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PORTAL (Portal Chronicles Book One)

Average Rating 4
( 409 )
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(166)

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(101)

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(75)

2 Star

(31)

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(36)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

6 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

Intriguing sci-fi romance

PORTAL is a sci-fi romance with well-fleshed characters and an intriguing plot. Normally, a novel in the romance genre would be of no interest to me at all (being a guy and all!) but PORTAL managed to keep my interest throughout thanks to its main character, Arizona, an...
PORTAL is a sci-fi romance with well-fleshed characters and an intriguing plot. Normally, a novel in the romance genre would be of no interest to me at all (being a guy and all!) but PORTAL managed to keep my interest throughout thanks to its main character, Arizona, and its fascinating sci-fi plot involving time travel and alternative dimensions. There's such a careful balance of sci-fi versus romance that both genre readers will enjoy it equally. I'd be hard pushed to say which genre comes through the strongest, and in this regard it reminds me slightly of The Time Traveler's Wife, another story that's hard to pigeonhole and one that wouldn't work if either the sci-fi or the romance was taken away.

There's a lot to think about after the book ends. All the complexities of the "experiment" are finally laid out for the readers (and poor Arizona) to see, and yet you come away with your head spinning -- in a good way. The best kinds of movies and novels are those that leave you with something to ponder, and PORTAL certainly does that. And the fact that there's a forthcoming sequel, EQUILIBRIUM, due in Summer 2010, is something of a no-brainer -- there's plenty more story waiting to be explored yet!

Not wanting to give away spoilers, I was happy with Arizona's decision at the end and think it would have been unrealistic for her to choose otherwise. Still, part of me wanted her to "take the plunge" and choose the other option, because what a great story that would make! Maybe that's what we have to look forward to in EQUILIBRIUM... or maybe the author will take us in a new direction altogether. There are so many possibilities, especially after the Epilogue, which almost came out of left field and really throws a sinister spanner in the works. Roll on Book II!

posted by UnearthlyTales on February 18, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

4 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

I guess I am now officially old...

I know it was in the "Teen" section but so are many other novels that have been published lately so I thought I would try it as it was relatively inexpensive. While I enjoyed the story line and found it interesting I was constantly distracted by the seemingly endless r...
I know it was in the "Teen" section but so are many other novels that have been published lately so I thought I would try it as it was relatively inexpensive. While I enjoyed the story line and found it interesting I was constantly distracted by the seemingly endless references to name brand items (clothes, I-phone, etc....) I often found myself wondering if Ms. Rose received product endorsements. also, and a bit of a spoiler here...I found it implausible how easily it was accepted that the character and her best friends just happened to all show up in the past in another life. They just went on with life as normal and it seemed if that was thrown on to the back burner. Even characters who hadn't gone back seemed to find it possible within a few sentences. Again, I am older I guess and jaded.

I would have also liked a bit more information on the science of how it all worked. there is a second book so maybe she explains more there?

So, I guess if you can suspend all rational belief and go with it just put on your Juicy top and your Hermes scarf, set some tunes on your I-phone and start reading...

posted by Catbirdmom on January 3, 2011

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 4, 2013

    Poorly written..

    This book is poorly written. I loved the concept, hated the result. Speech came off very stilted and unnatural. Grammatically I find it a complete mess, to the point where I had to force myself to finish the book in order to get some sense of resolution. The logic was NOT - not logical, that is. It's difficult for me to understand what people "loved" about this book, as it's not anything I'd recommend. Sorry.....

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 25, 2012

    Frustrated by the ending

    I had to work to read this book. It definitely wasn't hard to read, it just didn't capture my attention. I had forgotten that it was a young adult book so was not prepared for the lack of depth in story/character development. There was too much emphasis on fashion & teenaged angst for my liking. I kept wanting to read the explanation given to Arizona as to why she was in the past, but I guess I'll have to read the next book to find out. The time travel sequences were written in a very confusing manner; I suppose to keep the reader as confused as the characters!

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  • Posted July 1, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Eh...

    Okay book, wouldnt read it again and i probably wont get the next one. The characters were superficial, i didn't get any depth from any of them. Also, the way they interacted was a little bit fake, like Harry saying "goodness knows," i mean come on, what kind of teenage boy talks like that? I just didn't buy into the whole thing. It's okay for a light read, but this really should be with the free books, and even some of them are better than this. Don't spend the money if your looking for a truly good book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 25, 2011

    Great Idea, Shaky Execution

    Sometimes I wish B&N would have a multiple rating system. For example, in terms of originality and plot, I would give Portal three or four stars. It's a good idea and Ms. Rose's characters are mostly engaging. That's a good thing, because the writing style is unbearably stilted. I don't know a single teenager who speaks the way the teens do in this story. The grammar is too perfect-no contractions, no slang. It doesn't feel natural and it wound up pulling me out of the story. Ms. Rose also gives in to one of my least favorite tropes: that "you complete me" soul-mate crap made so popular by Stephanie Meyer. Like Meyer's Bella, the main character in this story has some awesome qualities that continuously get undermined every time a big, strong guy has to rescue her. Her personality becomes defined by her relationship, which ultimately winds up weakening her character attributes.

    The story itself is decent, if a bit slow-moving. Ms. Rose disorients and confuses the reader right off the bat. I found myself frustrated, which isn't necessarily a bad thing as it compelled me to continue reading, even with the faults in the chunky dialogue. The ending was rather abrupt and the cliff-hanger kind of cheesy. Yet, there's something there. I admit that I'm still curious about the world Ms. Rose created, but I'm not sure I'm curious enough to wade through the next book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 31, 2010

    It could have been so much better

    There is do much about this story that is great, but if she had written from anyone else's perspective other hat th daughters I would have loved it. I just couldn't listen to anymore rambling about ice hockey. And eve sometime when she wa writing from the teenager's point of view the words she was using did not sound believable. I could not finish it. Also, the sample does not open which really irked me.

    0 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted December 27, 2010

    Quick read.

    too descriptive went in circles and jumped back with no transition. not interested on the rest of the series.

    0 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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    Posted December 28, 2010

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