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Always a Witch [Hardcover]

Carolyn MacCullough
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
RRP: £10.24
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Always a Witch + Once a Witch
Price For Both: £15.48

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 276 pages
  • Publisher: Clarion Books; 1 edition (Aug 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0547224850
  • ISBN-13: 978-0547224855
  • Product Dimensions: 22 x 14 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 551,631 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

HardCover. Pub Date: August. 2011 Pages: 288 Publisher: Clarion Books Tamsin Greene has been haunted by her grandmother's prophecy that SHE will soon BE forced command 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 Victorianera New York in order to destroy her family. Tamsin is forced to follow him into the past. She soon finds herself disguised as a lady's maid in the terrifying mansion of the evil Knight family. 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.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Always a Witch 1 Aug 2011
By Lisa f
Format:Hardcover
This book is a fun, fairly quick read. I made the mistake of starting it on the bus journey to work and was a third of the way through by the time I got there. The reason this was a mistake is that I couldn't stop thinking about it in work, and was even more desperate for the end of the day so I could finish it!

I definitely recommend that if you read this book you set time aside and read it in one sitting. The story is well paced and the world building is good and expands on the elements introduced in the first book. I really enjoyed the historical aspect to the story. It is a sequel to Once a Witch and whilst you could read this as a standalone the experience will be better if you have read Once a Witch.

The story follows Tamsin as she travels back in time to protect her family from a rival witch family who have been using blood magic to enhance their powers. This time Tamsin travels back without her boyfriend Gabriel with no way of knowing if, or how, she will be able to return.

She soon finds herself in the midst of the Knight family and in grave danger. Relying on her ancestors to trust and help her is not as easy as she had hoped, but luckily help finally arrives and she manages to set everything right. Unfortunately, saving her family and their future comes at a high price.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, which is perfect when you want a quick read with a fast moving, interesting story. The characters are well written and the members of the Knight family were particularly well done.
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5.0 out of 5 stars brilliant 6 Oct 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Really enjoyed this, good second book and I look forward to the next.

Brilliant author would definitely recommend this book.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  66 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read! Great follow up to the first book, or even as a stand alone! 8 Aug 2011
By Uniquely Moi Books - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
For starters,' let me say, if you've read Once a Witch then you'll absolutely devour Always a Witch. If not, it is a fantastic stand-alone! This was a phenomenal book that was even better than the first!

Tamsin Greene had a horrific encounter with an evil Alistair Knight in Once a Witch which is still left untied. Currently life is calm, but won't stay that way if things are left the way they are.
Tam's sister Rowena is still full on board with wedding plans driving the family into a frenzy trying to get everything perfect for her big day. Agatha, Tam's best friend is back at the dorm, and Gabriel, Tam's boyfriend is with Tam to help deal with Rowena's crazy wedding demands. Before this wedding can go on though- Tamsin must take care of those loose strings. Apparently Allistair Knight was successful in traveling back to the 1800's to meet with his family to warn them about Tamsin and the Greene family. You see, in the 1800's the Greene's took the Knights magical powers and were able to lock them away into something called the Domani. Alistair was able to get a little of that magic out so Tamsin must go back, not only to stop Allistair, but to find her family and get them to recreate a new Domani that's stronger. This one can't break. Can Tamsin convince them to do this?

Once Tamsin goes back in time she can't seem to find her family but she does find the Knights. Things seem to be full of surprises for Tamsin and nothing works out like expected. Will she come through for her family in the future? Will she find her family in the past?
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny, witcy, and awesome 19 April 2012
By Tabitha @ Bows & Bullets Reviews - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Whoa. Just wow, I really wasn't expecting that ending. It came flying up out of nowhere and hit me smack in the face. It was completely brilliant though. Since I adored everything about Once A Witch, it really is not surprise that I loved this one as well. Carolyn MacCullough took everything I loved about Once A Witch and managed to improve upon it when writing this book. It's witty, it's funny, it still has that great Tamsin/Gabriel relationship. The sarcasm is cut down a bit, but it is still great.

This novel pics up not too far after the last one left off and it follows Tamsin in an adventure in the past. Her grandmother can no longer see a future for their family, so her only real option is to follow Alistair into the past and prevent him from warning the Knights. Deciding it is best to do this alone, she uses the Domani to travel back 1887 with no real plan beyond warning her ancestors and finding Alistair. She ends up taking a position as a lady's maid for the Knight family to watch for Alistair since she can't find anyone with knowledge of the Greene family. Complications arise, ensue, and are overcome.

