Book Reviews

Review: Blood Like Magic by Liselle Sambury

I could not stop reading Blood Like Magic. With a unique and inventive setting, Blood Like Magic is multi-faceted. It’s a story about family, love, and sacrifice. About ethics, technology, and racism. As I kept reading, it became impossible to stop! Keep reading this book review for my full thoughts!


After years of waiting for her Calling—a trial every witch must pass in order 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.


(Disclaimer: I received this book from the publisher. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)

TW: whipping in the context of slavery, torture, eating disorder, slavery, substance abuse and addiction, mentions of child neglect, police violence

What I loved about Blood Like Magic was the way Sambury is able to interweave fantasy and science fiction. Set in 2049, Sambury not only asks important questions about the ethics of technology, and experimentation, but also a fantasy story of magical families. At the heart of Blood Like Magic is also a story about difficult decisions and examining our future and family’s past. Just for the setting alone, I was entranced by Blood Like Magic. It’s a world with both magic and darkness. With gifts that come at a cost, and sacrifices we may not understand.

Blood Like Magic revolves strongly around family. What mistakes are in our past and how we can move towards the future. It’s a story that grew as I kept reading. At the beginning, I was entranced by the setting – this mixture of magic and technology. But as I kept reading, the themes of family – both the good and the bad – emerges and takes center stage. The crescendo of the plot, the suspense, and the tension only increases as our choices fall around us. Blood Like Magic tells Voya’s story of family and legacy, history and destiny.


Secrets about pieces of the family and sacrifices made. Blood Like Magic examines who we are. The root of our love, identity, and community. If we build our solidarity on sacrifice, cultivate power through fear and evils, the images around us through sanction and disdain. Blood Like Magic is an extremely multi-faceted debut that demands to be read. If you’ve ever had problems making a choice, you have to read this. It delivers a fantastic world premise, strong themes of family, and examinations of choices.

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Find Blood Like Magic on Goodreads, Amazon, Indiebound, & The Book Depository.


Would you rather live in a SF or a fantasy?

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