I am in a rare form this morning. I used common instead of come on in a professional email. And then, after Pam Jaffee, our Harper Collins publicist, emailed this review, I accidentally replied Dear Pam to a reader instead of using her full name and had to apologize. It will be this kind of day.
But I have a great review to share.
EMERALD BLAZE [STARRED REVIEW!]
Author: Ilona Andrews
Review Issue Date: July 15, 2020
Online Publish Date: July 1, 2020
Price ( Hardcover ): $27.99
Publication Date: August 25, 2020
ISBN ( Hardcover ): 978-0-06-303547-8
Two powerful magic users forge an uneasy alliance while investigating a murder.
Catalina Baylor is no stranger to duty and responsibility, as we learned in Andrews’ first book about her, Sapphire Flames (2019). Even though she’s in her early 20s, she’s the capable manager of her family’s investigation business, the powerful head of her family’s emerging magical house, and the covert Deputy Warden for the state of Texas. After Catalina is attacked by a series of magically fueled monsters that crawled out of a nearby swamp, her boss, Linus Duncan, the Deputy of Texas, assigns her to investigate the murder of Felix Morton. The dangerous monsters she encountered are connected to the work Felix and a consortium of powerful houses were doing to reclaim a dangerous magic-rich swamp on prime Houston real estate. Catalina has no doubt she’s up to the task of investigating the murder; however, she’s furious when Linus insists she accept the protection of Alessandro Sagredo, a powerful assassin and the only man Catalina has ever loved. They worked together on a previous case, but she was humiliated and depressed when he left her just as she was about to reveal her feelings for him. This time, she’s determined to find the murderer without damaging her heart. Catalina and Alessandro’s discovery of an unsettling, sentient magical presence living in the swamp is frightening not only as an individual enemy, but also for what it reveals about how recklessly humans pursue power. The romance between Catalina and Alessandro is a thrilling match between equals, and both must share their past hurts and reveal their vulnerabilities on the path to love. Andrews has a gift for placing likable characters within complex and interesting mysteries in which small, seemingly inconsequential, clues weave together into a spectacular finish.
A winning romance that will thrill and satisfy fans while leaving them clamoring for the final book in the trilogy.
I am really stressed out for various reasons, and this is so nice. 🙂 I have a happy. Happy has been in short supply lately. I’m going to try to hold on to this feeling for a bit.
Congratulations!! EB is AMAZING, all well deserved ????.
I hope all the happy decides to come your way now!
Vianne Higgins says
Can’t wait to read it in August! Wishing everyone reading this lots more happy in their lives.
+1 ???? May the rest of your day be filled with HAPPY.
H.A.P.P.Y! This makes me happy too!!
So excited to read!!!
Meg Kumar says
Congratulations!! I haven’t read the book yet but I know I’ll love it!! I’m about to start my nth re read of all the hidden legacy books so far to prepare for Emerald Blaze.
Already started 🙂 Have to make sure to get enough sleep in this warmth: almost 30 C for several days… Not unusual here but it is a good reason to keep reading 😀
August cannot come fast enough. Super excited to read this book.
Hee, and we have to wait two more months before we can start caroling in joy like this reviewer is! ::sigh/grin::
Yes, hold on to that feeling, but it’ll be even bigger after release day!
That’s lovely! It makes all of us happy too!
Margret Thordardottir says
Be happy – you and your husband are my favorite writers and I am extremely happy whenever you come out with a new book.
I’m so excited about the new book! I kept myself from re-reading Sapphire Flames, in hopes that I’d have forgotten the details in between reads, but now I get to pull it out and reread it in preparation for Emerald Blaze!
I’m sorry you’re having a rough day. Every time you mention being stressed, I want to send you a picture of my cats.
Oh! And I keep forgetting to mention it, but I read somewhere that dogs get sprayed by skunks more often because they see the upright tail as an invitation to sniff booty, like they do with other dogs.
Congratulations! What a wonderful review.
Wonderful- so glad you have a happy
Congrats!! I so can’t wait for the audio.
