Thursday, 16 August 2012

Hourglass - Myra McEntire

HourglassHourglass (Hourglass #1) - Myra McEntire
Grade: YA
Rating: 5/5 stars

One hour to rewrite the past . . .

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?

Full of atmosphere, mystery, and romance, Hourglass merges the very best of the paranormal and science-fiction genres in a seductive, remarkable young adult debut. (Description from Goodreads)

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Imagine that you wake up one day and can suddenly see beings from the past – only you can see them and they disappear when you touch them. You’d probably think you were crazy. Now imagine someone tells you that what you’re seeing is real and that you can actually travel to the past. This is what happens to Emerson Cole in ‘Hourglass’.

Convinced she’s going mental, Emerson can’t make sense of the people she’s been seeing since just before her parents’ deaths 4 years ago. The only thing she knows is that they show up at random and only she can see them...until Michael arrives. For someone who thinks she is crazy, Emerson is surprisingly sane; which proves the crazy is all in her head. Apart from her habit to say everything that comes to mind, she holds herself together – despite the troubled past we see unfold. I really enjoyed her voice. I loved that there was more to her than just the crazy and just the time travel gene. She hides her past hurt through sarcasm and misdirection and needs people to earn her trust. I liked seeing both her tough and vulnerable sides. It’s always nice to see a character that has more to them than just the surface images.

I went into ‘Hourglass’ expecting time travel – and it didn’t disappoint. We discover that the beings Emerson has been seeing are actually people from the past that are travelling through time because of her. Emerson has a special gene: a time travel gene, which gives her a link to the past. She meets other time travellers throughout the book who can travel to the future – it all depends on the gene. What I wasn’t expecting was the other powers that popped up: empaths, time manipulators, element control; the list goes on. I love seeing a series focus on more than one area of a world. Myra McEntire could have left out these other gifts and focused completely on the past, but she’s developed her world and brought every little element into the story so well. While time travel is the main focus, there’s more to the story than just time.

But it’s not all about seeing people from the past, not when there are special talents floating around. There’s where the Hourglass comes in. An organisation created to give a hand to people dealing with their gifts, the Hourglass seems like a helpful place to be tied to; except when the founder is involved in a surprise accident and the new leader is sending the organisation in a dangerous direction. I loved it! We’re given a mystery and an enemy – someone to fight against, it definitely makes the story more exciting.

I think my only issue with the book was the insta-love. Emerson and Michael had barely met before they were dying to get all over each other. Part of their chemistry and connection is explained throughout the story, so I won’t go into details; but I’m always a little concerned when characters fall all over themselves immediately for no reason other than seeing each other for the first time. But despite my hesitation towards their connection, I enjoyed the obstacles created for their relationship and the tension that built up; it was so easy to get lost in the moment when it came to Emerson and Michael (and Kaleb – who is a mighty fine distraction thrown into the mix). You can't help noticing that their connection is more than just love-at-first-site. I’m looking forward to exploring more about these relationships in the next book.

An amazing start to a fun and exciting series. Can’t wait to see what happens next.

5/5 stars

(Originally posted on Goodreads)


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