Betrayals by Kelley Armstrong
Series: Cainsville #4
Published by Random House
Published on: August 9, 2016
Genres: Urban Fantasy
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When Olivia's life exploded--after she found out she was not the adopted child of a privileged Chicago family but of a notorious pair of convicted serial killers--she found a refuge in the secluded but oddly welcoming town of Cainsville, Illinois. Working with Gabriel Walsh, a fiendishly successful criminal lawyer with links to the town, she discovered the truth about her parents' crimes in an investigation that also revealed the darker forces at work in the place that had offered her a haven. As if that wasn't enough, she also found out that she, Gabriel and her biker boyfriend Ricky were not caught in an ordinary sort of love triangle, but were hereditary actors in an ancient drama in which the elders of Cainsville and the mysterious Huntsmen who opposed them had a huge stake.
Now someone is killing street kids in the city, and the police have tied Ricky to the crimes. Setting out with Gabriel's help to clear Ricky's name, Olivia once again finds her own life at risk. Soon the three are tangled in a web of betrayals that threatens their uneasy equilibrium and is pushing them toward a hard choice: either they fulfill their destinies by trusting each other and staying true to their real bonds, or they succumb to the extraordinary forces trying to win an eternal war by tearing them apart.
BETRAYALS reads like a paranormal thriller which is a genre that Kelley Armstrong does well. However, this caused the Mallt-y-Nos retelling to go somewhat by the wayside, not a horrible digression given the awful love triangle that developed in book 3, but it did leave this installment feeling a little bit like filler. Good filler, yet filler nonetheless.
It was Gabriel’s turn to take a run at Olivia. Kinda. Walsh makes a serious effort to give her what she needs, they have a concussed “moment”, and Ricky makes a bold move, so hopefully this means that the next volume will focus on Liv and Gabriel. Good news because he’s who I ship. Walsh is definitely an acquired taste, and a tough nut to crack however, that’s just part of his charm.
The plot was entertaining because as I mentioned earlier, cover-ups, red herrings, and twists are areas in which this author thrives. It did tie into The Hunt, and the on-going cold war between the Cŵn Annwn and the Tylwyth Teg, but the connections were tenuous at best. It was more about solving the mystery of who is killing lamiae, and identifying the rebel Huntsman and Hound.
This installment brought with it a lot of flashbacks to previous incarnations of Matilda, Gwynn, and Arawn which I enjoyed. It was interesting seeing the original characters reflected in these latest manifestations, but also observing how they differ. I believe that RITUALS will be the final CAINSVILLE title, so I’m curious to find out how Armstrong’s modern take on this Welsh myth ends.
BETRAYALS will make Gabriel Walsh cheerleaders happy. Go team Gwynn!