Sweep Vol. 1: Book of Shadows, The Coven, and Blood Witch by Cate Tiernan

So this marks off my second prompt form the PopSugar Reading Challenge. Yes I know it’s March and yes I know I’m behind. I’m a bit behind on everything really, but that’s okay I will catch up and it will be okay. I can still make it; there is time. So these books are going to be interesting to talk about and review. There are technically 15 books in the series but I have them bound in 5 volumes by sets of 3. This is the first one containing the first three books: Book of Shadows, The Coven, and Blood Witch. I, however, will be talking about them by volume and not by individual book because honestly after reading the volume they make more since as one book and not three individual ones. Every book picks up exactly where the last one left off. So it ends up feeling more like the start of the next chapter and not the start of a new novel. Also may contain spoilers.

Morgan Rowland is just a normal girl living in a small town in upstate New York. She goes to school, hangs out with her best friend Bree, and dreams about one day going to college for science. Then everything changes when Cal Blair moves to town ans Morgan finds herself drawn to him, her and every other female in her class. Cal introduces Morgan and her friends to Wicca and something is awoken in Morgan. All of a sudden Morgan’s life is flipped upside down as she begins to piece together a puzzle that she didn’t know she had.

I find the story to be really enjoyable, but also problematic. Like most early 2000s YA Fantasy novels and even some of today’s YA Fantasy novels we have a bad case of a some what naive main character, a very powerful love interest, insta-love and the beginnings of love triangle. Morgan is very naive especially when it comes to love. There are several times throughout the story where Morgan comments how little time has passed between key events in the novel and then she comment how much she loves Cal a paragraph later. My 23 year old brain is like “GIRL YOU DON’T LOVE HIM! HE JUST GAVE YOU ATTENTION!” She also does this thing where she is like “I should tell this person whats going on, but nah.” Which is really annoying, but her inner turmoil about whats happening in her life is pretty relatable. One thing I DO NOT like is the relationship between her and Bree. First off Bree reminds me of a very toxic friend I used to have. Bree is selfish and uses Morgan quite a bit. Bree is used to having everything handed to her and being the prettiest in the group. Shes super popular and even hangs out with a different clique at school then Morgan. Their relationship was destroyed over a boy. Which is the dumbest reason for an 11 year friendship to end. Bree acted as though Cal would never choose Morgan over her. Although Morgan never told Bree about her feelings for Cal and she did ended up kissing him in front of Bree which is pretty bitchy. There aren’t really any strong female character in this book despite the fact that Wicca is a very women centric religion and seen by many to be pretty feminist in nature. Most of the women, especially Morgan, derive their worth from the men around them. Morgan constantly makes derogatory comments about her body, which is kinda off putting cause shes not as ugly as she would like the reader to think.

I guess now is a good time to talk about Cal, Morgan’s love interest. He’s kinda of a very charismatic ass. Its obvious from the beginning that Morgan is very powerful and very uneducated and its also very obvious that Cal wants to take advantage of that. He basically isolates her from not only her friends but her family as well and makes it so hes literally the only one she tells when things happen and he uses that to blind her to reality. The reality being HE’S AN ASS! He also tires to control her power and use it to his advantage. He also very much uses her own insecurities against her. At one point he even say something along the lines of “your not pretty from a distance and then you get up close and you’re gorgeous.” Like she should be thankful that he finds her attractive which is just stupid.

The writing itself is also pretty juvenile. The author is constantly reminding the reader of things that like just happened. Even though there are technically three books in the volume and they were originally published individually published its still kind of annoying to be constantly reminded of the big events. Tiernan also likes to use last names for the supporting characters like a lot. Its like in each new book the characters get reintroduced to the reader. I feel if I had read it when I was 14 I would find them to be absolutely amazing but 23 year old me is just like they okay. Hopefully it gets better!

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