tomas thought the old man could see right inside his brain, read the thoughts going on there. But then, he should. He probably knew Tomas better than anyone.

"Your faith isn't strong enough yet to do what will be required of you, Tomas," Dom said, and Tomas realized that he'd already said it once while he'd been lost in thought. "Faith ought not need proof to sustain it. But time is short, and you need to know. Demons are real. And powerful. See for yourself."

He opened the door, and Tomas looked inside. The girl in the bed might have been twelve. Maybe less. She was thrashing, arching her back, grunting and moaning. He froze in place as his mind tried to process what he was seeing. And his initial feeling was that he ought to yank out his iPhone and call 9-1-1.

Dom pushed past him, his black bag already open. He pulled out a crucifix and a bible, small and black and worn, its pages edged in gold. "Get the holy water. Bring it here."

Tomas pushed his doubts aside to be considered later.

He took the bag from Father Dom and rummaged inside until he found the vial, pulling it out and uncorking it.

"Use the water and draw an X on her forehead whenever I tell you."

Tomas moved up to the other side of the bed. The girl stank of urine, and it made him want to gag. She was foaming at the mouth like a rabid dog, thick white bubbles erupting everywhere.

"Exorcizo te, omnis spiritus immunde… " Dom nodded at him, and Tomas wet his forefinger with holy water and drew an X on the girl's forehead. She was hot to the touch, and Dom was still praying. "In nomine Dei Patris omnipotentis…"

He kept going. Tomas stopped listening. He found himself pulled into the girl's eyes until they rolled back, and he shot Dom a look. "She needs an ambulance. A hospital."

Dom stopped what he was doing and glared at him. Then he lifted one long arm and pointed his arthritically bumpy forefinger at the door. "Get thee behind me." He didn't say "Satan," but it was in his tone.

Tomas didn't argue. He didn't want any part of this. He left the room, head down, and walked down the stairs and out of the house. His trusty old Volvo wagon was waiting at the curb, behind Dom's boat-sized seventy-something Buick. He got in and drove, and he didn't look back.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 27 )
Rating Distribution

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(15)

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(8)

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See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 27 Customer Reviews
  • Posted September 17, 2012

    Our Review [by LITERAL ADDICTION¿s Pack Alpha ¿ Michelle L Olson

    Our Review [by LITERAL ADDICTION’s Pack Alpha – Michelle L Olson]:

    I have been a fan of Maggie Shayne and her writing for quite some time.  Her Wings in the Night series was my support system during a very rough patch of my life and after that I pretty much started to devour everything I could find.

    When I heard about Maggies new PORTAL series I was ecstatic!  A Wiccan High Priestess writing a Paranormal Romance about witches...truly, what could be better, right!?  When Maggie sent me an Advance Reader Copy of Mark of the Witch (book #1) to read and review I literally did a happy dance. :)  I wasn't sure exactly when I was going to be able to get to it, but I was excited none-the-less.

    Ironically (or maybe not so ironically!??), my life took a tumble and I ended up in another rough situation health-wise.  Knowing that I had Mark of the Witch sitting on my dresser, it was the very first thing I asked for after being hospitalized.  I settled in, and like usual with Maggie's books, was transported away to a world I never wanted to leave.

    Indira is a lapsed Wiccan who has lost her faith and a bit of her way.  She's had a rough childhood, has suffered loss, has some trust issues, and has basically given up on love.  In spite of all of that, she is one tough heroine!  She's iron willed, strong minded, and even a bit feisty, all with a layer of vulnerability that makes you love her even more.  When things start to happen that she can no longer ignore, she's forced to open her mind, try to put aside her doubts, and join up with some unusual allies in their mutual quest for truth.

    Father Tomas isn't your everyday hero.  He's multi-dimensional and incredibly fascinating - not to mention sexy as sin.  A Gnostic priest from a secret sect, he too struggles with aspects of his faith and his decision to put his life and his fate in the hands of one man who claims to know what he is meant for.  Smart and strategic, he attacks everything in life with a plan, but also with a passion that borders on abandon.  You can't help but get swept away...

    Indy and Tomas together are electric.  A forbidden passion that burns bright despite the roadblocks of their quest and the chastisement of their conscience.  Add in the revelation of some long buried secrets, and theirs is a relationship for the ages (literally).

    Mark of the Witch gives the reader intense intrigue, exciting plot twists, loveable sidekicks, antagonists that make your lip curl, beautifully crafted landscapes, action, drama, sizzling romance, and so much more.  It was literally spell-binding (pardon the pun)!  I absolutely cannot wait for Daughter of the Spellcaster, book #2, in October!

    LITERAL ADDICTION gives Mark of the Witch a well deserved 5 Skulls and would recommend it to everyone!  Paranormal Romance enthusiasts as well as Urban Fantasy lovers will adore this new series.

