The Fellowship of the Ring #2: the Ring Goes South – J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring: the Ring Goes South

Goodreads Link

Author: J.R.R. Tolkien

Length: 576 pages

“Sauron, the Dark Lord, has gathered to him all the Rings of Power – the means by which he intends to rule Middle-earth. All he lacks in his plans for dominion is the One Ring – the ring that rules them all – which has fallen into the hands of the hobbit, Bilbo Baggins.

In a sleepy village in the Shire, young Frodo Baggins finds himself faced with an immense task, as his elderly cousin Bilbo entrusts the Ring to his care. Frodo must leave his home and make a perilous journey across Middle-earth to the Cracks of Doom, there to destroy the Ring and foil the Dark Lord in his evil purpose.

J.R.R. Tolkien’s great work of imaginative fiction has been labelled both a heroic romance and a classic fantasy fiction. By turns comic and homely, epic and diabolic, the narrative moves through countless changes of scene and character in an imaginary world which is totally convincing in its detail.”

* * * * *

Note: I will be reviewing this book in two parts. The Fellowship of the Ring actually consists of two books, The Ring Sets Out and The Ring Goes South. Because of this, I thought it would be smarter to review each book (or part) of this book separately. Also, because Lord of the Rings, being an epic fantasy novel is quite long and rich, reviewing the parts separately will allow me to get a bit of a “breather” and hopefully maximise my reading enjoyment! 
★ ★ ★ ★ stars

Much to my dismay, I didn’t enjoy this second part of The Fellowship of the Ring more than the first part as I had hoped and expected. I was really hoping to get more “juice” out of the plot, but alas, it just seemed to drag along just as it did in the first part, even worse, in fact.

I will say this again: Tolkien has amazing writing. The book is written poetically and beautifully. Yet I do feel that because Tolkien just spends so much time describing scenery and illustrating long periods of time where there is no dialogue, no plot and no movement, it just comes off as a bit boring. 

I now have come to the conclusion that the way to go with The Lord of the Rings is to read small sections of the book and spread it out as much as possible. Ideally interspacing those sections with other books. Unfortunately, because I was trying to get the book finished relatively soon and because I ended up putting off all of the other books I was reading until I was done, I just felt like it dragged. And boy did it drag. But again, just because I can admit that parts of this book are not perfectly tailored to my reading style (short attention span, generally not much interest in learning songs…) that doesn’t mean that I can’t still see the genius and greatness of this book and it doesn’t mean that I didn’t really enjoy my time reading. 

The history, and the stories and the songs and just everything is just so rich. And I really, really, appreciate it. I do and because of that, I really did love this book. It is quite unfortunate that the dialogue seems lacking however, because whenever the characters did speak, I devoured each individual word. The way that Tolkien animates his characters (in manner and speech) is incredibly fascinating. Each character is originally and personally crafted, as if Tolkien infused each person with a small spirit of uniqueness, abundant in history, folklore, knowledge and personality. 

But again, I do have to say that unfortunately, because of my limited attention span and boredom limit, I do like the movies a lot better. They are the perfect depiction of this fantastic world and story that Tolkien has created and manages to both keep the plot going a bit faster and yet still captures this amazing book which is the genius genesis of Middle Earth. 

I will definitely be reading on, but I also think that for a couple of weeks at least, I need to go on a bit of a high fantasy reading break. 

The Fellowship of the Ring #1: The Ring Sets Out – J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring: the Ring Sets Out 

Goodreads Link

Author: J.R.R. Tolkien

Length: 576 pages

“Sauron, the Dark Lord, has gathered to him all the Rings of Power – the means by which he intends to rule Middle-earth. All he lacks in his plans for dominion is the One Ring – the ring that rules them all – which has fallen into the hands of the hobbit, Bilbo Baggins.

In a sleepy village in the Shire, young Frodo Baggins finds himself faced with an immense task, as his elderly cousin Bilbo entrusts the Ring to his care. Frodo must leave his home and make a perilous journey across Middle-earth to the Cracks of Doom, there to destroy the Ring and foil the Dark Lord in his evil purpose.