Wonderful review! Sorry your day previously hasn’t been stellar, but this is like an oasis in the desert.
Great review! I can’t wait for the book to be out!
I am sorry about your day, I have those sometimes and it’s just no fun. I hope things improve after lunch.
Congratulations! That was a stellar review. Yes, hold on to the happy by all means. The rest of us will patiently wait for August 😉 although Blood Heir is certainly doing its best to create happiness for us.
Congratulations on the excellent review! You deserve the happy, so bask away 🙂
Well-deserved! You should have so many happies.
I got my mom hooked on your books years ago and we had many a lively discussion about them. She was very much looking forward to Emerald Blaze, but sadly she died of covid-19 in April. So I am both counting down the days to August 25 and dreading it because I can’t share my thoughts with her.
I am so, so sorry for your loss.
Patricia Schlorke says
My condolences on your loss. Read the book as a memory of your discussions with your mom. I totally understand the dread. Lots of hugs. 🙂
Marie S says
My thoughts are with you. Such a loss. Release day is going to be very poignant. Hoping you feel your mom laughing and crying with you whilst reading EB.
So very sorry for your loss. May you feel a renewed connection with your mum through EB ????
I’m so sorry about ur mom. When EB comes out, hv a remembrance party, read it to her out loud; I’m sure she’d enjoy it.
What do we, as your most fervent fans need to do to give you more “Happy’s”?
You give us so many, it’s our joy and privilege to return in kind.
Good for you!! And mercury is in retrograde so comm stuff is all over the place, and not in the best way.
Cannot wait to read this book! Come on (common) August! 🙂
You deserve to have more things that will make you happy! What a great starred review, can’t wait to read the book.
I agree! ????
Hooray I cant wait to read it!!
Yesterday was my day. I kept forgetting to clock back in from my breaks and lunch. I know my manager will fix it. And we can prove I was on the phones and not slacking off but I felt bad for making her do extra work. Im going to have to mail her some candy or something
Lynn Stevenson says
Can’t wait for this book
Hold on to your happiness! You and Gordon are amazing writers and your creativity astounds me. Congratulations on an accurate, amazing, well-deserved review!
Melissa Grant says
Is Mercury in retrograde or is there some weird star alignment today? I had a professional call this morning and I had trouble stringing three coherent sentences together.
Hope it gets better for you!
Orlana Curry says
Very excited that this story is coming out. I feel like the Baylor’s are part of my family. Thank you for continuing this series.
Congratulations. I preordered the book when it was first listed. Hope against hope, I kept looking to see if there was a mistake/change in the release date. It hasn’t happened yet, and I know I wouldn’t be a good Beta reader. Among the horde I’ll remain, chomping at my reading bit.
janine orlando says
I know that if I could articulate half as well, I would post that review. Your work is amazing and such a gift to your readers. Hoping your day/week get exponentially better.
What a great review! Every day I see something posted in your blog it gives me a mental boost and I’m so happy to see that someone was able to offer you one today. Really looking forward to reading this in August And thank you for all that you share with us! It keeps me going!
Excellent! Definitely HAPPY worthy. Keep hanging on to that feeling!
July 1? I thought I had to wait until August. Yay!!!
Argh. Read the top incorrectly. What’s the difference between the online date and the publishing date?
I’m glad this review gave you a happy. It feels like those are in fairly short supply these days.
The “online date” is the date Kirkus publishes the review online for their subscribers, and the “publication date” is the date the book is released.
Reviews usually come out one to two months before the book is released, so libraries and bookstores will know to order it.
EMERALD BLAZE itself will be released on August 25.
Hope that clarifies for you ~
I did the same damn thing. Woohoo! Only 8 more days! Wait! August? Waaaaahhh ????????????????????????????
Great review, wish you more happy happy news! I just reread HL, and it is delicious. Can’t wait till August, already pre-ordered it and it can not be there soon enough!
Congrats!! Can’t wait to read it!
Wonderful review but of course I’m not surprised Kirkus likes your books! Looking forward to reading Emerald Blaze.
