A review by CJ Dee
Luna lives in a future where everyone spends their lives ‘plugged in’ to a virtual world via implants in their brains. Even when in the real world, implanted people are constantly shown an augmented reality. Luna, though, is a Refuser. She refused to accept an implant and has not plugged in manually for years.
When she is chosen to take the test for a top job at PareCo, the world’s leading supplier of just about everything, Luna is hesitant but goes along with it for her family’s sake. Eventually Luna is led down a path of murder and conspiracy until she unearths a horrifying secret that only she can expose.
Will Luna work out who she can trust before it is too late?
Mind Games is an incredibly conflicting book. On one hand, it is easy to read and the story pulls you through the pages with ease.
On the other hand, there are so many things I found distracting within the story.
The main character, Luna, is told from the beginning ‘don’t trust anyone’. So what does she do? She trusts just about everyone she meets. Occasionally she will remember what she has been told, but then disregards it anyway with disastrous consequences.
** MINOR SPOILER ALERT ** The ending of Mind Games was unsatisfying. Without going into too much detail, it is left feeling incomplete. There is a love triangle that is heavily focused on throughout the story, yet both love interests are left unfulfilled. I’m not a huge fan of sappy romance, but if I’m strung along with a potential love interest or two, I like to see at least one come to some kind of fruition. ** END SPOILER **
The characters are complicated almost to the point of convolution. Unfortunately this doesn’t work in their favour. Pseudo-main characters are introduced briefly and then thrown away once they have served their plot device purpose. Many of the characters who are pivotal to the beginning of the plot could have been merged with characters pivotal to the middle and end with a much smoother transition.
Despite the flaws in Mind Games that distracted me from the story, it is a book that I read fairly quickly. The plot, though derivative, was good. If you like YA science fiction, don’t mind switching your mind off to read it for a while (ironic given the subject matter, no?) and have no great expectations then Mind Games is an entertaining read worth a few hours of your time.
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Format: Paperback, 433 pages
Publisher: Orchard Books (Hachette)