J.R.R. Tolkien’s great work of imaginative fiction has been labelled both a heroic romance and a classic fantasy fiction. By turns comic and homely, epic and diabolic, the narrative moves through countless changes of scene and character in an imaginary world which is totally convincing in its detail.”

* * * * *

Note: I will be reviewing this book in two parts. The Fellowship of the Ring actually consists of two books, The Ring Sets Out and The Ring Goes South. Because of this, I thought it would be smarter to review each book (or part) of this book separately. Also, because Lord of the Rings, being an epic fantasy novel is quite long and rich, reviewing the parts separately will allow me to get a bit of a “breather” and hopefully maximise my reading enjoyment! 
★ ★ ★ ★ stars

So I loved this book so. much. more. than I did when I read it when I was like twelve years old. Mind you, it was still incredibly tedious to get through but once you scraped off the first layer of ‘oh my goodness, this book is so chunky and the words are so length’ what came out underneath was one brilliant fucking masterpiece. *removes hat for Tolkien* 

Now, I’m one big sucker for the movies (in my opinion, there is nothing to be improved upon them) so that’s probably why I shaved off that one star in this first half of the book. 

Also, I have absolutely no idea whether the character of Tom will have any kind of important role in the books to come, but I think that if it weren’t for the Hobbits’ journey through those woods and their encounter with Tom, I would have probably given this first half of the book five stars. There’s nothing wrong with that part of the story, really, but it was a tiny bit tedious and lengthy (especially the seemingly unending ways that Tolkien was able to describe the scenery). I just got a tiny bit tired of always hearing about how the landscaped looked like and where exactly the trees were placed. I just wanted the action and plot and dialogue and the book basically just kinda made you work for it. 

I absolutely lived for the descriptions of the Shire though and the lives of the cute Hobbits. It was simply adorable and wasn’t really shown as much as I really wanted it to in the movies so that was a huge plus for me. However, on the minus side, you didn’t really get to see Sam with that cute Hobbit girl he was crushing on and also the fireworks at the party were always one of my favorite parts of the film which also seemed to be missing from the book. 

What kinda surprised me though, even though I should have technically remembered this from reading it years ago, is that there wasn’t any specific chapter where we got to see Gandalf’s POV when he goes to Isengard. To be fair, this might be shown in the second half of the book, but it was shown fairly early in the movie and it was also an aspect of the films that I really loved. (I mean, who doesn’t love everything Gandalf??). 

So far though, I did really enjoy the book, but I think I’m going to take at least a week or so break from it before moving on. High fantasy does take a toll on me for a while usually and I can only really get into it for short periods of time before I crave a nice juicy YA book. 

The Beauchamp Family #1: Witches of East End – Melissa de la Cruz

Witches of East End

Goodreads Link

Author: Mellisa de la Cruz

Length: 272 pages

“The three Beauchamp women–Joanna and her daughters Freya and Ingrid–live in North Hampton, out on the tip of Long Island. Their beautiful, mist-shrouded town seems almost stuck in time, and all three women lead seemingly quiet, uneventful existences. But they are harboring a mighty secret–they are powerful witches banned from using their magic. Joanna can resurrect people from the dead and heal the most serious of injuries. Ingrid, her bookish daughter, has the ability to predict the future and weave knots that can solve anything from infertility to infidelity. And finally, there’s Freya, the wild child, who has a charm or a potion that can cure most any heartache.

For centuries, all three women have been forced to suppress their abilities. But then Freya, who is about to get married to the wealthy and mysterious Bran Gardiner, finds that her increasingly complicated romantic life makes it more difficult than ever to hide her secret. Soon Ingrid and Joanna confront similar dilemmas, and the Beauchamp women realize they can no longer conceal their true selves. They unearth their wands from the attic, dust off their broomsticks, and begin casting spells on the townspeople. It all seems like a bit of good-natured, innocent magic, but then mysterious, violent attacks begin to plague the town. When a young girl disappears over the Fourth of July weekend, they realize it’s time to uncover who and what dark forces are working against them.

