Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Book Review: Boundless by Cynthia Hand.


Product details:
Publisher: HarperTeen.
Hardcover, 438 pages.
Release date: January 22rd 2013.
Rating: 4 out of 5.
Ages: 13+
Series: Unearthly  #3.
Other Books in Series: Unearthly, Hallowed, Radiant.
Overall Series Rating: 4 out of 5.
Source: Purchased.

The past few years have held more surprises than part-angel Clara Gardner could ever have anticipated. Yet from the dizzying highs of first love, to the agonizing low of losing someone close to her, the one thing she can no longer deny is that she was never meant to live a normal life.

Since discovering the special role she plays among the other angel-bloods, Clara has been determined to protect Tucker Avery from the evil that follows her . . . even if it means breaking both their hearts. Leaving town seems like the best option, so she’s headed back to California - and so is Christian Prescott, the irresistible boy from the vision that started her on this journey in the first place.

As Clara makes her way in a world that is frighteningly new, she discovers that the fallen angel who attacked her is watching her every move. And he’s not the only one. . . . With the battle against the Black Wings looming, Clara knows she must finally fulfill her destiny. But it won’t come without sacrifices and betrayal.

In the riveting finale of the Unearthly series, Clara must decide her fate once and for all.


 Please note: This is a review of a next-in-a-series book. There may be spoilers for the previous book in the series in this review.


Ah, Boundless.  You made me smile, and then you almost made me cry.

Saying goodbye to an absolute favourite series is always a little bittersweet.  Bitter because it’s always sad to leave characters you’ve grown to love, but sweet because you generally leave them in a better place than when you first met them. I say generally, because that’s what usually happens, but not always.  And in order to avoid spoilers in this review all I’ll say is that a certain somebody from the Unearthly series really needs their own spin-off alá Adrian Ivashkov from Vampire Academy. Because my heart broke a little bit for that someone at the end of this book. Please, please, please make that spin-off happen.

Boundless begins with Clara packing up her old life in Jackson Hole and moving back to California where she’ll attend Stanford University.   While Unearthly was all about fulfilling her purpose, and Hallowed tested Clara’s resolve with heart-wrenching loss, Boundless is all about new beginnings and letting go of the past.   That’s easier said than done, though, especially when the past is the place your heart calls home.  Clara may have said goodbye to Tucker in Hallowed, but even though he’s no longer in her life, she often thinks of him, and the good times they shared.  That’s not to say that Clara doesn’t have other distractions though – namely University and all that entails, old enemies that continue to taunt her, and of course, a boy called Christian.

Ah, Christian Prescott.  Love him. I’ve loved him since day one. 

Let me take a minute:

“Hot is really not an adequate enough word for this guy. He is crazy beautiful. And it’s more than his looks—the intentionally messy waves of his dark hair; the strong eyebrows that make his expression a bit serious, even when he smiles; his eyes, which I notice can look emerald in one light and hazel in another; the sweetly sculpted angles of his face; the curve of his full lips.”  -

Cynthia Hand.


Le sigh. Christian is my Jay Heaton, he’s my Adrian Ivashkov, he’s my Noah Shaw, he’s my Cole St. Clair. In short, he’s one of my all time favourite book boys.


But can Christian win Clara’s heart? I mean, I don’t want to make this review all about Christian, but you know….Also, in the battle of the boys he pretty much dominates this book. Christian is a huge part of Clara’s every day life, while the cowboy, for the most part, is out of the picture.   I’m not sure how Team Tucker fans will feel about that, but that’s just how it is. However, rest assured that while Tucker isn’t physically present like before, he’ll always have a special place in Clara’s heart.   Then again, after all Christian’s been through – especially what he goes though in this book – doesn’t he deserve a little happiness? I mean, this guy would go to hell and back for Clara.

And Clara kind of knows that, which is why, having been a big Clara fan throughout the series, she infuriated me at times in this book.  Then again, Clara’s treatment of the people around her rings very true.  She has great qualities – she’s loyal, loving and caring.  But on the other hand she can be terribly stubborn and selfish.  I guess she’s very real. And that’s what makes her a great character.

As the final book in a series, Boundless features an epic showdown where good versus evil, lives are lost and all kinds of revelations come to light.  The thing about Boundless (as with Hallowed) is that is starts off a little slow, but that’s okay, because Cynthia Hand writes so, so, so beautifully. Beautiful words that become beautiful sentences, paragraphs, and pages. Then Boom!  Everything kicks off.  There are lots of surprises involving Angela (an actual OMFG moment!) and Christian – I so didn’t see that coming, although I’m thinking now that I totally should have.  What can I say? His face is a distraction.

Overall, Boundless is a great conclusion to a wonderful series that was just a joy to read from start to finish.  I miss Clara and co. already and I wish there was still more to come.  So, about that spin-off? Yeah?


*****



Radiant – Unearthly #2.5

Seriously one of the best novellas I’ve read.  Radiant depicts a hot summer in Rome with Clara and Angela that takes places between graduation (the end of Hallowed) and Stanford (the beginning of Boundless).  I loved this one because I’ve always been so intrigued by the character of Angela – I knew that girl had some major secrets! What happens in Rome stays in Rome, but that summer also has major consequences for Angela and Clara too, in Boundless.






