Saturday, 25 April 2015

{Review} Raising Cain (The Key Guardians #1) by Kelli Ireland

25176860Posted by Melanie 
Release Date: April 7th, 2015
Finished Date: April 18th, 2015
Publishers: Self Published
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Source: For Review
Format: eBook
Pages: 378
Buy: Amazon UK Amazon US 

Hiding places are scarce when both Heaven and Hell intend to find you. 

Dani Fayel’s backbreaking job as a stable hand at The Freaks’ Fair isn’t glamorous, but for someone looking to keep to the shadows? It’s perfect. Neither paranormal freaks nor human norms ever notice her. But when Dani is forced to either let a child die in order to maintain her anonymity or choose to save him and risk being discovered, she finds herself unwillingly thrust into the spotlight. 

Cain, Hell’s premier assassin and a predatory incubus, is close to fulfilling his final contract and earning his freedom. Hired by the Archangel of Death to find his daughter, Cain follows her trail to the Fair. He works undercover, certain his mark is inside one of the portable canopies or traveling cages. Dead or alive, she equals his ticket to freedom. 

When Cain’s objective is divulged, Dani realizes she can’t outrun her destiny. As the fabled Key—the one soul with absolute free will who is tied to the three realms of Heaven, Earth and Hell—only she is capable of opening the gates for the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Whoever frees the Horsemen allegedly commands them. Now both Heaven and Hell are vying for her allegiance, and there are no limits as to how dirty they’ll fight to obtain it. With Hell raining indiscriminate chaos as Heaven maneuvers its players around her, Dani realizes her would-be assassin may be the only man capable of helping her survive.

The Review: Raising Cain was a pretty good read once I got into it. It’s the first book in ‘the Key Guardians’ series and it definitely made an impression.
We meet Dani who is working in a sort of travelling fair for ‘freaks’, she has no one in her life and prefers to keep it that way, no one knowing anything about her, no ties + no attachments = no hurt. Dani also has a hidden gift – if you could call seeing a persons’ death as a gift – and she accidentally exposes it when a childs’ life is on the line. This brings her to the attention of firstly her boss Kavien who now decides she must become the resident fortune teller and the new guy on the scene – Cain – a mysterious man who is searching for the fable ‘Key’ that will bring about the apocalypse. Cain is actually an assassin and an Incubus but soon finds himself as Dani’s new bodyguard at the fair which comes in really handy when one of his associates tries to kill Dani claiming that she is in fact the key.
Dani is having none of it but when she is forced into revealing some things about herself that even she never knew, she decides now is the time to leave but she is betrayed in the worst way and runs for her life with hell on her heels. Life then becomes about staying ahead of her pursuers, staying alive and hoping that this has all been one big mistake….. but has it?
So, I did really enjoy this story and the content was actually not what I expected. The world is one that is inhabited by both humans and paranormals with humans knowing of their existence but they don’t live in harmony. I found Dani to be quite a lonely character, it’s clear from the beginning that she doesn’t let anyone in but considers those at the travelling fair as close to family as she can get but that’s not to say that anyone knows her. Her world is rocked when she saves a child because she has revealed her power and her boss makes her use it to his advantage but it also pushes Cain into her life. They share a sort of easy friendship and they feel pulled toward each other but no one really acts on that because who wants to be involved with an Incubus right? Cain is a complex character, in some respects he seems like a protector, others a predator, I was never sure if he was the love interest because the feelings he portrayed were so guarded. Even when he was trying to be tender with her, it wasn’t very believable – it was like he couldn’t show a feeling and it made it hard to buy into any romantic notions between the two. His demon side came across very well, he was scary, unforgiving and violent but I also wanted to see his weakness and willingness to be meek for her.
The storyline was good once it got started because the pacing was quite slow in the beginning but was more than made up for throughout the rest of the book. I liked the idea of the ‘key’ and what it was supposed to do, I liked it even better when we see how Dani fitted into the story aswell because she is the centre of it all. To send mercenary like assassins on the hunt for it was a great idea, they are the types that will stop at nothing to get what they came for so this shows exactly how brutal things could get but I also liked how later on we get to see the reasons that they have taken this mission on. Once some reveals have been made about Dani and her life, the pacing quickens up as the story takes on a run & chase scenario as Dani flees from more than one enemy. There are numerous attempts at capturing and killing her throughout that you actually felt the urgency in her to be safe and get hidden plus we get to see just what will happen when they get their hands on her. Through all of the danger and all of the action we get to know Dani & Cain that bit better, we also meet some more characters that will have an impact and it all heads towards a final confrontation where we get to see what everyone’s made of….. and it was gooood. I’m excited to see where it will all go next but I’m very impressed with this. 

4.5 Flowers!

Thank you to Kelli Ireland for giving me the opportunity to review this book in exchange for an honest review. 

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