Mar 13, 2011

Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

Unearthly by Cynthia Hand
Unearthly, book #1

Next book in series: Hallowed (Currently don't know much about this book.)
Publisher: Harperteen
Release Date: January 4th, 2011
Hardcover: 435 pages
Age Group: Young Adult (12+)
Buy: Amazon
Add to Goodreads
Source: Library
Challenge: '11 Debut Author Challenge, '11 A to Z Challenge, '11 Support Your Local Library Challenge, and '11 350 Page Challenge
Overall: five hearts

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?(Summary from Goodreads.)

First Paragraph: In the beginning, there's a boy standing in the trees. He's around my age, in that space between child and man, maybe all of seventeen years old. I'm not sure how I know this. I can only see the back of his head, his dark hair curling damply against his neck. I feel the dry heat of the sun, so intense, drawing the life from everything. There's a strange orange light filling the eastern sky. There's the heavy smell of smoke. For a moment I'm filled with such a smothering grief that it's hard to breathe. I don't know why. I take a step toward the boy, open my mouth to call his name, only I don't know it. The ground crunches under my feet. He hears me. He starts to turn. One more second and I will see his face. 

Unearthly is the perfect title for this book. And not just because this book is about angels. But because, in my opinion, this book IS just unearthly. It completely took my breath away! 

When I first started hearing about this book, I thought it might be a book about a girl finding out she was an angel, and I was a bit worried about that. There are way too many books out there nowadays where someone finds out that they are a certain person, or being, and not enough of ones that already KNOW they are a certain something, but are just learning how to control it. But despite some of the summaries going around the internet of this book, it isn't a book about someone finding out what they are. It's about a teenage girl, named Clara, who already knows she is an angel and is just trying to learn HOW to be what she is. 

And I really love the fact that her mother and brother know about her being an angel, because they are angels too! 

I really loved the characters in this book. You seem to really get to know them. I loved the main character, Clara. She seems like just a normal teenager from the outside, and she is, she just has a little bit of angel thoughts running around in her head. Nothing really bothered me about her at all. 

I really liked Christian, but I have to say that I LOVED Tucker. I was rooting for Christian at first, until towards the end of the book when you start getting to know Tucker better. Love his country gentlemanly charm! 

Hand's writing in this book was magnificent as well. It's one of those types of books that I love talking about so much that you feel as if you've only read a few pages, but you are already 50 pages past where you thought you were. It's awesome! 

Everything just flows so well and I love that element in a book. 

There were many times in this book that something was thrown into the mix that just made me go "Are you serious?!". I didn't see them coming! Especially the end. Whew! I bet I scared my husband with my random jaw droppage and gasp, ha ha! 

This is one GREAT debut novel that you will not want to miss. It's been hours since I finished this book and I still can't stop thinking about the ending of the book and what will happen in the next book. This is a great start to a new series and I am DYING to get a hold of the second book to devour it. 

But I guess we'll all have to wait until 2012 to see it! :(

Cover: five hearts
This cover is GORGEOUS! It may look awesome online, but wait until you see a physical copy of it! I was practically petting it in the library when I grabbed a hold of it. 
Cover art: Jacket photo by Howard Huang, Jacket design by Sasha Illingworth. 
I recommend this book to: Those of you who are getting into the kick with the new angel books that are sweeping into YA! You don't want to miss this one, it's unique and beautifully written. 

Rating Breakdown:
Plot: 20/20
Characters: 20/20
Creativity: 20/20
Writing: 20/20
Ending:  20/20

Overall: 100/100=five hearts


  1. Great review! I have this book sitting on my shelf, I need to read it soon!

  2. Just making my weekly visits to all the blogs I am following :)

    Check out my FUN ON SUNDAY post and answer the FAVORITES question so I can learn a little more about you.

    Have a great week!

    Mandy @ Embrace Your Oddities

  3. I really enjoyed this book! Great review.

  4. So glad you enjoyed it!! I hate having to wait so long for 2nd books. It's such a bummer!

  5. I'm so glad I requested this from the library! I'll be picking it up soon and I can't wait to read it. :D

  6. Wow, this book sounds awesome! Glad you liked it so much! Now I'm definitely going to have to go add it to my TBR list!

    Jamie @ Bookerella

  7. I saw the most transformation and growth in Clara though. There were already high expectations for her in life and Hallowed reveals those are only the tip of the iceberg. While still maintaining the innocence about typical teen problems (I'll explain in the next paragraph), she hurls herself heroically through difficult situations that makes many adults cringe.


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