3:59 – Gretchen McNeil


Untitled-7.inddJosie Byrne’s life is spiraling out of control. Her parents are divorcing, her boyfriend Nick has grown distant, and her physics teacher has it in for her. When she’s betrayed by the two people she trusts most, Josie thinks things can’t get worse.

Until she starts having dreams about a girl named Jo. Every night at the same time—3:59 a.m.

Jo’s life is everything Josie wants: she’s popular, her parents are happily married, and Nick adores her. It all seems real, but they’re just dreams, right? Josie thinks so, until she wakes one night to a shadowy image of herself in the bedroom mirror – Jo. 

Josie and Jo realize that they are doppelgängers living in parallel universes that overlap every twelve hours at exactly 3:59. Fascinated by Jo’s perfect world, Josie jumps at the chance to jump through the portal and switch places for a day.

But Jo’s world is far from perfect. Not only is Nick not Jo’s boyfriend, he hates her. Jo’s mom is missing, possibly insane. And at night, shadowy creatures feed on human flesh.

By the end of the day, Josie is desperate to return to her own life. But there’s a problem: Jo has sealed the portal, trapping Josie in this dangerous world. Can she figure out a way home before it’s too late?

From master of suspense Gretchen McNeil comes a riveting and deliciously eerie story about the lives we wish we had – and how they just might kill you.


You guys! 3:59 is AWESOME! That’s exactly how I need to start out this review, because I need you all to know just how cool and awesome this book truly is. It’s about a girl named Josie who lives a pretty normal life. Her boyfriend just cheated on her and is now dating her ex-best friend, her mom and dad have just divorced, and she pretty much takes care of herself. Then she gets a mirror and every day at 3:59 a.m. and p.m. she realizes that she can see an identical girl in the mirror. Turns out that girl is Jo, her doppelganger, who lives in a much more scifi/techy world than she does. The girls eventually switch places with the intention of switching back the next day. Things don’t go quite as planned, though, when Jo (the doppelganger) closes the portal through the mirror, and Josie is stuck in a world where dinosaur type beasts roam the night, snatching people off one by one.

The world that Gretchen McNeil created was both clever and fascinating. I was hooked from the very first chapter. It’s definitely a Sci-fi type book with a paranormal twist to it. All of the characters were well created, and I loved the whole idea of doppelganger’s and being stuck in a world that you can’t get out of. It honestly made me think of the Vampire Diaries….probably because of the doppelganger twist! Whatever…it was awesome!

Like with Gretchen McNeil’s other book, TEN, 3:59 was a little tiny bit gory and made me a bit jumpy. There were a few scenes that I was just like “woahhhhhhh.” There were other scenes where I was pulling the blankets up over my head and trying to hide from what was coming next. It definitely kept me on my toes! Another thing that I enjoyed was that I did not know what was going to happen. That seems to be a skill of McNeil’s. She always has some twist at the end that leaves me saying “WHAT?!” It was a little more predictable than in TEN, but…woah….just….woah. The ending was shocking.

Readers are going to be a bit ticked off because 3:59 is a standalone. There will be no sequel. The ending of 3:59 leads the reader to believe that there will be a sequel, which might frustrate or confuse readers. However, the book is just too amazing to pass up. I loved it. I’ll read anything and everything that Gretchen McNeil writes, and I would encourage everyone else to do the same!


Pages: 368

Publication Date: September 17th 2013

Publisher: Harper Teen

Rating: [rating: 4]


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