When Tamsin was born, her grandmother predicted that she would be one of the most powerful Talents in her family’s history, but Tamsin’s Talent never appeared. Now Tamsin is the only “normal” person in her family, living under the shadow of her supremely Talented and beautiful older sister, Rowena. When a man comes into her grandmother’s bookstore looking for special help finding a missing item and mistakes Tamsin for Rowena, Tamsin can’t help but pretend, just for a moment, that she is her Talented older sister. Tamsin always intends to set the record straight but one thing leads to another and Tamsin finds herself embroiled in a mystery that has her in way over her head. With the help of an old friend, Tamsin is determined to solve the mystery, but she may not be prepared for what she is about to find.
Reaction: This book was a pleasant surprise. I really hesitated over the premise — Tamsin posing as her sister, which usually is a plot device that just creates way too much tension for me to handle — but I am very glad that I gave it a chance. Tamsin posing as Rowena turned out to be a fairly small part of the story, the catalyst to get the ball rolling, but the real meat of the story is Tamsin learning about her family’s history and learning who she is and how she fits into the mix of Talented people from whom she’s always felt isolated. The back story of Tamsin’s family and the family history along with the idea of Talents with a capital “T” added interest to what could have been just another witch story. The ending has closure but leaves enough open for another book. While I think it works as a standalone, I certainly wouldn’t mind more time developing the Tamsin/Gabriel relationship. :)