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Hidden Legacy #4

Sapphire Flames

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Goodreads Choice Award
Nominee for Best Romance (2019)
In a world where magic is the key to power and wealth, Catalina Baylor is a Prime, the highest rank of magic user, and the Head of her House. Catalina has always been afraid to use her unique powers, but when her friend’s mother and sister are murdered, Catalina risks her reputation and safety to unravel the mystery.

But behind the scenes powerful forces are at work, and one of them is Alessandro Sagredo, the Italian Prime who was once Catalina’s teenage crush. Dangerous and unpredictable, Alessandro’s true motives are unclear, but he’s drawn to Catalina like a moth to a flame.

To help her friend, Catalina must test the limits of her extraordinary powers, but doing so may cost her both her House–and her heart.

359 pages, ebook

First published August 27, 2019

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About the author

Ilona Andrews

111 books29.7k followers
Ilona Andrews is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing team. Ilona is a native-born Russian and Gordon is a former communications sergeant in the U.S. Army. Contrary to popular belief, Gordon was never an intelligence officer with a license to kill, and Ilona was never the mysterious Russian spy who seduced him. They met in college, in English Composition 101, where Ilona got a better grade. (Gordon is still sore about that.)

Gordon and Ilona currently reside in Oregon with their two children, three dogs and a cat. They have co-authored two series, the bestselling urban fantasy of Kate Daniels and romantic urban fantasy of The Edge.

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5 stars
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346 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 2,630 reviews
January 9, 2022
And the moral of this reread is : sorry not sorry but I still think this reads like Rogan & Nevada, The Angtsy YA Edition.

And the other moralssss of this reread are : Alessandro is a giant ass clown of the first order and needs to be taken down approximately 150,000 notches, I want to be Grandma Frida when I grow old up, Bug and Bern need to hook up post haste, if Catalina says "I can't even" one more time I'm unleashing the murderous crustaceans on the whole planet, the Cuddly Beast of Cologne should be the star of this show, and I'm still waiting for the Zeus spin-off series. That is all. For now.

P.S. No, I still haven't read Emerald Blaze. Because I'm Super Extra Brave (SEB™) like that.

[May 2019]

Soooooo, because of my most abhorrent rating for this book, I find my little nefarious self writing this thing from the deepest depths of IA Hell. My life has been naught but excruciating pain courtesy at the vicious hands of the Super Extra Yummy barbarously ruthless Butcher of Merida for the past few weeks, and I would love nothing more than to be relentlessly chastised by him forever and ever and ever and stuff escape from this abyss of agony post haste. It does look excellent not look good for me, yay and stuff unfortunately, so I thought I might as well keep digging my own grave by exposing my shamefully reprehensible thoughts about this story. Here goes and stuff.

So. YES Sapphire Flames is entertaining and fast-paced and full of IA Scrumptiousness, BUT:

It feels like Nevada and Rogan Lite.
There, I said it. As much as it pains me to admit it, there are way too many situations/scenes/pieces of dialogues/whatever in Sapphire Flames that read like carbon copies of situations/scenes/pieces of dialogues/whatever from the first three books in the series. I might not have minded this, had the leads been as charismatic as Nevada and Rogan my beloved husband, but they aren’t, so I did. Catalina comes across as a pale imitation of her sister, and Alessandro’s overbearing arrogance is exasperating. Drinking up Dealing with the Scourge of Mexico’s deliciously smug, 30-something ass is one thing, but having to put with a shallow, barely-out-of-his-teens lad’s self-complacency is something else entirely. Which might perhaps maybe explain why I felt the urge to slap some humility into the dude whenever he made an appearance and stuff.

Yeah, that works, too.

The leads are revoltingly young.
Because yes, I am one of those despicable human crustacean beings who can’t stand don’t like silly new adults very mucho. Granted, Catalina and Alessandro are not that bad compared to other disgustingly juvenile MCs I’ve come across , but they’re still too annoyingly youthful for my taste and stuff.

Also, the whole coming of age business was never my thing (comes with being a despicable crustacean and stuff). Yes, Catalina might maybe perhaps become a seasoned, self-confident badass twenty ten years from now, but right now she’s just a way-too-sweet-and-tender for me, insecure kid who’s learning the ropes, and that’s not something I’m interested in reading about, to be disgustingly honest. (Please feel free to sue me and stuff.)

The romance.
[Please insert pre-emptive shudders here]
Yes, there was romance in Nevada and Rogan’s books, but it was packed with tension, hilarious dialogues, and enough chemistry to blow my Mariana Trench abode (and the murderous troops it is home to) to tiny little nefarious pieces. In Sapphire Flames, the romance-heavy storyline felt just too YA for me. Not to mention it felt off. I just don’t understand what the attraction is. It seems to be nothing more than a teenage crush, complete with Love at First Sight of Doom and Oblivion (LaFSoDaO ™). Yes, I know that most of you People of Despicable Book Taste (PoDBT ™) 💕 lurve 💕 that kind of repulsive stuff , but I don’t, so I don’t.

No Grandma Frida/Augustine hook-up.
This is totally unacceptable. Absolutely outrageous. Completely barbaric. Properly scandalous. And a total rip off, if you ask me. I demand an explanation post haste and stuff.

Okay, now time to add a BUT to my initial BUT (which kinda negates the BUT, if you think about it and stuff). So. No, I am not a fan of this story (as you might maybe perhaps have grasped from the previous paragraphs), BUT:

① It was written by IA, which makes it instantly very much slightly better than 99% of the crap stuff out there. (That’s immutable law of the universe #1, just so you know.) Also: this is one of the bestest, mostest coolest and originalest magic systems that ever was and ever will be and stuff. So QED and stuff.

② It features one of the mostest gloriousest cast of secondary characters in the history of mostest gloriousest cast of secondary characters: Grandma Frida, Leon, Bug, Augustine, Arabella, Runa, Matilda, Zeus, Cornelius and his Super Extra Yummy Menagerie (ZEYM™), Bern…They all deserve their own spin-off, if you ask me. Especially Zeus.

Random yet Delicious IA stuff (RyDIAS™): leaping desiccated corpses who try to rip one’s hair out (yay!), carnifexes, flying scorpion tricks, people being dismembered (woo hoo and stuff), lovely beasts and yummy creatures, vomit muffins, Celia (aka the cutest, friendliest chick ever), and last but not least, chainsaws and shotguns and gladii, oh my!

Nefarious Last Words (NLW™): the most ungrateful, unworthy, undeserving IA fanshrimpgirl I am, and atone for my most repugnant reading taste I shall. For all of eternity and beyond and stuff. Maybe.

P.S. I want to be Prime Venenata when I grow up. You’re welcome.

ARC provided by the Most Awesome Authorlords™ and Avon via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

· Book 1: Burn for Me ★★★★★
· Book 2: White Hot ★★★★★
· Book 3: Wildfire ★★★★★
· Book 3.5: Diamond Fire ★★★★
· Book 5: Emerald Blaze ★★★
· Book 6: Ruby Fever - to be released 2022

[Pre-review nonsense]

Pretty sure I’m going straight to IA Hell for giving this book such an abysmally low rating.

