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Review – The Portal December 11, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in 5 stars, Sci-Fi.
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Title: The Portal

Author: Alan Zendell

Publisher: FeedBrewer, Inc.

Publication Date: March 21, 2011

ASIN: B004TBC4DW

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Harry Middleton is born in an America staggered by a century of decline, a time of medical and technological marvels beyond the reach of most people in a shattered economy. Pessimism and despair are more common than optimism and hope, and a desperate government bets the future on space.  The lunar and Martian colonies have not provided the hoped-for salvation, so despite an angry, disillusioned public, the first star mission will soon be launched.

Harry is a special child, smart, precocious, his only confidante an embittered grandfather.  When the old man dies, Harry is lost, until he meets Lorrie.  At thirteen, they bond, certain they’ll spend their lives together, but a year later, she disappears, and Harry is desolate.

With help from his friend Carlos, Harry begins a quest to find her, but he quickly learns how powerless he is.  Even the police lack the resources to help.  Harry and Carlos can only depend on themselves and each other.  An unlikely duo, Harry is an academic prodigy while Carlos is a stud athlete.  Realizing that school and baseball are their  tickets out of the morass they’re caught in, they inspire each other to greatness in both.

Trying to move on with his life, Harry has a college sweetheart, but as long as Lorrie haunts him, he knows the relationship is doomed.  He gains celebrity and wealth, but the thing Harry wants most, finding and saving Lorrie from whatever fate took her from him remains beyond his reach.  And always, in the background, are the deteriorating state of the country and the coming star missions.

And of course, there’s the Portal.

Review: *A free copy of this book was given in return for an honest review.

This book basically chronicles the life of Harry Middleton during the 22nd century. It centers around his high school sweetheart Lorrie Grissom who disappeared when he was just fifteen. He spends a lot of resources searching for her and she’s never really far from his mind.

I’m a huge baseball fan. Huge. Naturally when baseball came up in this book I was thrilled. Futuristic baseball! Harry’s baseball career starts young and is an integral part of his life. His boyhood friend Carlos is also a baseball player and together they become a team.

Carlos was a rough around the edges type of guy. He was incredibly street smart. Harry drove Carlos to do better at his studies while Carlos drove Harry to do better athletically. They complimented each other extremely well. After Lorrie went missing, Carlos and Harry became inseparable.

The decline of America that the book shows is staggering. It shows itself all through the book. It made me wonder if that’s where we’re really heading. At the same time, the book shows the resiliency of the American spirit. Despite the dismal conditions,  Americans still fought to keep their country great.

This book made me look at the future differently. I look at it with a bit of hope and with a bit of dread. Either way, I enjoyed this book tremendously and it’s something I hope to reread in the future.

5 Stars_Star Rating System

It’s Monday! What are you reading? (23) October 29, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
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This Monday meme is held by the The Book Journey. Feel free to join in and tell us what you’re reading!

Title: Blood Song

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Julia has been ripped from the escape she’d planned for herself. When she awakens to discover that her reality has shifted to include a supposed soul-meld with a man she hates, and who hates her… she rebels. Julia doesn’t want to be captive in a gilded cage.

Broken from the horrific events surrounding her friends, Cynthia migrates to the very city that Julia resides, determining to find her as the police follow the bread crumbs she’s left in her wake.

The Feral has come full circle and must begin a new life from the shadow of the old. His placement in the hierarchy of the pack is uncertain when he finds that he has an integral enemy and a pack member to protect.

Can the vestiges of Julia’s former life be restored so she might reunite with her one true love or has that door closed forever because of supernatural circumstances beyond their control?

For some reason I’m not enjoying this series as much as I have the Savage series or the Death series. There are a lot of reasons why and I’ll enumerate them in my review of the book but basically there’s no tie in to the first book so I’m not sure where the book left off. It’s been awhile since I read the first book, I needed a little refresher. All I’ve been able to do is piece together what I can remember from the clues in this current book. The plot is complicated and this hasn’t been easy so I’ve been pretty lost for a lot of the book. That’s one of the main reasons I’m not enjoying the book. You could chalk it up to the failings of myself as a reader, but I like to think that I’m not the only one that has had read many other books since the first came out and has had a memory lapse. I’ll keep plugging away in the hopes that things get better!

Title: The Portal

Author: Alan Zendell

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Harry Middleton is born in an America staggered by a century of decline, a time of medical and technological marvels beyond the reach of most people in a shattered economy. Pessimism and despair are more common than optimism and hope, and a desperate government bets the future on space.  The lunar and Martian colonies have not provided the hoped-for salvation, so despite an angry, disillusioned public, the first star mission will soon be launched.

Harry is a special child, smart, precocious, his only confidante an embittered grandfather.  When the old man dies, Harry is lost, until he meets Lorrie.  At thirteen, they bond, certain they’ll spend their lives together, but a year later, she disappears, and Harry is desolate.

With help from his friend Carlos, Harry begins a quest to find her, but he quickly learns how powerless he is.  Even the police lack the resources to help.  Harry and Carlos can only depend on themselves and each other.  An unlikely duo, Harry is an academic prodigy while Carlos is a stud athlete.  Realizing that school and baseball are their  tickets out of the morass they’re caught in, they inspire each other to greatness in both.

Trying to move on with his life, Harry has a college sweetheart, but as long as Lorrie haunts him, he knows the relationship is doomed.  He gains celebrity and wealth, but the thing Harry wants most, finding and saving Lorrie from whatever fate took her from him remains beyond his reach.  And always, in the background, are the deteriorating state of the country and the coming star missions.

