Review: Hourglass by Myra McEntire

13 Sep

Series: Hourglass, book #1

Published: June 14th 2011 by Egmont USA

Details: Hardcover, 397 pages

My Rating: 4/5

My Summary:

A great read featuring Emerson, who since her parents death can see ghosts. She meets Michael, the consult her brother has hired, and her world turns upside down. I loved the dialogues, the heroine and the intriguing plot, but thought the romance and the villains were too clicheed. Still a hugely entertaining read, and I plan to continue the series.


A few chapters in:

I have just started reading Hourglass, not to be confused with the third book of Claudia Gray’s Evernight Series. Instead, this is a debut from author Myra McEntire, and it involves time travel and an “explosively delicious romance”, if to believe a statement by Beth Ravis (author of Across the Universe) at the blurb of the book.

It also received a stunning review from yareads, which as you know I follow very closely.

Enough said, I got myself a copy and I’m now a few chapters in:

Emerson Cole is a 17-year old with a rather unusual problem. She sees ghosts. Generally, these ghosts are people from the past and the only way to make them disappear is by touching them.

Her well-meaning brother Thomas and his wife Dru are of course worried about Emerson’s strange ability (or craziness) and they’ve done everything in their power to help her, including a number of shrinks and medications. As we enter the story, Thomas as just hired another one of these “consults” for Emerson.

This one however is different from the others. For one, he is only a few years older than Emerson. Secondly, he is absolutely gorgeous. And thirdly he has the very same ability to see “ghosts” as Emerson.

All great news. Except for the fact that Michael, as he is called, seems to hide something, and this is somehow related to the mysterious organization Hourglass which he is working for. What secrets exactly he is hiding I don’t know yet, but I’m sure we’ll find out soon enough.

And so far, I am really enjoying this! I like the smart, spunky heroine, the witty dialogue and the unpredictable story line. Let’s just hope it continues this way!

After finishing the book:

So here’s the deal, I thought Hourglass was a very entertaining read. It had that quality about it that forced me to continue, the kind of book that won’t let go. Just need to read one more chapter, okay just one more.. one more until Oops it’s 2 am! How did that happen?

That being said, it wasn’t perfect. Meaning, it was not the type of book that upon finishing it had me thinking about it for days afterwards. There were a few things I found myself questioning and a few cliché’s that had my eyes rolling, but which I chose to ignore because I was so into the unraveling mystery.

So yep, hugely entertaining, that’s for sure. Yet not a book to die for. Do I make sense? Probably not. I’ll explain a bit more:

What I loved:

I loved the heroine, let’s get that one straight. She was the type of heroine you want to become best friends with. I’d like all my heroines to be like that. She reminded me a bit of Clara in Unearthly, the same snarky humour, ability to fend for herself, depth, great relationship with her family, insecure but also tough. I could totally see how any guy could fall in love with her.

Like other reviewers have commented, I enjoyed the original take on the plot, and obviously the pacing was great! I loved learning more, along with Emerson, what exactly she could do, what the Hourglass was, and the inner workings of time travel. It was all really interesting and had me on the edge of my seat the entire time.

I also loved the side characters, her lovely brother and wife who believed in her and her best friend Lily, who seemed to have a few secrets on her own. Can’t wait to see her character expand! I also loved Kabel, the other guy in the love triangle. Maybe even more than Michael. He was more open and showed more of his emotions than Michael, who was a bit more closed off and had that tortured thing going on about him.

Which brings me to what I didn’t love so much:

Michael, the romantic interest. I think I’m getting tired of male protagonists being portrayed as tortured souls. It’s worked before – I mean Jace! – but I feel it’s time to read about something new now. That being said, I’ve definitely read about worse male romantic leads. Michael was okay, just not very original.

The romance worked because I liked their chemistry and especially their dialogues together. But again, I did have a few qualms about it, or rather, there were a couple of clichés embedded in that romance that had my eyes rolling a bit. For instance:

1)  There is this electric current that goes through them every time they touch. I mean, light bulbs would literally go out when they touched, that sort of thing. Call me cynical, but it seemed a bit too over the top.

2) Michael keeps saying that he and Emerson can’t be together and I kept wondering, why not? I sure didn’t understand that, and at the end of the book, it didn’t seem to be much of a problem either. So it really felt more like a convenient plot device to keep them separated rather than a real problem.

