Oct 02, 13
Read from September 21 to 23, 2012 — I own a copy
Overall, I really enjoyed this book.
The world building was a little clunky in its presentation - the book suffered somewhat from info-dumps and tell-not-show, especially during the earlier chapters - but the word Edwards created was engaging and fresh enough that the exposition never got boring.
My other main problem with the book was a certain plot device used at around the chapter 20 mark, which I think was pushed just a little too far and detracted from the psychological realism of the main character for me. (Had it been almost the same, but just toned back a little, I think I really would have loved it, however.)
The best part of this book is undoubtedly the detail of the world building. I enjoy that Edwards clearly put thought into how the primary technological idea behind the book (the portal technology) could effect the cultures people developed, and also clearly put thought into how the cultures that then emerged would effect what further technologies were developed. I enjoyed that the technology of the 21st century was seen a primitive by the people of 2788, but that, for example, the land and air speed of 21st century transport impressed the people of 2788, because the portals have eliminated a lot of the need for it. That this future has different modes of operating that make our modes obsolete is much more interesting and realistic than just imagining a future that has more or less the same technology as us, except better.
The romance in the book was sweet, if predictable, and avoided the now-tiresome love triangle plot that is being overused in YA fiction everywhere at the moment.
There were quite a few characters in the book I would have liked to get to know in more depth, but as far as flaws go I have to say leaving me wanting more is preferable to not engaging me at all or leaving me wanting less.
I think this book is a really solid first novel, and I feel most of my criticisms of the book stem more from the author's inexperience rather than lack of talent, so I'll definitely be looking out for more from her. I'm excited to see what she comes up with next!