22 comments :

  1. Great review! I really loved this book, especially the ending. But unlike you, I was always a Tucker fan. No doubt about it. I will admit I came around to Christian in this book and saw that special side to him that Clara loved but . . . I'm forever a Tucker fan. Mwhaha. I get that Christian would be perfect for Clara but I've always found Tucker offered something different . . . something Clara always needed . . a normal life. Still, Christian was pretty awesome in this book.

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  2. Oh no I don't want heartbreak!!! I'm dying to read this one but I have a pile of review books to get to first. So bummed that Tucker's not in this one as much, I'm one of  those Tucker fans. Can't wait to read it!!! 

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  3. WE DEFINITELY NEED A SPINOFF LEANNA!!! I've been pretty firmly in Tucker's camp from book one, but man did Christian test my loyalty in this book. I just wanted to hug him. And then hug him more. I'm so sad this series is ending, but I enjoyed every minute I got to spend with these characters and their world. Really wonderful review:)

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  4. I am Team Tucker, and although I haven't actually read this yet, I know how it ends. I completely understand why you are after a spin-off series! I know a lot of people who would agree. :) 

    Great review!

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  5. He LITERALLY went to hell and back for her. I've always liked both boys, but after Hallowed I really thought...well, you know. And so my heart was disappointed. *cries* It's been over a month and I'm still not over everything.

    Like you, I thought this was a great story otherwise, though. But YES. Spinoff. Short story. Anything. *cries more*

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

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  6.  Ha! Yes. I originally had the word literally at the end of that sentence, but then I took it back out again in case of spoilers. I guess I was already thinking I had given too much away in this review with my heartbreak and obvious Team Christian stance. But yeah, my heart broke for him in this book in a way that my heart hasn't broken for anyone since Adrian in VA, but it broke way worse for Christian for lots of reasons. I'm still not over it!! I feel like there's so much more to Christian's story and we only got a little peek in the epilogue, so I'd really love more!

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  7.  I really want a spin-off series bad.  I might have been better off if I'd known who she was going to choose going into this. I really thought my guy was in with a chance, you know! My heart is shattered for him! lol!

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  8.  Thanks, Jenny. Aw, I've been all about Christian right from the start, and I'd really love to know more of his story! I miss these characters already, but especially Christian. ;)

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  9.  There are still Tucker moments, but he's definitely not in this one as much as previous books. Lots of Christian, though!

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  10.  He was! I think more and more people started coming round to Christian in Hallowed, and then Tucker wasn't in this book a whole lot, so hearts were torn. You're right - Clara always wanted normal, but will she have it now after that twist??? I guess we'll never know!

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  11. I feel ya. It is bittersweet to read an ending to a series. Great review. 
    Happy reading,

     Brandi
    @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

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  12. OMG, I have to read this asap! I loved Unearthly and Hollowed and now finding out how it all ends for Clara, I need to know! Especially, with Tucker and Christian. For me, It's definitely impossible to guess who she would be with. I've always loved Tucker but after reading Hollowed and everything going on with Christian- though he has really grown on me. Nice review :)

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  13. So I skimmed your review since I just finished Hallowed yesterday and didn't want to spoil anything, but I'm glad you gave it 4 out of 5 stars. The ending to a trilogy can be disappointing. I also saw you read Radiant. I am not big on novellas, so I pretty much ignored it. But since you said it's one of the best novellas you've ever read and plus, it takes place in ROME!!, I'll have to get a copy. 

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  14.  Radiant is definitely worth reading. I usually skip novella's too but I checked this one out because I've always wanted to know more about Angela. It's definitely worth reading - even though everything that happens is pretty much recapped in Boundless. Oh, and yes, the Roman setting - you'll love it! :)

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  15. I am so scared! I'm listening to the audiobook right now and I'm just in the middle! Just like you I also LOOOOOOVE Christian. He's so wonderful and my heart breaks for him.. Constantly! There were w few scenes when I would have liked to punch Clara... 

    Now, I am so scared how it will all end.. 

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  16.  Yes - Clara just infuriated me in this book at times! I didn't know you loved Christian too. Come talk to me when you've finished listening!

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  17. Aaah you got me at  epic showdown!! Oh, and also at Christian.. And.. And.. At "Ah, Boundless" ok. I need to read this book like, yesterday!! :D

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  18.  Yes! :D

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  19. I'm so sad that this book hasn't been picked up here! I'm dying to read it but not at US HB prices :( 

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  20.  I know. It sucks that they didn't pick up the third book after publishing the first two. I read that they are looking for a new publisher over here though, so fingers crossed.

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  21. I've wanted this book for quite a while but i can't find it anywhere where I live... Which is definitely bad... After reading your review, you've tempted me a heck lot more! Great review!^_^

    Ria
    http://foreverreadingbooks.blogspot.co.uk/

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  22. Hi Ria! Yeah - the UK publishers didn't publish the third book so your best bet is to pick up a US copy online - the hardbacks can be pricey, though, I know.

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