But hey, at least I'll have central heating for all of eternity, so I guess I can't complain.

➽ Full Yeah Yeah Yeah I Know I Read It Very Wrong Indeed But There You Have It and Stuff (YYYIKIRIVWIBTYHIAS™) review to come.

[May 1, 2019]

Chapter 2 is here!!!!

[April 18, 2019]

The complete entire whole first chapter is can be read here in its entire entirety and stuff!!!!

[March 20, 2019]

It's deleted scene time!!

[February 13, 2019]

A cover, new snippet , new webpage, oh my!!

[January 31, 2019]

My my what big shifty lying eyes these are tiny snippet this is!

[January 9, 2019]

Pithivier, anyone? Happy New Year Snippet and stuff!

[December 19, 2018]

And a very snipetty morning to you!!!
“When I got my hands on him, I would pry his mind open like a tin can. And then I would make him do a little dance, record it, and play it for him on a loop after I drained my magic off. Irresistible. I’ll show you irresistible. Just you wait.”

[December 3, 2018]

Time for a new Snippety Snippet!!!!!

[November 19, 2018]

It's Holy Shrimping Snippet (HSS™) time!!!!!!!!!!!! And my future girlfriend (when she grows up a little and gets to be as ancient as I am) Runa the Delicious Magus Venenata is in it!!!! I am not excited at all!!!!!!

[November 7, 2018]

We have a title!!!!!!!!!!!!

[October 23, 2018]

A deleted scene from the book can be read here. I am absolutely not excited about it whatsoever. Of course not. I ain't no slightly immature 13-year-old fangirl on crack, thank you very much. Oh no, not me.


[April 24, 2018]

Coming to a bookstore near you it is. You'll just have to wait a WHOLE BLOODY STINKING YEAR for it, that is all. But hey, we had to wait THREE WHOLE BLOODY STINKING YEARS between Burn for Me and White Hot, so we can totally do this. No biggie and stuff.


Profile Image for Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽.
1,880 reviews22.7k followers
August 25, 2020
2020 quick reread before diving into Emerald Blaze! Review first posted on Fantasy Literature:

Sapphire Flames is the fourth novel in Ilona Andrews‘ HIDDEN LEGACY urban fantasy/romance series, in which powerful magical families control most of society. (Note: You really do have to start at the beginning of this series, with Burn for Me; each book builds on what came before.) Having wrapped up the romance of Nevada Baylor and Connor Rogan in the first three books in this series, Sapphire Flames and the interim novella that precedes it, Diamond Fire, shift the focus of the series to a new main character, Nevada’s younger sister Catalina Baylor, a so-called “siren” with powerful persuasive magic. (By the way, the reasons given for Nevada and Rogan being out of the picture ― out of the country, in fact ― and unavailable to help with the latest life-and-death crisis, are a stretch, but a necessary one for the sake of this novel and the series).

Catalina’s ability to convince others to adore her and cooperate with her every request has always been a heavy burden for her: it’s a brainwashing type of power, and people affected by it love her beyond all reason after a few minutes in her presence, even to the point of wanting to crush her to pieces in an effort to get closer to her. As a result, Catalina was a terribly shy teen who avoided everyone outside of her family, the only ones who are unaffected by her power … aside from, inexplicably, the family doctor.

At the end of Diamond Fire Catalina came to the conclusion that she needed to step out of the shadows, and Nevada’s mother-in-law was happy to help. Sapphire Flames picks up three years later. Catalina is now 21 and the head of House Baylor and their private investigation business. A murder case drops into Catalina’s lap, involving the family of Runa Etterson, the delightful poison mage from Diamond Fire. Runa’s mother and sister have been mysteriously murdered, and Catalina wants to take the case … even though a couple of major players CLEARLY warn her not to get involved (“Sometimes when you search the night, you’ll find monsters in the dark. You’re not ready”). Those warnings, of course, not only fail to deter Catalina, but only make her more determined.

One of those who tries to warn Catalina off is her former teenage crush Alessandro Sagredo, an Italian young man with “Prime” magic: he can nullify others’ magical powers, and also has some particularly interesting if apparently unrelated powers involving weapons. Alessandro has his own interest in the Etterson murder case, and he and Catalina reluctantly (haha) team up when it becomes clear that neither is going to go away. Their investigation leads them to things like assassin firms and crazed people with warped magic. Good times!

It’s fun to see Catalina step up her game … not just a notch or two, but some major leaps forward for our shy young woman. And, holy cow, Alessandro’s character is NOT what I expected given the brief glimpses we had of him in previous depths. Hidden depths, y’all. While their new aspects of their personalities did make the plot much more exciting, both Catalina and Alessandro are now much more standard urban fantasy characters, and less distinguishable from Nevada and Rogan. It’s different magical powers but the same basic formula. Hard to knock what works, though.

On the other hand, Runa Etterson, the poison mage whose family was murdered, has almost the opposite problem: Her ebullient personality was a scene-stealer in Diamond Fire, but in Sapphire Flames she’s a shadow of her former self, ruled by her anger and distress.
Runa’s emotions had clubbed her rational thinking over the head, dumped its body on the side of the road, and took my friend for a joy ride. Just what we needed.
It’s understandable in the circumstances, but I hope we’ll meet up with her again when she’s feeling more herself.

Sapphire Flames is a solid entry in the HIDDEN LEGACY series, with the Andrews’ typically witty banter, imaginative magic, action-driven plot and (let’s not forget) hot romance. I got sucked into it the minute it hit my Kindle and finished it off in one day. It’ll be fun to see what happens next.

ETA: Two fun snippets of deleted scenes from this book, from the Andrews’ blog:
http://www.ilona-andrews.com/a-misund... (Arabella POV story)
http://www.ilona-andrews.com/wcb-day-2/ (Sgt. Munoz scene)
Profile Image for Robin (Bridge Four).
1,606 reviews1,480 followers
October 14, 2020
Sale Alert: Kindle limited time deal 14Oct20 $3.99

Re-read Time Before Emerald Blaze Comes Out.

Gah...it didn't last long enough. I just breezed through this so quickly again. Loved it!!!

❤ ❤ ❤ I LOVED THIS!!! ❤ ❤ ❤


Nevada and Rogan have their new beginning and this book is all Catalina.

I think you need to know that going in. Sure, you get cameo situations from the Dragon and his new wife but they are so far removed from the main focus of this book you shouldn’t read it for that or you will be disappointed.

What you do get:
• 21-year-old Catalina who has grown into her siren powers since we first met her.
• The rest of the Baylor family including crazy grandma Frida, semi-scary Arabella and super funny Leon along with sniper mom and Bern
• BUG! He is hilarious and a bored Bug is a nosey bug.
• Alessandro, he is not who you think he is.
• Linus Duncan and all his power, um WOW.
• Augustine *swoony sigh*
• Crazy crew of deadly assassins
• And much, much more

With all of that there should be something for you and hopefully you won’t miss the Dragon and his new wife that much.

The end of the three-year grace period is coming to an end and House Baylor has had some time to make some contacts and get a little established, but it is a trying time as their immunity is about to expire. On top of that there is a case that falls into Catalina’s lap that everyone tells her not to take, so of course that is the case she is going to take.

