Monday, February 18, 2013

ARC Review: Mind Games

Mind Games by Kiersten White
4/5 stars
HarperTeen, 2013
237 pages
YA Paranormal Suspense
Scheduled to release February 19

Source: Received an ARC through Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review.

I think I've mentioned once or twice that I love books about sisters and then I've been a fan of White throughout her Paranormalcy series in addition to meeting her three times at book signings and following her blog. I also love stories told through flashbacks. So this book was kind of made for me!

Going in to the book, I had already skimmed a bunch of reviews (see some links below) and was prepared for a very different story from the Paranormalcy trilogy. Or at least I thought I was prepared.

I fell pretty quickly for sister one Fia, the younger unpredictable wild assassin. She is almost uncontrollable, laced with guilt, and pretty funny if not as quick with a quip as Evie. The other sister Annie is blind and kept locked up; love of Annie is Fia's motivation. As long as their captors have a grip on Annie, they can pretty much control all of Fia's actions. The ending of this book hints at a way Fia can fight back so we'll see what comes.

Why are the girls in captivity? Well their parents are deceased and their guardian had little interest in raising them. Their captors discovered Annie's ability to see the future and offered her a place at their school but Fia ended up being the real find with her perfect instincts. She can make winning stock picks, choose the unloaded gun, and do almost anything.

Besides the sisters, we meet a few other important characters. One is Eden, who can feel what others feel which Fia manipulates to amusing effect. The other two are boys. James is among the crowd who are keeping Fia and Annie contained; he and Fia have an incredibly complicated relationship. Adam is a boy Fia is supposed to assassinate in the beginning chapters but she finds herself unable to do so. He causes a fluttering of emotions in Fia and the push/pull of the two boys against the different parts of Fia's personality are fascinating to read. Because the book is short, I didn't feel like we got to spend as much time with them as I would have liked.

For the next book, for me to really become a fan, I will need more explanation of what Fia is fighting against. "Keane" is not a sufficient answer-who is Keane? Beyond desire for power, what is Keane's ultimate goal and motivation? I would also like to get a bit more insight into Annie-she came off as pretty weak and passive despite her attempts to be more and I would like her to be stronger. But despite these complaints, I will definitely be back for book 2!

Other Opinions: My blogging friends have talked about this a lot so I'm linking to more than usual
A Life Bound by Books-3.5/5
A Reader of Fictions-2/5
Beauty and the Bookshelf-Eh
Book Labyrinth-4/5
Reading Under the Willow Tree-5/5
The Book Lantern-1/5
The Midnight Garden-4/5
The YA Kitten-2.5/5


  1. I can't wait to read this book. I really liked her Paranormalcy books (I still need to read Endlessly though) and I can't wait to see how this works out. Books about sisters are always good :) Fia sounds like a solid character and I love flashbacks. Great review and I'm happy you liked it :D


  2. Loved Paranormalcy! Jealous you got to meet her three times! I'm really looking forward to this although reviews seem to be all over the place. I notice a lot of love it or hate it. The plot sounds interesting though even though it is lacking some details.

    1. Yeah, we live in the same area so it's been easy to attend her events.

  3. I've seen so many mixed reviews, but I think it's definitely worth a read. And Kiersten White seems so nice; I love her twitter. Definitely a book I'm going to be reading, and forming my own opinion on!

    1. That's just what I like to hear-can't wait to read your thoughts!

  4. I have an ARC and will get to it soon. Curious to compare it to the other YA I just read about a school for criminals -- How To Lead a Life of Crime.

  5. I'm going to have to read this one. The fact that it's short and leaves you with questions worries me but I'm still intrigued enough to give it a go.

  6. Glad you enjoyed Fia and her broken kick butt self. I agree though about details besides Keane.
    Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

  7. Since the reviews are really back and forth, I am so glad that I found another review that brings back my excitement for it. Great review. I will certainly be picking this one up.

    Jenea @ Books Live Forever

  8. I definitely enjoyed this book, but yeah, I want a few answers too. I really did love the end though and the twist and it shows us HOW important Annie is to Fia.

  9. I just saw this for the first time today and it looks really good.

  10. This is one I've had my eye on, it's had mixed reviews but the premise really appeals to me. Nice review :)

  11. I am sort of interested in this book. I liked Paranormalcy but couldn't get into the sequel. I do like books that explore sisterhood which is another plus in this book's favor. Thanks for sharing your review!

  12. Oh wow, thanks for linking. Yours is the first positive review I've seen for this one, and I'm glad to see that it does work for some people. I really struggled with the writing style, and, like you, I wanted to know more about what was actually happening in that world. Who is she fighting? What's the school's endgame?

    1. I really will need more answers in the second book if I'm to continue and that is my biggest dissatisfaction with this book. Still the writing style and characterizations were compelling enough to start with.

  13. I've read such mixed reviews for this book! I think I'm going to hold off for now and see how the series progresses. I'll be keeping an eye out for your review of the next book to see if you get the answers and development you're looking for. Those are things I think I would want, too.

  14. Sounds good! Due to mixed reviews we've been hesitant to start this one, but based on your commentary we think we'd probably enjoy it. Thanks!


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