My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Oh lordy. If I had read Tamsin as a wee lass of thirteen, I would have been completely obsessed with it. It has all the things that push my middle-schooler buttons: magic, obscure English lore, historical elements, a lovely ghost, and teenage whining.
The main character, Jenny, is uprooted from her home in New York to live in a ramshackle farm with her new blended family. She’s endearing right away- overemotional but bluntly honest. The plot takes a while to get going and there’s a heavy sprinkling of references to booze and drugs to make things Relevant for the Youth of Today, but once the narrative ends up in England, the magic takes hold.
I will most likely read this book again, on a rainy afternoon that lends itself nicely to magic. And I’ll probably hand it off to my own whiny preteen, fifteen or twenty years down the road, and hope that Jenny and her magic will catch her attention like it did mine.