Always a Witch

by Carolyn MacCullough

*Due to this being a sequel, there are some spoilers from the first book!*

Brief Summary: Tamsin Greene, reluctant and newly-discovered witch, is back in the sequel to MacCullough’s Once a Witch to try and prevent her family from being destroyed by Alistair Knight and his scheming family. For this, Tamsin must travel back to the 19th century and infiltrate the Knight’s ranks to prevent Alistair from passing his knowledge of the future onto his ancestors. Determined to both save her family and make the correct choice in a prophesied terribly difficult decision, Tamsin must rely on her just-found Talent and New York City smarts to try and defeat the Knight’s once and for all.

Kell’s Chatty Review: I found that I liked Always a Witch much more than its predecessor (and I liked Once a Witch). The suspense was ripe throughout most of the story (this seems pretty typical in a fantasy, since the author can focus more on the story instead of the world-building) and the new characters were mostly deliciously evil – which always makes for a fun read.

And, in case you were worried: The wonderful Gabriel is back. Although for the most part, in this book, Tamsin is defending the world on her own, which led to some great character growth on her part.

Not to go too far into it: But I was also happy that MacCullough gave Tamsin’s Talent some limits. Sure, it would have be super cool to have an amazing Talent like the one implied at the end of Once a Witch, but with these limits, Tamsin has to think for herself and grow a bit. Also, the story would have probably ended in about five chapters.

As I mentioned: We get some new characters to meet in the sequel, most of which are members of the Knight clan from the 19th century and goodness, what a crowd. On the whole, they are a nasty bunch. You do not want to run into them in a dark alley, let me tell you.

Where this book came from: I read an advanced reader’s e-copy from NetGalley.

Where you can find this book: Published by Clarion Books, an imprint of Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Always a Witch is set to be available 8/1/2011.

And, yes: I LOVE how the titles of the books are a match. Once a Witch, Always a Witch. Love!

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