This is a wild ride full of surprises. Catalina has been under the tutelage of none other than Mrs. Rogan and she has learned a lot. She might still be the shy girl at heart but she is coming out of her shell and this new case is going to push her to her limits.

The biggest surprise for me is Alessandro. I expected the charming pretty boy and not much more, but the boy has secrets, talents and a vendetta. Add all that in with some very cool powers and I loved what happened when he and Catalina teamed up to take down the bad guys in this.

Linus Duncan, man of mystery has a soft spot for the Baylors. If you’ve read the rest of the series you’ve probably guessed why. I was really surprised to see him play a role in this book and even more surprised by what that role was. Alessandro isn’t afraid to go up against some powerful men in his not courtship of Catalina, even when they act like a grandfather to her.

This is classic Ilona Andrews with humor and danger and that slow burn romance happening. I devoured this book and can’t wait to listen to the audio when it comes out. While I was sad not to see more of Rogan and Nevada I think Catalina and crew carried this book well and I loved the set up for some future books in the series with Catalina at the helm.

Initial ARC Review

I'm not going to say what I had to do to get a copy of this early. It might have involved the sacrifice of a Barbie involving four toenail clippings, herbs, a secret, a promise and copious amounts of bourbon...don't ask.

But, I got it and the Author Lords who shall be named IA have done it again and written something absolutely wonderful that I will read again and again and again.
Profile Image for Heather K (dentist in my spare time).
3,857 reviews5,629 followers
July 15, 2019
Absolutely, positively, you will not be able to put this one down.

Clear your calendars for release day, folks, because Ilona Andrews nails another book in the Hidden Legacy series, and it is just as addictive as the rest!

I'm a superfan of Ilona Andrews, and I've loved each and every book in this series. I was beside myself when I found out that I got an ARC of Sapphire Flames, especially since I was in love with Diamond Fire. Just totally gagged. I tried to wait until closer to release day to read Sapphire Flames, but after a few meh books in a row, I knew I had to crack this one open.

And I didn't go to bed until the very last word, just before 3 am.

The plot? Exhilarating.
The danger? Cranked up to an 11!
The romance? Just getting STARTED.

I loved getting to know Catalina, who is a bad-ass in her own right, and seeing more of the extraordinary Baylor family. I loved getting to know Alessandro, who is SO much more than meets the eye. I loved the pacing, the energy, and the non-stop action. It is a must-read for those who have loved the other books in the series.

The book isn't technically a romance, but those of you who are familiar with Ilona Andrews know how they operate. I know there will be more Hidden Legacy books coming with how this one left off, and I'm WAITING ON THE EDGE OF MY SEAT FOR MORE.

Ilona Andrews can't write fast enough to suit me.

*Copy provided in exchange for an honest review*

Profile Image for Corina.
756 reviews2,127 followers
April 3, 2023
Reading update 2022: It's time for a re-read ♡

4.5 stars

As expected, the author wrote one fantastic first book about Catalina and Alessandro.

The feelings, the action, the humor - Sapphire Flames had it all.

And although Catalina's magic is more defense than offense, the action wasn't missing in the slightest. Catalina grew so much over the last three years, that's how much time went by since Nevada's wedding, and wow there were some pretty interesting changes happening during those years. Catalina really impressed me. I had an inkling that she would turn into a fascinating character, but I had no idea how kick-ass that girl would become. Strong, business savvy, with a spine of steel and not hesitant to make hard choices when needed - Catalina has become a woman not to be messed with. And consequently my kind of heroine.

Alessandro on the other hand was as swoony as I remembered him. Not all was as it seemed. He had some interesting facts hidden behind his too gorgeous for his own good facade - and there is so much more I want to find out about him. He knew how to steamroll Catalina when needed. Supported her without question. Stood by her side without care for his own safety - all in all he was the perfect guy for her. And easily as awesome as Connor “Mad” Rogan, just a tad more realistic - lol. One word - yummilicious!!!

I loved that the world was so familiar to me. The supporting characters were beloved. And their banter and personalities so dear to me. The intricate plots were as fascinating as ever. And a recurring character had me questioning everything I thought I knew.

I can't wait to see how it all will end. I have so many questions.

Overall, I didn't want Sapphire Flame to end. I wanted to read book 2 & 3 immediately. That's how awesome and addicting this story was. And I can guarantee that the next two books will be even more awesome. Because that's just how it goes with an Ilona Andrews series. They pull you in and never let you go.

✵ ✦ ✷ ✫ ✷ ✦ ✧ ✵ ✧ ✵ ✦ ✷ ✫ ✷ ✦ ✧ ✵ ✧ ✵ ✦ ✷ ✫ ✷ ✦ ✧ ✵ ✧ ✵

If you haven't read this series yet, but you love a little magic, fantasy and PNR with your romance - you need to pick up the first trilogy. It's about the older sister - kick ass Nevada and her love interest Connor “Mad” Rogan.

Burn for Me (Hidden Legacy, #1) by Ilona Andrews White Hot (Hidden Legacy, #2) by Ilona Andrews Wildfire (Hidden Legacy, #3) by Ilona Andrews

I received a copy of this book from the publisher for free in exchange for an honest review. My opinions have not been influenced by the publisher or the author.

Profile Image for Em Lost In Books.
871 reviews1,760 followers
August 29, 2019
I didn't know how badly I was missing this world until I read this book. This was a very entertaining book but sadly I kept thinking about Nevada and Rogan. :| Cat was a shadow of Nevada and let's not compare Rogan and Alessandro. Ilona Andrews set very high bar with first trilogy and I think Cat and Alessandro has to work very hard to reach that level.
Profile Image for Melindam.
631 reviews273 followers
March 16, 2023
Sapphire Flames was the ULTIMATE READING EXPERIENCE for a book-lover like me.

I wanted to read it in one go, but kept on putting it aside, because I dreaded the moment it would all end.

Well, eventually it ended, but with WHAT A BANG! A MILLION EXPLODING PERFECT STARS!

I loved it from the first page to the last.

In my review of Book 3, Wildfire, I adopted the Baylors as my literary family and I also mentioned how much further potential there is in the Hidden Legacy Universe.

Ilona and Gordon kept expanding that universe in Books 1-3, adding more layers, depth and intrigue, BUT with Sapphire Flames they upped their game even further.

Influential families (called Houses) with powerful magic rule this alternate world and also control territories in Houston, where our story takes place. There are several kinds of magical abilities (telepaths, telekinetics, empaths, pyro/aquakinetics, truthseekers, etc) and several levels: minor, average, notable, significant & prime. Primes are usually the leaders of their families/houses and also "breed" to have offsprings with even more magic as it means social and economical power: the more you have the more influential you are.
Newly established or "emerging" houses have a 3-year-long grace period when they are protected from the intrigue/attacks of already existing ones. But once the period is over, the gloves are off and the beasts gather for blood.
This period is just coming to an end for the Baylors with 21-year-old Catalina (younger sister to Nevada) at the head.
We see the world of the magical Elite through her eyes: it's seductive, it's glamorous, it's glittering and it's cruel and dangerous as hell. Catalina's (not-so-secret) crush, Alessandro Sagredo, is the perfect embodiment of this world and they get involved in untangling a conspiracy that is beyond their wildest fears.

