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Today in Jen's Library

I listen to audiobooks while I flip houses. I also read real books which I buy incessantly.

Currently reading

Monsters (The Ashes Trilogy, #3)
Ilsa J. Bick
Time Between Us
Tamara Ireland Stone
The Message: The New Testament, Mass Market Edition
Boundless (Audio) - Cynthia Hand I read this series right in a row, and I am so glad I did. Now I want to move to Jackson Hole, WY and be 17 again. I've revisited scenes from these books again and again.

So yes, I loved and adored them all, especially this one, and you should stop everything right now and read them.

I was an "angel virgin" before reading this series. I avoided it because I have some faith issues with angels and I didn't want a sappy story about some idea of what angels are. For those of you who might also have faith/angel/Christian issues with the whole idea, let me set your fears to rest. This is a wonderful adventure that will likely not offend your mindset.

Every one of the books in this series has its own story, and Boundless is no exception. That's something that impressed me; while each sequel is a continuation, it has a separate theme that is well-developed. With Boundless, we get Clara off at college trying to grow up while dealing with loss and threat to her life. It makes for some great reading. I'm really sorry the whole thing is over!

As for the mechanics of the book, the plot is amazing. There is action and angst. There's a trip to hell, where the imagery is stunning. There is loss - of friends, siblings, romance. There is coming-of-age in a multitude of ways. And all of this is handled in a fashion where the pacing is perfect and each thing makes sense. There are no real lulls in the action, which is notable because of a stretch where the heroes are in hiding, essentially waiting and doing nothing.

The characters are probably what really send this book into the heavens (pun intended). Clara is still herself, but smarter and stronger. She still struggles with some angst, but it is warranted and she is mature about it. She makes mistakes and she moves on. She discovers some relatively new things about herself and sets new goals. In a word, she grows.

Christian continues to be revealed in layers. He is so interesting; just when I thought he was the perfect guy he appears to be, some weakness in judgement was revealed. He is so much more likable as someone who is a tiny bit flawed.

Angela changes dramatically in this story, as does Jeffrey. There is a new bad guy who is really, really bad - the kind of bad which makes me think that if this fictional demon is that bad, then I should be really, really afraid of the real Satan!

I love Clara and Tucker the most. But if I had to pick a third favorite character, it would be Samjeeza. The idea that this fallen angel is so conflicted is just fascinating. And his behavior in this book is wonderful.

Some people have had trouble with the love triangle. I resolved this in my own mind by watching Clara deliberate between her heart and her head, between strong emotion and logical conclusion. And because this is teenaged fiction, I can forgive these characters for breaking the one foundational rule of marriage: one should always, always marry one's best friend.

The ending was amazing good, inevitable, and only a tiny bit sad. I only wish every character could have had the kind of happiness that fulfills them. Then again, an ending is still an ending, and the fact that it is bittersweet in a small way just makes it all the better.

OK, well, see ya! Since this is fiction, I'll be in Jackson Hole, 16 years old again, going to high school, eyeing Christian Prescott and asking if Tucker Avery has a friend . . .