Unearthly – Cynthia Hand

Published September 8, 2013 by bibliobeth

Unearthly (Unearthly, #1)

What’s it all about?:

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.

What did I think?:

Clara Gardner is like any normal teenage girl, well – apart from one big difference. She is part angel (quarter to be exact, having a half-angel mother and a “normal” father). Finding out herself and her brother are angel-bloods is pretty exciting for Clara, although her mother warns that she cannot tell anybody as normal humans just wouldn’t be able to handle it. She is pretty, intelligent and can display abnormal feats of athleticism, which makes her fairly handy to have around on a Sports Day, I reckon! She also gets to have wings, and is able to fly, although she hasn’t quite got that part figured out just yet and a lot of her abilities are still developing. Most importantly for Clara, she has a “purpose” in the form of a vision, which she is duty bound to carry out, once she is able to interpret exactly what is required of her. In the early stages of the novel, her vision is quite patchy and involves a boy standing in the woods in the midst of a forest fire, which she analyses as someone she is obliged to save. Once she is able to retrieve a bit more information from this, her mother automatically decides to move the family to be near the place and the person involved in her purpose. But what exactly does she have to do? And can she get close enough to Christian, a popular and mysterious boy that appears to be her destiny?

This book comes highly recommended to me by my sister who has read the entire trilogy and loved it. I knew I was going to enjoy it too as soon as I found out it was about angels, which I have a bit of a soft spot for. What I wasn’t expecting was a really intriguing and exciting read with a few surprises thrown in for good measure. The characters are beautifully realised, and entirely relatable to teenagers today, and I appreciated the little bit of darkness that the author threw in regarding the Black Wings – pure angels with a bit of a nasty side. A plus side for the character of Clara is that she has amazing unearthly abilities, but in essence, she is a normal teenage girl with healthy relationships with friends, her mother etc. The ending definitely paves the way for the second book in the series – Hallowed, although I have to admit, I did see the twist coming. This didn’t spoil my enjoyment of the story as a whole, as the action just kept coming. Can I be an angel too?!

Would I recommend it?:

But of course!

Star rating (out of 5):


3 comments on “Unearthly – Cynthia Hand

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