Hold onto that feeling for all you’ve got. You earned it, and you deserve it. And honestly, you’ve racked up enough for a happiness reserve.
Alison Parker says
You ARE my happy everyday! I drop everything to read your messages. Don’t worry, not an obsession, just really appreciate your sense of humor and writing style. Your views on life are thought provoking and sharing your background provides a look into a world I didn’t really know about.
Basically, thank you!
Tiger Lily says
Already pre-ordered!! It is tough to wait to read it because I know it will be an excellent read.
Congrats on the great review(:
Angela Anderson says
Yay for encouraging reviews! I am so looking forward to reading the book. You guys are so good at character development. I feel like I know each person in your books. They feel like friends. Their individual strengths, weaknesses, flaws and motivations come through so well. To me, your humor is what really makes your books so special. There is such great sly banter and wit between your characters. Thank you for the hours of enjoyment your books have given. I hope your day turns out better than it started!
Suzann Schmid says
Do deserve tons of happys. So glad for you. Happy dance Snoopy style.
Cheryl M says
Hooray for happy and hooray for a great review! May the happy continue for as long as needed.
Sara B. says
Sorry that “happy” is in short supply. I guess that you (plural) know that a big chunk of our (your readers’) happy comes from reading snippets and thoughts from your blog. So thank you for giving us a daily opportunity for “happy”. Wish we could return the favor.
Woohoo! Fantastic review! August can’t come fast enough. Congratulations!
Congratulations I’m always happy when reading what you write.
I completely understand. It’s been one of the worst years ever, and I’m also having one of those days.
I’m finishing up my PhD. Part time work from home limited hours in lab, but they want me graduated NOW. I’m going through my mental list of things to do and by what time. Have to autoclave some liquid to sterilize it. I put it in the autoclave (forget to vent the caps which means they could explode) and try to set it to the correct setting. Doesn’t set. Try again. Doesn’t set. Maybe when I hit start it will change to the correct setting as I have it highlighted, so I hit start. Oh no that’s the wrong setting. So I panic and hit abort. Sign on the autoclave is like DO NOT HIT ABORT this will lock your items in the autoclave for hours and might cause a backup with the drain which will require calling someone out to service the machine. It’s been an hour, and I can’t get my things out. The machine is flashing red lights for error. I had it running for less than a minute. I also just now realized I didn’t vent the bottles so at least I had a 2nd reason to hit abort.
Our lab manager is also the department operations manager. I really hope it doesn’t break and I get my stuff out soon. She scares me.
I’m really looking forward to Emerald Blaze and I’m so happy to see good reviews for it. They are completely deserved.
LOL. Feel the pain of COVID PhD school. I am in grad school also ????. Keep calm and don’t panic. Take a walk everyday and try to enjoy the journey. Hopefully you started a PhD because research was fun.
Speaking of fun…IA have given me my first birthday present of the year! Woot! EB release birthday!
Judy Schultheis says
Great! Only a few days more to wait.
You deserve ALL the happies.
Reminder: I need to buy my dead tree copy at MBTB. (My ebook has been ordered since the link hit Amazon.)
Thank you for all the goodness the two of you send our way. You really are the best!
Congratulations on the review. This is just the first of many ,many great reviews.
Congratulations on your happy. We all need some happy .
Your writing makes me happy.
Woo Hoo! Just makes me excited to read the book!
Woot! That seriously kicks ass. I had to turn down the music I had on in order to take in all the awesomeness as I was reading the review. Congratulations House Andrews!
“Andrews has a gift for placing likable characters within complex and interesting mysteries in which small, seemingly inconsequential, clues weave together into a spectacular finish.”
A quote from the review, but it really rang my bell, this is why I am such a huge fan, and it is a trait I find in all of my favorite authors through many different genres and a kinda long life of reading.
+1 on the feeling from reading the quote
I’m a big believer in finding the happy in every day no matter how small – good for the heart and soul. ????
