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Storm Portal (Quantum Touch Book 1) Kindle Edition
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|Length: 247 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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All of the characters in this book feel like everyday people, even the President and First Lady. It’s easy to put yourself in the shoes of Fritz, Ash, Linda, George, the teenage students, etc. Everyone is maybe a little too calm about the sudden discovery of time travel, but it works for the lighthearted feel of the story. There seemed to be a lot of dinners and food-related get-togethers, and I would’ve liked to see maybe a little more use of the portal rather than so many conversations about lasagna recipes, but really the action scenes balance all that out pretty well.
The writing is smooth and easy. I read large chunks at a time because I wanted to know what would happen next. The mystery element of “How the heck does the portal work?” is very well developed. Overall, I’d definitely recommend this book if you like light Sci-Fi and History.
The characters were down to earth people, with 'other worldly' events happening to them.
Being drawn in to the events and lives of the people involved made it seem plausible, possible,
even probable. Not an easy task for such unusual circumstances! There was enough action that while
I was trying to anticipate what would happen next, a new and interesting twist occurred, that
led to the next adventure. It not only holds your attention, it makes you think about futuristic possibilities.
A well-crafted, 'worth your time' excursion, that does not disappoint, makes good on promises that seem incredulous -
without a doubt this is an exciting, unusual and rewarding read. If you only got the 'free' part, don't miss
the best and the rest of this tale! At such a reasonable price, it will be money well-spent!
This book is full of character development, imagination, both historical and current personalities, engages you from page one,
and in a phrase - was difficult to put down.
If you enjoy fast-paced action, believable people, an unusual experience with time-travel
and a very interesting premise for a story line, for a small price -
do yourself a favor - don't miss "Storm Portal" !
Fritz Russell is a New Jersey high school history teacher, passionate about his profession and his students, and apparently just an all round nice guy and loving husband. One day he's playing pick-up basketball with his friend and fellow teacher Ash (Ashley) when, after finishing, he's shocked as the school he's in is struck by lightning. It's soon after that the temporal hijinks begin.
Fritz and his students are somehow transported back in time to the day after Robert E. Lee's surrender at Appomattox. There's conversation among them about the Civil War, Lee's personal feelings about the war, and 21st century transportation. After some time, Fritz and kids return back to their own time and place.
There's soon another time trip, followed by a journey less about time than about place, and it's then the President of the United States becomes involved, and the buzz-phrase "national security" starts coming to a boil. What follows is a sometimes cursory but always entertaining adventure of detective work, personal misgivings, love, hope, and the American Way.
Is this science fiction? Anytime you make time travel the central concept, that's going to be a safe assumption. However, Mr. Stern has chosen to steer clear of pretty much any depth of actual science, but I want to be clear here, and will expand a bit more later: that glossing over of physics and the attending theories of relativity, is NOT a bad thing. In fact, it could open some future doors, in my eyes.
Suspension of belief does come in handy. The President stopping over Fritz's house and enjoying wife Linda's lasagna, complete with First Lady in tow, stretches things ever so slightly. But I have to say, it fits in the mood of the book and brings along a sense of warm, hokey charm. And I quite enjoyed the eclectic choice of historical moments Fritz and class were able to visit. It's always nice to see an author step out of the cliché closet and stretch the imagination.
And I have to say, the author's facility with dialog is a refreshing note. At no point do you ever have to wonder who's saying what, but you're never inundated with endless variations of "he/she said." As well, phrasing is real, and the characters' adaptive speech patterns reflect a genuine care for individuality and context.
I like the characters, too. Fritz and Linda are a well-matched pair, and principal George McAllister is a nicely toned-down caricature of a professional popinjay mitigated off-hours by his smarter and more worldly wife Lois.
But you know who intrigues me most? That would be Ash. He comes off as a hale-fellow-well-met fun-guy sharpened with a judicious dose of world-worn cynicism. And at the end of a few chapters, there are italicized paragraphs shining a dim but fetching light on some of the corners of Ash's psyche, making clear, but in no way clearly how, he is considerably more than what we've seen in this novel.
They're the kind of extras, the literary lagniappes, that make you quite happy that this is the first book in a series. You want to see more and know more about this enigmatic character. And might I say, perhaps we can have a bit more on the students themselves. Which...
...brings me back to genres. In this literary day and age, and for better or worse, genres drive marketing. They are part of what can make or break a book's success. Again, they don't determine what I will or won't read. But for many, it makes a difference. I mentioned the lack of substantial science. I love science, and short of the intricate maths involved, I gobble up and even grasp various and often complicated concepts. But the lack in this book is a deliverance, taking me back to a time many years ago when I could be wistfully wishful for a universe less rigidly constrained by natural laws, when the idea of circumventing strict limits and immutable impossibilities made me not disbelieving, but rather joyful just for the sake of imagination.
So Mr. Stern, I am going to read every book you decide to write in this series, and gladly. But if I may? I'd love to see more on Ash, fleshed out yet more. Maybe give me more depth on and centralization of some students, those, dare I say, young adults, who I suspect will play more of a role in future offerings. And make them genre-benders, by all means. But I feel there's a genre-driven market that will gladly revel in your Quantum Touch stories, a market made up of people with huge futures in front of them, many of whom can happily dispense with niggling details for the sake of being literarily entertained for a time. And this is the kind of book that will call out to them.