And of course, there’s the Portal.

I plan on reading The Portal next. It’s was submitted to me for for review by the author. I read a sample of the book and I enjoyed it so I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the book.

Title: The Duchess of the Shallow

Author: Neil McGarry and Daniel Ravipinto

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

A game is played in the fog-shrouded city of Rodaas, and every citizen, from the nameless of the Shallows to the noblest of the Garden, is a player or a pawn. And no one is as he appears.

Not Minette, brothel-keeper and obsessive collector of secrets. Not Uncle Cornelius, fearsome chief of the gang of brutes and murderers known as the Red. Not the cults of Death, Wisdom, and Illumination, eternally scheming and plotting along the Godswalk.

And certainly not the orphaned bread girl known as Duchess.

Yet armed with nothing more than her wits, her good friend Lysander and a brass mark of dubious origin Duchess will dare to play that game for the most coveted of prizes: initiation into a secret society of thieves, spies and rumormongers who stand supreme in a city where corruption and lies are common coin.

The Grey.

This book is another book submission. It looks really good and I look forward to reading it. I love reading about thieves and assassin guilds.

That’s what I’ll be reading this week! What will you be reading?

It's Monday! What are you reading? (23) October 29, 2012

Posted by thehypermonkey in Book talk.
Tags: , , , , , ,
add a comment

This Monday meme is held by the The Book Journey. Feel free to join in and tell us what you’re reading!

Title: Blood Song

Author: Tamara Rose Blodgett

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Julia has been ripped from the escape she’d planned for herself. When she awakens to discover that her reality has shifted to include a supposed soul-meld with a man she hates, and who hates her… she rebels. Julia doesn’t want to be captive in a gilded cage.

Broken from the horrific events surrounding her friends, Cynthia migrates to the very city that Julia resides, determining to find her as the police follow the bread crumbs she’s left in her wake.

The Feral has come full circle and must begin a new life from the shadow of the old. His placement in the hierarchy of the pack is uncertain when he finds that he has an integral enemy and a pack member to protect.

Can the vestiges of Julia’s former life be restored so she might reunite with her one true love or has that door closed forever because of supernatural circumstances beyond their control?

For some reason I’m not enjoying this series as much as I have the Savage series or the Death series. There are a lot of reasons why and I’ll enumerate them in my review of the book but basically there’s no tie in to the first book so I’m not sure where the book left off. It’s been awhile since I read the first book, I needed a little refresher. All I’ve been able to do is piece together what I can remember from the clues in this current book. The plot is complicated and this hasn’t been easy so I’ve been pretty lost for a lot of the book. That’s one of the main reasons I’m not enjoying the book. You could chalk it up to the failings of myself as a reader, but I like to think that I’m not the only one that has had read many other books since the first came out and has had a memory lapse. I’ll keep plugging away in the hopes that things get better!

Title: The Portal

Author: Alan Zendell

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

Harry Middleton is born in an America staggered by a century of decline, a time of medical and technological marvels beyond the reach of most people in a shattered economy. Pessimism and despair are more common than optimism and hope, and a desperate government bets the future on space.  The lunar and Martian colonies have not provided the hoped-for salvation, so despite an angry, disillusioned public, the first star mission will soon be launched.

Harry is a special child, smart, precocious, his only confidante an embittered grandfather.  When the old man dies, Harry is lost, until he meets Lorrie.  At thirteen, they bond, certain they’ll spend their lives together, but a year later, she disappears, and Harry is desolate.

With help from his friend Carlos, Harry begins a quest to find her, but he quickly learns how powerless he is.  Even the police lack the resources to help.  Harry and Carlos can only depend on themselves and each other.  An unlikely duo, Harry is an academic prodigy while Carlos is a stud athlete.  Realizing that school and baseball are their  tickets out of the morass they’re caught in, they inspire each other to greatness in both.

Trying to move on with his life, Harry has a college sweetheart, but as long as Lorrie haunts him, he knows the relationship is doomed.  He gains celebrity and wealth, but the thing Harry wants most, finding and saving Lorrie from whatever fate took her from him remains beyond his reach.  And always, in the background, are the deteriorating state of the country and the coming star missions.

And of course, there’s the Portal.

I plan on reading The Portal next. It’s was submitted to me for for review by the author. I read a sample of the book and I enjoyed it so I’m looking forward to reading the rest of the book.

Title: The Duchess of the Shallow

Author: Neil McGarry and Daniel Ravipinto

Available at: Kindle Barnes and Noble

From Goodreads:

A game is played in the fog-shrouded city of Rodaas, and every citizen, from the nameless of the Shallows to the noblest of the Garden, is a player or a pawn. And no one is as he appears.

Not Minette, brothel-keeper and obsessive collector of secrets. Not Uncle Cornelius, fearsome chief of the gang of brutes and murderers known as the Red. Not the cults of Death, Wisdom, and Illumination, eternally scheming and plotting along the Godswalk.

And certainly not the orphaned bread girl known as Duchess.

Yet armed with nothing more than her wits, her good friend Lysander and a brass mark of dubious origin Duchess will dare to play that game for the most coveted of prizes: initiation into a secret society of thieves, spies and rumormongers who stand supreme in a city where corruption and lies are common coin.

The Grey.

This book is another book submission. It looks really good and I look forward to reading it. I love reading about thieves and assassin guilds.

That’s what I’ll be reading this week! What will you be reading?