    8 out of 8 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 17, 2012

    Absoulutely LOVED this book and can't wait for the others to com

    Absoulutely LOVED this book and can't wait for the others to come out! What is better than a love than spans lifetimes... Although I kinda figured out what was going on pretty early on (because I overanalyze everything) this book kept me wanting more and more. I was disappointed to see it end but i'm sure this series will probably just get better and better. Definately an A+++


    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 17, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    i love the new portal series. i cant wait for the next book in t

    i love the new portal series. i cant wait for the next book in the series to come out. i have a maggie fan for many years started with the wings in the night series and just expanded from there! i hope indira & tomas make appearances in the next books!

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 17, 2012

    WOW!!!!! I don't think I can write a review to do this book just

    WOW!!!!! I don't think I can write a review to do this book justice it was absolutely amazing. It took me over so fast that I was lost for hours and refused to put it down.

    First if you read Legacy of the Witch the prequel to this book you will know a little bit more than I did while reading this book. Legacy really sets up the world you are about to dive into.

    I didn’t read Legacy first I received an ARC of Mark of the Witch from Maggie Shayne herself and read this first so while reading it I was able to experience a little mystery but it all wrapped up at the end and I love when that happens.

    BUT I WANT TO STRONGLY SUGGEST YOU READ LEGACY OF THE WITCH FIRST!!!

    Indy is a witch who is questioning her own beliefs but cannot ignore what is happening to her, I loved Indy she is a strong woman with a resolve to not let anyone sway her path to figure herself and her beliefs out.

    Thomas, it’s funny how he and Indy are on the same path of questioning their religious beliefs, it is written so well that anyone who has been on this journey can relate to the push and pull they both feel thru out the book.

    Father Dom….well I’m not going to comment on him cause than that would spoil the plot but I will say from the very beginning something nagged the back of my mind about him.

    Rayne, O I love her, she is written with such grace and humility and confidence that I found myself admiring her. And I love how she will not fight people with closed minds instead she lives by her beliefs and holds her head high. I also love how she guides Indy, like a big sister would.

    The Plot had me sweep up into a world that has you going between today and ancient Babylonian times. I love how Maggie reveals the visions/memories to the characters and how she transports us back and forth. I love the twists the story takes and literally already up to the end your still wondering what’s going to happen, you won’t be able to put it down.

    I have heard it many times that Maggie Shayne know how to cast a spell on her readers and in this book you will feel like time stops and nothing else exists till you finish. I’m not usually a fan of “witch” books I’m drawn more to vampire romance but I loved this book from beginning to end and I’m dying to get my hands on Book 2.

    I give this book 5 out of 5 stars; I could find anything I didn’t like about this book at all.
    HIGHLY RECOMMENDED TO EVERYONE!!!!
    Charity Costa~Bewitching Bella
    Emissary of Literal Addiction, Admin of Maggie Shayne’s Street Team and most Importantly a HUGE Maggie Shayne Fan
    Note: I received an ARC of this book via the author for review purposes.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 18, 2012

    I am a latecomer to Maggie Shayne's books and I must admit start

    I am a latecomer to Maggie Shayne's books and I must admit starting a 20 book series is a little daunting but I did and I am working my way through them. When I heard she was starting a new trilogy changing her focus from vampires to witches, I was intigued. Even more so when I discovered that Maggie herself is a Wiccan High Priestess. I went in to this book with high expectations and even then Maggie surprised me.

    Indira is a multi-faceted character, she is a strong woman who has suffered a lot in her past both physically and emotionally. Having recently had a lapse in faith and turning her back on her religion she has no choice but to go to her former High Priestess for help and advice when life suddenly takes a surprising turn.

    Father Tomas belongs to a secret sect of Gnostic Priests and he provides us, and Indira with a delicious distraction. However, Father Tomas is beginning to question his faith and the actions of his superior, leaving him unsure of his future in the priesthood.

    When Indira and Tomas are together the sparks fly, you can almost feel the passion leaping from the pages. A forbidden romance that had both them and me in knots.

    I loved the history involved, the intensity and intricacies of the plot, the twists and turns, character development. All in all I found this an amazing read and I can't wait for the next part!

    ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 17, 2012

    Mark Of The Witch- Maggie Shayne August 2012 This is th

    Mark Of The Witch- Maggie Shayne
    August 2012





    This is the first book in a new series, which I was excited to read. I wasn’t sure what to expect but let’s just say it was twist and turns throughout the journey.

    Meet Indira “Indy”. She’s lost and trying to find out who she is, she has given up on her Wiccan roots or so she thinks. She has been having these dreams but they feel real.When she asks for help from her former High Priestess Rayne she has to remember the past and the person Rayne feels can help might just do the opposite.

    Father Tomas was sent to help. He has been following the church since childhood and Father Dom has been his father. Tomas is here to try and help Indy but will it be his past that interferes? Father Dom is guiding Tomas, which might not be a good thing.