With a brand-new cast of characters, a fascinating and fresh world to discover, and a few surprise appearances from some of the Blue Blood fan favorites, this is a page-turning, deliciously fun, magical summer read fraught with love affairs, witchcraft, and an unforgettable battle between good and evil.”


★ ★ 1/2 stars

Spoilers

Pros
– The magic
– The main characters
– The buildup
– Tyler

Cons
– Romantifying cheating
– The Norse mythology which came out of nowhere (?!) 
– The ending
– Any character that was not either one of the three main witches and Tyler 

This book was quite alright, it was ok, but to be quite frank, it wasn’t anything beyond that either. I felt as though the writing was quite average, in my opinion and for some darn reason, I just could not remember the character names. Maybe it was because the characters were generally quite unremarkable (besides the main ones) or whether I get super tripped up as soon as surnames get added into the mix, but for whatever reason, it made reading this book quite difficult. 

I also think that this book took a bit of an unexpected and not so great turn in the end, when it suddenly switched from being about witches to being all about Norse mythology and its gods. Now to be fair, I do know that the Wiccan religion and culture does center a lot around religions and “gods” in general, but it just didn’t really fit the tone of the book and was quite anticlimactic. Not to mention the fact that I just did not understand what was really going on. 

And also, while I absolutely hate Bran, and while I do understand the whole “universal pull” between Freya and Killian, I do not and will never be happy with main characters cheating on someone. So, a big yes to Freya/Killian but a big no-no to how it all came about. 

I’m on the fence about whether I want to continue on with this series. The epilogue did kind of pique my interest, but not quite enough that I don’t mind putting it off for another later time. 

Legend #3: Champion – Marie Lu

Champion

Goodreads Link

Author: Marie Lu


Length: 369 pages


He is a Legend.

She is a Prodigy.

Who will be Champion?

June and Day have sacrificed so much for the people of the Republic—and each other—and now their country is on the brink of a new existence. June is back in the good graces of the Republic, working within the government’s elite circles as Princeps-Elect, while Day has been assigned a high-level military position.

But neither could have predicted the circumstances that will reunite them: just when a peace treaty is imminent, a plague outbreak causes panic in the Colonies, and war threatens the Republic’s border cities. This new strain of plague is deadlier than ever, and June is the only one who knows the key to her country’s defense. But saving the lives of thousands will mean asking the one she loves to give up everything.”


★ ★ ★ 1/2 stars


Spoilers


Likes

– The ending (it managed to get me on the Day/June ship for once)

– The cool point idea that Marie Lu integrated into Antarctica  

Dislikes
– It was still super hard to differentiate between June and Day’s POV
– The plot seemed slow in the middle of the book


I’m afraid to say that Champion was in my opinion the weakest book in the series. I think the reason for that was because the plot just seemed to drag along quite a bit. I was also just a tiny bit disappointed that June didn’t end up staying with Anden. I mean, I totally get that the two of them weren’t exactly made to be soulmates (which apparently June and Day are *eyeroll* ).
The ending was utter perfection though and it did make me tear up quite a bit. And although I’m not the biggest June/Day shipper, I am glad that it left the readers with a sense of hope for their future relationship.
Other than that, I’m really afraid to say that not much else of the book ended up standing out to me. It seemed like a very typical dystopian-we-gotta-fight-back-and-stand-up-for-freedom type of a book so it didn’t leave the biggest impression on me.

I am incredibly glad though that both Eden and Tess ended up being ok in the end. I also really hope that Tess and Eden end up together (am I the only one thinking that??). 




Legend #2: Prodigy – Marie Lu

Prodigy

Goodreads Link

Author: Marie Lu

Length: 371 pages

“Injured and on the run, it has been seven days since June and Day barely escaped Los Angeles and the Republic with their lives. Day is believed dead having lost his own brother to an execution squad who thought they were assassinating him. June is now the Republic’s most wanted traitor. Desperate for help, they turn to the Patriots – a vigilante rebel group sworn to bring down the Republic. But can they trust them or have they unwittingly become pawns in the most terrifying of political games?”




