Into the Hourglass by Kelly Marino is one of those unexpected gems it’s a thrill to discover. It’s a fabulous story in the paranormal genre and fortunately just the first of a trilogy. It’s feisty, bright, organized Franny’s nineteenth birthday and she gets a present she didn’t foresee from her parents – the news that she’s not their child. That explains some of her strange qualities, and also the reason that she faints and enters into another realm with two strangers, a young man, Mike, and a young pregnant woman, Abigail, who is not what she seems at all. Oh yes, and it’s 1693 too. That’s a lot to handle but Franny is made of stern stuff – very stern, immortal stuff and is well able to join in the fight against Yorvik, a merciless killer with a long-lived, anti-immortal grudge, and do her bit to ensure humanity remains a viable species.
It’s a book that’s gritty and gripping, tender and terrifying, romantic and horrific, but above all fresh and incredibly well written. It’s all so plausible and persuasive, paranormal as it is. Marino has an amazing way with words and creates some truly exciting situations and likeable characters. Franny has enough attitude to make her interesting but not obnoxious, and although she’s courageous, she’s scared too and makes mistakes. She’s a good person. There’s a lot of goodness in this book, which is a refreshing change. It’s not soppy, it’s an affirmation of what’s good about humans to make them worth protecting, even if history may have to change a little. I can’t wait for the next book in the series.