Friday, July 15, 2011

Hourglass by Myra McEntire

By Myra McEntire
390 pages
Released April 2011

Hourglass (Hourglass, #1)For seventeen-year-old Emerson Cole, life is about seeing what isn’t there: swooning Southern Belles; soldiers long forgotten; a haunting jazz trio that vanishes in an instant. Plagued by phantoms since her parents’ death, she just wants the apparitions to stop so she can be normal. She’s tried everything, but the visions keep coming back.
So when her well-meaning brother brings in a consultant from a secretive organization called the Hourglass, Emerson’s willing to try one last cure. But meeting Michael Weaver may not only change her future, it may change her past.
Who is this dark, mysterious, sympathetic guy, barely older than Emerson herself, who seems to believe every crazy word she says? Why does an electric charge seem to run through the room whenever he’s around? And why is he so insistent that he needs her help to prevent a death that never should have happened?(Synopsis from GoodReads)

I love the cover of this book.  I looked at it for months on the Amazon page and didn't even realize she was walking on a wall.  And after reading Hourglass I don't know what that has to do with the novel.  Maybe I should ask someone else that read the novel.  But that's not the most significant problem I had with the novel.  I'll start at the beginning.

Emerson can see ghosts.  She started shortly before her parents died.  She was institutionalized for awhile and doped up because of it and she stopped seeing them, but she stopped taking her meds and she sees them again.  She didn't want to be a zombie anymore so she chose to see ghosts over taking her meds.  Her brother and his wife don't know she stopped taking her meds, but know she's seeing ghosts again.  Emerson lives with them.  Thomas, Emerson's brother has tried every healer and snake oil dealer in the  world to help Emerson so it's no surprise that Emerson doesn't trust the new guy from The Hourglass when he says he can help.  Instant sparks fly when they touch-real sparks as in electricity and from then on it's like a cat and mouse game with Michael, the consultant from The Hourglass teasing Emerson into an almost relationship then pulling back.  It's tedious and confusing and I didn't buy into it.  Emerson talked all bravado and all, but she let Michael pull her strings and make her melt at the slightest touch.  Then he'd pull away and disappear and she'd chase after him.  Emerson, you never chase after them.  It makes you seem desperate.

So, the relationship thing made me almost not want to finish the book.  And I was really not happy because I've been wanting this book forever.  So I persevered.  And I was glad I did!  Because the second half of the book read like a totally different novel.  It was smooth and flowed like a story should.  The back story was filled in so that everything made sense.  There was none of this trying to be mysterious and hush hush.  I'm all for leaving things out, but I think too much of a good thing is just, well too much.  While the first half of the book seemed jumpy and static, the second half was the book I had been waiting for all those months.  And I loved the way it ended up and the story line and how it all tied together.  Just why waste all that time with the nonsense in the beginning?  Do I think you should read it?  I think it's up to you.  I know some of my blogging friends that I'd say no way because they wouldn't make it through that first part but I really think the second half redeems itself.  The ideas are fresh and new.  I haven't read them anywhere else and I can't wait to see where it's headed.  There was a huge plot twist at the end that I did not see coming at all.  And if the romance will just settle down and be and the story will be the forefront, I think it will be fantastic.

So, I think I said a lot about nothing.  Just, if you are having a hard time getting through it, I do promise it gets better.  I can't believe I, lover of romance, am saying this, but this time I think the romance got in the way of the story.  


  1. I'm glad you read on. Sometimes a second half truly makes up for the first and I'm also happy I just read on... I also have been dying to read Hourglass and I'm still looking forward to it although I'm not a bit more cautious about the first part!

  2. I have to say that regardless of how great it was after the first half - for $17.99 I want a masterpiece!! And its a debut novel too? I would only pay this much for a huge hardback - what's with this price? ITs WAY too much in todays market.

    Needless to say, unless I got given this book or the price was more than halved, I wouldn't bother with it.

    Great to see you over at wordsinsync Heather. Wondered why you didn't link this review up at the the hop? It counts if you get chance. ;D XX

  3. Great review, Heather! We talked about this one already and both agreed on it. I do think it redeemed itself somewhat in the second half.

