12 August 2012

Crystal Doors #1 Island Realm

By: Rebecca Moesta and Kevin J. Anderson

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.

Why did I pick up this book again?

Because I met the authors and they gave me a signed copy. I’d never read anything by Rebecca before, and really wanted to.  So not a great fan-base or thrill factor reason.  Sorry!

3 out of 5


I thought the two cousins were cute.  Certainly a great contrast between brains/logic and being spontaneous and how both can be good.  By the end of the book the cousins had met a trio of others that became friends, and since I’m all about camaraderie in stories, I have to say that I dug the characters.

4 out of 5

Did I care what happened?

Yes.  This is a lower YA / higher Middle Grade read, so there isn’t much depth to anything but the ocean in the story, but the characters certainly all had virtues and faults, and I was quite concerned about the magic carpet at one point.

3 out of 5

Plot Holes

You know, I don’t recall anything that made my plot hole radar go off.  Of course both of these authors are titanically experienced, so it might be a lost cause to try to delve for a hole.

5 out of 5

How many times did I yawn?

No yawns.  If I was between the ages of ten and twelve I certainly would have been glued to the pages of the book.  As it is, I didn’t devour the story, but liked it and didn’t get bored.

4 out of 5

Cool Factor

Loads of magic, a flying carpet, sea monsters, mirrors, crystals, ships, shape shifting messengers and all sorts of other creations kept the cool factor high.  I wanted more flying stuff, but I’ll be okay…

4 out of 5

The End

The end worked out.  The very end is a lead in to the rest of the series.  Curse you Rebecca and Kevin.

4 out of 5

Overall Enjoyment

This is a little lower on the reader age group than I usually pick up, but I still really liked the characters (which is a must for me) and the world was brilliant.   The writing style is a little slow to start out, which tripped me up a bit. But I read it pretty fast, and even told my niece that I would loan it to her after I was finished.  She doesn’t love reading (I’m working on that) but I think she’ll like this one.  So if I’m recommending it to others, that means I liked it, right?

4 out of 5


That's a Brown Belt!

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