The Hourglass Time

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THE HOURGLASS TIME: A Story of Seven Hourglasses

Last Free Dates: 7th Oct 21 to 9th Oct 21
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...The typos, grammar errors, and many other issues make this a book I can't recommend. ...

I cannot recommend this book.

It is meant for readers aged between six and nine, a time when it is exceptionally important for the rules of grammar and language to be followed. Without knowing basic sentence structure and layout, it becomes very difficult for readers to understand variants later on.

The formatting of speech is incorrect: a character’s name, followed by a colon, then quotes round the speech. The writing is hard to follow and grammatically incorrect, possibly ESL. I would say read the book, as I cannot sample enough to show how extensive the problem is, but here are a few examples from various places:

Toonar: “happy like what we are?”

Mightly brought an idea.

The other six hourglasses looked at him, and they have all agreed on this great idea.

Almost every sentence contains a mistake. Almost every sentence.

There are typos and outright spelling mistakes e.g. “explor” on p32. Capital letters are intermittent, but it did make me laugh out loud when I read that bags “temporarily irradiated color”. (For those confused, radiated and irradiated are very different things. Neither are likely to be in a six-year-old’s vocabulary).

The formatting is variable. There are images which are bright, simple, and drawn in a children’s crayon style, which take up a full page and work without problems. Attention has been paid to presentation, if only because the chapters start neatly on new pages and the images are centred, and yet it does not entirely work. For example, it may be my ereader, but there is a blank page after each image. Page 32 has a non-rendering character which should be a colon.

And finally, I shall admit I have been dodging the story. It is supposed to be a fairly tale. Instead it is thinly veiled attempt at societal critique: it is pointless to work for money because money can’t buy you happiness or life, forgetting that money lets you obtain food, shelter, and medicine. This isn’t even the Three (or five) Little Pigs. Quite literally, there are three roles for active characters in the story, and seven characters. By the end it focuses on two and doesn’t even pretend to follow the others to the end.

At risk of spoilers, the seven leave home, go to a factory, work, one dies (possibly after discovering an analogue for drug abuse), and two decide to leave and do something different. That’s it. Believe me, my brackets make this sound more interesting than it is.

A book that I would not recommend to children or to parents for their children. The typos and grammar errors are not likely to be helpful to early readers. Even for free about all I could suggest is teens who want a laugh or authors to see how it is not done.

I wish I could be kinder. I really do.

Rating: 1
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