Omens by Kelley Armstrong

April 9th, 2015 kimbacaffeinate Review 71 Comments

9th Apr
Omens by Kelley Armstrong
Omens
by Kelley Armstrong
Series: Cainsville #1
Published by: Penguin
Genres: Urban Fantasy
Source: Purchase
Purchase: Amazon
Goodreads
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

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.

Do you ever let a book sit in your TBR pile and then kick yourself when you finally read it? If you are a book buying, one-click addict like me, I am sure you can relate. Omens by Kelley Armstrong was one such book. I bought it around release and finally picked it up for Take Control. I am so glad that I did. I enjoy Armstrong’s books and Omens the first in her Cainsville series combines mystery and subtle paranormal elements. I was completely hooked from the superstitions to the town of Cainsville.

The tale begins in Chicago where we meet Olivia Taylor Jones; daughter of a wealthy Chicago family, educated and engaged to an up and coming CEO with political ambitions. From her volunteer work to plans to further her Ivy League education, Olivia appears to have it all. That is until all hell breaks loose and in one night she discovers she is adopted and the daughter of notorious serial killers.

The events that follow had me completely enthralled as fate draws Olivia to the town of Cainsville with its Gargoyles and strange townsfolk. Olivia is hiding out from the media, and coming to terms with her past. Aided by Gabriel Walsh, her biological mother’s former attorney she begins to investigate their case. All the while strange occurrences and the town’s unique interest in Olivia hold me spellbound. Ravens,fairy circles, black cats…the town itself becomes a character.

Danger, strange omens and unique characters bring this tale to life. I love old superstitions and Armstrong weaved them in from the popular to the obscure. The more Olivia uncovers, the more she finds she has this uncanny sixth sense and I devoured these elements. The characters are unique and likeable even as I found myself unsure if they are friend or foe. While I closed this book with more questions than answers, I know beyond any doubt I will continue. Olivia is strong, confident and surprising levelheaded despite all that is happening.

While this series is quite different from Armstrong’s previous works, I actually preferred it. The mystery element is at the heart of Omens weaving in murder, the supernatural and secrets. The town of Cainsville is absolutely creeptastic. There is a wrongness about it but I cannot quite place my finger on it.

About Kelley Armstrong

Kelley Armstrong has been telling stories since before she could write. Her earliest written efforts were disastrous. If asked for a story about girls and dolls, hers would invariably feature undead girls and evil dolls, much to her teachers’ dismay. All efforts to make her produce “normal” stories failed. Today, she continues to spin tales of ghosts and demons and werewolves, while safely locked away in her basement writing dungeon. She’s the author of the NYT-bestselling “Women of the Otherworld” paranormal suspense series and “Darkest Powers” young adult urban fantasy trilogy, as well as the Nadia Stafford crime series. Armstrong lives in southwestern Ontario with her husband, kids and far too many pets.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. She's a self-professed Whovian, as well as a Supernatural, and Sherlock Holmes junkie, She enjoys sharing books, tips, recipes and hosting the Sunday Post. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat... Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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71 Responses to “Omens by Kelley Armstrong”

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I have two and look forward to devouring it. Thanks for all your comments while I was on vacation Melliane, it meant a lot to me 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Hmm, I hope you try it Linda. Thanks for all the love while I was on vacation!

  1. Silvia

    I’ve just read a couple of Armstrong’s books, I didn’t know about this one but it sounds quite good. As for the ‘Do you ever let a book sit in your TBR pile and then kick yourself when you finally read it?‘, I think if we’re completely honest we have to admit that we all have that moment once in a while…

    Silvia recently posted: "Bully" by Penelope Douglas
    • kimbacaffeinate

      So true…spoken like a true book addict Silvia. Thanks for commenting while I was away!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Ha..I am so glad it wasn’t just me Kelsey. Thanks for commenting while I was on vacation 🙂

  2. Katherine

    Kelly Armstrong is an author I’ve been wanting to read but I’ve never been quite sure which one to start with. I like that this isn’t quite as paranormal as some of her others. I’ll definitely have to look for this one!

    Katherine recently posted: Still the One - Review
    • kimbacaffeinate

      This is different and the paranormal aspects are shuttle, think more like Hitchcock. Thanks for all of your lovely comments while I was away.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I think you would like this Nick from the characters to the town. Thanks for all of the awesome comments you left while I was away..I appreciate it 🙂

  3. Jenny

    Oh yes, I know the feeling of wanting to kick yourself for not picking something up sooner well Kim! Happens to me all the time because I get so nervous to try books that have a lot of hype, or books like this that are new series starts by favorite authors. So glad this worked well for you, even if you did have more questions than answers in the end:)

    Jenny recently posted: Review: Things We Know by Heart
    • kimbacaffeinate

      I am anxious to begin book two Jenny. Thanks for commenting while I was away..you rock!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      hehe…book addicts we are more alike then we think! Thanks for commenting and sharing my posts while I was on vacation..you are a doll!

