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33 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very satisfying read
This is a brilliant book from a writer I enjoy but find rather hit and miss. Like others have mentioned, this is Tom Holt very much 'on form', with a well-written story full of wonderful wit and likeable characters. Paul Carpenter is the typical Holt pathetic main character, who starts a very strange office job with a sour-faced girl, who he happens to falls for and...
Published on 16 Jan 2004 by D. S. Roberts

versus
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Being Harry Potter
This is my first Tom Holt book. Holt's writing style is very similar to other humourous British writers such as Robert Rankin and Douglas Adams, although on this evidence he can't quite match those authors skill in the genre. The "Portable Door" comes across like a cross between Harry Potter and "Being John Malkovich", to the point that I don't think this book would have...
Published on 10 Nov 2006 by Johnentwistlespout


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4.0 out of 5 stars The Portable Door, 5 Oct 2007
This review is from: The Portable Door (Paperback)
I bought this book knowing nothing of Tom Holt's writing or even the genre of the book I had bought - this perhaps increased my enjoyment of the book when I worked it out.
The book started off as a rather odd story of a young man in a very slightly strange new job - I wondered how on earth a portable door was going to come into the story. It was well worth carrying on with - laughs aplenty - and a new way of looking at the world around us. I can thoroughly recommend this book and the two follow-ups "In Your Dreams" and "Earth, Air, Fire and Custard"
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent read, 23 Feb 2004
This review is from: The Portable Door (Paperback)
This is the best book I've read for a long time. The way Tom Holt manages to turn an ordinary situation into something so bizarre had me hooked. It's one of those books that you can't put down.
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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Only a heathen couldn't love this book, 3 Oct 2004
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T. Williamson - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Portable Door (Paperback)
This is one of the best reads in a good, long while. It's my favourite of all the Tom Holt books, and believe me, I've got a lot to compare it to. It's just a shame that the sequel is so complex and dark.
READ THIS BOOK.
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious, 30 Dec 2005
By 
G. Jones "gemmellow" (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Portable Door (Paperback)
I laughed till i couldn't breath.You simply can't put this book down!
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A fun but imperfect novel, 9 Feb 2012
By 
R. A. Davison (UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Portable Door (Paperback)
The Portable Door by Tom Holt was recommended to me by several followers on my Twitter account as a good fun fantasy novel, and a good introduction to Holt himself a writer these followers liked.

In The Portable Door, following what appears to be the world's oddest and most disastrous job interviews Paul and Sophie are appointed as junior clerks to J.W Wells & Co. From the start, their office is odd, and they can't really quite make out what it is that the company does....

I feel sexist saying it, it pains me to say that to a certain degree I felt that The Portable Door was a decidedly male novel. There's something in the narrative voice that makes me feel that way, something that isn't present in for example, A Song Of Ice And Fire, like Holt, in his mind, has a solely male audience too.

I didn't particularly like either awkward, slightly neurotic Paul, or rude, abrasive Sophie and that's a problem, considering they are the 'leads' in the novel. I think it also suffers from my having read it in too close a proximity to Rivers Of London and Moon Over Soho. Those books deal with a magic department within the Metropolitan Police and The Portable Door is about a company dealing in magic, so there is some similarity, but the former are just better books.

Where I DID like it though, was really, when it got going, and Paul and Sophie discover more and more about the organisation in which they work. There's magic, and goblins and a pretty decent mystery going on. Paul gets sexually harrassed by his boss's Mum, and that's quite a fun subplot.

Another criticism is that I wondered why it always seems necessary in some novels to have a romance between the protagonists, a man and a woman never seem able to be just mates with a really great friendship or working partnership. It sort of leaves you thinking : "You're going to get together anyway, so just get together now and let's have done and get on with the rest of the story".

When reviewing Moon Over Soho, I mentioned that its "current" vibe may inevitably date it. In this novel Holt references Esther Rantzen's chat show and "Cilla's Blind Date" neither of which have been broadcast in about ten years, the references aren't strictly necessary either and I think its something writers need to consider. Although, there is nothing worse than what Sebastian Faulks did in 'A Week In December' where he invents new names for things you recognise from popular culture such as calling the Costa Award by some other name or calling MySpace "YourPlace", so you know what he's actually referring to but the name is all wrong, terribly annoying and pointless. That's a terrible book anyway avoid it like the plague.

In the end, I warmed to The Portable Door, after say the first third, once the action got underway. At the end of the day, I'm a sucker for magic, and that's what saved it, but I am incredibly torn in my overall opinion. Ultimately, there are two further books in The Portable Door story, 'In Your Dreams' and 'Earth, Air, Fire and Custard', but I don't think I'm going to be in a massive rush to read them immediately.

There was one quote I particularly liked regarding the perils of dealing with people who know magic and that was:

The very worst your kind can do to each other is kill someone. That's practically Vegan when you consider what we get up to sometimes.

Overall my reaction to the book was mixed and I think I'll only give it a 6/10
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not his best, 2 Feb 2005
This review is from: The Portable Door (Paperback)
I really, really enjoyed this book. I gave it four stars because I enjoyed "Faust Among Equals" a lot more.
I'd recommend this as a good book for a starter to Tom Holt for those who haven't read him before.
A very good Comic fantasy book and in some ways even better than Pratchett in that the story is SLIGHTLY more believable in that it's actually set in our world rather than a diffrent Universe.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 28 July 2014
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This review is from: The Portable Door (Kindle Edition)
Very well written and very funny
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3 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Made me laugh aloud!, 1 Jun 2004
This review is from: The Portable Door (Paperback)
Very few books make me laugh out loud, I think Wilt by Tom Sharpe was the only other. This book is brilliant with funny characters. Very good read.
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Best book in quite a while, 25 Sep 2003
By 
plot hound (Dublin, Ireland) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Portable Door (Hardcover)
This is a good funny book. He isn't trying to be so dark like he did in "Little People" although the plot is far more character driven than his earlier books it goes along at a good pace. There is very little substance to the plot but there doesn't need to be since there are a lot of jokes and they are far more hit than miss.
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0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I'm a Pratchett fan and..., 28 May 2012
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This review is from: The Portable Door (Hardcover)
I don't like this bloke at all - gave it 100 pages as you have to but then gave up.... I don't knwo why I didnt like it - other than it is generally weak - tries too hard to imitate douglas adams I think - the ideas are well worn (well they are to me)
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The Portable Door
The Portable Door by Tom Holt (Paperback - 5 Feb 2004)
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