Book Review: When Asia was the World by Stewart Gordon

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Genre: Non-fiction / translated biographies

Age Recommended: 13 and up

It’s this time of year again… summer assignments. This book wasn’t as boring as I expected it to be, and I enjoyed reading the accounts of people who lived many centuries ago. However, the author could have done a better job linking the different chapters of the book to each other, as they were all independent stories, and the only thing similar about them was the fact that they all took place in Asia and were in consecutive time periods.

When asia was the world

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This book focuses a lot on the change and continuities over time in the Asian world from 500 to 1500 CE. Some chapters discuss the evolution of religion as an ideology of empires, and others cover the political and social effects of religion.

My favorite chapter in this book is chapter eight, because while it discusses Islam, a sensitive topic in society today, it also clears up a lot of the mystery surrounding this religion and its way of thinking.

Here is an excerpt from my assignment that talks about the a possible reason for the decline of an empire.

The later destruction of the royal library (140) showed an almost Nazi-like hatred for things of the past, or things of other cultures. It displayed a very rapid decline in the levels of tolerance that rulers had for people of other cultures, or people from other world regions.
This decrease in tolerance also led to “whole regions permanently altered (141)” and the “end of Buddhist culture (141)” which was inevitably detrimental to Asia in the long run. It led to the failure of conquest because of the lack of belief in an ideology, followed by great wars that split kingdoms up even more.

All in all, I enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend this for people who like history.

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: When Asia Was the World: Traveling Merchants, Scholars, Warriors, and Monks Who Created the “Riches of the “East”

Book Review: Changeling by Cate Tiernan (Book 8 of the Sweep Series)

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Genre: Supernatural Fiction

Age Recommended: 14 and up

I liked this book a lot, and this was one of the only books so far in the series where the end satisfied me and didn’t make me need to read the next book. However, I do want to know what happens so I will be reading the next book anyway.   🙂

Changeling

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Morgan has found her father. He is not who he seems to be. Morgan thought her father was her late mother’s husband, but it was actually her mother’s lover. Morgan learns that her father, and his coven, are planning to bring about another dark wave. This would eliminate a coven and would allow her father’s coven to harness the destroyed coven’s power.

Morgan meets with a council member who tells her that she must meet her father and plant a tracking spell on him so that he may be captured and his coven’s plans thwarted. Morgan is unsure that she will be able to accomplish this task, but with the encouragement of her friends, she contacts her father and meets him.

However, Morgan finds herself growing close to her father and that scares her as he may be able to convince her to join him. Morgan knows that she is no match for him and is apprehensive about her own abilities.

Will Morgan be able to capture her father and bring him in? Or will she join the people she worked so hard to avoid?

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: Changeling (Sweep, No. 8)

Book Review: The Calling by Cate Tiernan (Book 7 of the Sweep Series)

Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars

Genre: Supernatural Fiction

Age Recommended: 14 and up

This book was considerably slower than the rest, which was why I didn’t enjoy it quite as much. Moreover, the cliffhanger is EVIL, just EVIL! I must read the next book as soon as possible.

The Calling

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Morgan has had a dream- one that has her boyfriend, Hunter, concerned, because it shows the evil witches who have yet to be captured. Morgan, Hunter, and their other four friends go to New York City to find these evil witches and bring them to justice. However, their one clue- the son of the evil coven’s leader- is kidnapped and they can’t find him.

Meanwhile, Morgan is keen on finding her mother’s antique watch that was a gift from her lover. She ventures out in the city alone, eager to uncover the secrets that lie there.

However, the evil coven uses this to their advantage and spies on Morgan after discovering her identity one night at a club. Morgan is scared because she starts having nightmares that show her what the evil coven is up to, but she doesn’t know where they are. Moreover, the coven is planning to sacrifice a witch to get more power and it’s up to Morgan and her friends to save this witch.

Will Morgan be able to vanquish the evil coven before they can cause any harm?

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: The Calling (Sweep, No. 7)

Book Review: Spellbound by Cate Tiernan (Book 6 of the Sweep Series)

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Genre: Supernatural Fiction

Age Recommended: 14 and up

Unfortunately, the lady I bought this series from was missing books 5, 11, 13, and 15. I hope to get the missing books in a few days, but meanwhile, I’ll skip them and continue reading the series.

Spellbound

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Morgan is looking for Cal. After attempting to take her life, Cal and his mother leave town and go into hiding. They have succeeded in turning Morgan’s friend David, to the dark side, but now David is dead and Morgan and her coven have no way to find Cal and his mother Selene.

