Mind Games: Enjoyable If You Don’t Mind A Shaky Premise

Mind Games is written by Kiersten White. It was published in 2013 by Harper.

Summary/Blurb:

Fia was born with flawless instincts. Her first impulse, her gut feeling, is always exactly right. Her sister, Annie, is blind to the world around her—except when her mind is gripped by strange visions of the future.

Trapped in a school that uses girls with extraordinary powers as tools for corporate espionage, Annie and Fia are forced to choose over and over between using their abilities in twisted, unthinkable ways…or risking each other’s lives by refusing to obey.

Thoughts:

I had two main problems with this book. The first is that, while the book is engaging, there’s a lack of worldbuilding that is really noticeable. Why are there people like Annie and Fia at all? If Fia is the only person that Keane has encountered with perfect instincts, why are he and his cohorts expertly able to manipulate her as if they’ve done it before? How did Fia manage to do half of the things they first told her to do (such as slipping something into someone’s purse) with just perfect instincts (perfect instincts doesn’t mean perfect sleight-of-hand, perfect reflexes, etc. For that matter, instincts aren’t really tied with right and wrong, either, since right and wrong is morality, unless we’re talking about simply the “feel” of the situation, but even then conscience has a say in that as well as instincts)? How did Keane get that powerful? Adding to my confusion was the emptiness of the world: even when the characters are supposed to be around lots of people (in school, in a city, in a club, etc.), it feels like there’s no one around except for them, like they’re the only people there.

My second problem was that I felt that the punch of the end was ruined by having Annie have a vision of it beforehand. Yes, even with the additional twist that White throws in, the whole ambience was ruined. Also, Fia’s thought of “this will always be wrong, but it’s the right sort of wrong” and “we’ll do wrong to make things right” was just…ugh. You should have stayed with Adam, Fia. (Also, if the endgame is James/Fia, I will scream).

What I did really like about the book was Fia’s overall “broken bird” personality, especially the breakdown in her language as the book progresses. In the flashbacks, it’s especially noticeable how fragmented her thoughts get over time. I thought that in particular was really well done on the part of White.

Rating: 2/5

Recommended Age Range: 14+

Warnings: Sexual situations, kissing, violence.

Genre: Supernatural, Realistic, Young Adult

Passages/Quotes:

Before I say anything, John/Daniel speaks. “You feel sick about this? Can you describe the feeling?”

“No, I can’t describe the feeling,” she snaps. “All I know is that this is a bad idea and you’re a liar and I should keep Annie far, far away from you and your stupid school.”

~White 27

Overall Review:

I did enjoy Mind Games, although I felt the worldbuilding was not developed enough and left too many questions. I actually got really mad when Annie had her vision that spoiled the ending plot twist (although not really, but close enough that the overall punch was still ruined), and overall I thought the book would have been better if it had been a little more developed and a little more polished. I did like the look into Fia’s state of mind through the fragmentation of her thoughts on the page, though.

You can buy this here: Mind Games

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