I really loved this novel. Love, love LOVE it.

I loved Tamsin going off on her own (though it was stupid) and blindly charging off to save her family. I love that it doesn't turn out perfect when she arrives. Too many novels have the heroine arrive and it just all magically falls into place, like the first person she asks knows where to find her family and they believe her and fix it and then cue the happily ever after. No, Tamsin arrives and cannot find anyone that has even heard of her family. She wonders around cluelessly until a man offers her a job as a lady's maid for the Knight family. Then when she finally finds her family, they don't believe her. I truly loved that. Call me cruel, but I like seeing the heroine (or hero) struggle to get what they want/need.

I was a bit sad when she left without Gabriel because I love him and I want as much of him in the novel as possible. He finally shows up in 1887 a little over halfway through the book, so those of you fearing (like me), that you won't get enough of him here, let me put your mind at easy. You get plenty of the signature Tamsin/Gabriel banter.

I have to give it to Carolyn for catching me off guard because I didn't see that ending coming at all. I don't know exactly what I was expecting but it certainly wasn't that. Even though I didn't expect it, it was perfect. It seamlessly tied the whole story together. It makes it completely understandable why Grandma forced everyone to hide Tam's powers from her. It really left me speechless.

I also loved that this series is just a 2 part set. It is very refreshing to see a short series in a world where it seems like every story is continued to like 15 volumes. Oh and for those of you wondering, this series had no love triangle. :)
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Worthwhile sequel to Once a Witch 25 July 2011
By Amanda - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Always a Witch is the fast-paced sequel to author Carolyn MacCullough's 2009 debut, Once A Witch. After enjoying virtually everything about Always a Witch, I was eager to get my hands on the sequel. However, if you haven't read Once a Witch, I highly recommend picking it up before launching into Always a Witch, because you'll be more than lost if you haven't read it.

Always a Witch picks up right after the gripping, edge-of-your-seat conclusion of Once a Witch. Now that Tamsin Greene, daughter of a powerful witch family has discovered that she actually has a magical Talent (and not just any Talent, but one of the most powerful and crucial Talents in her family's history), she's begun to realize her importance. Not only does she have to deal with a chilling prophecy from her grandmother, but when Tamsin discovers that her family's nemesis, Alistair Knight has gone back in time to destroy her family, she's got to do some more time jumping (you'd think this would cause more of a dilemma to so much time travel) to Victorian-era New York, where she goes undercover as a maid in the Knight family mansion.

As fast-paced and magical as Once a Witch, Always a Witch is a fantastic, fabulous sequel that's as riveting and enjoyable as the first. Tamsin is a wonderful, realistic protagonist that readers will want to cheer for. The historical aspect of the novel is also well done, as MacCullough paints a lush portrait of Victorian-era New York and seamlessly weaves together history, magic and mystery in a well-paced tale that's a delightful read.

For me, the only tiny issue with this book is that is feels much the same as the first book (especially with the time jumping), but since it's such a great read, I can't complain too much. Other than that, Always a Witch does feel a little short. It's just under 300 pages (which seems a tiny bit slim for the price) and goes by so quickly it also feels like a blur. Still, optimal for teen readers and fans of YA fantasy/paranormal fiction.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars To the 1800's! 27 Mar 2012
By Pacey1927 - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
After enjoying "Once A Witch" I was very eager to read the follow up "Always A Witch". I have to say I liked the sequel even better than the first book, which is quite unusual. The two books are about Tamsin Greene, a teenager who comes from an extended family of witches who all have different talents. Tamsin's aunt can touch people and `freeze' them. Tamsin's sister can persuade people by issuing commands to do so. Her boyfriend Gabriel can find anything. When Tamsin was born, her grandmother announced her to be the greatest witch the family had ever known, but unfortunately those powers didn't develop...until the events described in "Once A Witch". "Once A Witch" does give us a conclusion but it leads right into another, even bigger issue that must be resolved for good in "Always A Witch". To resolve this dilemma, Tamsin must travel back in time to the late 1800's. She has to stop the events that led to her family being used horribly by another Witch family.