So, Ilona & Gordon just went and did it again. They pulled me under to this world and I don't want to re-emerge, ever.

There were moments when I went cold (all the atrocities some people are committing) and then hot (OMG, Alessandro & his characterisation is perfect. I love what a dark horse and how morally ambiguous he is!), when I laughed out loud (the always adorable Baylor Family and their antics) and when I was sitting on the edge of my chair with excitement and anticipation.

The Baylor Family dynamics is heart-warming and perfectly imperfect and the sexual chemistry between Catalina and Alessandro is delicious & sizzling. I loved their every scene.

And until the next book comes out ... well.. I'll just start re-reading the whole series again.

A BIG THANK YOU to Ilona & Gordon for writing another breath-taking installment to the Hidden Legacy Series + to Edelweiss/Avon for letting me read it before publication.

And let's not forget my GR Friend Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽ for recommending me the series despite the covers!

ARC provided by the Publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Aisling Zena.
635 reviews461 followers
August 30, 2022

Deleted scene!!!


4.5 stars

Re-read 17/8/21, 7/9/19

This was a delightful addition to the Baylor universe but it wasn't as perfect for me as the first three instalments.

I think the problem here is the transitioning from Nevada to Catalina. Nevada was badass and exceptionally strong in the first three books whereas Catalina avoided all confrontations because of her power. She is a definite badass in the making though. I just felt she was way too caught up on how Alessandro looked at certain points. Too many mentions of how handsome he is. And Alessandro was a bit of an asshole in my opinion. The plot was really intriguing as were all of Linus appearances. Overall I think this book set a good foundation for the next ones.

I have some other minor issues, like the way Nevada quit being Head of the House. I feel like she wouldn't do that to her family but what do I know? She doesn't live in my head, she lives in the authors heads and they know her better that me.. I feel kinda disrespectful saying it but it's the way I feel.

Other than that, I cannot wait to read the next one and see where the authors take Catalina and Linus. I would love a novel/novella with Bern and Runa, and Arabella and Leo and even Grandma Frida.



Proper review to come as soon as I can.

Just want to say I loved the magic and the powers and Catalina. Alessandro is no Mad Rogan but I liked him too. And man do I want Linus to marry Grandma Frida!!!!



Deleted scene!



Deleted scene turned into short story!



Snippet and Cover!



Short snippet!



Short snippets!



Short snippet!!



Deleted Scene from Hidden Legacy 4!!!!!




Catalina and Alessandro!!!!!!!!


Profile Image for Nicole.
731 reviews1,829 followers
January 9, 2023
3.5 stars

You know when you feel like you want to read something but have no energy to try out something “new”? In that sense, I have my comfort series –the Dresden Files- and comfort author. Ilona Andrews. I wasn’t very much okay with the whole spin-offs thing but reading her books is usually a guaranteed enjoyment. And this one was.

After reading the novella –which proved Catalina not to be this annoying-I-can’t-stand type of character- I was looking forward to reading Sapphire Flames. I was wary of Alessandro but arrogant and all, I still found him hot.

If we compare this book to Burn for Me it pales. Extremely. The chemistry between Nevada and Rogan in that book, their interactions, their sexual tension… well, Sapphire Flames is simply a shadow. But let’s not do that because that trilogy is better than most in its genre. If I want to keep comparing the two, I will like this book less and less. So I won’t.

I quite like Catalina, she’s smart and loyal. I always admired how strong their family ties are. However, I hated how besotted with Alessandro she was. Like girl, get a grip on yourself and don’t give me love at first sight bullshit. Ok he’s handsome. IA reminded us of his gorgeous looks way too many times. Nonetheless, I found her reaction toward him way annoying and unrealistic when she “couldn’t think because of how breathtaking he looks like”. That’s what annoyed me the most about her.

As for Alessandro, he was interesting. His powers did not make much sense to me –I hope we’ll have that explained, later on, . Plus the whole thing of two powers… anyway, he was also too egotistical, but I still liked him. I feel though that his interactions with Catalina weren’t enough to create this sparkling chemistry. I needed more of them in this book. Their dialogue was not enough to make me root like crazy t for them. I also still do not understand why they were attracted to each other in the first place. Well, besides his looks. Catalina maybe but Alessandro? Nope.

I feel like the plot in the next two books will be fairly predictable not who’s the culprit wise but more like the turn of events with all the information, we were given in this book.

I also hear them complain about money –same thing for Nevada at first- yet IA always throws crazy amounts of money as expenses they have to pay. And all while Catalina complains about how she will be able to pay them off, we learn that they own not ONE building but buildings. They also have several cars... That is not short on money but more like not as rich as they want to be.

I originally wanted to give it 4 stars but after writing this review I rounded it to 3 because simple things could’ve been improved it. I might have complained a lot but I promise I did enjoy this book! It was fun and I enjoyed the characters very much. I don’t regret reading it at all. I know I’ll be reading the next book as soon as it comes out and I have a feeling it will be better than this one. hopefully by then Catalina will stop mentioning how hot Alessandro is.
Profile Image for Anne.
3,917 reviews69.3k followers
November 25, 2019
3.5 stars

These guys don't write bad stuff. So. It's a good book.
I honestly don't know why I can't rave about this series like everyone else, but it is a really solid romantic urban fantasy.
AND I actually like Catalina more than her sister, Nevada. Which, might be weird because a few of my friends were saying she's not as badass as Nevada, but I didn't get that vibe at all. She's got a pretty cool power what with the making everyone love her (to death), and I like that she has to be careful of the way she uses it.


Alessandro has an awesome power, as well. Whateverthehellitis?
At any rate, it looks like they'll make a good team in the future.
So, in case you were wondering, there's NO happily ever after for the lovebirds just yet. I think (correct me if I'm wrong) we've got at least 2 more books with these two as the main characters?
And THEN...


Except not really because then we've got the littlest sister and maybe a few cousins, right?
Anyway, this isn't like Kate Daniels, and my excitement level is nowhere near what it was for that series. <--which is fine. They wouldn't be my favorite books if everything else in the world was just as good.
On the upside, I'm warming up to this world a little more every time.
It's good stuff. Intrigue, drama, action, love, & magic.
Recommended for Ilona Andrews fans.
December 27, 2022

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Mad Rogan who?

I have been wanting to read this new trilogy about Nevada's younger sister for years, and when the first book went on sale ages ago, I may have screamed. But then I remembered the agony of reading the original series as they came out, and through a truly Herculean effort of will, I forced myself to wait until I was able to binge the entire trilogy all at once before starting SAPPHIRE FLAMES. Which was agony itself, but also HOO-BOY, after that cliffhanger, boy am I glad I waited.

I've seen some of my friends saying that they preferred the original trilogy but I actually think they're equally good in different ways. Catalina is just as vulnerable as Nevada in her own way, but she has a different set of problems. With siren powers that make people fall in love with her, she's always second-guessing whether people really love her for who she is, or if that's even possible. I think that's something a lot of people with anxiety and impostor syndrome relate to, with or without powers, and Catriona is so sheltered that being the new Head of her House comes at such a draining psychological cost that you can really feel the toll it takes on her, and part of the fun of this book is seeing her grow stronger for it.

