Sunday, March 7, 2010

Book Review: Hourglass by Claudia Gray


Bianca will risk everything to be with Lucas.

After escaping from Evernight Academy, the vampire boarding school where they met, Bianca and Lucas take refuge with Black Cross, a fanatical group of vampire hunters. Bianca must hide her supernatural heritage or risk certain death at their hands. But when Black Cross captures her friend—the vampire Balthazar—hiding is no longer an option.

Soon, Bianca and Lucas are on the run again, pursued not only by Black Cross, but by the powerful leaders of Evernight. Yet no matter how far they travel, Bianca can't escape her destiny.

Bianca has always believed their love could survive anything . . . but can it survive what's to come?


Hourglass picks up smoothly from where Stargazer leaves off but what Gray does not do is waste time recapping everything that's happened as though the reader didn't read the first 2 books in the series. She inserts reminders as needed- enough to spark the memory even in someone who hasn't read them in awhile- but doesn't do an entire intro of My name is this, this has happened to me, this is where I'm at. I thoroughly appreciate when authors take this route rather than the other and it made me enjoy the book even more.

Also notable to this book is how much I think Gray's writing has improved. Hourglass pulled me in far more than Evernight or Stargazer did, each one improving compared to the last. I slipped into Bianca's mind often and about half way through, I found myself unable to put the book down. While it was somewhat slow at the beginning, it wasn't boring- while reading it, I could completely understand why things seemed at a standstill and why the events were playing out the way they were, sometimes even seeming repetitive. The reason? Things were repetitive for Bianca and Gray didn't shy away from showing the full extent of her situation just to avoid being "boring" which I applaud.

Bianca's character grows significantly in this book which I very much enjoyed, as does Lucas. This book centers, more than anything, around their love for each other. These two find themselves in some interesting situations, facing unique problems and emotions and I think Gray handled their scenarios poignantly. From their reasons and motivations to the outcomes- both good and bad- Gray thrust all of it out there for the reader and it added tremendously to the overall quality and experience of Hourglass. I felt more for Bianca and Lucas in this installment than I have in the other two, helped along by the writing style. Gray also builds some of the secondary characters, sparking interesting in them and making them stand out as well.

The plot has some very surprising twists- some you might see coming and others you certainly won't- before ending on a very intense cliffhanger that has certainly left me salivating for Afterlife. Some of those twists are downright brilliant and the last 100 pages or so are very emotional, very raw, and very astoundingly done. It takes on a somewhat different tone than seen in the series before it but Gray slid into that needed state easily, pulling the reader with her. It will happen before you realize it but I fully appreciated the ride.

Overall, Hourglass is a step up from Evernight and Stargazer, building on not only the story but strongly on Bianca and Lucas' characters. The writing has improved in my opinion and I have high hopes for Afterlife to be even more well done than this one. Hitting in at 4 stars, I found some parts to drag even if I could understand the necessity of it and didn't stay completely engrossed until about half way through or so but this was an enjoyable read.

Source: ARC received for review from the publisher
Reading level: Young Adult
Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: HarperTeen; 1 edition (March 9, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0061284416
ISBN-13: 978-0061284410

Author's Website
Author's Blog
Sneak peek of the prologue and Chapter 1

What Others Are Saying
The Book Blogger
Reversing the Monotony


  1. I love this series. Can't wait to read my ARC

  2. I'm DYING to read this! I'm so jealous that you got an ARC. I'm glad to see that you liked it. Thanks for the review!

  3. I'm so jealous that you've read this one! I thought Stargazer was really great so to say that this one is even better is making me all excited.

    Thanks for another one of your amazing reviews!

  4. I love this series, and can't wait to get started on this one :)

  5. I love this series too x_x! I can't wait for Hourglass!

    Fantabulous reviewwww ;3

  6. I keep meaning to begin this series but haven't yet. Thanks for the review.

    I have given you an award here because I enjoy reading your content.

  7. spoiler:

    lucas dies!