Monday, November 15, 2010

Review: Mind Games (The Disillusionists Trilogy, #1) by Carolyn Crane

I enjoyed Mind Games. The premise of a group of Disillusionists using their abilities to “reboot” the bad guys is interesting and clever. The main character Justine Jones is a hypochondriac who struggles with a fear of vein star syndrome. When she meets a highcap (people with unique mental powers) named Packard who sees people’s psychological structures, she is given the opportunity to learn how to channel her fear into others, thereby allowing her to lead a normal life. Justine is reluctant to join Packard’s band of crime fighting disillusionists at first, because she questions whether of not it is ethical to disillusion people, even if said people are known criminals and murderers. Could forcing someone to live out their greatest fear be synonymous with torture? However, when Justine gets a taste of life free of crippling fear she is helpless to give in to Packard’s offer and join his crew. There is a catch of course. Living a life without fear and fighting bad guys isn’t all its cracked up to be.

Packard was my favorite character in this book. As the leader of the disillusionists, he is responsible for finding targets that are compatible with each person’s ability. Justine uses fear to secure her targets, while other disillusionists specialize in emotions such as anger, hopelessness, or greed. His reason for establishing this group of crime fighters is fascinating and his ability to manipulate makes him a dangerous player in a world filled with powerful highcaps. Packard’s relationship with Justine is enticing and the sexual tension between the two is palpable. Packard may toe the line between noble and devious, but how Justine can resist such a man is beyond me! Justine has two other love interests, one of which is her boyfriend Cubby and the other is a mysterious suitor that I won’t reveal. However, I found both of these men to be unattractive and unappealing. What she sees in either of them is baffling.

My only real complaint with Mind Games is that I guessed the identity of Packard’s nemesis. This disappointment, however, was short lived, because the author Carolyn Crane was kind enough to throw in a twist or two for my reading pleasure. I’m really looking forward to getting my hands on the next book and have already put in a request for my local library to order it! The great thing about reading a really good book is that it reminds you why you developed such a passion for reading. Lately I have been reading a lot of YA and as much as I have enjoyed it in the past, I think I’m going to go back to reading more adult urban fantasy. I find adult urban fantasy and paranormal romance to be much more satisfying and entertaining than many of the YA titles offered in this genre today.

Rating: 4/5 Stars

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