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 fiancé, 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 had read quite a lot of review books in a row and suddenly I just needed to read a book that I knew I would enjoy. Although I had some doubts about Omens I knew it would be good, because I love Kelley her writing style and that can compensate for a lot of things. While Omens was different than I expected I still loved it and after the start which was a bit slow I got totally into it and couldn’t put it down.
For me the book started off a bit slow, I didn’t really knew what to expect yet and at first Olivia wasn’t in cainsville and it just took me a while to get into the story, but when I did I couldn’t put it down. I found myself wishing to read more and more and staying up late to read a few more chapters and finding excuses to just read again and let other things wait for a while. Omens is really addictive and it has the same writing style as Kelleys earlier books and I really love her writing style.
I rally liked Olivia as a main character, she came across as the victim and a bit weak at first, but soon I realized she actually was a strong character. She was smart and I really liked her personality. And then there is Gabriel, there is nothing I love more than a slow building romance. Gabriel is a great love intereset. He seems hard and cold, but I just knew there was more to him and I kept routing for him and Olivia. ofcourse while I wish their romance developed faster I also loved the slow developing pace. The romance isn’t the focus, but I think it’s done perfect and I can’t wait to read the next book and see how their relationship continues.
I did have some problems to remember some of the side characters though. Even though I read the book in a few days I still had trouble remembering who was who sometimes and how they where connected, but this is an issue I have regulary with murder mystery books, because there are so many different suspects and family members, it is difficult to remember them all.
The most important thing to remember when picking up this book is that the focus isn’t on the paranormal. There are paranormal aspects to the story, but in this book it is still a lot that is hinted at and suggested, but it isn’t at the forefront. The mystery aspect is at the forefront and Kelley can write great mystery books that’s for sure. Research and mystery was always a part of the Otherworld series, but here it’s the focus and while I don’t read a lot of mysteries I found myself truly enjoying this book and it even made me wonder why I don’t read more mystery books. I love guessing who is quilty and who ahs done what and trying to uncover secrets.
There is some world building, but most of that focusses on making the town Cainsville come alive. I really liked the small town and it sounds like a lovely town to live in. Kelley did a great job making the Cainsville seem like a real place (yeah I even checked google maps to make sure it wasn’t a real city, just to be sure). There is some world building focussed on dropping supernatural hints and I felt like there is still so much of the story and world that we don’t get.
To conclude: I loved Omens! There was a great story and I really liked the characters and the slow building romance. The beginning was a bit slow, but after that I didn’t want to put it down. Omens was different than I expected with less focus on the paranormal and more on the mystery aspect than I expected, but I still loved it! I actually really liked the mystery aspect and finding the clues alongside Olivia. I am really looking forward to read the rest of this series! The wait for the next book is going to be a long one.
You can add Omens to your to-read list on Goodreads
You can buy Omens here:
– The Bookdepository
Sounds intriguing, I have seen this at the bookstore and wondered what people thought of it. Adding it to the TBR after your review, I love the sound of the mystery and intrigue surrounding it. Great review Lola!
Jeann @ Happy Indulgence
It’s always a compliment to hear someone added a book to their to-read list after reading a review of mine, thanks Jeann! I hope you love it as much as I did, just don’t expect as much paranormal as in Kelley her other books. Have you read Kelley her other books?
This book sounds interesting, and I know that Kelley is a great author even though I haven’t read any books by her yet. The cover is so gorgeous!
I actually like it when a novel is not focused on the paranormal, and if you take the paranormal elements out you still have a great story and great characters. That’s always a plus.
Oana @All Fantasy Worlds
I agree Kelley is a great author, I have read almost all of her books (only still have to read the Nadia Stafford series) and I would definitely recomend you pick up one of her books. I love this cover for this book the most and I am so happy I actually got the book with this cover.
Also while I like paranormal, it’s a plus when the story is great even if you would take those elements out. In this case the paranormal is neatly woven into the story, but it’s really subtly and while it’s an important part it’s not over obvious like most paranormal books.