Welcome back to the blog! Today I’m going to be sharing my thoughts on Blood Like Fate by Liselle Sambury, the sequel to Blood Like Magic which I reviewed last year on my blog! You can check out my thoughts on the first book in this duology can be found here! Feel free to discuss with me your thoughts in the comments! Thanks for taking out the time of your day to read this review!
Without Further Ado, Let’s Get Started!
Book: Blood Like Fate
Author: Liselle Sambury
Published: August 9th 2022 by Margaret K. McElderry Books
Genre: YA Fantasy
Content Warnings: Gun violence, reference to police violence, discussion of and character with an eating disorder, blood/gore/violence, death, substance abuse/addiction, mentions of child neglect, sickness/infection
Voya fights to save her witch community from a terrible future.
Voya Thomas may have passed her Calling to become a full-fledged witch, but the cost was higher than she’d ever imagined.
Her grandmother is gone.
Her cousin hates her.
And her family doesn’t believe that she has what it takes to lead them.
What’s more, Voya can’t let go of her feelings for Luc, sponsor son of the genius billionaire Justin Tremblay—the man that Luc believes Voya killed. Consequently, Luc wants nothing to do with her. Even her own ancestors seem to have lost faith in her. Every day Voya begs for their guidance, but her calls go unanswered.
As Voya struggles to convince everyone—herself included—that she can be a good Matriarch, she has a vision of a terrifying, deadly future. A vision that would spell the end of the Toronto witches. With a newfound sense of purpose, Voya must do whatever it takes to bring her shattered community together and stop what’s coming for them before it’s too late.
Even if it means taking down the boy she loves—who might be the mastermind behind the coming devastation.
After being given the opportunity last year to read Blood Like Magic early and absolutely falling in love with it, I just knew I had to pick up its sequel. Blood like Fate definitely did not disappoint adding a satisfying conclusion to a well-written duology. If you haven’t picked up Blood Like Magic, I would thoroughly encourage you to check out before you jump into this review as there will be spoilers present.
This review contains spoilers for book one
After the shocking cliffhanger ending that we were left with after Blood Like Magic, Voya is now the matriarch of the Thomas Family, even though everyone is not quite on board with it. When Voya uses her gift to glimpse into the future, she sees the death of all witches and her ex-lover at the center of it all. In order to prevent this, Voya decides to bring together the other matriarchs to form a council to prevent the dark future that faces them all.
You might have thought Blood Like Magic has intense, high stakes but Blood Like Fate takes it to another level. With Voya becoming matriarch, this book shows us the consequences of Voya’s decisions in the last book and how difficult things have become since the ending of Blood Like Magic. We constantly see Voya stressed out with her newfound role as matriarch and struggles with the fact that she will never be able to live up to everyone’s expectations. She faces constant disapproval from the various members of her family while still grieving her grandmother’s death.
One of the elements that I praised Blood Like Magic for was its spectacular worldbuilding, and how it was able to seamlessly weave fantastical and science fiction aspects into the story. Blood Like Fate continues to do this by adding more background knowledge about the previous matriarchs and the limits of her own gifts. In the end, Voya discovers that impure or pure magic isn’t stronger than the other but is brought forth by blood and intent.
The themes of family and community present in Blood Like Magic are once again present here and are done absolutely beautifully. While Voya’s family didn’t always agree with her decisions, they stood by her back and were willing to help her by giving feedback. There were many times that I agreed with Voya’s decisions but once someone disagreed with providing a new perspective, it highlighted how Voya wasn’t making reckless decisions but realistic ones from her point of view. The evolution of how their community is defined helped to highlight the importance of coming together, ignoring labels, and supporting all from different walks of life.
While for the most part I thoroughly enjoyed this story, I did have an issue with the pacing. In addressing the consequences Voya faces in book one, certain points got repetitive and were emphasized to the audience far too much. There were many times when suspicious details were brought up and didn’t relate to the story until the very end. While foreshadowing is a great tool to make a story more engaging for the reader, if it is too much it begins to drag down the story which can be seen here.
Blood Like Fate does a fantastic job of wrapping up this duology and by the end, I was left satisfied. All the various character arcs are tied off in a way that progresses their stories in the most logical and fulfilling way. Many stories tend to leave the side characters’ arcs open-ended and we aren’t given a rewarding ending for them even though we spend so much time with them. Sambury took the opportunity to give all her characters the endings they deserved, completely bringing their characters’ arcs to a close.
The twists and turns woven into the story were executed brilliantly and were unexpected, to say the least. Voya’s journey was done in a way that will have readers captivated from page one. The romance takes a backseat in this story, which allows a focus on family and community to take center stage. Blood Like Fate was a captivating story filled with a focus on community, magic, and thrilling stakes.
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