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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic new thriller series
Olivia Taylor Jones is living the perfect life. Engaged to the perfect man, heir to a department store fortune and contemplating going back to college, little does she know all that can change in an instant. When journalists uncover her heritage, Olivia not only learns she is adopted but she is the daughter of notorious serial killers, Todd and Pamela Larsen. Fleeing from...
Published 13 months ago by Curiosity Killed The Bookworm

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tepid Start
I am slightly disappointed by this book. I've read a lot of Kelley Armstrong and really enjoyed it but not this book. I kept waiting for something to happen but it did not. I will give the next book in the series another chance, hopefully things will get better.
Published 12 months ago by Robinl15


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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic new thriller series, 21 Aug 2013
By 
Curiosity Killed The Bookworm (Dorset, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Omens (The Cainsville Trilogy) (Hardcover)
Olivia Taylor Jones is living the perfect life. Engaged to the perfect man, heir to a department store fortune and contemplating going back to college, little does she know all that can change in an instant. When journalists uncover her heritage, Olivia not only learns she is adopted but she is the daughter of notorious serial killers, Todd and Pamela Larsen. Fleeing from the press and desperate to live without hand-outs from her adoptive family, Olivia soon finds herself in the isolated town of Cainsville. A town where outsiders aren't welcome...but maybe Olivia is.

I know, we're all a little sad after the end of The Women of the Otherworld series but Kelley Armstrong knows how to make everything better. Omens marks the start of a great new supernatural thriller series and I have to say I loved every minute of it. There's really only a hint at the otherworldly in this opening instalment, but something's definitely odd about Cainsville and Olivia's talent for spotting omens treads along the line of explainable. There are so many bizarre and conflicting superstitions out there, I loved this take on them (also handy for weather forecasting).

It starts off a little like a glossy chick-lit story, until the news breaks and Olivia basically goes on the run from the press. She has nothing to be ashamed of but they are looking for every reason to compare her to her parents. Socialite turned sociopath would be the perfect headline. Olivia starts to doubt herself, pondering nature over nurture and shunning the people from her old life. So she must find out as much as she can about her biological parents; just so she can know the truth. Whether guilty or innocent, she wants to know what her genes are capable of and unlock the dormant memories she always thought were just dreams.

Whilst Gabriel Walsh is nothing like Lucas Cortez, it's interesting that there's another lawyer as a main character. A lawyer who is instinctively disliked by Olivia but manages to prove his worth, whatever his motives. I loved that he was described as having weird eyes but that made him creepy. How often in books do the characters swoon over the unique eye colouring of someone that we know would really be unnerving in real life?

It's a real page turner, with loads of elements that all weave together perfectly. Intrigue, conspiracies, betrayal and curtain twitching neighbours. I am excited to see where this series goes.

Review copy provided by publisher.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great start to a new series, 21 Aug 2013
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Olivia is an only child heiress to a retail fortune. A society brat who is expected to be nothing more than a philanthropist and a pretty trophy wife to her future husband. That's fine and she is already halfway there, engaged to a charismatic future senator, but Olivia feels stifled and doesn't fit it. If she is honest with herself she would rather get a job and find out about what it feels like to actually earn the money she spends. It turns out that she won't have to wait long to find out what that's like. Olivia is revealed to be adopted and her biological parents are notorious serial killers. Unable to cope with the media and the cold attitude of her family Olivia runs away trying to hide and find answers. What she doesn't realise is she is unwittingly being guided to mysterious town called Cainsville - and they've been expecting her. There is something strange about the town and its inhabitants but Olivia isn't sure what exactly. Along with the help of her real mothers former lawyer Gabriel, Olivia sets out to either prove or disprove her parents innocence. She soon becomes entangled in an investigation that is a lot more dangerous that it seems and if the omens are right, she could find the end of her new life much quicker than she wanted to.