YAY! Time is creeping. Thanks for snippets! I am re-reading all the House Andrews. So much fun! I love finding things I missed the first 12 reads through because I go so excited I start scanning instead of reading. I can’t stand the suspense!
Yay for a happy! Now I REALLY want to read Emerald Blaze.
I’m happy the book isn’t coming out for little while soI can forget all this TMI!
While I’m thrilled that you got this extremely well deserved review, She should know better than to spill so much of the plot in the review. She could just give the regular sized book blurb and talk about what superb writers you are. Then give new readers a warning to plan when they start reading, like,”Don’t start this book just before going to bed, or just before you have to start supper for your family, etc., because once you start an Ilona Andrews book, you Simply Can’t Put It Down!”
Great review, and I’m glad you have a happy! 🙂
Hold on the happy. We all need happy ????
Congratulations! I’m very excited for the online release date! WOOHOO!
Nancy Weaver says
There is a hardback! Yea! When I went the only gave me an option for a paperback in August.
Donna Hart says
Take all praise like its your birthday! Celebrate every win – yeah you guys!
So happy for you on the review! Congrats! I know we’re all waiting with bated breath for the book tobe released.
Patricia Schlorke says
See, the Kirkus review shows what the BDH already knew along…this book is going to be a great read. Grab that happy and don’t let it go. 😀
Not much longer to go. At least we have the Ryder snippets to read while we wait for Emerald Blaze.
I am so excited to read this book in August.
Marie S says
Congratulations! That’s superb and so well deserved. Hope the happiness gene remains reactivated for a while. Can’t wait for publication date. Feels like it has been on preorder forever… Well, in reality, since it became available. ????
Go House Andrews!
EB is the best book I have read this year. Y’all have the best words put together in the best way!
I’m practically salivating for Emerald Blaze to come out, even to the point where I want to be in August though it means school will be a thing again. I swear I’ve read every book in the series at least four times. Whenever I’m unhappy and don’t have something new to read, which are often coinciding states of mind, I get this irresistible temptation to reread Hidden Legacy and then I think, “I’ve read this so many times! How can I want to read it again? Shouldn’t I read something I haven’t read?” and then I’m like “no” and just read it again, dragging it out as long as possible for the anticipation and happiness. Thank you so much for that. You guys deserve all the good reviews in the world.
Excited to read it, and I am sure I will be looking forward to the third one in the future as well.
Johanna J says
Congrats!! August is getting closer and closer. Big smile here.
You guys deserve ALL the happys!
Congratulations! Been busy here…but I will get to reading Catalina too!
You may be stressed about whether this book is good, but I’m not. Based on very consistent past performance, this book will keep me up till it’s over. I should pen it into my calendar now, so I don’t make plans to talk to people or be useful.
This will probably get me booed but I’ve read Emerald Blaze (sorry folks) and you have nothing to worry about. It’s great. I will further say that, as a librarian, I shoved Magic Bites into a lot of hands and, unlike some of my other choices, I never had anyone complain about your work. Believe your fans when we say that you do good work. 🙂
Congratulations! Kirkus can be a tough nut but they loved EB — and with good reason. So happy for you — I hope you float on happy all day!
Aman Sidhu says
You should bask :), congratulations. It’s well deserved. You’re an amazing team.
Donna A says
If I could send a gif, I would send a gif of happy dancing.
But I know not how.
(I only just noticed today, three years into using WhatsApp, the gif feature – I’m on a roll – gimme 18 months top and I’ll be posting gifs here like crazy)
“IMAGINE A HAPPY DANCING GIF OF YOUR PREFERRED CHOICE” dancey, dancey dance
Only two more months, with Peace Talks, a new Steven Brust, and Mills Vane’s second barbarian novel in between.
A book awaited for YEARS, a fabulous author who doesn’t publish annually, and a new love in between, and it’s Emerald Blaze that I want nownownow.
Don’t get me wrong — the others will DEFINITELY distract me from the nownownow. And there are many other, smaller excitements on my pre-order list.
But I still wish it was August.