4 ¼ STARS  ★ ★

Spoilers Ahead

Likes
– Plot twists
– Anden
– Kaede


Dislikes
– Day and June’s supposed “romance”, ugh
– Day and June always figuring everything out together 
– Still not really being able to tell the difference between the POVs

I really enjoyed this book, more than Legend, actually. I felt like the twists and turns really made this book, especially the bigger “reveal” about Anden and his true character. I was really rooting for him throughout the whole book, especially when June got to spend some time with him. I can also see that this is going to turn into one huge love triangle. 


I still can’t really get on board the Day and June ship though. (Dune? Jay?). I’m not entirely sure what it is, but I’m really not feeling it. I feel like they’ve got zero chemistry (maybe that’s just me though) and honestly, June would be way better off with Anden. 

What really did shock me was that the Patriots ended up being the “bad” guys. I mean, I wouldn’t have been super surprised if the Patriots (while not in league with the Republicans) would have turned out to be just as manipulative as the Republic (a la President Coin from the Hunger Games) but I really did not see that coming, so kudos. 

But…Kaede dying was something I just could not handle. My heart broke into a thousand little pieces when she sacrificed herself for the others. The bravery and selflessness of what she did was just too much – she is the true hero of the story. 

The one thing that I think was one of the things that could have been done better was the way that Day and June both found things out. It seemed that they almost always came to the same realizations (like, Razor being evil) at the same time (from their differing POVs though but still). It would have been a bit more exciting if there would have maybe been a little bit more tension between the two of them (like, Day not seeing June’s signal immediately) but other than that, this book was pretty fabulous. 


Legend #1: Legend – Marie Lu

Legend

Goodreads Link

Author: Marie Lu


Length: 305 pages


“What was once the western United States is now home to the Republic, a nation perpetually at war with its neighbors. Born into an elite family in one of the Republic’s wealthiest districts, fifteen-year-old June is a prodigy being groomed for success in the Republic’s highest military circles. Born into the slums, fifteen-year-old Day is the country’s most wanted criminal. But his motives may not be as malicious as they seem.

From very different worlds, June and Day have no reason to cross paths – until the day June’s brother, Metias, is murdered and Day becomes the prime suspect. Caught in the ultimate game of cat and mouse, Day is in a race for his family’s survival, while June seeks to avenge Metias’s death. But in a shocking turn of events, the two uncover the truth of what has really brought them together, and the sinister lengths their country will go to keep its secrets.

Full of nonstop action, suspense, and romance, this novel is sure to move readers as much as it thrills.”


★ ★  ★ STARS

Spoilers!




Likes
– The differing POV and how they crossed over
Both June and Day 
– The plot 
– Tess

Dislikes/Mehs
– Insta-love
– Your typical “we have to rebel against the government and start a revolution” principle
– Hard to tell the difference between Day’s POV and June’s POV sometimes

I was very pleasantly surprised by just how fast I read this book and how it sucked me in. Day and June are both characters who were incredibly interesting to read about and had their individualities which I appreciated. 

It did however feel like a very typical dystopian build up (there’s a totalitarian government and a dude who’s the face of it, you have to swear loyalty or die, they are hiding the evil they are doing, etc. etc.). That aside, it was incredibly interesting to see both the “insider” POV from June and the “outsider/outcast/rebel” POV from Day. I think the POV overlaps and the way they intertwined was on the things I loved most about this book.

I was incredibly shocked when Day’s mother and brother both ended up dead by the end of the book. I mean, I get that a lot of characters almost never make it through dystopian novels alive, but I was really rooting for their reunion. Day’s mother being shot literally a couple of seconds after finding out that her son was alive just seemed beyond cruel. 

June and Day however did feel like a very insta-lovey relationship and I think that that kind of turned me off them for a bit. They are quite sweet together, but I do feel like especially Day is making his affections for June to feel way bigger than they can be, considering they only just met, like a couple of days before the end of the book. 

And poor Ollie! I can’t believe June had to leave the poor guy behind *sad face*.


