Dive in Review: A Matter of Blood

So about two blog posts ago I hosted a cover reveal for a new Steampunk book titled A matter of Blood from Author Lauren H. Salisbury. You can find that cover reveal here.

Here the back cover to remind you what it’s about:

In a city where debts are paid in blood, it takes more than courage to survive.

All his life, Jake Amarel’s talent for mechanical invention has been overshadowed by his family’s ability to control matter with their minds. After an argument with his father compels him to leave for the capital, Jake’s dream of becoming an inventor is finally within reach. But as he’s swept along on a whirlwind of high living and technological marvels, Jake unwittingly enters the city’s darker side, where the slightest misstep could put more than his own life in peril.

Nathan Amarel has the peaceful life he always wanted—working the land on his family’s estate far from the evils they left behind in the capital. But when Jake leaves for the city, Nathan must decide how far he is willing to go to protect the brother he loves.

My review of A Matter of Blood:

On the surface, A Matter of Blood by Lauren H. Salisbury is a steampunk retelling of the parable of the Prodigal Son. But once you start reading it you soon realize that the prodigal son was only a frame work. The real story has much more meat to it.

Jake Amarel is the protagonist and titular prodigal. He leaves home taking his entire inheritance with him only to … well you either know this story or you don’t. This novel goes farther than the short Biblical account. Jake is a much more fleshed out character and his mistakes are much more relatable. His problems are also much worse than too much partying with fake friends.

This is where this novel really stands out. Not in how it retells a well known story but in how it twists the well known story into something deeper and even more meaningful. I admit I did not see that ending coming.

The setting of this story is also more than it’s surface level Steampunkness might imply. Right in the first chapter we are introduced to creatures that are not horses and flying things that are not birds and you realize that this not Earth. Steampunk is after all a subgenre of sci-fi so it fits. But this addition makes it not just an interesting steampunk world (complete with an in-world explanation for why everyone is wearing goggles) but an interesting world in general with so much more to explore and see. I would enjoy reading more in this story world even if it follows different characters.

*I received an advanced copy of this book for the purpose of review. The opinions in this review are my own and are given here willingly and honestly.* 

A matter of blood is available now: https://books2read.com/u/38y1jw

Make sure to follow the Author on Social Media!

Lauren’s handles:

Facebook – @gillascourage

Instagram – @laurenhsalisbury

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