I loved the entire back in time portion of the book, which honestly was about 80% of the novel. It was handled beautifully and realistically (as possible!). The villains were truly creepy and sadistic. There is true danger and horrifying consequences if things go wrong. There were several shockers along the way than only added to the odds being stacked against Tamsin. I think Tamsin is a strong character and I enjoyed her as the lead character. Gabriel was adorable and I like that he called Tamsin out on some of her behaviors and isn't afraid to stand up for himself. He also fits in so well with Tamsin's quirky family and he felt like he belonged with them every bit as much as Tamsin does. I was vaguely disappointed that we didn't get anything more out of the relationship between Tamsin and her overbearing sister. This is only a two book series but the story does end well, even if things aren't ideal. That in my opinion is just realistic. Not everything can end up being perfect especially when you face such odds. Above all I am glad to read a magical tale where there is a definite consequence to having powers. I just really enjoyed this one and would definitely recommend it. I will be looking for future novels by this author.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars WARNING: If you haven't read Once a Witch, the first book in the series, then you probably shouldn't read this review. 11 Nov 2011
By Amarathon - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Maybe I'm still not off the high caused by the recent Harry Potter movie, but I'm a bit disappointed that I didn't get my magical family square-off like I'd expected. Perhaps it's possible that I misinterpreted...? But then: ...both families square off in a thrilling display of magic... I was preparing for this huge battle, practically jumping up and down in my seat, but it didn't really happen the way I imagined.

Don't get me wrong! The sequel was still great. One of my not-so-secret wishes was fulfilled: more romance for Tamsin and Gabriel! Every time they got all gooey or sexy on me, I sported this ridiculously wide smile. I adore them together. And I'm glad that, despite the present (or should I say past... hehe) circumstances, MacCullough didn't totally cut Gabriel out of the book, only giving him moments in the very beginning and the very end. An added plus was the time-traveling. Tamsin going back to the late-1800s--one of my favorite time periods, by the way--brought out a familiar, yet refreshing feeling. Familiar because I've been taken to this time period by several different books, but each time it's unique and in Always a Witch it's no different. I was a little fearful that MacCullough would be lengthy and dull in her descriptions, but, gratefully, I was spared any boring, several-pages-long descriptions that I would've presumably skipped over. It was anything but boring being in Old New York, and in the Knights' residence no less. These wicked, bloodthirsty witches that everyone is so scared of and horrified by.

I admire Tamsin. She has a healthy sense of what's right and wrong, but even she is forced to make decisions, is put into situations where she's capable of making mistakes. And she does. I'm not just saying that. Her judgement can be impaired; she's flawed. But not in a Too Stupid to Live kind of way. She's feels... authentic, genuine. Like a real teen, a real person, and not in a totally annoying way. And Gabriel complements her well. If she tries to pull the whole I'm Super Powerful Because of All My Cool Powers And Therefore I Will Be In Less Danger So You Should Stay Behind to Stay Safe routine, he's all like Don't Even Think About It, You Don't Get to Make Decisions for Me And I'm A Guy, What Did You Expect? Their banter, Gabriel's innuendos always give this book that wonderfully addictive comical flair that breaks the tension and tugs a much-needed laugh out of me.

With the addition of characters like La Spider, Liam, and Jessica Knight and the Greene family ancestors, I enjoyed the range of emotions that each of them invoked. La Spider really permeated that spine-chilling, creepy atmosphere throughout the book. And Liam was no better. A mask of lazy good-humor and charm hiding the inner-cruelty and murderous tendencies that come with being apart of the aforementioned bloodthirsty family. Sympathy coursed through me for Jessica, and I started to feel protective of her, to wish happiness unto her. I don't know how such a sweetheart ended up in that greedy, devious family, but... I'm glad for her...and that's all I'm going to say. The Greene family ancestors lacked the depth and dimension that their descendants possess in the future, but, their personalities and Talents were completely intriguing. I was just disappointed not to be able to get to know them a bit better.

And all of the events encompassing both books lead up to the heartbreaking decision that's been plaguing Tamsin's conscience, her grandmother's warning/prophecy echoing constantly throughout the book as an insistent and mysterious reminder. MacCullough did an excellent job wrapping up Tamsin's story, making sure to come full-circle and tie up the loose ends. Really making sure that the reader understands everything and anything that has caused questions up until the ending. And the ending itself was a satisfying closing that makes me sad to see this series go. I'm definitely going to be missing the Greenes, Tamsin and Gabriel. I hope to catch a glimpse of them in MacCullough's future books, unexpected cameos that would undoubtedly make me super happy!
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