I am incredibly interested to see how the story will continue in Legend, and I am also crossing my fingers that it doesn’t turn into your stereotypical “good guys vs. bad guys” rebellion/revolution in the end. 




Tales of a New World #2: Sun Warrior – P.C. Cast

Sun Warrior


Goodreads Link

Author: P.C. Cast 

Length: 608 pages

The battle lines have been drawn and Mari, an Earth Walker and Nik, a Companion, who were once from rival clans now find themselves fighting to save each other and their people from destruction.

Thaddeus betrayed his own people, killing Nik’s father and destroying their entire clan. But he wants more. He wants the power he believes Mari has stolen from him and his people and he will do anything he must to get them back, even if it means destroying everything in his path. There is only way to stop Thaddeus, but it means a harrowing journey for Mari and Nik into the heart of darkness. But if they hope to survive the coming fight, they have no choice but to believe in each other. “


Before I get into my review, I would really briefly like to address the issue that people have allegedly been having with this series, apparently because they have seen racist parts in it. I am not usually someone who engages in debates like this and I like to keep myself out of them in general but I would like to say that personally, I have not read or seen anything remotely racist in this series. Yes, the characters of the Tribe and the Clan are both incredibly bigoted and racist towards one another in the beginning of the series (especially in Moon Chosen) but the entire premise of this book (which is also why it’s called Tales of a New World) is set on the idea of coming together, putting aside prejudices which rest on skin color, background, etc. and build a better life elsewhere with people who are accepting and loving towards everyone. Just because the characters within a book series have racist tendencies does not mean that this is supposed to be seen as the author’s personal opinion or to be seen as ‘good’ traits. Characters go through major character developments in books like these, and it’s not always going to be the case that all character are going to be accepting (even just taking the statistics of our own world). There would be no growth on these issues (when tackling them in literature) if we would not have a starting point which is bad. And also, people can change and grow with these issues. People can ask for forgiveness and learn to be better people, and that includes book characters. 


But I would also like to say that if you personally do not want to read this series or have DNFed it because of the issues that you have been having, that is totally fine. I respect everyone’s opinions and freedom on this issue. 

★ ★  ★ STARS


Spoilers ahead



Important moments

  • Dead Eye’s body gets taken over by Death
  • Mari calls down Sunfire to save the Tribe
  • Sora gets chosen by Chloe
  • Thaddeus gets driven more mad until Oddyseus dies
  • Dove escapes from the People and joins the Pack
  • Mari and Nik become mates 
  • Danita becomes close with Bast, the Lynx and heals from her assault
  • Jenna, Isabel and Danita officially become Moon Women apprentices 
  • Danita channels the Moon by herself
  • The Pack decides to move and head towards the Wind Rider territory
  • Nik goes back to get the Mother Plant and gets captured by Thaddeus and saved by Mari


Damn, that was truly a brilliant, beautiful, magical book. I’m starting to think that maybe P.C. Cast has some sort of gift of writing books that never cease to disappoint me. 


This book – if even possible – was even better than Moon Chosen. It was filled with everything that I ever wanted from this series and stuff that I didn’t even know I wanted. 

As always, the relationships and character developments were fabulous and amazing. The plot was absolutely intriguing, dark and mysterious as well as light, comical and heartfelt. 

What happened to Dead Eye was completely gruesome and terrifying. At first I thought Dead Eye was going to be some sort of antagonist, providing Mari and Nik trouble, but it was entirely shocking to realize that basically the great evil God of Death was behind everything. I began to feel so much for both Dead Eye and Dove and it kind of made me regret ever thinking that Dead Eye was evil through and through. I’m beyond glad that Dove managed to find sanctuary with the new Pack. 

One of the questions that I would like to have answered by the next book is why does the Great Goddess never speak to Mari? I mean, there must be some sort of reason why this is happening. It’s kind of sad as well, because it seems like Mari really and truly wants to have an intimate relationship with the Goddess but it seems like there is something that is holding the Goddess back from speaking to her. I’m curious as to how that gets resolved or if that’s just the way things are going to be. 

