Friday, October 14, 2011

Always a Witch - Carolyn MacCullough - Blog Tour Review

The adventures of Tam and Gabriel continue with more time travel, Talents, spy work, and of course, the evil Knights.

Since the gripping conclusion of Once A Witch, Tamsin Greene has been haunted by her grandmother's prophecy that she will soon be forced to make a crucial decision—one so terrible that it could harm her family forever. When she discovers that her enemy, Alistair Knight, went back in time to Victorian-era New York in order to destroy her family, Tamsin is forced to follow him into the past. Stranded all alone in the nineteenth century, Tamsin soon finds herself disguised as a lady's maid in the terrifying mansion of the evil Knight family, avoiding the watchful eye of the vicious matron, La Spider, and fending off the advances of Liam Knight. As time runs out, both families square off in a thrilling display of magic. And to her horror, Tamsin finally understands the nature of her fateful choice.
Synopsis taken from goodreads.

Title: Always a Witch (Sequel to Once a Witch)
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Witches, Urban Fantasy
Publisher: Clarion Books
Publication Date: August 1, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Source: Received from publicist. Many thanks goes to Thomas Allen & Son for sending me a copy of this book for review. I received this book free of charge in exchange for an honest review. 
Blog Tour: Teen Book Scene blog tour. You can follow along with the tour here, or by clicking through the banner located below the review.
Look for it: Amazon, Book Depository
My rating: 5/5

Tamsin Greene once believed she was an ordinary girl in an extraordinary family. Now, she alone has the power to change the future for her family as they are plagued by the evil and illustrious Knight family. With Tamsin's talent, she can do almost everything. Well, except for time travelling to the past and getting back to the present time; but she won't let a little thing like time travel stop her from fulfilling her destiny. 
I fell in love with Once A Witch when I read it last year, and Always a Witch lived up to my expectations completely. The loving familial bond between Tamsin and her family is still there, and a certain scene involving the fridge, poisoned sugary confections, and a well-known song all make an appearance which will have the reader laughing along at the crazy antics that happen in the Greene family. This of course, is before Tamsin realizes just what she has to do to save her family from certain destruction. But, as with the first novel, Tamsin doesn't let her fear stop her. She jumps at the chance to fix things, as she wants to take care of her family. Sure, she's impetuous. Especially when there's that pesky thing called time travel involved. Not knowing what will happen is part of the charm, and she will make it home somehow. At least she hopes she will. You have to commend her for her bravery there. She willingly puts her life on the line for her family, and she might not have thought through every aspect, but she is smart and decides that she will figure things out as they play out. 
Gabriel is her male counter-part and love interest. He is a lot fun, and he complements Tamsin perfectly. He is level-headed, has a good sense of humour, and cares for Tamsin deeply. He is perfect for her, especially since he has grown up with her family and has a talent or two of his own. He also has a penchant for looking out for Tamsin, which helps when she realizes she might not have thought through every aspect of her plans. 
With a plot full of twists and turns, and evil villains around every corner, you will be holding your breath, hoping that Tamsin will survive long enough to save her family. The added background from her last foray into time travel helps as well as she meets certain members from the Knight family for the second time, but really it's the first time for them. This leads to a few moments of panic on her part, until she realizes that their future selves know her, not their present selves. 
All in all, a worthy follow-up to Once A Witch. Always a Witch will keep you spell-bound while Tamsin tries to find her family, and the evil Knight family in the past. Will she succeed where her family has failed in the past? One won't know until the conclusion, and even then certain events come full circle from the first book to this one, leaving the reader with an "aha!" moment. I would definitely recommend Always a Witch. Love, laughter, and family will always be a drawing card for me. Mix in a notoriously evil, rival family and hi-jinks will ensue. 


Carolyn MacCullough said...

Thanks, Corrine, for such a lovely review--I really appreciate it! Carolyn

Mel (He Followed Me Home) said...

Oh I'm so happy to see you loved this as much as Once a Witch! I really need to read this now, thanks for that review.