Unearthly by Cynthia Hand
First in the Unearthly trilogy
Clara Gardener is part angel. Her mother is Dimidius and she and her brother are Quartarius. Clara has been having visions; visions of a boy in a field on fire. Her mother says her purpose has come. Uprooting her and her family from her California home to Wyoming to fulfill her purpose. When she meets Christian Prescott he turns out to be the guy of her dreams quite literally. As Clara must find away to fulfill her purpose she runs into some problems and the biggest one is her new best friend’s twin brother, Tucker. There’s something lurking in the shadows; something her mom keeps hidden from her and it could destroy them all. I went into Unearthly knowing I would like it, but I didn’t think I would love it. Unearthly has such high ratings and raving reviews I figured that it must be good. For me Unearthly was more than good it was GREAT! (Excuse the caps lock moment. I just can’t contain my excitement!) After reading such an amazing book,The Evolution of Mara Dyer, I didn’t think anything I picked up would even remotely as interesting. I sped through this book just as fast as The Evolution of Mara Dyer. I ran into a few flaws and snags but they could be easily overlooked (but I’ll talk about them anyway because after all this is a review).
The main female character is Clara. I don’t love Clara. In fact she can be a bitch sometimes, but I can relate to her in that way because well I can be too. I didn’t like how Clara put Wendy on the back burner when she started to become friends Angela. I hate when friends do that to me and I try to never do that, but it seemed liked Clara knew what she was doing. Then she goes and makes a hurtful comment to Wendy that pissed me off. You don’t talk to your friends like that even when you’re pissed off and having a bad day, but her reason for being so hurtful to Wendy was the thing that set me off. She told Wendy she should stop being Invisible and all kind of other crap all because Wendy finally told her what I had been thinking for most of the novel. She told her to give over Christian and stop stalking him. When Angela said that to her it was OK and no feelings were hurt. I’m glad Wendy and Clara made up, which had to be the fastest reunited friendship ever. The fight only lasted eight pages! Speaking of stalking. Clara is a very bad stalker. She literally details a whole paragraph about the things she noticed about him by watching him in British Lit class. That’s a big no-no.
But she wasn’t all bad. She wasn’t a Mary Sue and aside from those few things I mention above I actually really liked her. She was witty, funny, sarcastic, strong, determined, and relatable.
Kick-Butt Heroine Scale: 8
The main male characters are Christian and Tucker. I never liked Christian. From the minute he was introduced to the end. I think he’s too perfect. I don’t like guys that girls fawn over constantly for nothing at all. His twist though! I must say I had thought it for a brief time and then cast it away. Very clever of Ms. Hand. All Christian really did was piss me off. He was a jerk without even realizing it which is the worst kind of jerk. He also kept getting in the way of Tucker and Clara’s possible relationship. Tucker… Tucker Shaw! I’m not normally into cowboys, but there’s something about this cowboy that I want him to whisk me up on his horse and ride off with me into the sunset.
Yes, I’m cheesy. I didn’t think I would like Tucker, but oh my, he’s just so dreamy. I love his banter with Clara and from the very first scene where they had a showdown in the cafeteria I liked him. Christian better not ruin Tucker’s relationship with Clara (but we all know he will).
Swoon Worthy Scale: Christian-
The Villain- I am not going to say his name but I will say this. There was an attempted rape scene involving the villain and if that makes you squeamish avert your eyes to another book. He wasn’t much of a presence so I don’t find him all that threatening until the end.
Villain Scale: 8
Wendy, Tucker’s sister and Clara’s first friend, I particularly like Wendy. I think she’s sweet and charming. She kind of reminds me of a little fairy. Angela is a friend that Wendy makes while working on a project. I saw her secret coming from a mile away. I was right of course. I like Angela, but there’s something slightly off about her. I don’t think she’s to be trusted a hundred percent. Jeremy, Clara’s little brother. I like Jeremy, but I also feel like he might cause trouble along the way. Clara’s mom is actually very prominent in this story, which is a relief to see. I’m tired of never seeing a close mother-daughter relationship in YA. I don’t like how she keeps secrets or is so disliking of Tucker though. Kay also just seemed like an annoying little puppy that was there to make Clara have problems at school since she was new. In fact Kay reminded me a Chihuahua. Constantly yapping and thinking that she’s threatening but when she’s out of high school we all know she’s going to end up without friends except for a few and no longer Queen Bee.
Character Scale: 9
One of my favorite things about Unearthly though is that we don’t have to experience Clara finding out she’s an angel except in flashbacks. I am so sick and tired of the whole self discovery mission thing. Yes, Clara had to still find out about her angel-self pretty much all by herself since her mother kept secrets, but it wasn’t tiring or boring. I actually liked that. It’s refreshing to come across something like that in YA. There were times when Clara’s mom did really bug me though. She always seemed to be pushing for Clara to end up in a relationship with Christian. I didn’t understand why. I still don’t. Speaking of mission… I totally didn’t see that coming! Unearthly left me in an emotional wreck. I was going through so many emotions the last hundred pages. I can’t wait to get my hands on Hallowed.
Cover Thoughts: The model looks so much like Natalie Portman it’s crazy.
I personally think they look a lot alike.
I love the cover and the dress, which I’m pretty sure, is the one she wore to prom. I also like the trees in the back. It’s all very environmental.