One of my favorite characters (besides Sora, of course) has become Danita. I thought it was really sweet how she and Bast became really close. I really loved the way that the Lynx seemed to be able to heal her from her traumatic experiences and I definitely hope that eventually she can completely heal from that. I’m also interested to see whether Bast will eventually choose Danita as Antreas’s mate and whether she will accept him. It seems like she is definitely warming up to him, but she does have a long way to go before being complete again. 

I am super excited for book 3 (which is also I believe the last book in the series). I absolutely cannot wait to see what’s going to happen. P.C. Cast has – again – crafted an absolutely phenomenal, magical, breathtaking world in which I love to read in!


Unearthly #3: Boundless – Cynthia Hand

Boundless

Goodreads Link

Author: Cynthia Hand

Length: 434 pages

“The past few years held more surprises than part-angel Clara Gardner ever could have anticipated. Now, with the fallen angel who attacked her watching her every move and the threat of Black Wings looming, Clara knows she must finally fulfill her destiny—a destiny that includes Christian Prescott by her side. But in order to complete her purpose, Clara must first find a way to give up the thing she wants most . . . a future with the boy she loves, Tucker Avery.”

★ ★  ★ STARS

Warning. Spoilers Ahead. 


Aw man, the ending of this book really got to me again, just like the ending of Hallowed. I’m not sure how many more times I’m able to read about saying goodbye to their loved ones without crying all over myself. 

I very much enjoyed this book and I feel like the ending was really a perfect way to wrap up this trilogy. It felt very bittersweet, especially because of what happens between Clara and Christian, but I do feel like it was inevitable, either for Christian or Tucker, and also I am also optimistic about what the future for them holds (as friends). Knowing Christian, he will definitely find a way to forgive Clara and move on. 

Probably the most shocking thing that happened in my opinion was Angela’s pregnancy. I literally could not believe it when she told Clara she was pregnant. Um…what?! She was definitely the last person I expected to end up having a baby, but wow. 

What I also really loved about the ending was Jeffrey and his escape from hell. That was quite shocking to me, but I suppose looking back it wasn’t completely surprising that that would have ended up happening to him. I am still quite curious as to what his purpose is, though, since we never really got to learn about that. I definitely hope that he ends up choosing the side of good (again) and manages to stick on the straight and narrow.

That epilogue though, was just so sweet. I am incredibly happy that Clara and Tucker managed to find their happy ending together. And speaking of that, Tucker a prophet? I am actually pretty disappointed that there won’t be any more sequels where we get to see Tucker learning how to cope with his new abilities or powers or whatever. 

What I also really wished for was more of a rounded off ending for Sam. I know that he probably won’t ever end up being “good” again or whatever (unless Clara manages to stab him with her glory sword) but I would have liked a bit more of a closed ending for him. He was probably one of the most interesting and complex characters of the trilogy and I do wish that he could have found peace again. 

Overall, I did really enjoy this series. It’s not one of my favorite series of all time, but I thoroughly enjoyed reading them. I think book 2 was definitely my favorite of the three. 🙂 

Unearthly #2: Hallowed – Cynthia Hand

Hallowed

Goodreads Link

Author: Cynthia Hand

Length: 403 pages

“For months part-angel Clara Gardner trained to face the raging forest fire from her visions and rescue the alluring and mysterious Christian Prescott from the blaze. But nothing could prepare her for the fateful decisions she would be forced to make that day, or the startling revelation that her purpose—the task she was put on earth to accomplish—is not as straightforward as she thought.


Now, torn between her increasingly complicated feelings for Christian and her love for her boyfriend, Tucker, Clara struggles to make sense of what she was supposed to do the day of the fire. And, as she is drawn further into the world of part angels and the growing conflict between White Wings and Black Wings, Clara learns of the terrifying new reality that she must face: Someone close to her will die in a matter of months. With her future uncertain, the only thing Clara knows for sure is that the fire was just the beginning”

4 ¼ STARS  ★ ★


Spoilers ahead


Oh wow. I think the ending of this book definitely falls under the top five books that have made me bawl at the end of them. I literally sat there with tears in my eyes for minutes after finishing this book

I also have a lot of mixed feelings about everything in this book at the moment. Obviously I love Clara with Tucker and I think the two of them are absolutely adorable together, but I’m starting to also really ship her with Christian. I also think that considering everything – especially all of the angelic issues, and her powers and whatnot – Christians seems like the reasonable and safe choice. But then again, love is not meant to be safe, is it? 