And I LOVED Alessandro. I loved that his powers work in opposition to hers and that she has a sort of teenage crush on him that she thinks is unrequited. I loved the juxtaposition of his suave European playboy persona against his cold mercenary one. He's more dapper and dashing than Rogan but no less dangerous, and I think the real difference between them is that Rogan is more of a traditional alpha hero whereas Alessandro skews a little more gamma. They're both wonderful love interests, though, and in both subseries, I think that the authors did a great job creating chemistry and sexual tension.

What to say about the plot without spoiling? Well, as with all books, they end up involved in House turf wars, but unlike previous books, House Baylor is past its probationary period and now they're all sitting ducks. There's a truly terrifying villain in this book and evil monsters that wouldn't be out of place in the Kate Daniels universe. I'm honestly truly shocked that these books haven't been picked up for a TV show, yet. Some Netflix exec working for their acquisitions department must be zonked out at his desk because I can't imagine any other reason why someone would be sleeping on the movie rights for these books. I read most of SAPPHIRE FLAMES with my heart in my throat, and if you're thinking that that pretty dress on the cover probably doesn't even make an appearance, THINK AGAIN.

5 stars
Profile Image for chan ☆.
1,051 reviews48.9k followers
August 5, 2022
rereading so i can read the final book in catalina's trilogy.

i enjoyed this but i think i missed some of the slightly less fast paced moments of nevada's trilogy. i'm also just... confused by alessandro. i don't dislike him or catalina but it's hard to totally love him when the introduction of his character is so bizarre. he shows up with no context, and i get that's part of the plot but it makes it a little confusing when we're expected to trust him for virtually no reason.

if you get easily bored by fantasy romance or think they're too slow paced/the plots are typically shitty you will NOT be disappointed by this series tho.
Profile Image for Bibi.
1,282 reviews3,270 followers
June 4, 2021
Random thoughts:

1. Catalina is Nevada 2.0

2. In the three years since becoming House Baylor, they've remained stagnant. No alliances, no client growth, no financial growth. Just stagnant. Why?

3. The plot is pretty similar to Nevada's except instead of Mad Rogan we get an Italian Count

4. What would happen to the heroines if they didn't have the heroes to save them? I mean Nevada would have died 6 times had Rogan not been there to blast cars away or something. Same with Allessandro and Catalina

5. I would have preferred if this had moved in a different direction. Perhaps a situation that necessitated a forced alliance between the two houses whereby Catalina and Alessandro had to get married asap. I think it would have provided a more robust template and an opportunity for the authors to differentiate Catalina and Nevada

6. I wanted more scenes with the secondary characters. Heck, I would have been happy with a one-page glimpse of Zeus

Profile Image for Holly.
1,430 reviews981 followers
September 2, 2019
3.5 stars

It's almost heresy for me to rate an Ilona Andrews book less than 4 stars, but, well, I liked this but didn't love it. But I DID like it! With strong heroines like Nevada and Kate, Catalina is a tad forgettable. True story: I finished reading this two days ago and had to look up her name just now, so there you go. Anyways, I don't mind 'weaker' heroines but usually they are accompanied by stronger emotional backstories, which Catalina really doesn't have. Throw in some weirdness with how Nevada was kind of written out, plus Alessandro who isn't a compelling love interest (yet), and this makes for a kind of odd spinoff. BUT there's still a lot of potential and I'm still all in! So I would suggest reading this if you're an IA fan, but I wouldn't necessarily rush out to read it. And if you're still new to IA, don't start with this book (you'd have to read the previous three books in this series first).
Profile Image for Sarah.
3,336 reviews1,016 followers
July 12, 2021
1st & 2nd read - April 2019
3rd read - August 2019
4th read - May 2020
5th read - August 2020
6th read - April 2021
7th read - July 2021

If you go into this book looking for more Nevada and Rogan you're going to be disappointed because this is very much the start of Catalina's trilogy and the focus is on her and the rest of the Baylor family. And that's not me trying to be negative or put anyone off reading because I absolutely loved Sapphire Flames and think fans will too, I really love how much Catalina has changed and grown in the three years that have passed since events in Diamond Fire. She's a force to be reckoned with and so is Alessandro, they're definitely going to be a power couple and I'm sure I'll come to love them both as much as I do Nevada and Rogan.

Anyone who knows me should know I'm obsessed with Nevada and particularly Rogan, I'm totally addicted to their books (I've read them all well over 10 times each now!) and yes, I would have been happy to read many, many more books from Nevada's point of view. Having said that I'm still glad that they've been given their HEA and I'm happy that we'll get to see glimpses of it in Catalina's story. I think Ilona Andrews deliberately kept them pretty absent from this book to allow readers to get used to the change in narrators and I think that was the right thing to do. There is a reason for their absence and we do still get small hints of what is going on with them now but this is Catalina's time to shine and she does it brilliantly.

I've already mentioned that it's been almost three years since Nevada's wedding and the formation of House Baylor. Catalina is now head of the house and they're just about to run out of the 3 year grace period where no other houses were allowed to attack them. Their enemies are circling and Catalina has been doing her best to form allies and build their reputation as a house that shouldn't be messed with. It's not easy though and in a lot of ways they're still a little known entity that other more established houses don't really take too seriously. Catalina has spent years training with her magic thanks to help from Rogan's mother and she's grown a lot in confidence in that time too. She's still quite shy and would rather avoid confrontation but at the same time she is very protective of her family and will do whatever it takes to keep them safe, even if it pushes her completely out of her comfort zone.

I don't want to give away too much of the plot of this story but there is plenty of action, hints of more than one future romance and all the humour you'd expect from this series. The Baylor family is as crazy as ever but they're also just as close knit. Nevada was so much older than her sisters and cousins that she had a very different relationship with them than Catalina does so I really enjoyed seeing how Catalina works alongside Arabella, Bern and Leon. All four of them are more grown up now and they're all coming into their own both magically and in a sense of finding their purpose. We may not see much of Nevada and Rogan but other familiar faces are still in full play from Cornelius and Matilda through to Augustine, Bug and Linus Duncan.

Alessandro obviously has a lot of secrets but I'm enjoying the banter between him and Catalina. I love how dorky she can be sometimes and that he finds it so endearing and I really enjoyed learning more about his magic. He has some impressive skills and I think we're only beginning to touch the surface of what both he and Catalina are capable of. Theirs is the kind of slow burn romance that Ilona and Gordon excel at and I can't wait to watch it grow into something explosive. It won't be easy to knock Nevada and Rogan off of my top couple spot but I have a feeling that Catalina and Alessandro may be able to do it!

The only thing even slightly disappointing about this book is that I can't have the rest of the trilogy immediately but even that isn't something I can really complain about as I'll have so much fun rereading the previous books while I wait for the next ones to release. My Hidden Legacy obsession hasn't dialled back even slightly with the change of narrators, in fact if anything it's grown even stronger.

April 2019:

I HAVE AN ARC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I think I'm about to spontaneously combust from the excitement!