    Indy and Tomas must find the solution together…but is it to late. Is Faith bigger then Love? You will have to read this book to find out.

    I will be waiting patiently for the next installment and recommending this series to my fellow readers.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 22, 2012

    Fimally a Wiccan series I can bite my teeth into. Very well writ

    Fimally a Wiccan series I can bite my teeth into. Very well written. Bravo Maggie.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 22, 2012

    Before I started reading Mark of the Witch I read Legacy of the

    Before I started reading Mark of the Witch I read Legacy of the Witch. Currently it is a free ebook that gives an introduction to this series. It is a short story, only about 53 pages, and it is something I recommend you read. I thought it was enjoyable and it did help to make me more interested in this series.

    Mark of the Witch is the beginning of a very compelling, new paranormal series. It is about three sisters/ witches from another time who are reincarnated in order to save the soul of one a man who one of them loves.

    When Indira starts having strange dreams that feel like they are real, she turns to her best friend Rayne who happens to be a Wiccan High Priestess. Rayne puts her in contact with the one person who she thinks can help, her brother Father Tomas. Tomas is a Gnostic Priest and yet he knows something about these strange dreams and even though he is questioning his faith, he still wants to help Indira.

    I was very impressed with how both religions were represented in Mark of the Witch. The plot has many wonderful twists and turns and really was an enjoyable read. I look forward to the next books in the Portal series and seeing how the battle between good and evil ends.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted September 25, 2012

    Can someone tell me why there aren't more than 5 stars? This bo

    Can someone tell me why there aren't more than 5 stars?

    This book was so incredibly amazing I want to re-read already! Legacy of the Witch started the series off but WOW!!! This book....WOW! Maggie Shayne never disappoints!

    Indira is an amazing character! She's strong and has a mind of her own. Tomas is a fantastic hero and am glad he can think for himself. Father Dom, well I just plain hated him.

    Fantastic read and I'm so sad then next book isn't out until December!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2014

    Strange magic

    Decent story, but slow in parts. Would have cut out some of it for clarity.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 11, 2013

    This is a great book along with the other 2 books in this series!

    Mark of the Witch, Daughter of the Spellcaster, and Blood of the Sorceress has a good plot all the way through all the books. Great Love Story, enjoyed it alot. Didn't want to put it down!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2013

    Thrill ride start to finish

    Excellent plot characters What a page turner

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  • Posted November 19, 2012

    Thrilling,lots of switchbacks!!

    Liked it very much can't wait for the next book!!

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  • Posted October 16, 2012

    more from this reviewer

    Maggie definitely knows how to wield an awesome pen.

    This is book #1 in The Portal Series. There is a prequel for those interested, but I haven’t read it yet. This is going to be another on my list of ‘Must Read’ series’. From what I can tell this series will not be one where the main characters go from book to book. The series will be based on The Portal (hence the name of the series) appearing in each book.

    The characters in the book are so life like it’s unreal. They grow and change as the plot forces them to face things in their lives they would rather not have. The trials that they go through are relative to the occurrences in the fantasy world, but are also mirrors of trials we go through in real life. Maggie definitely knows how to wield an awesome pen.

    In this first book, Indira is a former Wiccan whose reason for the ‘former’ is that she has lost faith in the religion. She kept performing spells to provide her with her soul mate but never found him. When she was practicing she was a Solitary Witch, a witch who never formally joined a coven.

    Indira has been having a recurring dream, but this morning when she wakes, the scars from the dream are real in the waking world. She seeks out her best friend, Rayne, who is a High Priestess for the local Wiccan coven. Rayne, fearing for her friend, contacts the one person she knows she can trust, her brother the Priest.

    Tomas has been charged by God, and his mentor Dom, to prevent a demon from entering the world through a portal that opens once every 3500 years. It will happen this year. It will start with a witch, a marked witch, that will bring about the apocalypse and Tomas must stop her, must stop Indira.

    Tomas tries to convince Indira that she is part of this calling, that she is the witch with the power to destroy the demon and seal him in the underworld forever. Not all goes as planned.

    During their adventure Tomas and Indira discover they are reincarnations of the original witch and priest involved in the events leading to the portal creation 3500 years ago.

    While I was reading the book, I kept thinking “I know what is going to happen next,” but this book is full of so many twists and turns that I was pleasantly surprised with every flip of the page. Everything was neatly tied up at the end of the book so I can’t wait until next month when Daughter of the Spellcaster is released.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 7, 2012

    Great book but ending was amiss

    This was really a good book but the ending missed out on letting the reader know end-of-story information about main characters. Since the next story isnt about this book's characters, there should have been an epilogue.

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    Posted October 1, 2012

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    Posted October 2, 2012

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    Posted April 28, 2013

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    Posted December 13, 2013

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    Posted October 13, 2012

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