I am very biased when it comes to Kelley Armstrong as she has always been a favourite author of mine so I was extremely excited to start reading the Cainsville series. Olivia is a likeable enough character. Thankfully Kelley spared us from any whining about how tough life into be rich and instead gave a character that even though she wasn't too happy in her life, knew she was extremely fortunate and therefore did not bitch and moan about how difficult it was to have money. If that had been the case I wouldn't have liked the character at all. As it was I took a while to warm to her but ended up thinking she was a great lead that has a bit of something missing and I'm still not quite sure what that something is. The story was fast paced and I couldn't put it down even at 3am. It starts off with action and throws you right into the plot rather than building up to it which was great. As a first book in a series you are introduced to Cainsville but nothing is really explained about the creepy goings on. Told in first person you only know what Olivia does and therefore you are only going to find out along with her. The only other insight is the few odd chapters told from a Cainsville residents point of view which I really enjoyed and gave you one or two hints more than Olivia that something is really weird in that place. A really good set up for the future books. Cainsville itself almost seems like a character in its own right. The supernatural element is being introduced very slowly and it is leaving me on tenterhooks for the next one.

I really liked the mystery and crime solving element of the book. A great read that was very different to the otherworld or Nadia Stafford series and to me that makes it even better. Kelley is still one of my favourite authors and this was a great story so well worth a read.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you Kelley for this new trilogy!, 27 Aug 2013
I have read some of Kelley's previous books mainly from the Otherworld series, which I enjoyed, but I must admit not as much as this one!

I really enjoyed Omens by Kelley Armstrong as it was a real page turner with lots of mystery and intrigue, with a very different storyline and style of writing from the "Otherworld" series but in a good way. Even from the first incident in the book regarding a little girl my heart was racing trying to understand what was happening to her.

I liked both of the main characters and how you were able to get a real feeling for their background, which were both very different. They were both very believable.

Olivia's "visions" were a little difficult to understand at the start, but soon became natural to the book, unlike the Ravens - still questions remain unanswered for me - which leads me nicely onto I am really looking forward to reading the next book of the trilogy, where I am sure the answers will be revealed.

Thank you Kelley for this new trilogy!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant new series, 21 Aug 2013
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If you loved the Otherworld books with their complex, fully realised characters and world, you will love this. It has similar features, admittedly - a heroine who is strong, smart, and self-directed, a guy with a complex past who may turn out to be more than an investigative partner, and a mystery they set out to solve - but the difference lies in a setup for a new and intriguing supernatural element that is only just unfurling in this book and which suggests so many different possibilities you will be dying to keep reading. Once the story hits the town of Cainsville, it takes on this whole other fascinating layer which sets it apart from your standard paranormal mystery/romance fare, and I hope this promise is followed through in the next book (soon!). I love how real and flawed her characters are, and the author has a knack for building mysteries and suspense, but for me, I just long to spend more time in Cainsville and find out what its secrets are!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Cainesville? Not sure I'd like to visit..., 19 Sep 2014
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But it's an interesting place. This book is set out much better than most in this genre. It has a certain believability to it with the way Eden/Olivia questions everything she 'sees' as if she knows there is something more to it but can't quite believe it because 'normal' society has programmed her know better. Yet at the same time the things she 'sees' are proving quite accurate. She constantly questions if the things she sees are as a response to something she has noticed subconsciously or something other. It's quite clever and well delivered.

Eden/Olivia and Gabriel are developing into well rounded if slightly flawed people who I like for the most part. Although I'm a little unsure of some of there less than ethical behaviour. One event in particular I didn't agree with. Yet at the same time these flaws mark them as human. The other characters are slowly developing also but I have yet to form opinions on them.

I can't yet work out much of what's happening in Cainsville but I have strong suspicions about other areas, particularly the medical records. Suspicions that I can't elaborate on without spoilers. I am fairly certain of what is happening and unfortunately not particularly pleased with the direction it appears to be heading. I hope I'm proved wrong though.

So far I've liked what I have read and can recommend this series. Although I much prefer the 'Women of the Otherworld' series though and would suggest that if you haven't read Kelley Armstrong before then you should start there.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Different but not in a bad way, 11 Jan 2014
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As an avid reader of the Otherworld series I picked this up a little... tentatively... shall we say? And whilst I wasn't blown away by it, I was most certainly intrigued.

