Fans of the young adult paranormal romance genre are likely looking for a book that feels fresh and new, whereas many novels lately feel stale and lacking originality. Though there are several shining examples of what this genre is about, Myra McEntire's Hourglass unfortunately falls into the latter category. With a promising premise--a troubled girl who sees ghosts--McEntire quickly backtracks from what I found interesting in the novel, choosing instead to focus on a slow-going time-travel plot. While the fantasy elements of this novel leave much to be desired, the romantic aspects are equally disappointing.
Emerson Cole recently lost both of her parents in a tragic bus accident. Shortly before their death she began to see ghosts, which we eventually find out aren't actually ghosts. After having spent time in a psych hospital to be treated for seeing ghosts, Emerson has gone off her meds and is now seeing the ghosts again. Sounds interesting, right? All of this happens before the book actually starts, so we readers don't get to see it. What we do get to see is a rather uncompelling "forbidden" romance with an awkwardly inserted love triangle. Not even the secret supernatural organization (which gets nowhere near enough time) can save this novel.
After seeing more ghosts, Emerson's brother hires a supernatural expert. This is when Michael, the impossibly handsome and young representative from The Hourglass organization enters the plot, derailing the book entirely. While Emerson is a reasonably competent narrator for the book, she fails to give any reason for her attraction to Michael other than his intense, brooding attractiveness. His best friend, Caleb makes for a confusing addition to Emerson's love life later in the novel. It might be believable for a lonely teenaged girl looking to live vicariously through her reading, but for a mature reader, this novel just doesn't cut it.
Bottom Line: A slow plot, uncompelling love story and disappointing supernatural elements make this book one you should pass over unless you are extremely passionate about paranormal romance. Even then, I would suggest you think twice.
You can find Myra McEntire's Hourglass at your local chain bookstore, online or at an independent bookstore near you (click here for a list). You can also look for it on your Amazon Kindle, Barnes & Noble Nook, iPad or other ebook reader.