Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

Just finished reading Unearthly by Cynthia Hand which was totally captivating, original and romantic.

I really enjoyed this story.  Told by Clara this is a novel about angels.  Clara and her brother have angel blood – a quarter part – there mother is half blood.  All angels have a purpose which is revealed to them through dreams or visions and when Clara’s vision begins to manifest itself the family pack up and leave California and set up home in Wyoming.

I don’t want to give too much away about the plot so I’ll just rave about the book instead.  The writing was captivating.  I just loved the way this was written so I’m now definitely a Cynthia Hand fan!  I thought the story was really good, I loved the idea of the angels having a purpose and single mindedly pursuing it.

I thought Clara was a lovely character.  She’s part angel and as such is faster, stronger, etc, she can talk any language – including ‘bear’ – and can pretty much pick up any sort of sport with ease and grace, but, in spite of this she isn’t perfect and this imperfection makes her so likable.  She struggles to fit in at school – and I don’t suppose having bright orange hair exactly helps – she comes across as shy and frankly sometimes she’s just down right embarrassing in the way she stares at people.  Clara’s purpose is to rescue a boy from her school, one of the popular guys, called Christian.  Christian is good looking, in fact really good looking, clever, witty, etc, etc, – he is also the boyfriend of the school mean girl, Kay who appears to take an instant dislike to Clara.  Unfortunately Clara has developed a rather enormous crush on Christian and doesn’t seem to be able to help herself from staring longingly at him (you’re sort of blushing on her behalf!)

I thought the other characters were also really well written.  Wendy is a really lovely friend and I did end up feeling sorry for her because she didn’t always get as well treated as I thought she deserved.  Clara’s other friend, Angela (who turned out to be another part blood) seemed to monopolise a lot of Clara’s time and frankly I was relieved when she went to Rome for the summer – there’s something distinctly untrustworthy about Angela, I don’t know what and perhaps I’ll be wrong but I can’t quite like her.  She’s too pushy for a start.  She has a strange obsession with Clara’s mum and there were just other little things, like starting rumours at school, and not responding to Clara’s messages when she needed to talk urgently!

Now, add to all this Tucker – he’s such an adorable character.  He’s a regular, old fashioned cowboy.  He’s popular and well liked by everyone – and not because he’s rich or good looking but because he’s so lovely and to top it off he’s hot.  I had no hesitation in liking Tucker, I always preferred him to Christian, there was just no contest as far as I was concerned.  Christian was a nice guy I suppose but, again, there was something that I didn’t really like about him.  He started hanging out with Clara but I never got the impression that he was really into her – just like he was going through the motions.

So, great cast of characters, good storyline, well written, hot cowboy, fallen angels (dark and brooding), and well told romance.  What’s not to like.

In terms of criticisms, I don’t really want to criticise to be honest because I found it so enjoyable – but, I guess Clara’s mum could have opened up a bit more?  Also, I didn’t see why there was this whole push for Clara to fall for Christian.  I mean, I understand that she was going to save him – but does that mean they have to be an item?  What if her purpose was to save a little baby from a runaway pram?  Or an old lady from getting run over by a truck, or a 12 year old boy from choking to death or drowning, or, etc, etc, you get the picture??  She wouldn’t have been all gooey-eyed about any of those!

Now, the ending did throw everything up in the air and has left lots of unanswered questions, but I don’t mind that – you wouldn’t really expect everything to be tied up nicely and if it was you wouldn’t have anything else to look forward to.

So, definitely recommend this book.  I thought it was an excellent debut and I can’t wait to read the next one.

Rating A




4 Responses to “Unearthly by Cynthia Hand”

  1. Nikki-ann

    Sounds like a good book then! 🙂

    Is it me or are a certain group of covers all beginning to look the same?

    • lynnsbooks

      Yes, a lot of covers are looking the same these days. The book was good though.

  2. BookGirlR

    This book sounds like one I should check out! Seems as if angels are the popular thing right now. A while ago it seemed like all the new books were about vampires, and then it was werewolves… and now, angels.

    • lynnsbooks

      I know what you mean – i’ve had the same sort of feeling about Dystopian novels ever since The Hunger Games was such a huge success! Unearthly was good though, and better, I thought, than a few of my most recent YA reads. (Although Plague and Unwind were brilliant!)

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