Rummanah Aasi
 After failing to come into her powers, Voya--a Black witch living in near-future Toronto--is forced to choose between losing her family's magic forever, a heritage steeped in centuries of blood and survival, or murdering her first love, a boy who is supposedly her genetic match.

Review: After reading glowing reviews for Blood Like Magic, I was really excited to pick it up. I really wanted to love it as much as the reviewers did, however, I had a really hard time finishing it. 
  Blood Like Magic has a really intriguing premise. Voya comes from a long family line of witches. When she reaches puberty, she will go through her trial called "The Calling" in which her ancestors will give her a test to perform before disclosing her magic affinity. When Voya fails to complete her first Calling due to indecision, she begs for a second chance. Though her wish is granted, she has a harder trial: she has to destroy her first love or else the lineage of witches ends and her family loses all of their magic. Voya believes her first love is of the romantic kind and is set off to find someone to fall in love with and kill them within the span of a month.
 There are a lot of aspects that I liked about Blood Like Magic. I found Voya to be a likable character. She is a great cook and baker. She loves her family, but her greatest weakness is making a decision for herself. She will passively follow other people's decision but will never put herself first. When Voya gets her second chance at her Calling, she is constantly telling the reader how difficult the decision is and for over 400 pages it becomes tedious, tiring, and it negatively impacts the book's pace. 
 The book's world building is unique in that witches are commonplace and magic and technology work side by side. I just wish that this aspect was fleshed out a bit more or perhaps it took place more in the future than in the near future (2049). There were many times when I forgot the book took place in the future and it took me out of the story.
  I appreciated that the story has a really strong focus on family, history, and Voya's Trinidadian roots. The family is large and they each have distinct personalities, however, there are important issues such as a character that is dealing with an eating disorder or addiction but these issues are only dealt with on a surface level and it made me wonder why mention them at all if they are not addressed. As for the romance aspect of the book, I found it really disappointing. Luc, the love interest, is unlikable and I did not feel any chemistry between him and Voya. Needless to say, I will not be picking up the sequel.

Rating: 2 stars

Words of Caution: There is mention of eating disorders, addiction, and strong violence. Recommended for Grades 9 and up.

If you like this book try: Witches Steeped in Gold by Ciannon Smart
2 Responses
  1. Jen Twimom Says:

    Wow! I love the cover, but after reading your review, I know it's not one for me to try. I get so frustrated with books that mention serious issues as a setting or character flaw, but then don't address the issue and impacts on the characters.

  2. What a shame that this book didn't work for as it's got a good premise.

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