By Cynthia Hand
hardcover, 403 pages
Published January 17th 2012 by HarperTeen
**May contain spoilers if you have not yet read Unearthly or Hallowed. Read at your own risk!**
My Review Breakdown
FINAL SCORE: 17/25 = 4 Cupcakes
My Rating: SIMPLY DELECTABLE!!!
WHY I WANTED THIS BOOK: I read Unearthly last year and really enjoyed it; so I continued with the series and wasn't disappointed.
STORY/PLOT: The world building is very good in this series. Hand has a unique approach to how her angels are that is different enough to distinguish it from other angel series out there. I also like that she can have heaven, hell, and even God in the book but it never becomes religious or preachy. Clara's story is an interesting one, and being a teenage girl is difficult enough, let alone being an angel-blood and having to fulfill a purpose! There really aren't any scenes where the story lags, there's pretty much action happening on every page which is great because it kept me really engaged. I like where all of the characters are at the end of the book as well. The story line is well developed though I do feel that it jumps in time too much; like one chapter ends the next begins weeks to maybe a month or more in the future. It doesn't take from the story at all but I think if there weren't these gaps it would be even better to see the dynamics of the relationships between characters.
CHARACTERS: It's been a year since I read Unearthly so at first it took me a bit to get back into the characters. Clara's character is very likable if not maybe a tiny bit predictable. She is a very real character; easy to put yourself in her shoes and see why she reacts and acts the way that she does. Tucker is definitely swoon worthy as well; and Christian, I'm not sure why, but I have my guard up about him. Hopefully this is unfounded but for now, I just don't know! I also had a lot of trouble connecting with Michael. This might be the only character/writing that I wasn't head over heels for. It'll be interesting to see if he's in book 3. And then there is Samjeeza. I know, I know, he's a Black Wing *gasp* but holy freaking hell (no pun intended...) his sorrow makes ME want to cry! He is such a tragic character, but I really feel for him. He pulls me in when he's not supposed to! Well, actually, I guess that is what he's supposed to do, right? hee hee...
WRITING: I like Hands' writing style for its simplicity and ease. It's a pleasure to read and is engaging. There were a lot of times where I'd be flying through page after page and then something stops me. A quick sentence, fleeting and minute, but it grabs me. This is what I love and crave! There weren't any parts that seemed forced or rushed. Everything tied together very neatly and I really like her dialogue. There were a few things that I definitely felt were easily predictable, and then there were others that weren't at all (like say, Jeffery and his purpose? Nuff said.)
ENDING: The ending was perfect and left plenty of room for book 3!
COVER: The covers on both Unearthly and Hallowed are absolutely gorgeous. I don't know what it is about them, but they really pull me in. I literally sat and just stared at the cover for a good couple of minutes before opening to the first page! The only thing that kept me from giving this a perfect score, is that there is something that isn't connecting in the models face for me. It's beautiful and it works, but I don't get the sadness that I would like to get when looking at the cover.
WHAT I HOPE FOR IN BOOK 3: I would love for Clara to give her and Tucker a 2nd chance. I am curious to see what happens with Jeffery as well since he is M.I.A. Also I am curious to see how Clara and Billy's relationship is; if it grows and blossoms or if Clara has trouble looking up to her as a motherly figure. It'll be interesting to see how Stanford goes for Clara and Angela, and what Angela's purpose is. I can't wait to see how Clara and Christian handle the new found knowledge of what they really are.
FINAL THOUGHTS: Holy crow, this book rocked my world! If you love angels, love triangles, and action you need to read this series. You won't be sorry!
READ THIS IF YOU LIKED: Angel Burn & Angel Fire by L.A. Weatherly, Hush,Hush, Crescendo & Silence by Becca Fitzpatrick, Angelfire by Courtney Allison Moulton, Fallen Angel by Heather Terrell