Book Reviews

Alchemiya by Katey Hawthorne

Genre Lesbian / Fantasy / Magic / Erotic Romance
Reviewed by Kym Palmer on 07-April-2021

Book Blurb

Eugenia was born to privilege in the Ratna clan, nobility famed for their alchemical jewel production. Eugenia’s a talented alchemist herself—but the patriarchy insists her less able brother is the heir to the family secrets and property. As if that weren’t insult enough, an accidentally public tryst with another woman means Genie is shunned by polite society altogether.

Enter the gorgeous Lord Oliver Plumtree, scion of one of the oldest alchemical families in Chrysopoeia and master of the foreboding Waldgrave Abbey. But Lord Oliver is actually Olivia, and on the lookout for a wife—one who requires an escape from the same crushing social mores that have forced Olivia to masquerade as her own long-dead brother to keep her family’s estate intact.

Genie and Liv seem a perfect match from the get-go, and things heat up quickly between them. But before they can carry off their marriage of convenience, Waldgrave Abbey reveals more secrets. Jealous Plumtree relatives and Liv’s association with the Secret Society of Alchemiya, rumored to be a dark and sinister arm of the patriarchy, might just ruin Genie and Liv’s chance at their unlikely happily ever after.



First edition published by Loose Id, September 2016.


Book Review

This is a little gem of a novella. Part one of a new series, it introduces the story of Eugenia and Olivia, both members of alchemist families in a world where alchemy means power. Eugenia, as a woman, is not supposed to practice alchemy publicly—it’s a realm reserved for men. Olivia passes as a man, Lord Oliver Plumtree, as a means to prevent her father’s estate from being inherited by a fortune-chasing male cousin.

When Eugenia meets Lord Oliver she finds herself drawn to him, despite her very open lesbian sexual identity. Once she discovers Lord Oliver’s secret identity she agrees to a marriage of convenience to suit both women. The more time they spend together, the less this needs to be a marriage purely of convenience…

Whilst the romance side of this story is wonderful, there is also an underlying mystery involving a secret society and the history of the world the characters inhabit that seems to have been conveniently rewritten to suit its current rulers. Hawthorne introduces the world and its history in bite-size chunks that make it easy to keep up with how the society functions without using overwhelming detail. The secondary characters are good—Eugenia’s sister Rebekah is a naïve little soul, whereas Olivia’s sisters are much more worldly-wise, and that’s a nice contrast. The scheming cousin is suitably awful, as is Eugenia’s brother.

There are some hot sexy scenes between Eugenia and Olivia that totally fit the storyline and occur in all the right places. The most satisfying arc in the book is Eugenia’s, as she starts out as a rather bitter young woman with a chip on her shoulder, and learns the hard way how to treat—and keep—someone who cares about her a great deal.

A very enjoyable read and I already wish book two was available.





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Additional Information

Format ebook
Length Novella, 114 pages
Heat Level
Publication Date 05-October-2018
Price $2.99 ebook
Buy Link