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

Raising CainSynopsis:

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.


My thoughts:

I received this book for a book tour and when I read the synopsis I thought it would be something I like. I’m happy to say that not only I liked the book but loved.

It had everything I like, Urban Fantasy world setting, paranormal creatures (including some centaurs, unicorns, damphirs) but mainly angels, fallen angles and demons  , tons of action and suspense, some romance but it doesn’t take over the story.

Loved the characters, story and writing. It just held me captive form the first few pages. I had a hard time pitting it down. There was only one minor thing that I didn’t care for and that was whole Freak Fair in the beginning of the book. But that only lasts for a few chapters. But maybe I was just offended for the “freaks” (paranormal beings) for being called freaks and put on show.

 I really liked Dani, she was strong, never really gave up, even though she had her (well deserved) pity moments. She just seemed real .But no matter what she went through she never lost her snarky humor. And that also made me love her. Poor Dani is pretty much on the run and being kidnapped (more than once) the entire book after the one person she calls a friend sells her out. I really felt bad for her, for all the stuff she went through in the past and now in the present.

Than we have Cain, I really liked him, even when he had his “dick” moments. Sometimes it was not sure on what side Cain is and what he will do. Up to the end there is no telling what Cain will do. But it is easy to see the internal struggle he has. Although there were plenty of moments I wanted to strangle him.

We also meet Armen and Noah and I liked them both from the minute we meet them. They added some nice balance to the book and provide some much needed answers for Dani.

The end was heartbreaking and I really didn’t see that coming, but I guess even with all that it felt sort of peaceful for Dani to have a somewhat closure of what to do and what is ahead of her. It is hard to explain without giving too much away so I will just leave it at that.

Most things will be explained by the end but it also opens up for the next book to come. I for sure can’t wait to read it and see what will happen next.

I rate it at 4 ½ ★



Some of my favorite quotes:


“You need a mood ring. It’s the only hope I have of determining whether you’re more likely to hump my leg or bully me”


“You fucking angels are all alike, hopped up on holy water and pretending you piss gold and shit sunshine.”


“I’m, um, not exactly sure how a condom fits into the conversation.”

Noah looked at him, his expression bland. “If you’re going to act like a dick, you should at least be prepared. Go ahead.” He waved a lazy hand. “Slip it over your tongue and make sure you’re safe before you re-enter this particular conversation”


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*I received a free ARC in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!


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