I'm somewhat new to Ilona Andrew's writing, and almost all of it has been through audible. I have enjoyed listening to these stories and I really loved the progression of Nevada and Rogan's trilogy. I was really looking forward to this new trilogy, and without looking too deeply into this, this story is fun, light, and well written. It was easy escapism and well narrated. I enjoyed it. But some things did irk me. Like why they're in the same position now as a house as they were three years ago. Why they would allow themselves to employ such ridiculous security that was clearly incompetent (and especially when they're at the three year grace period and know there is a good chance they'll be targeted and killed). Why are they still worrying about money? None have been smart enough/resourceful enough to figure out a way to secure their family? And why would Nevada, someone who apparently loves her family, leave them at their most vulnerable time? She calls maybe two or three times throughout the book to check in. That's it? Maybe if the *spoiler* pregnancy plot-line had been in from the start, and she had to step back to keep her baby safe, because she would be such a target and they couldn't allow that, it would have made more sense? But this doesn't sound like the Nevada we grew to know over the course of thee and a half books. And that part of the story of why she stopped being the head of House Baylor is thrown out at a weird time, the explanation seems more like a plot-hole they noticed and had to quickly fill. It didn't come across as genuine. The fight? The weird obsessive behavior from Nevada? Given all she dealt with (and survived) in the three previous novels, what had her burning out here so much worse? That must have involved even bigger foes than the first three novels, even with the flu. Sounds like a much better story than skimming over it to get to this one.
As for Catalina, I did like her. She's got plenty of growing to do, a backbone to build, and confidence to find. She came across as a teenager for a lot of this book, so I hope she is developed better in the next book. And I hope it doesn't take loving a man to bring any of that out in her. I liked Alessandro, but he did seem to dismiss Catalina a lot. I'd like to see his reaction to her not needing him. And I'd like for them to be more equals. And for the love part? It was super rushed. Like, other than being hot, what was it that Catalina liked? She's worried that she'll accidentally use her ability to trick him into loving her, but she doesn't seem to realize it's her puppy-love/teenage crush that has her attached to him. She never shrugged off those feelings, which should tell her that she can't be in love with him. She knows almost nothing about him. It's all a fantasy in her head that she dreamed up as a young girl. And even then, she loved the superficial, fake version he portrayed. There was barely a blink to adjust to the new hitman version, and it didn't change her "love" for him at all.
The action itself was great, the plot interesting, and the stakes here were high. I did enjoy this book and will definitely be reading the next. Given the delays in the final book, I'm going to try to hold off. I did see online that it was said to be coming out early 2022 so I thought it was a good time to start now. But I have now seen it's looking to be the end of 2022, so I have definitely jumped the gun now. Oh well. I would recommend going into this book without the high expectations of Nevada's trilogy, and with the intention of just having some fun and not thinking too deeply.