Author: Kelley Armstrong
Series: Cainsville #1
Release Date: August 20th, 2013
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.
Here is a checklist for what I think makes for a super duper awesome book
1. It's original, different from what you usually read. And a bit of creepyness doesn't hurt anyone
2. It has a strong plot
3. Good relationship development
4. Strong lead who knows what their priorities are and doesn't spend the whole time fantasising about the potential love interest while pretending to have a strong dislike for that person
5. If there is a love interest, he/she isn't one dimensional. (In case its a dude, please.. no broody tortured bad boys.)
6. Makes me incredibly hyper (due to it's awesomeness)
I am pretty sure my list could be longer than that but this book hit every single one of those points and more.
I feel like I can finally breathe again. The paranormal genre and I share a love/hate relationship. It's always been hard to dig out the gems in this genre and you always end up being more disappointed than anything else. For the past two months, I just haven't read anything that blew my mind like this book did and it's such a relief because it fills me with hope. Hope that even with all the books out there that fail to do anything for me, there will be some like this one that drive me mad with excitement.
The paranormal concept was so different from what I've read before. Omens. Superstitions. I am not superstitious person so most of the omens were new to me but superstitions have always interested me, so this book was right up my alley. This book doesn't focus too much on the paranormal side though what with the trying to solve a murder case but I am sure we are going to get more about that in the future installments.
The main character Liv made me so happy. She is the kind of female lead all that all the others should look up to and LEARN from. She isn't easily influenced and believes herself more than anybody else. She does have a little pride but that doesn't stop her from asking (or rather using) someone for help.
Gabriel is one of the other main characters and a potential love interest. And let me just say, I AM LOVING THIS GUY! (I was going to say I am loving it but that reminded me of McDonalds and I am kind of hungry right now). He is a sleazy lawyer who is honest. He had a hard childhood which taught him not to care for people. He however, unlike all those other cliches out there, doesn't take it out on the world. For him, everyone is the center of their own universe so he thinks everyone is just as selfish as him. He is a very interesting character to say the least.
As for their relationship, it's really fun to see how they play each other. The sparks are obviously there but not in the tons of sexual tension kind of way, more like the, they complement each other type of way. Neither of them are drooling over the other. They find each other interesting so they 'observe' each other. It's actually really interesting to see how they go from being acquaintances to almost friends.
As for the plot itself. It was one hell of a ride. There are so many things going on, so many questions to be answered. It was very lively.
I honestly believe this is the best Kelley Armstrong book I've read, although Elena and Clayton remain my favorite couple. She has out done herself with this book and I really can not wait to get my next Cainsville fix.