In case you missed it there is all kinds of extra info about the new Hidden Legacy series in this Entertainment Weekly interview with Ilona and Gordon. I am so bloody excited about this spin off!

Profile Image for Geri Reads.
1,232 reviews2,038 followers
August 27, 2019

YES, yes, it's everything I expected from the Andrews! Fast-paced, anxiety inducing action, fantastic dialogue, searing chemistry between the two leads, humor, and so much more!

Full review to come closer to the release date!

ARC provided by Avon books via Edelweiss
Profile Image for Phuong ✯.
617 reviews5,068 followers
November 18, 2021
re-read Nov 2021

I still feel exactly the same now as I have when I read Sapphire Flames 2 years ago. Nothing changed, not my feelings, not my ratings, not my thoughts about these characters. 💫


#4 Sapphire Flames – 3.5 stars
#5 Emerald Blaze – currently reading
#6 Ruby Fever – tbr


original review

3.5 Stars
"Follow me," Linus ordered. "And cheer up. We're about to embark on a killing spree accompanied by massive property damage. Try to have fun."

I wasn't too keen on reading Catalina's books, because Nevada was such a badass and I thought everything after Nevada wouldn't be as good. While Catalina was a super likeable characters in book 1-3, she was still too shy and innocent for my liking. But oh boy, I was so wrong. Since Catalina took over as the head of house Baylor, she became such a badass who is smart, ruthless and calculating. What a nice surprise, I love it.

Alessandro is still such a huge mystery to me. His magic, his family, his occupation, his mission, who he wants to kill?! Everything around him is a big question mark! Iloana Andrews is such a tease with the epilogue... you can't give me his POV and then end the book. Arg, that's so unfair! I really hope we get more of his POV in the next book and what is going on his head.

I did not know how much I missed the Baylor family until I reunited with them in Sapphire Flames!!! Gosh, the family dynamics are amazing. Arabella, Leon, Bern, Penelope, Grandma Frida and Bug are the best family and great side characters. It's amazing to see them work together and have each other backs no matter what.

It took me a while to get back into this world, but I'm finally on the Catalina + Alessandro train and can't wait for the book! I hope Nevada and Rogan play a bigger part in the next book too, I was missing them here!
Profile Image for Erin O'Roark.
146 reviews27 followers
September 5, 2019
I have so many mixed feelings right now. I am so excited this series is continuing because I love these characters and the world is far too brilliant to end in a trilogy. But I honestly have no desire to read about Catalina. I want more Nevada and Rogan as they are the main reasons I loved this series. I just don't think I care about three books on Catalina.

Edit after read:

Alright, I won't say I was completely disappointed. Considering I love everything Ilona, I inevitably enjoyed it.

However, I will say it's just...off. The flame I felt between Nevada and Rogan (or even Kate and Curran) is just TOTALLY lacking. Catalina herself is kind of a snooze and I'm not really excited to read three books on her. I hope she's only this way because that's her character now and maybe she will come out of her shell...but right now I just feel like she is SO one dimensional and monotone.

I will regardless always read any of their books but...after the first three masterpieces, I'm just not sure I'm that excited for these. I'd honestly rather read about Arabella.
Profile Image for Jilly.
1,838 reviews6,160 followers
August 27, 2020
I've had this book forever, but forced myself to wait until the next one came out because I heard it ended in that way that makes you insanely craving the next book for a year. I'm tired of pining after next-books! If I love a book, you must give me 30 books to read immediately!!

And, there was no way I wasn't going to love this. It's Ilona Andrews!

This book is about Catalina, a siren, who has a family of mostly magic-users that does investigative work for their profession. She takes a case to find out who killed her friend's mother and sister, but it ends up being something so huge that she is way in over her head.

A little backup?? Please!

Enter the hero!! Alessandro is a guy that we met in the last book of the series. He's supposedly a rich playboy, but we learn he is much more than that. He ends up working with Catalina and sparks are flying everywhere. Not all of these sparks are romantic, though, because there is magical bees and flying scorpion-like monsters also flying around. I hate when that happens.

Alessandro is a good match for Catalina, but I didn't feel it. He won't make my book-boyfriend list like Mad Rogan did. He just feels young. Maybe I am finally allowing my mental age catch up with my physical age because I kinda liked Linus better and he is hella old (meaning, my age). But, he's so blood-thirsty! How could I resist?

“Follow me,” Linus ordered. “And cheer up. We’re about to embark on a killing spree accompanied by massive property damage. Try to have fun.”

Plus, he makes fajitas. That is a sure-fire way to a Texas girl's heart.

So now that my waiting has paid off, I will immediately get to read the next book... Then I'll wait for the next one.
*sigh* yeah. My plan isn't perfect.

Profile Image for Mara.
2,473 reviews232 followers
August 27, 2019
I'm clearly in a small minority of fans that didn't love Sapphire Flames. It's almost painful to give such a low rating to IA, but on the other hand I really, seriously disliked Catalina and Alessandro. Honestly I couldn't stomach her. And I thought he was totally stupid and irritating. And this goes back to my dislike of NA which unfortunately is all that this book is, including all that emphasis on an idiotic baseless teenage crush that is declared love for no reason at all.

And this brings me to the second reason I didn't like SF: the heavy handed approach to 'romance'. In the first trilogy the 'lust makes me totally stupid' thread was minor, you just had a few glimpses of it. Here was heavily present and, moreover, didn't really make any sense.
But then neither did the so called reason for the switch of power in House Baylor. Left me speechless.

So a great plot, absolutely destroyed by the full NA characterization of most of them (minir ones included from their chief of security to the brother of the client). It made a difficult read for me.

Here are some of the reasons why I don't think this is such a good book. It's a long, gif aplenty review by an other fan https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...
I disagree only with the Nevada Roland light point. I know some think that Catalina wasn't strongly differentiated from her sister, but I can't agree with that. I think she's her own woman, well my problem is she is her own *girl*.

So I won't be buying a second copy nor will I read it 4 time like the Nevada trilogy. I'm not sure about book 5 either.
Profile Image for Emma.
972 reviews975 followers
August 25, 2019
4.5 stars...

Like many others, the thought of switching perspectives from Nevada to Catalina held little appeal. It's never easy giving up characters you've been through hard times with, but they're off living the high life somewhere, being all lovely dovey, and we need more drama, battles, and sexual tension. So, enter Catalina Baylor. It's three years later and she's learned some stuff. This is not the girl we've seen before, not even the one in the novella. Here is someone fighting to protect her House from seriously powerful enemies while taking on enough jobs to pay the bills--and stay alive herself. Not only is the result pretty damn good, I personally think these books have the potential to be better than the first trilogy... But maybe that's just my love for Alessandro speaking. Safe to say that he's not what we thought, that's for sure. And their interactions are HOT. Phew.

I read the whole book straight through in a few hours and now have to wait impatiently for what comes next. You know what the Andrews team is like with their damn endings...!!

Give it a try. The surprise will only make it better.

ARC via Edelweiss.
Profile Image for Anna [Bran. San. Stan].
260 reviews80 followers
November 13, 2022
A solid start to the second trilogy! I love cocky, smartass Alessandro and how he is more than meets the eye - and ultimately not that different from Rogan (whom I still terribly missed.)

