RITA Reader Challenge Review

RITA Reader Challenge: Hourglass by Myra McEntire


Title: Hourglass
Author: Myra McEntire
Publication Info: Egmont USA 2011
ISBN: 978-1606843840
Genre: Young Adult

Hourglass This review was written by Brooke. This story was nominated in the Best YA Romance and Best First Book categories.

The summary:     

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?

And here is Brooke's review:

I’m a huge fan of YA novels so I admit I had high hopes for this book.  After finishing this book I have mixed feelings.

There seems to be an unwritten formula that YA authors follow now anytime they have a young female protagonist.  1) She must be socially awkward and have some special ability that makes her special.  2) There must be a tragic incident in her past. 3) And last but not least she has that one perfect best friend that sticks by her side no matter what happens.

I think my main issue with this novel is that with the exception of a few interesting plot twists that make the novel rise above a simple girl-who-sees-ghosts story, there was very little originality to the story.  It’s hard to go into much detail on the plot without giving away the surprise twists. Essentially a dark handsome stranger comes into town, the heroine immediately falls in love, and the handsome stranger turns out to be her knight in shining armor that sets about explaining all the unexplained problems that have plagued the protagonist and made her life miserable. 

And no matter how cold the handsome stranger may be, or how much he tries to push her away, all he has to do is smile and our heroine becomes weak kneed and all is forgiven.  And of course a second possible love interest is thrown in to supposedly create tension between the main couple even though it is painfully obvious from about chapter 5 who the heroine is going to end up with.  The heroine faces challenges that help her grow as a person and find a place where she belongs.

This isn’t a great book, but it’s certainly not bad either.  The secondary characters are interesting and if there are sequels to this book, which the ending is clearly setting up for, I hope the author devotes more time to developing their stories.  I think if I had not read so many similarly themed books recently it would have been more enjoyable.

This book is available from Goodreads | Amazon | BN | Sony | Kobo | All Romance eBooks. [Note: currently the digital book is on sale for $1.59 – 1.99.]

Comments are Closed

  1. 1
    kkw says:

    I couldn’t finish it, but I’m not a YA fan.

  2. 2
    Renee K says:

    I was working on a review for this…but you’ve pretty much covered everything I was thinking.

    Also, there was soooo much orange!  I felt like everything was orange, or pumpkin, or creamsicle or coral…

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