Always a Witch is the sequal to Once a Witch. In Once a Witch, Tamsin Greene grew up in a talented family of witches believing herself to be ordinary. Her own family were rather awful to at her times considering their deception. We find out part of the reason why they treated her this way in Always a Witch.
Her Grandmother knew that Tamsin would have to sacrafice her own talent; stopping others from using their talent on her, so she wanted her to learn to live without having one. Her family still could have treated her more kindly. Her dad was obnoxious. I found that ending too pat so the sequel was much needed.
Both novels handled the complicated matter of time travelling rather well. Tamsin has to go back to 1889 New York to stop Alistair Knight from preventing her own ancestors from defeating the Knights. Tamsin goes undercover as a ladies maid.
This could have had much more potential. Tamsin had it much too easy maneuvering her way around a time she did not belong in. She missed breakfast once, but the hardships of the times weren't felt by her character. The Dark Shadows
revival came to my mind. Victoria was accused of being a witch because her clothing said machine wash on them. Tamsin was prepared somewhat with an outfit but, she didn't plan her excursion into the past all that well. She should have fallen on her face some.
Tamsin from Once a Witch made a few mistakes and lied. Perhaps, if the writer had borrowed a page from Iva Ibbotson's The Countess Below Stairs
things might have been more compelling. Life as a ladies maid was hard. She could have been expected to actually use the equipment of those times and burned someone's hair off.
Liam was creepy lite. He hit on her and murdered people but again, the missing maid was not utilised as it could have been. She found out straight away that Rosie and Horace had lied. I will overlook that it was too convenient she met Horace who got her the job in the first place. The book would have been bogged down with detail if everything was explained.
Liam wasn't used to his full potential as a pervert. She never wanted him. There just wasn't much tension or stakes in this book. Alistair was more insidious in Once a Witch when he put a love spell on her sister. If she had been a governess instead to the weird child Edmund things could have had more drama. No romantic feelings towards the perverts? Oh well, Gabriel is a nice love interest. I can't blame MacCullough for keeping their relationship intact.
I kept thinking of Hugh Jackman in Kate and Leopold
during her excursions in 1889 New York. "This sir, is not New York!" Always a Witch shared more in common with Kate and Leopold's New York than Gangs of New York.