To be honest though, love-triangles aside, I was way too focused on Maggie reaching her 120th year than any romance issues that might have been going on. And while I have read a lot of books where people die – even very important or main character – I feel like Maggie’s death just hit me harder because we knew that it was going to happen quite early on and it felt like you were mourning her death throughout most of the book, and the sadness just happened to climax when she actually passed away. I also just could not, for the life of me, believe that she was actually going to die. 

What I also just did not understand was why was Jeffrey’s purpose to set that fire and save Tucker? What possible good was supposed to come out of that? I mean, if Jeffrey never had to start that fire, then Tucker would never have needed saving, right?

I am incredibly interested to see what is going to happen in the third and final book, especially in regards to Clara’s relationship with both Christian and Tucker. I also really hope we get to see her going to Stanford, because I absolutely love her relationship with Angela. What I’m also really hoping for is for Clara to be able to see her mom again, or that she’ll be able to travel to heaven sometime. But maybe that’s just stretching it. I’m curious to see what will happen to Samjeeza and whether Clara might have to work together with him on something. 

I guess we’ll see!


Unearthly #1: Unearthly – Cynthia Hand

Unearthly 

Author: Cynthia Hand

Length: 435 pages


“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.”

★ ★  ★ STARS



Spoilers ahead

Clara and Tucker are just to die for cute *squeal*! That was basically my reaction when I finished this book. 

I absolutely love Cynthia Hand’s writing style! This was my first book that I read of hers and I was incredibly surprised. 

I honestly could not believe it when it turned out that Tucker and Clara were falling for one another. I mean, I can’t seriously be the only one who thought that the two of them would basically be constant enemies? But boy was I happy when they got together. 

This was the first book about angels that I have read before. I mean, The Mortal Instruments obviously also has angels in it, but this was very different and I really loved the perspective it gave us on what kind of creatures angels are. 

I am still completely at a loss for words on what happened at the end of the book, with Christian also being angel-blooded and the fact that he HAD THE SAME PURPOSE AS HER (???). Goodness, that really shocked me. 

That aside though, I did feel like the ending was just a tiny bit cliché, with Clara flying off to save Tucker instead of Christian, but it didn’t really bother me one bit to be honest (probably cause they’re just so darn cute together!). 

I am incredibly intrigued though by Clara’s mom, and what exactly her backstory is. If I’m to take a guess at what she’s hiding, I’m going to guess that maybe her purpose didn’t work out either, and she suffered serious repercussions? (Maybe something that led her to meet that fallen angel?). 

The only thing that kind of bothered me was this (and I seriously hope I won’t get any backlash for saying this): as a Christian myself who strongly believes in a loving God who grants everyone free will, I don’t really like the book “trope” where God and a “divine destiny” (if you will) gets pitted against someone’s wish to love someone (or someone else). I strongly believe that we are all free to love who we want to and just generally portraying God as someone who will punish someone for loving someone is – even though it’s something fine to use in books and movies and whatnot as a plot device – an inaccurate representation of the Divine and might mislead people into believing something about God that isn’t true.

(Ok, enough religious ranting, LOL )

What I also really appreciated about this book were the friendships. I absolutely loved Clara’s relationship with Angela and Wendy and it was really interesting to compare the two of them. I wonder whether Wendy will soon be in the know about what Clara is (considering Tucker knows everything now) and whether Wendy and Angela will ever really become good friends. I also really loved Angela and how they her mom owned that theater. 

And I am also insanely curious as to why Angela’s wings are pure white. I mean, is there something going on that we don’t know about?? (I mean, probably, this is a trilogy after all)