Author: Liselle Sambury
Narrator: Joniece Abbott-Pratt
Audiobook Length: 16 hours 14 minutes
A rich, dark urban fantasy debut following a teen witch who is given a horrifying task: sacrificing her first love to save her family’s magic. The problem is, she’s never been in love—she’ll have to find the perfect guy before she can kill him.
After years of waiting for her Calling—a trial every witch must pass to come into their powers—the one thing Voya Thomas didn’t expect was to fail. When Voya’s ancestor gives her an unprecedented second chance to complete her Calling, she agrees—and then is horrified when her task is to kill her first love. And this time, failure means every Thomas witch will be stripped of their magic.
Voya is determined to save her family’s magic no matter the cost. The problem is, Voya has never been in love, so for her to succeed, she’ll first have to find the perfect guy—and fast. Fortunately, a genetic matchmaking program has just hit the market. Her plan is to join the program, fall in love, and complete her task before the deadline. What she doesn’t count on is being paired with the infuriating Luc—how can she fall in love with a guy who seemingly wants nothing to do with her?
With mounting pressure from her family, Voya is caught between her morality and her duty to her bloodline. If she wants to save their heritage and Luc, she’ll have to find something her ancestor wants more than blood. And in witchcraft, blood is everything.
Blood Like Magic first appealed to me due to the amazing cover! This first novel in the series was intriguing and I loved that it was set in Toronto since there are not a ton of novels set in Canada. The story begins with the introduction of the main character, 16-years-old Voya Thomas, and her large family. Initially, it takes a minute to get used to the vast amount of family members to track, but each had their own personalities, so it became easier soon. The family itself was written well as they were close, yet they still had their disagreements, which made them feel very relatable.
As the synopsis states, the story follows Voya as she tries to pass her Calling, the trial every witch must pass to come into their powers. Voya is tasked with killing her first love; however, this seems impossible as she has never been in love before. Things become complicated when she discovers her genetic match through a new program ran by the company NuGene. Her match is Luc, an infuriating character, who also is trans, seems impossible to love. I loved the representation with Luc as it was written in a more natural matter compared to feeling forced. If Voya fails to complete her task, she risks losing her family’s magic forever, so she must choose her path.
The pacing of the story is slow and with the book at over 500 pages, it is a little longer than some other novels in the genre, but it did not feel drawn out. As I completed this via audiobook, it seemed to go by fairly fast plus the narrator did an excellent job. While this initially seemed like a very simple story with Voya deciding what to do with her Calling task, I liked that more subplots were introduced that were weaved together with the main one. There were small pieces here and there that helped to create a nice complex story and it will be interesting to see what the sequel brings. Overall, this was an enjoyable story and introduction to the series, and I cannot wait to try the sequel!
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