by Cynthia Hand
Read via Library Book
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Big Themes: Angels, Fallen Angels, Destiny, Love Triangle, Great Outdoors (skiing, fishing, hiking)
Clara is an angel-blood, meaning she is part angel. As she turns 17, her angelic purpose starts to make itself clear to her through regular visions. Her family moves from California to Wyoming so that Clara can begin to discover her purpose, which she believes involves saving the dreamy Christian Prescott from a forest fire.
What I Liked:
Main Character: Clara is a likable protagonist, but it took me a chunk of the book before I felt that way. Upon her arrival at her new school, I was annoyed by her narrow focus on who was popular and who wasn’t. And her obsession with Christian and the fainting and the repeated description of his eyes/hair felt a little too familiar to Twilight for my tastes. But once we got into the meat of the book, Clara’s character developed further. I understood her frustration with her mother over holding back angel information. I liked Clara’s choice of friends (Wendy and Angela). And I admired how she handled herself in certain situations. (Don’t want to spoil anything!)
Choice of Setting: The first moment I had where I really started to love this book was when Clara goes skiing for the first time. Her description of learning to ski, the chair lift, the snow, the mountain made me feel like I was there. And it was refreshing to have the main character doing something besides school, shopping and friend drama. The book went on to have more lovely descriptions of outdoorsy stuff and I really felt like those moments were the highlights of the book for me.
Love Interest: I am soooo swooning for Tucker Avery. I don’t want to ruin a single moment of this book, but Tucker Avery is now one of my favorite male leads ever. I loved his teasing, his patience, his outdoorsy knowledge, his chivalrous ways. He was really just a regular guy. None of that brooding, mysterious stuff that’s so prevalent in romantic leads right now. He’ll help you tow your car out of a ditch or teach you how to fly fish. (Oh please, Tucker, teach me to fly fish!) If I could script out how I’d want a guy to woo me, they could just follow how Tucker did it. OMG. I love Tucker.
Things I’m Still Not Sure About:
Paranormal/Angel Stuff: I don’t think I have enough info on Cynthia Hand’s version of angels to make a verdict on whether her paranormal world makes sense. I still don’t quite understand the whole visions and purpose thing, but Clara doesn’t understand it either so I’m probably not supposed to yet. I’m definitely curious about how she’s going to be able to wrap this up in 3 books. A purpose/destiny seems bigger than something you can tell in 3 books.
Christian Prescott: Still not sure how I feel about this guy. He’s a little too perfect and mysterious.
After finishing the book, I instantly gave it 5 stars on Goodreads because I LOVE TUCKER. After reflecting for a few days, I probably need to downgrade it to a 4 star read. Still a great book, but the focus on popular people vs invisibles was a turn-off and a lot of the angel stuff is still unclear.
I’ve already bought Hallowed (Book #2), and am currently over halfway done. Stay tuned for my review!