Paranormal Young Adult
Received from publisher for review
THE STORY (from Goodreads)
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.
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.
Boundless is a book we open with equal parts eager anticipation and nervous trepidation, our desire to know how things end for Clara, Tucker and Christian combining with our fear at the fact that these pages are the last we’ll get to spend with them to guarantee we’re on edge chapter to chapter. Not only are our nerves alight, crackling and jumping with every page as we wonder when the foreshadowed darkness of the prologue will catch up to us in real time, but our emotions are raw, the pain of Tucker’s noticeable absence something compounded by every lonely beat of our ravaged hearts. Luckily for us though, we have a protagonist in Clara who stands strong even as our own knees threaten to buckle, and she remains a pillar of strength until the very end.
Clara is the type of heroine those of us who read a great deal of young adult literature crave; someone who doesn’t cave under enormous emotional and physical pressure or seek to play games with the young men in her life. Though things are definitively over with Tucker from page one of this final installment, Clara never attempts to numb her obvious pain by accepting the love and affection Christian repeatedly offers, instead she gives herself time to come to terms with the dissolution of one relationship before immediately throwing herself into the complexities of another. While she sorts through the hurt and confusion she also never once leads Christian on or makes promises to him she’s not sure she can keep, she simply reminds him again and again how much his friendship means and what an important figure he is in her life even if he's not in the role he might wish.
Christian, for his part, handles the emotional fragility between he and Clara with equal grace, never pushing her to make a decision or admit feelings for him she’s not capable of voicing just yet, and our hearts hurt for him all the more for the respect he shows her. It would be far easier for us to exult in our love for Tucker and our desire for Clara to choose him were Christian to rage and fight and be cruel, but his quiet acceptance even as his hope that things will eventually change nearly undo us. Tucker’s role in this last book is brief but memorable, his clear hurt when Clara returns home from Stanford adding precariously perched weights to our already unstable emotional pile–threatening to topple everything and leave us reeling–but still our love for him never wavers, and we can’t help but wish for an ending that sees happiness spread far and wide for all three of them.
One complaint with this book is with regard to a bevy of unanswered questions we’re left with by the time we close the back cover, something we don’t worry about in the moments after finishing when our euphoria (or disappointment, depending on which way one is romantically leaning) over the resolution of things between Clara, Tucker, and Christian has us in its grip, but once we’ve had ample time to think, we realize not much besides their relationship was actually resolved. Questions still abound as to what the villain was actually trying to accomplish, and how exactly the triplares were going to assist in that endeavor, and the final battle with him lasted but moments. Granted, this story has always been more focused on Clara and the other angel-bloods individual purposes rather than the larger heaven vs. hell fight, but it remains unclear at the end just what the villain was fighting for, specifically. Despite those questions, Boundless is still a thrilling and emotionally intense read, and I’m greatly looking forward to what Ms. Hand will move onto next.