Crystal Doors #1: Island Realm

Overview

Fourteen-year-old cousins Gwen and Vic have lived together ever since the mysterious deaths of Gwen's parents and disappearance of Vic's mother--until Vic's father accidentally transports them through a magical doorway to the island of Elantya. Vic and Gwen are soon caught in a tempest of ancient magic, vicious creatures, and fierce battles--all connected to a territorial feud with the sea-dwelling merlons, an age-old conflict between the bright and dark sages...and the cousins'...
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New York, NY 2006 Hard Cover First Edition New in New jacket First edition/first printing. Book is in fine (unread) condition with a fine unclipped dustjacket protected in a ... Brodart wrapper. An Attractive Copy! Please feel free to ask me for pictures or more information, Thanks. Read more Show Less

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Overview

Fourteen-year-old cousins Gwen and Vic have lived together ever since the mysterious deaths of Gwen's parents and disappearance of Vic's mother--until Vic's father accidentally transports them through a magical doorway to the island of Elantya. Vic and Gwen are soon caught in a tempest of ancient magic, vicious creatures, and fierce battles--all connected to a territorial feud with the sea-dwelling merlons, an age-old conflict between the bright and dark sages...and the cousins' own mysterious roots.
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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
This young adult novel is the first volume of a trilogy set in the magical island world of Elantya. Fourteen-year-olds Gwendolyn and Vic Pierce are cousins born five hours apart to identical twin archaeologists who met the exotic sisters they married on a dig in the jungles of the Yucatan Peninsula. Carlton Pierce has been raising both teens since Gwen's parents were killed in an auto accident two years earlier and his own wife disappeared a week later. After Gwen is almost attacked by a killer whale at an Ocean Kingdoms show, Uncle Cap sends the cousins through a crystal door to a laboratory in Elantya but is unable to follow them. Gwen and Vic make friends with two students, Lyssandra and Sharif, and are welcomed as helpers by Sage Rubicas, though Orpheon his assistant is less welcoming. Vic and Sharif rescue Tiaret, a girl from Afiric, and she becomes their fifth close friend. When the cousins manage to open a window to earth, Cap tells them that the dark sage named Azric, who is using sea creatures called merlons to battle Elantya, is also responsible for the accident that killed Gwen's parents and for the disappearance of Vic's mother. In the laboratory, Rubicas has developed a spell to create transparent shields to protect against the merlons, but Orpheon is strangely unimpressed. While the teens fight off merlons and sea monsters, Orpheon steals the notes necessary to create a larger shield and tries to take the information to Azric. Gwen and Sharif intercept Orpheon, but he leaps off a cliff to escape them. At the end of this book, the five friends are tested for special powers and discover that when they all touch the crystals together, their power is beyond anything ever seen,so strong that it fulfills an ancient prophecy that five Chosen Ones will ultimately fight against the Dark Sages. Intriguing details of the island world and likeable characters make the book a pleasant read. 2006, Little Brown and Company, Ages 12 up.
—Judy DaPolito
VOYA
Does this story sound familiar? Gwen and Vic are two fourteen-year-olds who have lost their mysterious mothers in equally mysterious ways. After walking into an experiment involving a room of crystals, the teens find themselves transported to the magical island of Elantya. Imagine their surprise (but not the reader's) when they learn that their mothers both were from the island and have gifted their children with unique abilities. Finding themselves trapped indefinitely on the island because of the destruction of the crystals, Gwen and Vic are enlisted to aid in a feud with the mer-people, who are being held in thrall by a wicked dark sage. Not even the reputations of best-selling authors Anderson (Saga of the Seven Sins, X-Files, and Star Wars novelizations) and Moesta (Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights series) can elevate this first volume of a trilogy above the trite and predictable plot. Perhaps writing established characters in movie and television adaptations has led them to create cardboard, stereotypical characters. The typical fantasy elements are all there: the secretly gifted children, the mysterious amulets from their mothers, their mothers' fate linked to the dastardly doings on the magical island. This novel is reminiscent of so many better series, such as Mac Hale's Pendragon series and Diane Duane's Young Wizard books, that it is difficult to see why any but the largest of libraries would add it to their collection. VOYA CODES: 2Q 3P M J (Better editing or work by the author might have warranted a 3Q; Will appeal with pushing; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2006, Little Brown, 294p., Ages 11 to 15.
—Arlene Garcia
VOYA - Deborah L. Dubois
Fourteen-year-old cousins, Gwen and Vic, have lived with Vic's scientist father since the mysterious death of Gwen's parents and the disappearance of Vic's mother. Gwen and Vic are accidentally transported through a crystal door to the magical world of the island Elantya. Here they encounter sages from many worlds and the novices and apprentices that study with them. Gwen and Vic make friends with Lyssandra, Sharif, and Tiaret, and together they have enough power and ingenuity to defeat the Merlons, sea creatures that are in league with the dark sage Azric. As they explore this strange world, Gwen and Vic learn more about their own roots that are entangled with the history of Elantya. From the beginning, the reader is captivated by the action. While at an amusement park, Gwen is almost eaten by a killer whale being controlled by Azric, which prompts Vic's father to send them to safety in Elantya. The teenaged characters are believable. The two cousins tease each other, and they all show off a little for those to whom they are attracted. They work together to defeat the enemy by using their wits. The Elantyan world will appeal to fantasy fans with its mixture of magic, sea monsters, sages, and crystal doors that open to many worlds. This book is the first in a planned trilogy, and the ending where the teens learn of their own power as the Chosen Ones will have readers anxiously awaiting the next installment.
School Library Journal
Gr 5-8-Gwen and Vic are cousins who were born within five hours of one another. Their mothers were sisters who mysteriously showed up out of nowhere in the Yucatan jungle, where their husbands-to-be, two brothers, were working at an archaeological dig. Now Gwen's parents have been killed under strange circumstances and Vic's mom has disappeared. The boy's father is obsessed with finding his wife and figuring out what happened to his brother and sister-in-law. After he tells the kids that they are going away, they find him in a room surrounded by strange crystals, and suddenly Gwen and Vic are transported to another world. Elantya is a way station and an educational center that travelers from different worlds can visit through crystal doors. No one is quite sure how the cousins arrived there, but everyone is anxious to help them return home, until the teens and the rest of Elantya are forced into a war with the monster merlons. Crystal Doors is a fun fantasy adventure. It starts off a little slowly, but once the adventure in Elantya begins, the pace picks up considerably. Some of the foreshadowing is a little heavy-handed, but the protagonists are realistically drawn and the adventures exciting. The ending leaves open the possibility of a sequel or two.-Saleena L. Davidson, South Brunswick Public Library, Monmouth Junction, NJ Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
The world called Elantya, a wannabe Atlantis with some faux Greco-Roman nomenclature, runs on telepathic powers that are magnified by special crystals. Fourteen-year-old cousins Gwen and Vic are transported there and become the focus of a group of five gifted teens, all from different universes. As can only be expected in this formulaic Heinlein juvenile, they save the world from the bad guys, leaving plenty of loose threads to set up the next in the series. Characters are predictable, harking back to earlier science fiction and fantasy styles, and including a villain so obvious that youthful readers will be hooting and pointing as they read on. And read on they will, because once the story takes hold, the suspense builds and builds. This tension-filled work by the authors of the "Star Wars: Young Jedi Knights" series, with its likable teen characters and exciting plot, will appeal to readers of tween SF/fantasy series fiction. Unchallenging but entertaining fare for middle-schoolers. (Fiction. 11-13)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780316010559
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 6/6/2006
  • Series: Crystal Doors Series , #0
  • Pages: 304
  • Age range: 11 - 15 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.87 (w) x 8.50 (h) x 1.12 (d)

