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Once a Witch by Carolyn MacCullough

Once a WitchOn the day of Tamsin Greene’s birth, her grandmother predicted that Tamsin would be the most Talented in their large family of witches. But years pass with no sign of Tamsin’s magic. Now seventeen, Tamsin has resigned herself to living a Talentless life. She attends a boarding school in Manhattan where no one has heard of her eccentric family and she can pretend to be normal. Home for the summer, Tamsin has to work in her family’s bookshop. When a young professor from NYU visits the store and mistakes Tamsin for her older, more Talented sister, she feels for the first time what it’s like to be powerful, a rightful member of her family of witches. Despite her lack of Talent, Tamsin agrees to help the professor find a family heirloom lost long ago. But this heirloom and the professor are not who and what Tamsin thinks they are, and her search will unleash a lot more than her family’s anger—it will unveil a magic so powerful it could wipe out Tamsin’s family and more importantly, the truth.

Once a Witch is a swift and mostly satisfying read with plenty of magic, action, and romance. MacCullough creates a truly lovable cast of characters in Tamsin’s family, particularly because of all the distantly related relatives with all their strange Talents. It’s easy to understand why this magic-laden atmosphere makes Tamsin feels the odd one out and sometimes even a failure, so it’s really no wonder she keeps trying to prove herself. It’s easy to sympathize with Tamsin even if I felt I didn’t really get to know her all that well. However, Tamsin proves to be a strong and determined heroine, which makes the story move along quickly. The plot is exciting and fast-paced with many surprising twists and turns. I really enjoyed how Tamsin’s search tested her wits and abilities and, after a wild goose chase, brings her closer to her family and real identity. There’s something very enchanting about time travel, and I’m glad MacCullough incorporated it into this story, because it made this novel all the more interesting. I would’ve liked the minor characters and main to be better developed and to know more of the backstory, but thankfully, Once a Witch ends with plenty of room for a sequel.

This unique story of witchcraft will appeal to fans of Sisters of Misery by Megan Kelley Hall, Revealers by Amanda Marrone, and Blue is for Nightmares by Laurie Faria Stolarz. I look forward to the next installment in Tamsin’s story.

Rating: 3.75

Review copy from Amazon Vine

2 munch(es) :

Kelsey said...

I really want to read this! Thanks for the review(:

Cara Powers said...

Cleaning out my reader, I discovered that you were the one who made me buy this book. Thank you. I liked it. I think I tweeted that I hated you for giving me a new book with sequels to come. I hope I can return the monetary damage soon.

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