Published by Harper Teen on 1/17/2012
Genres: Paranormal Fiction, Romance, Young Adult
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.
It’s going to be really hard not to gush about how great HALLOWED was, especially as a follow-up to Cynthia Hand’s debut novel, UNEARTHLY. Again, we get more of the unusual paranormal element – angels – and we also get to read more about the fight between Good and Evil (in this case, the angel-bloods against the Black Wings, those angels who’ve fallen). I continued to adore the characters: Clara, Tucker, Christian, Angela, and Wendy. Not to mention the secondary characters and everyone new whom we are introduced to in this book. I started out in UNEARTHLY in love with Tucker. He’s a good ol’ boy with a good heart, the kind that makes you want to melt right into your shoes. Christian was nice, but standoffish and while it was an interesting triangle, I knew which team THIS girl was rooting for. But now that Cynthia Hand delivers more and more twists and surprises, I’m not sure! She took everything I thought I knew in UNEARTHLY and changed the game on me. Well done, Cynthia. WELL DONE. I really liked the play on the Good vs. Evil bit, it was exceptional. Hand is really good at writing villains; I liked Samjeeza even when I despised him. Maybe because I pitied him so much, but Hand writes him as this powerful, menacing creature who is somehow still just really sad & pathetic. You can tell he wants salvation, but he’s just so proud. Cynthia Hand is an expert at drawing out the reader’s emotion and twisting it around her finger. I often found myself near tears, or laughing aloud throughout HALLOWED. So much is going on in this novel, I was unsure where it would turn next. I love when I’m surprised! I can honestly say there wasn’t one predictable thing about it. There isn’t a ton of action in HALLOWED, so if you’re looking for that, you’ll be disappointed. What I think HALLOWED is, is a dynamic follow-up, a setting of the stage if you will, for what is to happen in book three. I wish I could tell you more, but that would spoil pretty much everything, so I’ll leave you with this: get your tissues and be prepared to experience every emotion!
“That’s the hardest part,” he says. “The absence of uncertainty.” The phrase has a nice ring to it. It could be the motto of my life.
Books like this: UNEARTHLY