  4. Lupdilup

    I got a signed copy before its release (at a signing), but I waited for the audio…LOL
    I enjoyed too, but I think I’d enjoy it more now, back then I expected it be more like her previous work and I wanted more of that. Now I have a different appreciation for stories like this.
    Great review 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      This would be awesome on audio with the right narrator. I really enjoyed it and have book two. Thanks for the love while I was on vacation Loupe!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Ha…me too but the worst is the books I pre-order and let sit! Thanks for all of your lovely comments while I was on vacation, it meant a lot to me 🙂

  5. Laurel-Rain Snow

    I haven’t read this author yet, but the cover and the blurb drew me in…and I like how you described events. I don’t read a lot of paranormal books, but when they are cloaked in family mysteries and dark secrets, I’m in. Thanks for sharing.

    Laurel-Rain Snow recently posted: AUTHOR’S HOME PAGE
    • kimbacaffeinate

      This is subtle so I think it is a good crossover book..nothing to crazy Laurel. Thanks so much for commenting while I was away..it meant a lot to me 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Hello #1 commentor..thank you so much for all of the comments while I was on vacation.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Right..I consumed those books on audio in November and December..love that series. I am liking how different this series is. Thanks for stopping in and commenting while I was away..it truly meant a lot to me 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      LOL, that is why I host Take Control..in hopes of uncovering some of them Grace! Thank you for stopping by while I was away, it meant a lot 🙂

  6. Ramona

    Well, as far as recommendations go, you nailed it with this one, dear friend 🙂 What an intriguing premise! I cannot wait to delve into this one 🙂 Another beautiful review – a pleasure to read.

    Ramona recently posted: Clean Reader Controversy
    • kimbacaffeinate

      Enjoy Ramona..I certainly did. I want to thank you for stopping by so often when I was on vacation, I really appreciate the support!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Yes…no worries on catching up. Thank you for all of the lovely comments while I was away..you simply rock my world 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I like the blend too Sophia..I do this with preorders too! LOL Thanks for all the love you gave my blog while I was away..you made my week!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      This would be awesome with a good narrator Candace. Thanks for popping in while I was away..ya all are so nice 🙂

  7. Bea

    “Do you ever let a book sit in your TBR pile and then kick yourself when you finally read it?” Oh yeah, more than a few times. 😀 I still prefer her WotO books but the Cainsville books are a close second. I am impatiently waiting for book three to release this summer.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I still need to read those Bea..I have only tired her young adult..so they are on my wish. After dipping heavily into UF and Paranormal this felt fresh to me. Thanks for stopping by while I was on vacation..I appreciate it 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      So true Heidi..so true. Thanks for commenting while I was away..you all made me feel loved 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      LOL, I still need to read her Otherworlds and thought I would try audio..or was there a problem with narrators? Thanks for commenting while I was away it meant a lot 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It is, and I love the quirkiness of it all. Thanks for commenting while I was on vacation, it truly meant a lot to me 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It came at the perfect time for me, and I loved the vibe. Thanks Mary!

  8. Tanya

    Omens really left you wanting to grab the next one. I thought it had a really different flavor than the other paranormals I was reading. I’m not sure what to think about Gabriel. I want him to be a good guy, a romantic interest, but I feel like he’s hiding an awful lot.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Oh I agree about Gabriel, I have book two and hope to start it soon!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It’s different Rita, and I liked the subtle paranormal vibe throughout.

  9. Bookworm Brandee

    Nope. I never allow a book to just sit…and then kick myself when I finally get to it and love it. Never. bwahahahahaha Of course, I do that because I’m a fellow addict. 🙂 And I actually have Omens sitting on my shelf. Unread. :/ Of course, now I’m eager to jump into it. Especially if you preferred this to Armstrong’s other work because I LOVE her other work. Great review!

    Bookworm Brandee recently posted: Review ~ Spend the Night Volume 3 ~ Elizabeth Lee
    • kimbacaffeinate

      Yes we addicts share similar traits. I haven’t read her Otherworld books, but her YA..of course those are on my wishlist.

  10. Terri

    I’m constantly kicking myself for leaving books in my TBR pile for too long, so know the feeling! Kelley is one of my favorite authors, so glad to hear you enjoyed this one. She’s never disappointed me, and I love the direction this series is taking! Really looking forward to seeing what happens next!

    Terri recently posted: Review: Carniepunk anthology
    • kimbacaffeinate

      Yay! So glad I am sharing new to you books Blessie!

  11. Lola

    Reading your review made me remember how much I loved this book, I really should read the next book soon as I still haven’t read it. And I love how you mention the Town almost feels like a character, that is a great way to describe it! The supernatural element was lighter then I expected, but I actually enjoyed it that way combined with the mystery. Great review!

    Lola recently posted: Sunday Post #121
  12. Tyler H. Jolley

    Oh man, Kim, this blurb really strikes a nerve for me. My daughter is adopted. But the entire premise of the book is very intriguing. I really like the real life premise mixed with the paranormal elements.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Oh I imagine it would. Thanks for all the comments while i was on vacation!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Yeah I like the cover too Berls I have book two Visions and cannot wait to start!