Saturday, December 31, 2011

SWEEP (Volume 2) by Cate Tiernan | REVIEW

Title: Sweep, Volume 2 [Dark Magick; Awakening; Spellbound]
Author: Cate Tiernan
Number of Pages: 564
Published: November 11, 2010
Rating: 4/5

Morgan Rowlands is a blood witch, the last of a long line of ancient and powerful witches and the holder of an unfathomable power. With the help of her love, her soul mate, Cal, she has realized her true self - but at at price. For Morgan and Cal share a terrible, dark secret, one that binds them together even as they are rent apart. Yet there is something about Cal's hunger for magick that frightens Morgan.... And now there is another one who can bring Morgan clarity, truth... love. Morgan must decide who is her true love, and who is out to destroy her forever.... (goodreads)

"I struck out blindly with my hand and brought it down on the candle flame. There was a hiss and a faint, charring smell. And I was alone in the darkness." - Morgan Rowlands [Awakening]

"But it's pointless to consider. One cannot escape one's destiny - if you hide from it, it will find you. If you deny it, it will kill you." - Hunter Niall/Giomanach [Dark Magick]

REVIEW [Spoilers this time.]
Where in the first volume everything has unravelled, this new volume follows up with the reunion of feelings and characters and hopes and dreams. Dark Magick, the fourth book, immediately throws you into back into the mix of Morgan's life, turned upside-down after the murder of Hunter Niall—the murder she and Cal committed. Grief and guilt haunt her, ravage her, eat her from the inside out.

Yet in the end, it was the right thing to do. He was going to kill Cal. Right? Right? No. Instantly things turn awry when Cal introduces Morgan to his little Wiccan sanctuary, his sheomar; and from there on she feels something. Her magick knows something is off, and it keeps trying to warn her of the hunger Cal possesses for all things dark, all things capable of being controlled.

The roller coaster ride won't let you go. Up, up, up on your high as Morgan reassures herself that Cal is safe, good, her muirn beatha dan—and bam! Hunter's alive! Morgan is forced to start questioning everything, and soon enough she finds herself knowing that Hunter is right, Cal is evil, and he reveals it. This roller coaster is spiraling downward, making your stomach drop as Morgan comes to the realization that Cal was wrapping her around his little finger this whole time; casting spells on her and entrancing her.

After attempting to kill Morgan the way her mother Bradhadair was killed [burned to death], Cal and Selene flee. Bree, Morgan's former best friend; and Robbie, her other best friend, come to her rescue. End book 4, instantly back in the action with Awakening.

Now, I think this volume went slower after this. It seemed that events were forced along, as though Morgan just sits up one day and says, "I think something needs to happen today. Oh, hey, I sense magick!" Tiernan masks it well, but that's the vibe I got. You aren't moving at all like the breakneck pace you're thrown into with the previous books. But I suppose with Cal and Selene out of the picture, it's inevitable—they took all the action with them. But in response you gain Morgan's struggle to trust Hunter and Sky, and her denial as one of her friends could have opened himself to dark magick.

Another thing I believe was lacking in this volume was the cooperation with Morgan and her friends. Morgan and Bree are trying to mend their relationship, but this is really all you get, it seems. You see other characters interacting, but never Morgan with them. The circles she performs with her coven don't seem as strong and entrancing as they were before, but you can give the excuse of Cal leaving again.

Awakening was the boring book of this volume, I'll say it now. It ends with one of Morgan's friends being prosecuted. Spellbound makes up for it, but at this point is when I really think everything starts chugging along because it's being forced to. It seems as though some characters are just there because they need to be. It never felt natural. The story remained entrancing, I promise—it was just hard to swallow when you were speeding through it like I was.

The provocations of Cal and Selene, the tense relationship between Morgan and Hunter, the blossoming attraction between characters such as Sky and Raven; Ethan and Shannon; Bree and Robbie are addicting. Even the arc in which Morgan struggles on whether to take revenge on three boys harassing her gay aunt draws you in. The humor remains in this edition, and so does the high school drama [Mary K. and Bakker].

I still recommend this. The only downsides with these additions to the Sweep series were how everything seemed nudged along and the lack of interaction between Morgan and other people. Otherwise, just as good as the last three. Onto Volume 3!


Reading: Fire and Ice - Erin Hunter
Catching Fire - Suzanne Collins
Sweep [3] - Cate Tiernan
Listening to: Mirage Coordinator - Best of Umineko
Watching: NCIS
Quote: "I don't know... I can't explain it. ...But the lonely little girl I met when I was younger, and the girl we knew as Nyu... I love them both." - Kohta [Anime: Elfen Lied; Episode 13]

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