    I'm over my Cover Lover stage, LOL and am now a firm believer of 'You can't judge a book by it's COVER!' I don't care how gorgeous it is, even if it has pretty butterflies all over it...

    Thanks for the awesome review!

  4. Interesting. It seems like this is almost 2 different books between one half and the other. I'm with you Heather, I like being kept in the dark somewhat, but sometimes it just gets to be too much and I can't get into the story because I have no idea what's happening. So glad the second half improves drastically:)

  5. Yes, it does make a difference though

    Shah- try Book Depository. It's got to be cheaper there. I didn't pay that for it, it's just the list price on the cover. I didn't link up because I was going to try to be creative on my writing blog! And I was searching your blog for the post you wanted me to read on the 4th. I couldn't find it.

    Book Faery- I haven't tried butterflies anymore. It just gives me the willies! And I am now over my cover love!

    Danny- Did you already read it and your waiting for the next one? I think the next one will not have the problems this one had for me. I just think she'll have found her stride.

    Jenny- I thought you might have already read this one. This one kept me so in the dark I was bumping into things. Then things were thrown at me and it felt like getting hit. When things finally made sense it really was interesting but I had to think to understand it all. And her where her "abilities" came from has not been explained. But I'm sufficiently interested to read on.


  6. I loved the twists and turns at the ending... it made it all the more exciting! The first half of the novel was a bit slow because of the details but I like Emersons sarcastic personality. Her instant feelings with Michael weren't as great but I love her moments with Kaleb... Thanks for the honest review! (Also, I don't know what walking down a wall had to do with the book but it's definitely cool to look at!)

  7. Hi Heather,
    I miss seeing you around...I see you're still busily reviewing!!!
    You've been tagged. Hopefully you have time to play along!
    Have a great weekend.

  8. I'm glad to hear that this one picked up in the second half. The idea behind it sounded very interesting, so it would have been a let-down if this one wasn't as good as you thought it would be. I just finished The Goddess Test, and for me the second half of the book definitely made the book worthwhile. Great review, and it's nice to see you back!

  9. Midnight Bloom- I'm glad I'm not the only one that loved the cover but didn't understand what it had to do with the book!

    Brenda- I have been tagged for what? I haven't been around much b/c I just moved. Last week. So I'm trying to blog around unpacking boxes. I guess I should just say I probably don't have time to be tagged right now. But thanks for thinking of me.

    T.B.- You're a star! Featured in a picture with her dad on Josie Angelini's blog at a signing! So cool! I'm trying to be back. I've got a pile of books waiting to be reviewed. If I don't write them soon I'll have to reread them! I had heard so many so-so things about The Goddess Test that I didn't read it. I'll read your review, see if it changes my mind.


  10. I've been hearing some good things about Hourglass but I haven't had the chance to read it yet. Too bad about the disappointing first half but I'm a sucker for a good ending and the second half sounds like it redeemed the story. I will probably still read this when I have some time.

  11. Jenny N- Give it a try! You know everyone likes different things. And just b/c I didn't like the first half doesn't mean everyone won't. Let me know what you think!


  12. Hm, I think I'll try it and try to make myself stick with it through to the end. Eventually :)

  13. Small- are you reading this now? Do stick with it. The ending or middle to end makes up for the beginning. And I might be the only one that has a problem with the beginning.


  14. I loved the book but have been putting off doing my review for some reason. The cover made no sense to me though I loved it. Like you I had absolutely no idea what it had to do with the storyline. Maybe it wasn't suppose to. It definitely got and kept my attention, though. Luckily, I never hold a cover against the author as long as the storyline is entertaining.

  15. LisaRichards/alterlisa- Sometimes I have to sit with a book before I review it, especially if I loved it. Maybe that's what's up with you? I did love the second half. And even parts of the first half. Just the relationship part was getting to me. It was like she was a toy. I don't like that. The cover was what drew me in in the first place. It's just so darn pretty!



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