3) I didn’t completely understand why Michael was being all that mysterious about Hourglass. Once again, I thought he was exaggerating that, or that he was mysterious for the sake of being mysterious. He’d keep repeating that he couldn’t tell her anything but at the end of the day, she was bound to find out anyway, and it sure didn’t seem to cause any problems then. So why the whole mysterious act?

A final qualm I had with this book was the end, which felt a bit too over the top. The villains were evil because..yeah why exactly? They were evil because of the sake of being evil? Too black and white if you ask me. It felt like a James Bond movie, where they have this long ooohahahahaaa talk about why they betrayed certain people and want to conquer the world. You know?

I didn’t completely buy into it.

But, despite all that, I sure flew through this book, in a matter of hours. I just could not stop! The number one reason, apart from a great heroine, characters and intriguing plot was the dialogue! It was great, fun, inventive and most of all sarcastic! I literally laughed out loud througout the book! So great job on that McEntire!

All in all, this is a great fun read and I’m sure to pick up the next book in the series, to hit the shelves some time next year.

10 Responses to “Review: Hourglass by Myra McEntire”

  1. jenika September 18, 2011 at 11:17 am #

    your review made me curious, I already found the book on line, I’ll let you know my thoughts once I’ll read it!
    Thank you for your review.

    • tess September 20, 2011 at 8:33 am #

      Great! I would love to hear what you think if you read it!! Thanks, Tess

  2. jenika September 29, 2011 at 6:04 pm #

    Hi Tess
    I read the Hourglass and I am afraid I didn’t really enjoyed it.
    It wasn’t so bad but I couldn’t enter inside the story very much, the characters were maybe a bit too fake and the romanticism between Emerson and Michael was not credible at all.
    When Kaleb entered the story I thought it might be an interesting character but he too was not credible at all… (at least michael had an excuse to feel drawn towards Emerson… but Kaleb? It looked to me like the author wanted to throw in the story a love triangle but was not able to develop it in proper way…)
    I think all the characters were quite shallow and not well developed.
    The only few things who made the book interesting where the identity of Jack and a few surprises happening towards the end of the book.
    I would give the book not more than 2.5/5 and surely I will not continue the series.

    • tess October 1, 2011 at 8:49 am #

      Sorry to hear you didn’t enjoy this one as much. I do agree on some of your points, it was a very standard young adult, a bit too standard actually with the inevitable love triangle, the electric current whenever they touched, and the guy being all moody and mysterious. I still got caught up in the story, because I thought it was witty and well written with those twists towards the end. But yeah, still debating whether I should have given it 3.5 or a 4. Good as always to hear your thoughts 🙂

  3. Saundra October 6, 2011 at 12:45 am #

    Hey Tess! I hope all is well, just curious what you are reading now and what your next review will be. Saundra

    • tess October 6, 2011 at 10:37 am #

      Hi Saundra! Sorry for the absence! I’m good but have been swamped by work these last couple of weeks! But I just published a review today, and I have a few more coming – all dystopias which seems to be what I’ve been reading lately, for example Matched, Awaken and Unwind. What have you been reading lately? /Tess

  4. Saundra October 6, 2011 at 4:19 pm #

    So glad, cannot wait to read your reviews! Dystopian is definately a fav of mine too. I am currently reading The Umbecoming of Mara Dyer, half way through and WHOA! Next in my TBR is Wolfsbane. I think my next purchase is going to be EVE, it is a new Dystopian trilogy that just came out this week. So good to hear from you (my favorite blogger)!!!!

    • tess October 6, 2011 at 4:43 pm #

      Thanks Saundra, that’s really nice to hear! You know what, we have more or less the same book pattern going on, because I’ve just ordered The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer – great to hear you’re that into it!! AND, Wolfsbane is pretty much the next book in my TBR list too! It will be fun to see if we think the same – I’ve seen that it’s got mixed reviews so I’m trying not to have too high expectations. I have not heard of EVE though, but will definitely check it out now! Thanks as always for your comments!!

      • Saundra October 6, 2011 at 9:21 pm #

        That is too funny! I have read mixed reviews about Wolfsbane too and Mara Dyer, cannot wait to hear your thoughts, I hear the ending is a real kicker. Checkout my goodreads to-read for Eve. Daughter of Smoke and Bones may be next as well, so many books so little time! Happy Reading!

      • tess October 8, 2011 at 8:15 am #

        Oh wow, so many books so little time, I totally agree. I’ll check out your goodreads to-read! Thanks!

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