They Made Us Blood and Fury, by Ghanian author Cheryl S. Ntumy, is yet another African speculative fiction story that centers powerful female characters. The book was published earlier this year in January and is the first book in Ntumy’s Chronicles of the Countless Clans series. 

The story follows two main characters, Aseye and Kwame, who are descendants from two different clans. The major action of the novel centers around the dissipating “life blood,” a substance made by the Queen and used to fuel everything in the society. With the survival of the clan in jeopardy, the daughters of the Queen called the Diviewe seek to find a way to save the clan.

Ntumy is a Ghanaian writer living in Botswana. Her work has been published on major literary platforms. She was shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize in 2018.

They Made Us Blood and Fury joins novels such as Namina Forna’s The Gilded Ones, Tomi Adeyemi’s Children of Blood and Bone, Jordan Ifueko’s Raybearer, and Nnedi Okorafor’s Who Fears Death—stories that are inspired by West African mythology and that imagine fictional worlds centered on complex and world-shaping female characters. 

Readers who enjoy themes of adventure, science fiction, and a bit of romance will enjoy this book. Ntumy has another science fiction collection titled A Conyza Bennett Story for anyone interested in exploring her work further.

Read the publishers description.

Anyi is the gem of the Countless Clans. Their Queens make lifeblood, a magical substance used for everything from medicine to weapons. Once, Anyi had so much lifeblood that they gave it away. Now their Queen is dying, none of her daughters, the Diviewe, can produce lifeblood and the gods that guide the clan have gone silent.

In the Empire of Ka, Anyi native Aseye dreams of leaving her work at the imperial armory to strike out on her own. Kwame, a spy with a hidden heritage, is a charming distraction. A man of conflicting loyalties, he’s not to be trusted with Aseye’s heart – or her secret, buried so deep that even she doesn’t remember it. A secret that could end her life.

As Anyi’s lifeblood dwindles, the Diviewe beg the Elders to unleash an ancient weapon to save the clan. The Elders refuse. The Diviewe take matters into their own hands. But the weapon is not what they thought it would be, and it’s not the only thing to wake…

Buy They Made Us Blood and Fury: Amazon