Audiobook Review: Once a Witch by Carolyn MacCullough

Once a Witch
Witch #1
Author: Carolyn MacCullough
Narrator: Hannah Friedman
Reading Level: YA
Genre: Fantasy/Paranormal
Run-Time: 9 Hours
Released: November 15th 2011
Review Source: Brilliance Audio
Available: Amazon

Summary: (from goodreads) Tamsin Greene comes from a long line of witches, and she was supposed to be one of the most Talented among them. But Tamsin's magic never showed up. Now seventeen, Tamsin attends boarding school in Manhattan, far from her family. But when a handsome young professor mistakes her for her very Talented sister, Tamsin agrees to find a lost family heirloom for him. The search—and the stranger—will prove to be more sinister than they first appeared, ultimately sending Tamsin on a treasure hunt through time that will unlock the secret of her true identity, unearth the sins of her family, and unleash a power so vengeful that it could destroy them all. This is a spellbinding display of storytelling that will exhilarate, enthrall, and thoroughly enchant.

Audio: 4 Trees
Taking into consideration that Once A Witch was the first audio book that I’ve ever listened to without the actual text to follow along, I found it somewhat of a struggle in the beginning to focus completely on the reader. After the first few chapters, I decided to start over and try once again, determined to give this audio read a fair chance, with my total attention from start to finish. With nothing to compare it with, upon finishing Once A Witch I decided to begin another novel via audio, so that I could make a sound evaluation in regards to the audio presentation and have something else to compare it too in regards to the audio quality.

The inner voice of Tamsin Greene, the main character of the novel is portrayed with a light and airy feel by Hannah Friedman. Her tone in the beginning of the story truly begins to allow the listener to visualize the overall setting of the story through the background offered in the novel. Hannah offers a very distinct voice for all of the characters of the story. Alistar, another main character, has an accent that was maintained throughout the novel. Unfortunately, there were some moments in the audio where that accent disappeared, but it quickly returned, giving light to the reader of who was speaking. Upon finishing the audio, I must admit that I rushed to the nearest library hoping to find the next book in the series. I have it, haven’t started yet, because right now I really can’t imagine Tamsin’s voice any other way. So, I would say that speaks volumes.

Novel: 4 Trees
Upon finishing the audio of the novel, I decided to purchase the book and do a quick re-read giving me the opportunity to see if I fully captured the theme of the story, and I did. Tamsin Greene is faced with the knowledge that she has no unique powers, no unique gifts, nor special talents as the rest of her elite family of witches. She lives throughout the day attending boarding school, excepting the fact that she is different and will never be like the others of her family. Her life changes the minute a mysterious professor by the name of Alistar walks through the doors of the family business asking Tamsin for assistance. Finding objects of any kind is just one of the many talents that the family possesses. However, little does Alistar know that Tamsin doesn’t have a talent. Tamsin excepts the assignment with the up most hope of finding the object and proving to her family that she is special too. Fortunately for Tamsin, she doesn’t have to face the request alone. A new character is introduced, Gabriel, a childhood friend, who has a unique talent of his own. A fantasy novel, with a little bit of coming of age and maybe even a hint of love, this was a novel that I was excited about knowing that the sequel was already in print.


  1. Nice review, I might pick this one up myself. In paper though, I strongly dislike audiobooks.

  2. I shall have to look to see if I can find this audio book at my library. I'm always looking for good audio since I'm picky with listening to books.

    Thanks for the great review. :)


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