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Iona Portal: Book One of the Synaxis Chronicles Paperback – December 4, 2011


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Product Details

  • Series: Synaxis Chronicles
  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (December 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1467992542
  • ISBN-13: 978-1467992541
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.2 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (139 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,053,442 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Robert David MacNeil is an author, wine-lover, and investigator of things supernatural. Over the last twenty years he's traveled to 31 nations teaching on angels, demons, and supernatural encounters. His travels have taken him from the steppes of Mongolia to the jungles of Thailand, and from the Eskimo villages of Northwest Alaska to le fin del mundo, the “end of the world,” at the tip of South America. Robert loves science fiction and suspense thrillers, and is a student of history–especially ancient Greece, Rome and medieval Europe. He's particularly fascinated with Patrick, Columba, and the ancient Celts of Ireland and Scotland. The Celtic monks had a very special relationship with the angels. They also loved beer and invented whiskey. The Irish really did save civilization. Robert has authored five non-fiction books under a different pen-name. IONA PORTAL is his first novel. He's presently working on the sequel, IONA STRONGHOLD.

More About the Author

Author, wine-lover, and world-traveler. I've traveled to 31 nations, from the steppes of Mongolia to the jungles of Thailand, and from the Eskimo villages of Northwest Alaska to le fin del mundo, the "end of the world," at the tip of South America.

I love scifi, suspense-thrillers, and the study of history. I'm particularly fascinated with the ancient Celts. The Celtic monks had a special relationship with angels. They also invented whiskey. The Irish really did save civilization.

I've authored five non-fiction books under a different pen-name. My first novel is the SciFi Thriller, IONA PORTAL. I'm presently working on the sequel, IONA STRONGHOLD.

For more information on Iona Portal, visit my website at IonaPortal.com

Customer Reviews

Robert did a great job of character development in the story, the characters were very real and believable.
Debra Fleming
This is the type of book that will keep readers on the edge of their seats, not wanting to stop reading until they finish the book like I did!
Viviez
The characters are believable, the plot fascinating and the author brings you to places that are both familiar and fasinating.
Barry Canada

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Dawn A. Lajeunesse on September 9, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I haven't been this blown away by a book since the Steig Larson trilogy.

Maybe it was because I don't usually choose books in the fantasy/sci fi genre. Maybe my expectations were low, as they often are with self-published books. Maybe I really wanted to be able to say something positive about an unknown writer's work, since I'm in the same boat.

Or maybe it's just an excellent read!

I was hooked from page one and found myself sneaking in an extra chapter when I should be getting back to work - and contemplating turning on my kindle and adjusting the print size to make it readable on my long drive home. (I didn't.)

What I know was I was drawn to all of the characters as they were introduced. I mentioned before that it is not a genre that I normally would seek out, but the way the story unfolded made it all so believable! I actually forgot that it was fantasy.

I recommend this to any avid reader, regardless of genre preferences. It has something for everyone!
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By BJP on September 4, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
This new Fiction Author has created a masterpiece of suspense in the first of his series of Sci Fi books. It is definitely a must read if you enjoy being swept away from the first page and held spell bound until the last. MacNeil showed great skill in weaving the multiple characters, plots, and events all together. In fact, he easily paints mental images of his characters and plots causing the reader to feel as if they are watching the events unfold before them.

Personally, I liked the inclusion of historical areas along with its history. I also felt the author gave validity to the plot by discussing the science behind his story. He apparently has a gift of explaining science in terms that even the youngest of readers could comprehend. He also blended both of these elements in the right proportions thus keeping the focus of this novel as a Sci Fi book.

My desire upon completing this book was to immediately pick up book two in the series and continue reading. My hope is that we don't have to wait too long to do just that. In the meantime, don't hesitate to join me in becoming a fan of Robert David MacNeil's book, Iona Portal. You will not be disappointed.
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25 of 31 people found the following review helpful By agarose2000 on April 18, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've read a fair number of low-priced indie novels on Kindle. Some of them are outstanding, some of them lack in editorial quality but are still good, some of them are edited professionally but fall flat.

Iona Portal falls into the third category. There are no glaring typos or lack of editorialism, but that's perhaps the best thing I can say about this book. The storyline is an attempt to be original and creative, but this whole "angels vs demons" story has been done to no end already, and there is nothing original about this one save for the location. If you're a Scotland fan, this will add a star for sure, as he goes into painstaking details about areas in Scotland, but at the cost of character development and richness. This is a very 2-dimensional book, and the language is so basic that it's again, like drafting a movie script without fleshing out any intricacies or subltleties.

This scene sums up the entire book: In the very first few chapters, a character encounters an "angel" and is literally presented with the Matrix's "Choose the red pill or the blue pill?" I'm not exaggerating here, it's literally presented in the book like "Have you seen the Matrix? Well, you can now choose the red or the blue pill" explicitly, and lazily, using an already vastly over-referenced scene. That scene should have been cut flat out by the editor, but somehow it's still in there, and in fact, most of the book is written along these lazy lines. 2 stars is exactly what this book warrants - no more, no less.

I can't explain the large number of positive reviews, but a few reasonable hypotheses:
- Fake reviews. I hate to say it, but I'm seriously considering it here. Most of the reviews are very light on substance and thinly written, but "5 stars!
Read more ›
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Madame X on September 26, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The Iona Portal is a fast-paced, exciting novel that will make you think. It blends historical fact (in recounting the legend of Iona island as well as depicting ancient rites) with situations that make you keep turning the pages toward an astonishing finale.
The author did a great job of maintaining converging storylines and keeping each character distinct. Every character was fully fleshed out, each with their own personality and history. The descriptions of settings were also evocative and vivid.

What I appreciated most about this novel was the way it made sci fi situations believable and made me suspend my belief system. The story was well-plotted and generated tension with every page, leading toward a thrilling conclusion. While I don't read this genre often, I found this book really interesting; the unique blend of fantasy, realism and the supernatural definitely has me reaching for the sequel.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By R. Sundrud on April 24, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The Iona Portal is the first book of a series, with an "angels versus demons" basis and our characters caught in between. The author, MacNeil, is determined to keep everything geographically correct, so we are given much detail about locations and photos of places. While there is nothing wrong with this, most readers, including myself, don't care if the island is absolutely correct in geography, or whether it is ripped whole-cloth from the imagination. Diagon Alley in Harry Potter doesn't have an exact GPS location, nor does Hogwarts. This story would have been improved with a little less geography and more character development. I had to work to get through it, and I don't intend to buy the sequel.
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