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    REVIEW: The Witch’s Blood by Michele Notaro

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    The Ellwood Chronicles: The Witch’s Blood – Michele Notaro

    I’ve been living with this burden for years, but my secret has finally been revealed and I feel like I can breathe again. I’ve wanted to ask—to beg—for help, but the spell that’s held me captive wouldn’t allow it. With it out in the open, I’m more determined than ever to break the seal from my chest so I can truly be free. 

    But what if my seal has something to do with one of the most feared prophecies of the millennium?

    “A broken seal breaks the fragile hold…” 

    What does that mean? How am I connected? And why do I find myself so deeply drawn to Julius when I know my viramore, my soulmate, is out there somewhere? It’s not fair to either of us for me to lead Jules on, but it seems that my vampire companion is fierce in his determination to help me. 

    The Witch’s Blood is the third book in The Ellwood Chronicles and is a continuation of the overall story as we follow Emrys, Julius, Sebastian, and Ailin on their journey. It contains explicit material and is intended for mature adults 18 years of age and older.

    Recommended Reading Order: 
    The Enchanter’s Flame
    The Witch’s Seal
    The Enchanter’s Soul
    The Witch’s Blood

    That damn long-ass prophesy continues to haunt the Ellwoods. This time, it’s all about Emrys and the seal that cost him everything.

    Em was part of the Ellwoods coven and also Ailin’s ex-boyfriend who, for reasons unknown at that time, betrayed them. Or so, they thought. It was Sebastian who finally shed some light when he saw that there was a seal on the witch’s chest, preventing him from telling Ailin and the coven the truth.

    Reading the books in sequence is the best way to get to know the Ellwoods. I liked how each book build up on the previous one. There are a lot of things going on but it’s not as overwhelming as other urban fantasy books (*side eyes Soulbound*) and it never loses sight of the main thread.

    The series is full of magical creatures up the wazoo, either making it on page or name-dropped. Each creature has its own magic. I do wish we get more details about the magic systems or creature abilities. What we know is that witches have different magical affinities, ex. Ailin has nature magic. Enchanters have their own special magic but what makes it different from witch abilities was not explained.

    The Witch’s Blood is as riveting and magical as the first two books but with more bloodsucking. The romance takes focus but is nicely integrated with the prophesy and the overarching thread. Since this is the third book, the world is already established so there not so much info-dump.

    The book picks up on the aftermath of the ogre battle where the Ellwoods’ nearly lost Seb. Em is now with his friend/lover Julius, a vampire, in coven grounds as they try to recuperate. This is where they, Julius in particular, constantly butted heads with Ailin as they try to find a way to break the seal while trying to keep all the coven members safe.

    The story is presented through four POVs, Emrys, Julius, Ailin and Sebastian. This is very effective in showing the group dynamics and how each character developed as their world descends into chaos.

    Sage Ailin continues to take responsibility for everything because the witch just loves to bear the weight of the world on his shoulders. He is a giant asshole but we all know A’s heart is in the right place because he couldn’t resist bringing home yet another stray. Seb is forever the peacekeeper, defusing the easily triggered A everytime his viramore (soulmate) gets ticked off.

    I was already invested in Em and Jules since the previous books and I’m glad that the author gave them their own story. Emrys is a death witch. He has magical affinity for dead things. I think it’s very apt that his partner is a vampire. It adds an extra kick to their relationship because he could very easily control the undead.

    I love how Jules really shine here. You gotta love his devotion to his witch. The vampire is all about keeping Em safe. Once you read about his past, you will love him even more. Regularly drinking a witch’s blood gives him access to their powers. He could use it anytime he wishes. But would he?

    This is what’s fascinating about Em and Jules’ relationship. There are many nuances to their relationship, much more so than Ailin and Seb. Later, it turned out that they are even more deeply connected.

    A big hug goes to Tobi, Julius’ fledgling. I don’t know why everybody was threatening the guy, he was a cinnamon roll! If A didn’t make him part of his coven, I would have hexed the damn witch. Luckily, A has a soft spot for lost creatures.

    And me, I have a soft spot for the Ellwoods a mile wide. Why can’t those evil creatures leave them alone?

    We’re near the end of the prophesy. Armies gather. War is here. Another horrid monster rises out of some Goddess-forsaken hole. You can bet one of these Ellwoods is going to make the ultimate sacrifice.

    I can’t wait for the final book!!!!


    Review of The Enchanter’s Flame here.
    Review of The Enchanter’s Soul here.

    4 Stars – minor quibbles but I loved it to bits

    Soundtrack: Blood Sings
    Artist: Suzanne Vega