Monday, July 29, 2013

Omens (Cainsville #1) by Kelley Armstrong

Twenty-four-year-old Olivia Taylor Jones has the perfect life. The only daughter of a wealthy, prominent Chicago family, she has an Ivy League education, pursues volunteerism and philanthropy, and is engaged to a handsome young tech firm CEO with political ambitions.

But Olivia’s world is shattered when she learns that she’s adopted. Her real parents? Todd and Pamela Larsen, notorious serial killers serving a life sentence. When the news brings a maelstrom of unwanted publicity to her adopted family and fiancĂ©, Olivia decides to find out the truth about the Larsens.

Olivia ends up in the small town of Cainsville, Illinois, an old and cloistered community that takes a particular interest in both Olivia and her efforts to uncover her birth parents’ past.

Aided by her mother’s former lawyer, Gabriel Walsh, Olivia focuses on the Larsens’ last crime, the one her birth mother swears will prove their innocence. But as she and Gabriel start investigating the case, Olivia finds herself drawing on abilities that have remained hidden since her childhood, gifts that make her both a valuable addition to Cainsville and deeply vulnerable to unknown enemies. Because there are darker secrets behind her new home and powers lurking in the shadows that have their own plans for her.

I was so excited to hear that Kelley started a new series, and this one sounded remarkable.  I dove into it not long after it arrived and only came up for air when I had to.  It's just that fantastic.

With a first book in a series, I knew that there was going to be a lot of world-building.  I expected it and I wasn't disappointed.  From Olivia's posh life to when she has nothing but the clothes on her back to Cainsville, a picturesque town with a lot of secrets, the attention to details by Armstrong bring each scene to life.

There are quite a few characters and not all of them are introduced in Omens.  I'm looking forward to meeting Olivia's birth father, who is currently in prison.  Many characters just cameo'd and their actions didn't make a lot of sense to me, which I'm hoping is revealed in an upcoming installment. I like the premise of Olivia having a talent for Omen's and how she starts to know who she is and come into her own.  But, while Armstrong gave a few answers, by the end, I had more questions.

Page-turning, rich in suspense, impeccable character development and amazing world building, I couldn't get enough.  I need more and I fear it will be a long wait for the next one! While I couldn't stand Gabriel at first, the lawyer helping Olivia find out what really happened to the murders her birth parents were accused of, by the end, I found him charming, yet dangerous.  I can't wait to see what those two get into next! Highly recommend!

*I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.

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