Both his and Catalina‘s magic are fun to watch and present intriguing new challenges. (I will say I would have appreciated a glossary listing all known magic talents.)

I think it’s safe to say I am an Ilona Andrews addict. 🙈
Profile Image for preoccupiedbybooks.
456 reviews1,021 followers
September 28, 2019
I know the next one isn't out until next year, but I just couldn't help myself! 😂

Full of action, battles, magic, secrets, murder, family, teenaged crushes and friendship!

I really enjoyed Catalina's first book in the trilogy, and she sure had big boots to fill after her sister Nevada's trilogy! It was thrilling and I read it very quickly!

The only thing that bothered me was the way the author's dealt with the hand over from Nevada to Catalina. It felt a bit like a character assassination, and it didn't sit right with me! I felt it was all out of character for Nevada, and like they were disrespectful of her after all she had achieved in her own trilogy. I know they had to write a way for Catalina to become Head of the house, but the way they did it stuck in my throat a little.

Anyway not to end on a bitter note, because I still enjoyed this engaging story a hell of a lot! I'm interested to see where this storyline goes, and am intrigued by Alessandro, although he is far to young for me to view as a love interest ha ha! I loved the Baylor family as usual, with their pranks and banter, and I liked Runa a lot. The secondary characters are a real credit to this series.

And I now I wait.... 2020.... 🙄😭
Profile Image for Carole (Carole's Random Life).
1,717 reviews462 followers
August 28, 2019
This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

There is something special about a new Ilona Andrews book. When I get one in my hands, I feel like a kid a Christmas. That kid has no idea what is under the tree but they know that it is going to be good. And it was good. So very good. This series is one that I treasure so my expectations were really high when I sat down to read this newest installment and every single one of those expectations were met. This story is a gift and I am very glad that the writing pair of Ilona Andrews were able to share it with their fans.

This is the fourth full-length book in the Hidden Legacy series which follows the Baylor family. The first three books were told from Nevada's point of view. Catalina took center stage in the novella, Diamond Fire, and kept the lead in this book. I loved Nevada but I am finding that I really like Catalina as well. Catalina is definitely her own person and often approaches things differently than Nevada might. I really enjoyed seeing this wonderful family from a different perspective.

I loved the characters in this book. I already loved the members of the Baylor family from the earlier books in the series but I always enjoy getting to know them just a little better. I really liked getting to know Catalina in detail. It was fun to see her use her powers and I have a feeling that we are going to get to see them develop quite a bit in future books. Alessandro was a bit of a mystery. I liked the fact that it was really hard to tell whose side he is on but he always seemed to show up exactly when he was needed. The chemistry between Catalina and Alessandro was pretty much off the charts so I am looking forward to seeing how things progress between the pair in future books.

This story was exciting and the mystery was very well done. There is no shortage of action in this story as I have come to expect from the series. The mystery was fairly complex and Catalina was forced to juggle many things while she worked to get to the bottom of things. I really liked that there were a few larger plot points that were left open and I look forward to seeing where things go in future books.

I would highly recommend this book to others. This book was everything that I had hoped that it would be and even just a little bit more. I can't wait to read this one again and again!

I received a digital review copy of this book from Avon Books via NetGalley / Edelweiss.

Initial Thoughts
Amazing! This was the kind of book that you lose sleep over. The kind of book that you really hate to put down. The kind of book that as soon as you finish you want to start reading all over again.

I guess you could say that I liked it :) A lot of things have happened in Baylor family and I really enjoyed seeing Catalina take the lead. She is different than her sister, Nevada, but just as easy to like. There was a lot of action in this one and a few developments that I didn't expect. I can't wait for more!
Profile Image for Rachel  L.
1,825 reviews2,186 followers
August 29, 2019
4 stars!

There’s something so comforting about opening up a new Ilona Andrews novel. It’s like seeing an old friend and falling back into things as if no time has passed by. I will fully admit I was skeptical about Catalina’s book, especially when I didn’t love the prequel novella with her in it. But the Andrews’s duo totally pulled it off and now I am DYING for the next book. This book is everything we loved about all the previous books in the series. Fans will not be disappointed.
If you haven’t read this series, honestly I recommend reading the first 3 books or you may get lost. I don’t consider this a standalone novel

I won my ARC in an Instagram giveaway from Kelly and the Book Boar Thank you Kelly!!

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Profile Image for aarya.
1,247 reviews
May 25, 2020
May 23, 2020:

I live-tweeted a thread here: https://twitter.com/ardentlyaarya/sta...

May 18, 2019:

I hate myself for reading this so fast. The wait for the next book will be just as bad as post-Burn for Me. If you love HL, you’re going to love this. Review to come closer to release date.

I've discussed/written about Hidden Legacy twice:

1) I made a Buzzfeed quiz, "What Magic User Are You From Ilona Andrews’s Hidden Legacy Series?": http://www.ilona-andrews.com/hidden-l...

2) I wrote about Rogan and Nevada's meet-disaster/meet-kidnapping here: https://smartbitchestrashybooks.com/2...

May 31, 2019:

This review will be spoiler-free and it's not really a review, more musings about why Sapphire Flames worked for me.

In case you don't know, I'm a huge, huge fan of the series. I've reread them at least ten times. So I'm not exactly unbiased in my love for this book, but I honestly do love it. I strongly recommend that you don't start here and go back to Burn for Me. While Catalina is a new protagonist and the book does explain the worldbuilding in great detail for a newcomer, I think it's not possible to understand the nuances of the Baylors' current situation or appreciate how much Catalina has grown up from the earlier trilogy.

In no particular order, this is why I love Sapphire Flames:

1) The sense of community that the books provide. The HL books are structured in a way where the author teases speculation and leaves clues for shocking revelations. For example, before reading Sapphire Flames, my friends and I spent endless months debating the following questions:

If we could live in the HL world, what house would we be in and what would our magical power be?

Is [Redacted A] Caesar? [Redacted A] seemed suspiciously friendly in the last book. No, I think it's [Redacted B] because of this quote here...

Will Nevada stay Head of House after she's married to Rogan? Or will she pass the reins to Catalina?

Is [redacted] the illegitimate son of [redacted]?

Is [redacted] the grandfather of the Baylor girls?

You get the idea. I've read the books so many times and have come up with so many conspiracy theories and speculations (some plausible, some less so). The joy of being a Hidden Legacy reader is fangirling over the books (ferret heists! Tank-driving grandmas! Pacifist intellectual bears!) and speculating about future books. I haven't felt this kind of community with other books, and I think it's because the author is clever enough to leave crumbs of tantalizing clues for future revelations.

After reading Sapphire Flames, I'm so freaking excited for everyone else to read it. Because some of our long-awaited questions have been answered... and more questions arise. I'm bursting to squeal and share my new theories with everyone. And honestly, it's why the annual wait for the next book feels so torturous. We're talking about the book constantly and the more I think about the book, the slower time gets. Gah. This book isn't even out yet, and I feel like I'm dying for the sequel (summer 2020, God help me).

