I received this book for free from Free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review."The Cool Aunt" by Ilona Andrews
Genres: Magical Realism
Published by Author on September 14, 2020
Also by this author: Burn For Me, Magic Shifts, Burn for Me, Magic Binds, White Hot, Wildfire, Iron and Magic, Magic Triumphs, Magic Bites , Magic Burns, Magic Strikes , Magic Bleeds, Magic Slays , Gunmetal Magic, "Gerard Demille and Helen Meet", "Diamond Fire", Magic Rises , Magic Breaks, Magic Shifts , Magic Binds , Magic Triumphs, "Sweep with Me", Clean Sweep, Sweep in Peace, "Questing Beast", "A Mere Formality", Blood Heir, "The King of Fire", Blood Heir , Sapphire Flames, "A Misunderstanding", Emerald Blaze, One Fell Sweep, Burn for Me , Sweep of the Blade, White Hot , "Silent Blade", Fated Blades, On the Edge, Bayou Moon, "George and Jack in School"
A free short story, 5.1 in the Hidden Legacy magical realism series (and 2.1 in the Catalina Baylor Trilogy subseries) revolving around the Baylor family. The focus is on Arabella with a side look at Nevada and Connor.
“The Cool Aunt” actually occurs during the end of Emerald Blaze, 5, when Nevada goes into labor. Fortunately, we also get a quickie wrap-up of Emerald Blaze.
Andrews uses first person protagonist point-of-view from Arabella’s perspective. Andrews also uses the start of the story to describe Arabella. It’s so dang funny, if you know that Arabella turns into a terrifying beast, as she assesses her lipstick and worries about which pair of shoes to wear.
I’m not quite sure why Arabella thinks Stephen Jiang will be anywhere. It doesn’t sound like she’s meeting him??
Oh, man, only Andrews . . . We did learn about the baby’s power towards the end in Emerald Blaze, but nothing like what we’re learning in “The Cool Aunt”!
It doesn’t help when Nevada relates what happened when Arabella was born. Eeek. Nor does it help when I read that “six in tactical gear armed with automatic weapons” met them on the hospital’s roof! Then there’s the emergency telekinetic team. Oy.
Part of the story is the action that takes place in the hospital room, lol. I can’t wait to see how Nevada and Connor cope with their newborn son at home!
The pace of the story was average, although I suspect Nevada thought it was danged slow, *more laughter*.
Okay, I enjoyed reading it, discovering the “nasty” surprise towards the end, but I do not enjoy having to wait until 2022 to read Ruby Fever.
Nevada is in labor, but Catalina and Alessandro must do battle in the Pit to protect the world.
Protecting Nevada during birth falls to Arabella . . . and Connor with his telekinetic abilities, the armed men, the halycons, medical personnel, and emergency telekinetic team.
Arabella Baylor is the youngest sister and a beastly Prime. She’s so scary that governments and the military want to imprison her.
Catalina Baylor, a Prime Siren, is the head of House Baylor and the middle sister. Alessandro “Mr Dreamboat” Sagredo is Catalina’s handsome Italian assassin/not-boyfriend.
Nevada Rogan-Baylor, the oldest sister, is giving birth to her and Connor “Mad” Rogan‘s baby. Connor is a Prime Telekinetic with slight empathic powers, a.k.a. the Scourge of Mexico.
Dr Maier is a Prime laborist, who specializes in High Risk Prime Parturition. The power of a halycon is to sooth and calm.
Victoria Tremaine, the Baylors’ evil paternal grandmother, is threatening Nevada and the baby. Trevor is her assistant. Grandfather? Where did he come from? He’s never been mentioned???
The Pit is . . .
. . . a swamp where a monster construct has acquired self-aware intelligence. Stephen Jiang, a Prime Aquakinetic, is one of five investors in the Pit Reclamation Project.
The Cover and Title
The cover, lol, is something of a disaster with a deep gray monster baby with glowing green eyes, hands, and feet in the center standing atop what appears to be a pillar that’s falling apart with barbed wire extending out on the left and right. Yep, there are smoky explosions blowing debris into the brownish-gray to pale gray sky that segues into a green band and then a red lower right corner. The title is at the top with the series information right below it; both are in white.
The title is all about Arabella, “The Cool Aunt”.