Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Review–Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

Unearthly (Unearthly - Trilogy)
  • Reading level: Young Adult
  • Hardcover: 448 pages
  • Publisher: HarperTeen (January 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061996165

First of all, this book cover is absolutely gorgeous. The silvers and greys with purplish tints, the effect is stunning and I love having this book on my shelf.

I think Unearthly is a wonderful debut by Cynthia Hand. Clara is one fourth angel-blood and now that she is 16, she is well on her way to discovering and fulfilling her earthly purpose. Her visions point her to a certain boy in a burning forest so she and her mother and brother pack up and head to Jackson Hole Wyoming where Clara can find this mysterious boy that her visions are telling her she must save.

I really enjoyed some of the characters in this book, Clara and her brother were fascinating, discovering that they are part angel and having to deal with understanding the extraordinary powers that accompany that, but also trying to fit in a normal society without standing out.  I also really enjoyed a lot of the background characters, such as Clara’s friends Angela, Stacy, and Tucker.  However,  Christian, the mysterious boy that Clara is meant to save, seemed like a very shallow character that could have used a little more work.

While I was fascinated by the background of the Nephilim, one of the complaints I have about Unearthly was that there are entirely too many things left unexplained, questions unanswered, which, to me, left too many holes in the plot. I understand that the reader learns things at the same time as Clara does, but I find it hard to believe that she is able to accept such incredible things and react to such unusual circumstances with barely any explanation as to  what is going on or why. Clara’s mother is super secretive throughout the book and absolutely refuses to explain what it means to be an angel and what the higher “purpose” is all about.

That being said, the characters kept me interested in the story. I loved that there was a unique twist on the “immediate attraction” thing that is so common in YA today. I thoroughly enjoyed the teasing friendship that builds between Clara and Tucker. I was surprised by how quickly I was able to finish this book, it doesn’t really seem like a page turner since there really isn’t much action, but I think it was the unanswered questions that kept me reading, wanting to understand more about these angel-bloods. Unfortunately that doesn’t happen in Unearthly, so I’ll have to eagerly await the next in the series.

Rating 3 – I liked it but hope the next in the series answers more questions and explains things much better.



Selfcentered said...

I've only started reading the book and so far its kept me reading! Great Review! :D


hmm, I just ordered the book like two seconds ago. I hope it wasn't a mistake. But I know it's a triology which can often lead to more so maybe the character will develop further in the next book and more questions will be answered. It happens so much in books that are triologies or parts of a series. So much setting up for the next book and not enough attention paid to the first book. Too bad.


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