2) I'm really impressed with how different the three Baylor girls are. Before reading this book, I was nervous that Catalina would be just like Nevada (whom I love, but I don't want to read about the same type of heroine over and over again). My worries were for nothing. Catalina's voice is completely different than Nevada's voice. Catalina is introverted, pragmatic, and keeps her emotions tightly hidden because she's so vulnerable and scared to trust her heart with anyone. But she's so damn strong inside and willing to do anything for her family. She wants to be loved so badly (and she pines so badly for her teenage crush Alessandro), but she keeps all of those forbidden feelings locked inside because she's so scared of her own power. As a siren, everyone falls in love with her if she isn't careful to shield her magic.

But as different as the Baylor sisters are (and I haven't even gotten into Arabella, my favorite!), they have that core Baylor goodness inside them. They will always help people who come to them for aid, no matter how dire the circumstances. Nevada was never able to resist a client-in-need, and neither can Catalina. It's my favorite thing about the family.

I don't want to go into spoilers, but I was willing to die for Catalina by the end. My murderous, sweet, introverted, brave, and vulnerable Catalina. She easily goes into my list of favorite heroines ever (it's a very long list, I refuse to whittle it down as I love them all). And by the epilogue, I wanted to give her a big, big hug and a large tub of ice cream. She deserves all the happiness in the world and I love her so much.

3) Alessandro. I think I might like Alessandro more than Rogan. He's definitely a very mysterious character and there's lots more that we don't know yet, but his brand of "hot Italian aristocrat playboy with mysterious secrets" appeals to my id. I wanted to both hug and smack him. He inspires a lot of emotion inside of me, and you'll understand why when the book comes out. I am so determined not to spoil anything, gahhhh. This book needs to come out already so I can scream/wail with someone.

LOL. Okay, this wasn't the most helpful of reviews but I do think that all fans of the original trilogy will love this. I tried hard not to spoil anything because it's really hard to talk about this book without spoiling the plot (and I do think that most of it should be discovered while reading).

What I can tell you is this: when you reach the end, you're going to scream and cry because it ends in the worst/most torturous way possible. And then you're going to try to wish a time machine into existence because going forward in time is the only way to get the next book. I really have no idea how I'm going to survive the wait for another year.

Disclaimer: I received a free e-ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Profile Image for Kat.
Author 8 books350 followers
March 31, 2022
I love this series with House Baylor and House Rogan and all the backstabbing mage houses of the world out to kill each other. We’re now at the start of Catalina’s trilogy. Catalina is a siren, and while she’s not quite as much of a badass as sister Nevada, she definitely has the snark thing going on, and the chemistry between her and Alessandro is off the charts. Plus, when she uses her siren abilities, awesome scenes. I really enjoy the way the Ilona Andrews writing team comes up with such cool powers for each of their characters. This book had some truly awesome good and bad guys.

Please excuse typos/name misspellings. Entered on screen reader.
Profile Image for Niki Hawkes - The Obsessive Bookseller.
724 reviews1,202 followers
October 12, 2019
[4.5/5 stars] I’ll take a hundred more Hidden Legacy books, thank you very much. Sapphire Flames was a ton of fun and easily one of my favorite reads of the year.

My favorite thing about it was the main character, Catalina. I really like her. Unlike most of Andrews’ leading ladies, Catalina isn’t inherently a kickass face-everything-head-on type of person. Stepping up to things takes a lot of courage, and watching her face down those fears and be a total badass anyway was inspiring. Not to mention relatable. Then you add in a sweet schoolgirl infatuation with a handsome boy, and I was sold. Awkward heroines always speak to me more, especially when it’s a subtle awkwardness of behavior and thoughts. I can’t wait to see how she develops in future books.

Don’t be swayed by the overly cheesy book covers for this series. It’s a robust story filled with great character dynamics, good world building, and plots with substance. That’s not to say it takes itself too seriously. It has some elements that risk eye-rolls if they were executed any less flawlessly. But these authors always know how to make it work. No matter how silly a plot element seems, I never cringe, I just enjoy the story. They also never cheapen the story and recognize that a slow burn can be really effective, and that’s one of my favorite things about them.

Overall, I’m at the point where a new Ilona Andrews book gets top priority in my TBR. I always know I’m in for a great read, and recently I’ve even given out a few sacred 5 stars to some of them. If their storytelling formula works for you, you’re in for a boatload of fun.

Recommendations: don’t let the covers scare you – these are high-functioning urban fantasies that manage to create depth while still maintaining the fun factor. If you’re a fan of the series and haven’t picked up the 3.5 prequel (Diamond Fire), you’ll totally want to do that before diving into this one. For any who haven’t read these authors yet, they’re my favorite urban fantasy writers and I can’t fangirl enough. The only book I haven’t loved from them is the very first Kate Daniels. Keep reading. It’s worth it!

Via The Obsessive Bookseller at www.NikiHawkes.com

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Stray (Shifters, #1) by Rachel Vincent Moon Called (Mercy Thompson, #1) by Patricia Briggs Minimum Wage Magic (DFZ #1) by Rachel Aaron Dead Witch Walking (The Hollows, #1) by Kim Harrison Hounded (The Iron Druid Chronicles, #1) by Kevin Hearne
Profile Image for Angela (Angel's Guilty Pleasures).
1,547 reviews864 followers
June 12, 2021
I love diving into an Andrews novel. I can always expect to feel a verity of emotions. To be sucked into the story and swept away.

When we start, Sapphire Flames, 3 years have passed since the Baylor family came out as a house. Their safety buffer is coming to an end.

We meet up with Runa who we’ve seen briefly in a another novel. Her mother and sister are found dead and Runa has deiced to hire the Baylor family to find the killer. This case becomes much more complex then expected and Catalina has to face many dangers and choices.

Catalina is now 21, a Prime, and head of the Baylor House since her sister’s nuptials. I enjoyed Catalina and her tack charge attitude. She has to manage a lot in Sapphire Flames. She’s strong, independent, selfless, determined and brave. She handled herself well and proved to be a worthy adversary. We see a significant growth with Catalina from when we first meet her as the shy quiet type to the head of a House.

Alessandro Sagredo swoops in when Catalina finds herself in danger. He appears to be one thing, but he’s something else. He plays the pretty boy, but there are so many layers to him that I cannot wait to peel each one away.

These two have a wonderful back-and-forth banter full of snark and sparks. Although there was a hint of romance, it was not an integral part of the plot. The focus was on solving a crime and putting an end to a network of assassins.

The story moves along quickly. The double-murder mysteries are intriguing and our ending leaves you wondering what will come next. The wording-building is extraordinary and the surprises will shock you. Their is much much more going on then we know.

I was hooked from the first word and couldn’t stop until the end. I can’t wait for the next novel. Sapphire Flames can be read as a standalone in that the Andrews Team provides sufficient background information, but I’d recommend reading the series in order.

Narration: Emily Rankin did a wonderful job. Her voices are comfortable and distinctive. I enjoyed her performance of Bug and Alessandro. I felt for Catalina; because Rankin vividly brings out her emotions and makes you feel for her. I’d recommend the audio.

Rated: 4.5 Stars

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