Somehow in the midst of my many school projects and essays I was finally able to finish a book! Another thing, usually when I review a book I link to various book retailers. However, from now on I'm only going to link to Amazon and WorldCat. If you're unfamiliar with it, WorldCat is the world's largest library catalog and you can put in a book and then your location to find what library nearest you has the book available. Because the only thing better than books is free books. Plus, you get to support your friendly neighborhood library. =)
On to the review!
I had heard of Kelley Armstrong before and seen her books lying around, but never really got around to reading any of them. The only book I did pick up a few years ago was an impulse buy, Waking The Witch that I DNF'd once I figured out it was the 11th in Armstrong's ongoing Otherworld series. Not exactly the best start to reading a series, right? I still haven't gotten around to reading the Otherworld series, but when I saw Omens and the description I was very intrigued. Luckily my local library had it in stock!
Summary from GoodReads: 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.
Review: No lie, at the beginning I thought Olivia was a snob and was unsure whether or not I would like her as the main character of the novel. But as the story progressed I saw that Olivia wasn't so much the poor little rich girl that she initially appeared to be, but instead was more so a character out of place in her own life due to the adoption that was hidden from her.
I loved the tone of this novel, it had such a creepy vibe at times that I barely resisted flipping to the end to find out what happened. Thankfully, I did! The pacing is a bit slow, but I would argue that the story might be better for it - at least for the first novel setting up the series. One of the things that I really enjoyed about the book was the perspective.Omens is told from the first person perspective of Olivia, but in various chapters you get the perspectives of other characters lurking in the shadows or various townspeople and it really enhanced the setting and tone for me. I don't usually read first person, not that I have a preference, I'll read anything as long as it is good. =)
Sometimes in books main characters are relatively static, even when the writer tries to give them hurdles to cross it doesn't effect their personality so much, just their immediate actions. With Omens, you see a definite change in Olivia as she transitions from an apathetic rich girl unsure of her path, and really comes into her own as she begins to realize that she much prefers taking care of herself and the independence that comes with that. I'm really looking forward to the next book in this series, and I would highly recommend it - especially since Halloween is coming up, this is the perfect creepy thriller to pass the holiday with!