Any good review is nice, but a Kirkus Starred Review is excellent!!!! Those aren’t easy to come by. Congratulations.
I forgot when this was coming out, so this was a great reminder. Now I’m super excited for next week!
Wishing you many smiles :). You give me and other readers many smiles and I’m glad you got one back. I’m sure you deserved this review and many more like it 😀
I was lucky and got an ARC of this book. No spoilers…loved it and can’t wait for the next one!
Helen Holck says
I’m so happy for you. You deserve it. I’m sorry happy has been in short supply. You both deserve better
You deserve a happy! We are happy for your happy.
Sheree Ross says
Oscar Robbins says
This is going to be so awesome.
Congratulations on this excellent review!!! Can’t wait to read this one!!
Whoohoo! Congratulations. Can’t wait to read it.
J.Lee Conaway says
That is so wonderful for you. So nice to have a happy to balance the issues from stress. 😀
I do hope you get more happies soon.
I’m glad you got a great review, as, of course, you should! Always good to have a happy moment when not having an overall good time of things.
Congrats! I am so excited for August for book 2. Just finished re-reading book 1. I don’t want to cause you stress by clamoring for book 3 but I know I will pre-order the day it becomes available.
The first KD book I read was Iron & Magic & then Magic Triumphs. (I know). So needless to say I read all the books in the KD series in one giant gulp. Same with the edge series. Same with Nevada’s books. So waiting for the next post, the next book is teaching me patience, which I don’t have. So thanks for that too.
Wishing I could send you a fraction of the happy your writing brings to me.
Rachel W says
I just cannot wait!! It’s going to be so amazing
I can’t wait! I love this series and am rereading the earlier books in advance of this one being published. Great entertainment in difficult times. Thanks for the excellent imaginative escapism!
I’m sending my ???? happy energy now. Poof I hope it helps. Thanks for all House Andrew does for your fans.
I adore all of your work. I’m especially happy to immerse into Ryder’s world.
“Andrews has a gift for placing likable characters within complex and interesting mysteries in which small, seemingly inconsequential, clues weave together into a spectacular finish.”
100% agree. I love reading your work for very much this reason (among others!).
I am so excited for this book!! I stare at my pre-order and will the days to go faster. LOL
Thank you both for giving us such amazing worlds and rich characters to explore them with. ♥️
Stressed is desserts spelled backwards. I suggest chocolate with caramel.
Whoo hooo!!!! This makes me even more excited for the book! You can find me at 12:01 a.m. the day of the release haunting amazon until they release the Kindle version! Wishing everyone especially the authorlords LOTS and LOTS of HAPPY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Karen B says
So happy for your well-deserved great review! Like everyone else in this thread I am salivating for the release of EB! The only thing keeping me hanging on are the wonderful Ryder snippets you bless us with. I scour my emails every day in hopes of another treat – thank you – thank you – thank you!
I loved the first two chapters you posted – amazing! Pam and I were roommates in college and sorority sisters. She’s awesome. And she used to proof read my term papers because I was not known for my proper grammar and punctuation. If only she could edit some of my business emails – auto-correct has sent out some doozies recently! It just makes me happy that You, my favorite authors, work with her. ????
Judi Lynn says
I really hope you can hang onto your happy. Sometimes, it’s really hard. I love your writing.
I can barely wait for the book. It great you had a happy, each one is a treasure.
Adding my congratulations and continuing happiness to you and yours.
Barbara Swanson says
You deserve all the happy, ever (to paraphrase Catalina re. Nevada’s lilacs).
I mostly lurk, but want you to know, I think your writing is superb. I have perhaps 6 writers whom I follow religiously. You are at the top of my list, with Patricia Briggs. I follow no one else, I don’t do blogs anywhere else. Your combination of excellent writing, coupled with truly enjoyable characters; plus tight plot lines that don’t ever just disintegrate, make you all the top of the mountain.
So glad you have a ‘happy’ this far in advance. May many, many more come to you before release day.
The review is pain inducing. As in causing us to want more. NOW!
Looking forward to this ,the review was really good , congrats. ????????????????
