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Monday, June 17, 2013

Book Review: Unearthly

Release Date: January 4, 2013
Author: Cynthia Hand
Publisher: HarperTeen
Length: 435 pages

In the beginning, there's a boy standing in the trees . . .
.
Clara Gardner has recently learned that she's part angel. Having angel blood run through her veins not only makes her smarter, stronger, and faster than humans (a word, she realizes, that no longer applies to her), but it means she has a purpose, something she was put on this earth to do. Figuring out what that is, though, isn't easy.

Her visions of a raging forest fire and an alluring stranger lead her to a new school in a new town. When she meets Christian, who turns out to be the boy of her dreams (literally), everything seems to fall into place and out of place at the same time. Because there's another guy, Tucker, who appeals to Clara's less angelic side.

As Clara tries to find her way in a world she no longer understands, she encounters unseen dangers and choices she never thought she'd have to make between honesty and deceit, love and duty, good and evil. When the fire from her vision finally ignites, will Clara be ready to face her destiny?

Unearthly is a moving tale of love and fate, and the struggle between following the rules and following your heart.

Review:

Protagonist: Clara begins the tale as a newly discovered Nephilim, or more accurately angel-blood. She starts by receiving a glimpse of her "purpose," the one thing she was put on this earth to do, via an intense vision. She starts off as a bit apprehensive to her powers, yet still pretty excited about her purpose, mainly because it involves a good looking boy and well, she's a teenage girl, you know how they get. Over the course of the book Clara grows stronger as she prepares to face her destiny, but that doesn't mean that distractions and temptations won't sneak in to throw her off her preordained course.

Romance: Holy love triangle! I was blown away by this love triangle, not necessarily because of the love interests themselves, but rather how it's presented. This love triangle is unlike anything I've ever read before and the best way to describe it is that the predictable aspects of the traditional are put into a deck of cards shuffled and redistributed among the two potential suitors, making this triangle totally unique and completely unpredictable. While I don't like choosing teams, due to the unpredictable stance of this triangle, I felt as if I had to, but more than just that, I couldn't stand one of the love interests. I won't say who just yet, but I will say that for once I'm completely unsure where this romance will go.

World-Building: I'm a sucker for a good angel lore novel and this one is no exception. I loved the larger focus on the angel-bloods rather than the angels themselves, and the idea of the purpose, the one thing that these angel-bloods are on the earth to do is amazing. I wish I had the ability to see the reason or reasons I'm on this earth and the impact, large or small I will make in the world. I also, enjoyed the names given to the angel both pure and fallen, the White Wings and Black Wings based on the shade or lack thereof of their wings, and the ability to tell an angel-blood's alignment by looking at the color of their wings.

Predictability: I was caught off guard by this book, in the best way possible. While the majority of this book is either unpredictable or random (but in a good way) there were a few moments here and there that I saw coming. The twists in this book are crazy and mind-blowing, at one point my mind had to shut off and reboot before I could fully process the game-changer thrown in at the end of this installment.

Ending: The ending of this book was almost ruthless in it's game-changing twists and cliffhanger ending. I do not envy, and want to congratulate those who've read this series from the beginning and had to endure what I can only imagine would be a torturous year between installments. I'm tankful that I can hop from one book onto the next to find out how this story will develop now.

Rating:



Wow, I haven't given a 5 crest rating in a while but I have to admit that this series is groundbreaking, it's so different and much better than any other YA series I've read, with some obvious exceptions, but this novel breaks free of the confines of the "YA formula" and takes it's own path.

P.S. Just a reminder, head on over the the Giveaways/Contests page to enter for the chance to WIN a SIGNED hardcover copy of The Eternity Cure (Blood of Eden #2) by the insanely talented Ms. Julie Kagawa.

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