Witches Steeped in Gold by Ciannon Smart

by Hope Hanson
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Divided by their order. United by their vengeance.

Iraya has spent her life in a cell, but every day brings her closer to freedom—and vengeance.

Jazmyne is the Queen’s daughter, but unlike her sister before her, she has no intention of dying to strengthen her mother’s power.

Sworn enemies, these two witches enter a precarious alliance to take down a mutual threat. But power is intoxicating, revenge is a bloody pursuit, and nothing is certain—except the lengths they will go to win this game.

–from the blurb about Witches Steeped in Gold
5 star review
Rating: 5/5

I first found out about this book last December, and I immediately wanted to read it. The cover is stunning and the blurb sounded so awesome; it was one of my most anticipated releases for this year. After all, I can never say no to a book about witches!

Anyway, I can now happily say that this book did not disappoint; I just loved it so much. Seriously, I have so much to say about how amazing it was. But I’ll try to keep my thoughts organized, I promise.

So, without any further delay, here’s my review for Witches Steeped in Gold!


Firstly, I loved the world-building in this. There were so many different aspects at play, and Smart put so much effort into creating such a detailed world. The Jamaican influences were awesome, and I found myself Googling so many things and learning so much beyond the book itself. The magic system was admittedly a bit confusing at times, but it also felt incredibly real; I felt immersed in it, and I have no complaints.

As for the magical orders and the related politics, I can only say that I was in love. Of course, if you know me, you know I have a weakness for political ploys and complicated plotting, especially in a fantasy setting. So, this was guaranteed to make me fall head over heels in love. I really didn’t stand a chance, especially considering it was witches playing politics. (And, no spoilers, of course, but when the pirates made an entrance? It was done. There was no going back for me. I officially have a new obsession.)

That is to say, I really enjoyed the plot. Flipping back and forth between Iraya and Jazmyne and watching as they tried to out-maneuver one another? Amazing. I loved it. The storyline had so many different twists and turns, and I couldn’t make myself put the book down.

Finally, the characters. I thought they were very well-written. I loved the parallels between Iraya’s and Jazmyne’s struggles with their roles, and of course, I also enjoyed seeing the differences. They both changed a lot over the course of the book, and I enjoyed watching that unfold. But that’s just the praise I have for the main characters. Seriously, I loved pretty much every character in this book. The entire cast was just amazing.

To be fair, looking back on the book from a more objective standpoint, I do think there are some criticisms I could make. But I also got that excited, joyous feeling from this book that only a few books can evoke. I was so invested in the story and I felt so connected to both the world and the characters. So, even though I’ll admit that I could make some criticisms, I won’t, because I don’t want to do anything to ruin that feeling. I loved it, and that’s that.

TL,DR Recommendation

In short, I highly recommend reading this. I absolutely adored it; both the writing itself and the storytelling are incredible, and everything about this magical rollercoaster ride of a book is guaranteed to delight you. Obviously, I loved the intricate plot most of all, but I enjoyed every single aspect of this book. I cannot wait for when the sequel comes out!

If you do choose to read this one, or if you’ve already read it, drop a comment below and let me know your thoughts! I always love to connect about books, but I’d especially love to talk about this one.

Also, if you enjoyed my review for Witches Steeped in Gold, feel free to check out the Book Reviews tab above to see my full collection of reviews.

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