It is in hard cover? Were others in the series hardcover? I bought them all as mass market paperbacks. (Now, I want hardcovers for all in the series.)
Cherylanne Farley says
Hooray hooray! Well deserved on so many levels. My heart goes out to you in identical Moody ooky-i-ness. Taking to friend at animal rescue and she mentioned her friends that have goat ranch planning to RENT OUT THEIR GOATS to “make zoom meetings more interesting.” Umm. Well–ok then–wait–how??–err–what–I mean? Sheesh!
yay!! You guys deserve all the happy just for all the happy your books and this blogs bring to many of us! xx
Congratulations !! This is great ! ????????
Take care ~~
Great review – can’t wait to read the book
You deserve a ‘happy’
d lm a says
Life batters you and beats you. Twists your thoughts and misdirects your mind
You got it girl, you got a happy, so its going to be one of those days …. thank you for reaching out and reminding us that chest patting, back rubbing, soul hugging unexpected happy is real and happens.
She got it … the joy, the life, the adventure… even the eeks , yikes, fears, emotional & adventure, that you deliver in your story telling.
I just KNEWI wasn’t ???? cra-cra thinking y’all is all that. You da bomb ????. It’s 6/25 August is only …. ????????????????????????☹️????????????????????????
Mary Peed says
I can’t wait!
Not that I needed a good review to anticipate. I pre-ordered it as soon as it went up.
Ooh, lovely review, so exciting! Hope today gets better!
Kirkus is the toughest book review journal of them all. To get a star from them is nearly impossible. Congratulations!!
Melissa B says
Yes hang onto that happy feeling and put music on to keep it going too. I just listened to Michael Buble’s Crazy Life song. Which got the legs a tapping. ????. Wonderful praise for your book and I’m excited for y’all. Take care!
GREAT review. But the last sentence hit me in the face. Final book?!? NO!!!!!!
This world you have created is so open to so many more plots and plans and things to resolve! I do hope that this “final book” is only the finale to the “Blaze” trilogy. I need more Nevada, Arabella, Penelope, and the entire cast of characters. I need to find out who wants to be Caesar! Every time you write a book on a new subject, I want more and more of them!
Hang onto that happy. There is altogether too little of it in the world this year.
Congrats! I can’t wait to read this. The hidden legacy books have been my comfort reads during the past few months. I’ve been listening to the audiobooks while working and quilting.
Waiting so hard for August! Congrats, this is a great review.
Wow, what a great review. I was already looking forward to the next installment but now I’m super stoked!
Wow, this is so well deserved – a Kirkus started review is a BIG DEAL. You both deserve it .
It makes Emerald Blaze a must buy for every public library with a budget!!!
Now I am stressed out waiting for the book to come out. In tv series I like for the whole series to be out so I can binge watch. In books it’s an inner struggle between binge reading the whole series or reading each book as soon as it comes out.
Congrats, thats a terrific review n no less than you deserve ????. I hope your supply of happy is now overflowing, cos you give us so much of it, n more with every book and snippet. Lovelovelove your work, u cld probably write a bestselling phonebook ????
See, I keep telling you, your stories are amazing. Some of ur books are not my cup of tea, but they are still amazing.
I’m always jealous of people smart enough to be able to “see” in multiple dimensions, as best as I can describe it, and yes, I am jealous of you, Ilona Andrews.
Congratulations! Job well done!
Although I’m loath to hv the summer fly by, I can’t wait for August 25th. Time for another IA party!!
Bill G says
Congrats! I’m looking forward to reading EB and I have to admit that the wait was considerably easier with Ryder.
I thought I was anxious to read the book before the review! I’m ready to go sit on the publishers desk and beg for it NOW!!
I always anticipate the release of anything you write. Keep it coming and you will keep enjoying these great reviews.
These two actors are really beautiful, really like
Angela Sklar says
Cannot wait to read this one !!!!! Love , love, love this series and all the wonderful characters! ! So glad this will not be the last book ! Hope Arabella gets a trilogy too !