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Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite
Born of Fire by A.L. Knorr is the second book in The Elemental Origins series. Saxony is spending her summer in Venice where she'll be working as an au pair to two little boys. When she arrives, she's surprised to meet the youngest boy, Isaia, who is clearly ill and doesn't speak. The two create an unexpected bond which only grows. As do his symptoms which his mother doesn't seem to find strange. During an outing, Saxony and Isaia stumble upon a break-in and a fire which puts them in the path of danger, creating the perfect circumstances for her to receive an unexpected gift. Her summer takes a turn when she catches the attention of two handsome Italian men and a powerful crime family who have plans for her new found abilities.
Saxony's opportunity of a lifetime takes several twists from a bond with a sick boy to catching the attention of a dangerous family. A.L. Knorr continues to explore the origins of the various elements. This time Knorr focuses on the element of fire, featuring a stunning location and a twist with a mafia family. Isaia is the biggest connection Saxony makes, forming a strong bond. Isaia is seen more than his brother who barely has any scenes. The focus is on the bond between Saxony and Isaia which is a catalyst for major events in the story. Their scenes together show her softer side. She's strong willed and feisty generally but as an au pair her protective instincts and kind nature are explored. Knorr never sways from the heart which often has Isaia and their bond at the center. He's a sweet character, completely capturing the innocence of a child. She also befriends Isaia's mother who helps guide her through a surprising change in her life.
Knorr weaves in plenty of mystery as Saxony works to figure out the source of her newfound abilities and why a crime family is interested in her. As the mystery unfolds, her love life also comes with a few surprises with some romantic moments and plenty of dangerous ones. The sweeter moments give a lightness and flirty quality to the story while also giving way to another danger she doesn't expect. She becomes a hero she didn't know she could be and it's clear this is just her origin story, with plenty more to come. Born of Fire is another exciting journey in the Elemental Origins series with more secrets revealed, a fiery lead, a stunning setting, and a crime family twist.