Meet the Author

Kevin J. Anderson has over sixteen million books in print in 29 languages, including the bestselling prequels to Dune, cowritten with Frank Herbert's son Brian, and numerous Warner Aspect titles.

Rebecca Moesta (pronounced MESS-tuh) is the author or co-author of more than 25 books. A self-described "gadgetologist" Rebecca enjoys learning about (not to mention collecting) the latest advances in electronics.

Rebecca and Kevin live in Monument, CO.
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Sort by: Showing all of 4 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 16, 2011

    Great

    This book was amazing!!!!!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 25, 2006

    Courtesy of Teens Read Too

    Fourteen-year-old cousins Gwen and Vic Pierce are almost nothing alike. Where Gwen is serious, scientific, and analytical, Vic is fun-loving, spontaneous, and outgoing. Older by a mere five hours, Gwen likes to think of herself as the one in charge. Vic likes to use his love of fun to rile his cousin up. Since they both live with Carlton Arthur 'Cap' Pierce, Vic's father and Gwen's uncle, things often times get interesting. Gwen's father, Reginald 'Rip' Pierce, was Uncle Cap's twin brother. And her mother, Fyera, was the sister of Vic's mom, Kyara. The two brothers met the two sisters on a dig in the Yucatan Peninsula and were instantly smitten. They soon married, and Gwen and Vic arrived on the same day, only hours apart. Now Gwen's parents are gone, victims of a mysterious car accident. Even Vic's mother, Kyara, is no longer in the picture, having vanished into thin air two years ago only one week after the death of Gwen's parents. Now it's just Cap and the cousins, and the three attempt to make the best life together that they can. Gwen and Vic are raised almost like brother and sister, with Cap as their father. Although Gwen sometimes feels guilty for this new 'family,' her dreams of one day being a marine biologist keep her reaching towards her goal. After a nearly disastrous trip to Ocean Kingdoms, the kids are surprised by Cap's strange behavior. He informs them that their family will be leaving the very next day, to avoid danger. Having no idea what he's talking about, Gwen and Vic spend a night of fitful sleep wondering what's gotten into their uncle and father. They awake the next morning to a solarium full of mirrors, crystals, and prisms, and suddenly their world gets a whole lot stranger. Gwen and Vic find themselves falling through the light that Cap has created, almost as if it were a door. And when they land, they're no longer in a place that they recognize. The kids have come through a crystal door and ended up on the island of Elantya, the center through which all crystal doors unite. Although both bewildered by this new place and uncertain as to how they'll return home, Gwen and Vic are both excited by the people they meet on Elantya--Lyssandra, an interpreter and a telepath Ali el Sharif, a novice at the Citadel who comes from the flying city of Irrakesh and Tiaret, a young warrior girl who came from Afrik to also study at the Citadel. As Gwen and Vic learn that the Elantyans are in the midst of a war with the Merlons, vicious creatures of the sea, they realize that getting back to Earth may be the least of their problems. The two teens will have to work together with their three new friends to protect Elantya from its enemies--and one such enemy might just very well be someone within the Elantyan's own midst. The first in a trilogy, CRYSTAL DOORS is a highly entertaining contemporary fantasy that readers of all ages will enjoy. I look forward to reading more about life in Elantya, and finding out the reason that Gwen and Vic were brought there. A great read that you'll definitely enjoy!

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    Posted July 2, 2011

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    Posted August 21, 2010

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