However, one day, Cal speaks to Morgan telepathically, saying that he wants to meet her. Morgan accepts, because she still loves him, and the two meet near her house. However, Hunter, Morgan’s boyfriend, shows up and their meeting is cut short. Hunter says that he showed up because he sensed Morgan’s panic. Morgan lies to Hunter and tells him that she just was overwhelmed with recent events. Later on, Hunter is appalled that Morgan hid her knowledge of Cal’s whereabouts from him and he demands to know what else she has been hiding.

Morgan says that she doesn’t know anything else and the two of them continue their search for Cal and his mother. A few days later, attempts are made to murder Morgan and Hunter and their coven suspects Cal.

Will Hunter and Morgan be able to find and punish those who deserve it?

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: Spellbound (Sweep, No. 6)

Book Review: Dark Magick by Cate Tiernan (Book 4 of the Sweep Series)

*Warning: this review contains spoilers* (I’m sorry, it had to)

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Genre: Supernatural Fiction

Age Recommendation: 14 and up

It seems that, in this series, the books are increasingly fast-paced. This book was incredible and also extremely gripping.

Dark Magick

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Morgan has just assisted her boyfriend in murdering a man. Cal is gravely injured and Hunter is dead.

Morgan’s suspicions arise because, before being murdered, that he was a Seeker, sent from the Council of Witches, to bring in Cal and his mother for trial, for improper use of magic. Morgan had not believed him, but now, after seeing hidden rooms and reading her mother’s diary, she is not so sure he was wrong.

Later, Morgan meets Hunter who said that his cousin saved him from drowning after he had fallen off the cliff into the ocean. Morgan and Hunter then proceed to look into each other’s minds, revealing the secrets within. Morgan learns about Cal’s true intentions and Hunter learns that Morgan had no evil intent aside from saving her boyfriend, Cal.

Morgan also learns that Cal and his mother are part of an organization working to destroy all witches who are not part of their clan, Woodbane, and they want Morgan because she is a Woodbane princess and an extremely powerful witch. However, when Morgan confronts Cal about this new revelation, he proceeds to kidnap her, saying that he only wants what is best for her.

Will Morgan find a way to harness her powers and break free from the clutches of evil?

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: Dark Magick (Sweep, No. 4)

Book Review: Blood Witch by Cate Tiernan (Book 3 of the Sweep Series)

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Genre: Supernatural Fiction

Age Recommended: 14 and up

This is my favorite book in the series so far because it is really fast-paced and rather intense.

The Blood Witch

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Morgan has been learning about witchcraft. She has a boyfriend who loves her and has magical powers to be reckoned with. As of now, her life seems perfect. However, a boy names Hunter and a girl named Sky soon come into the picture. Hunter is a sly, vicious, snide boy who hates Cal with a passion and Sky is the blood witch who is leading the coven that Bree and Raven have joined.

Morgan learns of Bree’s plans for revenge but has doubts about the execution. Moreover, Sky and Hunter seem to be following Morgan and have cast revealing spells on her car and house. Morgan learns that Hunter is Cal’s father’s son and that explains the hatred between them. However, the intentions behind Sky’s actions towards Morgan are not revealed.

Later on, Morgan learns that she is a Woodbane- a part of the evil clan of witches. However, she is reassured when her fellow witches tell her that not all Woodbanes are bad and that it depends on who she is as a person as well.

Morgan finds her mother’s tools for magic under the house that her mother was burned alive in but the tools raise more questions than they answer.

Will Morgan continue to dig into her past, or will she embrace her future?

If you would like to read this book, you an purchase it here: Blood Witch (Sweep, No. 3)

Book Review: The Coven by Cate Tiernan (Book 2 of the Sweep Series)

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Genre: Supernatural Fiction

Age Recommendation: 14 and up

I felt that this was a little slower paced than the first book, but I still liked it. However, the cliffhangers in this series are not funny. WHY?!! The author really needs to stop torturing devoted readers and just tell us what happens. Luckily, I have bought the entire series and cannot wait to devour the rest of them!

The Coven

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Morgan has finally accepted the fact that she is a blood witch. However, she is eager to find out more about her past, since she is adopted. Morgan learns that her parents were burned alive because they left their clan of witches. Moreover, Morgan finds out that she is naturally gifted and that spurs her into learning more about her heritage.

Eventually, Morgan learns about witchcraft and the responsibilities that come with it. However, Morgan’s best friend, Bree, and Bree’s best friend, Raven, quit Cal’s coven because they are jealous of his relationship with Morgan. Moreover, Bree and Raven go join another circle but for a different reason than healing: revenge.

Morgan is scared for her best friend but she is also certain that the revenge that Bree wishes to inflict will be upon her.

Will Morgan be able to protect herself?

If you would like to read this book, you can purchase it here: The Coven (Sweep, No. 2)