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."
Author: Cynthia Hand
Year of Release: 2011
Sequel(s): Hallowed & Boundless & a novella called Radiant
Book Version: Hardback
Where did you get the book?: Library
Rating: 4.5 of 5 Stars
Warning: There are some spoilers in this review
The plot in this novel was very well done and very well paced. I didn't feel as though it was rushed even though a lot of time went by in only 435 pages. Cynthia Hand had a very good way of handling that. The book also never had a dull moment. I never got bored. Cynthia was able to keep me entertained throughout the entire book. As I mentioned earlier, this book was hard to put down.
As a romance lover, my favorite aspect of this novel was the romance. At first, I was surprised when Clara discovered that Christian, who she is meant to save, already has a girlfriend. I was expecting what most novels have: a love at first sight type of thing. It was strange at first. I had become so accustomed to books where characters fall in love right away that I was actually getting annoyed that it wasn't happening. Then I realized that this story (the love aspect anyway) was realistic. Although people can fall in love within a few weeks of knowing each other, it's much less likely to happen. Clara has a massive crush on Christian, but he already has a girlfriend. Typical if you ask me. I experienced that when I was in high school myself. Their relationship was gradual and natural, the way it would be in real life which I liked.
Enter Tucker Avery. Oh my gosh. I knew he was a potential love interest because of the summary, but by the way the summary describes her relationship with him, I expected him to be a bad type of boy with a sweet side like Patch from Hush, Hush or Jace from The Mortal Instruments. I was entirely wrong. He started out as a total jerk to Clara and I was starting to wonder how this guy was going to become a love interest. She pretty much loathed him and it appeared that he despised her as well. Enter Wendy Avery, Tucker's twin sister who is one of Clara's best friends. I liked the scene between the two of them where Wendy wants to know what's going on with Clara and Tucker and Clara is stunned that Wendy would ever consider such a thing. Wendy mentions that Tucker is only being a jerk to her because he likes her. I hadn't realized that as a possibility considering that no other love interests in books that I have read start out as complete jerks. That was a very unique way for Cynthia to do this, and I liked it. As the novel went on, I started to like Tucker more and more. Clara was falling for Christian, and I found myself falling for Tucker by the little things he did: giving money to Wendy when she was going to go shopping with Clara, taking three girls to prom because none of them had dates, offering Clara a ride home, and of course, willing to take Clara out on a tour of the area when nobody else was around during the summer. I was stunned that he wasn't a jerk at all, but actually a real gentlemen who opened doors for ladies. It was really sweet. I'm still blown away by his relationship with Clara slowly progressed throughout the novel and by the revelations of his character. I never would have expected Clara to fall for him. I just thought he would be the guy who liked her from a distance who eventually told her his feelings, and that she would decline him. I thought he was the underdog. I was, again, inevitably, wrong. (Yay!)
The final chapters of this book were very intense and I enjoyed them a lot. I found myself reading them quickly wanting to find out what happens next. I also found myself in bed still in my night clothes at 12:30 PM still reading. It was that good. What ended up happening was totally unexpected and I have many questions now, but fortunately, I have the last two books already from the library so I will be starting Hallowed very, very soon.