Cainsville, Book #5

By Kelley Armstrong

ISBN# 9780345815231

Author’s Website:  http://www.kelleyarmstrong.com/

Brought to you by OBS reviewer Heidi

*Beware of possible spoilers*

This book picks up where the previous installment, Betrayals, left off.  Ricky ended things with Olivia since he felt that Gabriel never had a fair shot at her.  At the beginning of this book Ricky is out of town, giving Gabriel the perfect opportunity to make his move!  And, Gabriel wants to make his move on Liv, but then the unexpected happens.  His mom whom they all thought was dead shows up, and she’s back to her old tricks; scheming.

But Gabriel finally does take Olivia on a little trip, where they finally get to explore the possibility of a relationship.  Unfortunately, a new enemy makes themselves known shortly after.  This entity insists that Liv’s choice isn’t just between the Fae of Cainsville and the Huntsmen, but that they are her third choice.  And, they insist that they already have a claim on her, and they state that she has been bought and paid for.  This has all been a chess game, with this evil being the game master from the very beginning.   Now it’s up to Olivia, Gabriel, and Ricky to find out what has happened and what it means for their future.

Now the Tylwyth Teg and Cwn Annwn must work together to assure Liv’s safety!  The time is quickly approaching for Liv to choose between Gabriel and Ricky, but how can she hurt one of the men that she’s grown to care for so greatly?  And, with this new player in the mix, will she ever get a chance to make that decision?

I have really enjoyed this series, so I’m pretty sad to see that this is the series finale!  By the end of the book, all the loose ends are tied up into a nice pretty bow, everyone’s fate and future determined.

Let’s start with Ricky.  There is no man that is a more stand-up kind of guy than him.  He broke my heart at the end of Betrayals when he broke up with Olivia.  And, he didn’t want to end things as he’s very much still in love with her, but he felt it was the right thing to do.  To give his competition a chance to woo her.  Who does that??  It makes me love him even more.  But he learned firsthand how hard it is to watch the woman he loves grow close to someone else.  And, yet he finds a way to watch and still be friends with both Gabriel and Olivia, and to even make them feel better about hurting him.  He really should be up for sainthood … well he is a Saint already…. the motorcycle club….

“You might want to pop your collar.”

“Hey if the biker doesn’t pop his, I’m not popping mine. Also? We’re thirty years past that fashion faux pas.”

“Yeah, but it still comes in handy when you’re sporting a hickey.”

“What?” My hands flew to my neck, and I found the tender spot. “Shit. No, that’s not– I burned it. My hair wasn’t cooperating, so I dragged out the curling iron.”

“Gabriel has a curling iron?”

“No, I meant–Damn it.” I rooted through my bag for concealer. “I’m sorry. If I’d noticed, I’d have hidden it.”

“I know.” His lips twitched. “It is kinda funny, though, watching you guys scramble with excuses. Gabriel told me you weren’t answering my calls because you forgot your phone in the car. Which is about as likely as you leaving your arm behind. He dried his hair so fast the back was sticking up. And then he scarfed down half the food I brought for lunch. I’ve never seen him eat like that.” He smiled. “But I do appreciate he’s being circumspect.”

“He’s not going to wave it in your face.”

“No, but we are talking about Gabriel, who never goes out of his way to cushion anyone’s feelings but yours. He’s being very thoughtful. It’s sweet. Just don’t tell him I said that.”

“I won’t.” I finished applying the concealer. “Better?”

“Yep.” He leaned over for a better look and then stopped. “Is that a bite on your collarbone?”

“Shit! No. Damn it.”

Ricky laughed as I frantically applied more makeup.”

Gabriel was scarred by the way he was neglected and abused as a child, it has shaped him into the man he is today.  A man that keeps his heart guarded so that it doesn’t get hurt again.  But the walls around his heart are starting to come down and he’s learning how to truly love.  Olivia means everything to him and he will do whatever it takes to protect her.

Then there is Gabriel’s mom, Seanna.  A drug addict that tricked Patrick into creating Gabriel in a scheme to extort money.  Seanna never held love for her son, but instead he was a means to get what she wanted.  But we learn in this book, that not everything is what it seems and that there were other things at play that made Seanna the way she was.

And, speaking of Patrick, I totally forgot about him until he showed up in this book.  That’s pretty strange considering how much I liked him in the beginning of the series.  That’s not to say I don’t like him now, but he is a rather complicated character.  And, let’s face it, a shitty father!  He let his son suffer under the hands of Seanna, and didn’t even let him known who his father was!

I also really enjoyed the dryads.  They brought a lot of fun and youthfulness to the book, that I enjoyed.  And, they gave Patrick a hard time as well, which he kind of deserves at times.

“I couldn’t get through this last book.”

“He didn’t even just skip ahead to read the sex scenes,” Helia said. “Which is what he normally does with your paranormals.”

Patrick turned to Gabriel. “This is your revenge, isn’t it?”

“Helia and Alexios? “Gabriel said. “This is Patrick. He’ll be accompanying us to Seanna.”

“Oooh,” Alexios said. “It’s a family reunion.”

“So you really are Gabriel’s father?” Helia said. “That’s what everyone says, but then we found Seanna and started thinking maybe the rumor was wrong, that you two couldn’t have … you know. She seems kind of …” She wrinkled her nose. “Nasty.”

“Maybe he likes nasty,” Alexios said. “You’ve read his sex scenes.”

“I’m not sure they’re meant to be nasty.”

“I believe it’s time to go,” Gabriel said, ushering them out.

“Well played,” Patrick murmured as he passed. “Well played.”

There is so much going on with these characters and this town and I will really miss each and every one of them.  I’m sure there was more story that could be told, but I guess it’s best to end it before the series loses its fun factor.  Although I’ve heard, whispers of potential novellas in the future, we shall wait and see if that pans out or not!  I enjoyed my time in Cainsville and I’m curious to see what Armstrong has in store for us with her future works!

*OBS would like to thank the publisher for supplying a free copy of this title in exchange for an honest review*