It's great to have another strong female character in Olivia/Eden and a broken, reluctant - almost anti-hero in Gabriel. The fringe characters such as Rose and Patrick have me drumming my fingers and making a lot of "Hmmmmmmm!" noises. I want to know more about the elders, the gargoyles, the hounds... Yes. All in all the scene setting for the next two books was nicely done and I'll be pre-ordering the next one.

I've purposely keep any actual details vague as, to me personally, there is nothing worse than reading a review that tells you the entire plot, ruins the ending and makes reading the actual book pointless. Instead I'll say that I wouldn't hesitate to recommend it to Otherworld fans just be prepared for something different.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tepid Start, 25 Sep 2013
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I am slightly disappointed by this book. I've read a lot of Kelley Armstrong and really enjoyed it but not this book. I kept waiting for something to happen but it did not. I will give the next book in the series another chance, hopefully things will get better.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Like a missing link, 16 Sep 2013
This review is from: Omens (Paperback)
Cainsville is like a missing link between Kelley Armstrong's Otherworld and Nadia Stafford series: There's a bit of supernatural stuff, but generally it's more about crime. Maybe it's because OMENS is the first in a trilogy, but at times it feels like it goes off on tangents. It also seems a bit long - did we really need all those job-seeking and house-hunting scenes? Perhaps they're included to slow the novel's pace, but they don't feel necessary.

There's a spoilery plot element that I absolutely love - and it's not supernatural. You'll know when you get to it. If we're on the same wavelength ;-) But I will say this: Anita Mosley is the most fascinating character. Her story interests me more than Olivia's, to be honest.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to look up the English translations of these Welsh words...
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5.0 out of 5 stars Worth reading, 23 Aug 2014
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I love Kelley Armstrong, when I pick up her books I can be sure i won't do anything but read until I've finished the story, and I'm always hungry for more. Omens is not an exception. I was a little skeptical with a book not belonging to the otherworld series, as it turned out Armstrong is a secure bet, whether it is adut, YA, supernatural or not. The storyline is complex and intriguing, always keeping you guessing. But the heart of the book are the characters. No heroes or heroins with god complexes and egos to match for Armstrong but people strong and fragile at the same time, struggling with feelings and fears that are utterly human and relatable even in a supernatural setting, wich is just barely visible and hinted at in this first book, that sets the tone and leaves the reader with more question than answers. It is definitely worth reading I could not put it down.
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6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nothing is explained, nothing is revealed - and it's a part one, 8 Mar 2014
By 
DebB (Oxfordshire, England) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Omens (The Cainsville Trilogy) (Hardcover)
Hmmm, I seem to be in a very small group of not-so-positive readers.

I didn't get this - a young woman's life is drastically turned upside down, helped along by some jaw-droppingly shallow behaviour from her significant others. She is forced to flee by a rabid press and maybe, maybe some other manipulation. She ends up in an odd little town, and tries to make sense of what's happened by digging into her past.

All fine and fair, but this is presented as a supernatural book, and apart from,

- a lot of folklore superstitions
- a town with a lot of gargoyles (stone/wood - not live ones)
- some slightly strange characters
- the odd bit of the Welsh language
- lots of vague suggestions that something beyond the normal is happening,

there's was never a point when I thought, "Aha, at last. Finally we have something totally inexplicable that needs a supernatural explanation."

This is a big book at 486 pages in my copy, and I ended no wiser than I was at the beginning.

I disliked the automatic use of guns when in trouble, (but that's the Brit in me), and disliked the sensation throughout that there was a lot I could know but wasn't being told (like our heroine I suppose, but she wasn't expecting anything bizarre or woo-woo, whereas I was), and really disliked getting to the end and realising this was part one. I don't mind part ones as long as they don't leave you thinking, "Yes but what about...." - and this did.

So not for me. In its defence, it's well written, rolls along briskly never flagging, has an engaging heroine and a large cast of supporting characters, many of whom get to give at least a bit of the book from their point of view, and there is an element of mystery about it all, but it's all too vague and drawn out.
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Omens (The Cainsville Trilogy)
Omens (The Cainsville Trilogy) by Kelley Armstrong (Hardcover - 20 Aug 2013)
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