Thursday, January 8, 2015

Review for The Eye of the Minds by James Dashner

16279856The Eye of Minds (The Mortality Doctrine #1)
By James Dashner
Published October 8th 2013 by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Borrowed Hardback from Local Library
308 pages

"Michael is a gamer. And like most gamers, he almost spends more time on the VirtNet than in the actual world. The VirtNet offers total mind and body immersion, and it’s addictive. Thanks to technology, anyone with enough money can experience fantasy worlds, risk their life without the chance of death, or just hang around with Virt-friends. And the more hacking skills you have, the more fun. Why bother following the rules when most of them are dumb, anyway?
But some rules were made for a reason. Some technology is too dangerous to fool with. And recent reports claim that one gamer is going beyond what any gamer has done before: he’s holding players hostage inside the VirtNet. The effects are horrific—the hostages have all been declared brain-dead. Yet the gamer’s motives are a mystery.
The government knows that to catch a hacker, you need a hacker.
And they’ve been watching Michael. They want him on their team.
But the risk is enormous. If he accepts their challenge, Michael will need to go off the VirtNet grid. There are back alleys and corners in the system human eyes have never seen and predators he can’t even fathom—and there’s the possibility that the line between game and reality will be blurred forever." ~ Goodreads


The Eye of Minds had so much potential - a gamer holding players hostage in a game? yes! - but it felt very underdeveloped.

Was this a bad book? No. Was it really boring? No. However, it just wasn't what I expected... and not in a good way. The characters had personality, but it felt superficial. I couldn't understand why the government would choose Michael and his friends, Bryson and Sarah to try and track down a dangerous criminal in cyber world. I guess it became apparent later on that Bryson and Sarah actually possessed hacking skills, but Michael? Why Michael? They must have been getting desperate. He kept on going, even when things turned nightmarish. I guess that's a good quality to have. Anyway, I did enjoy the relationship between those three. Even though they had never met before in real life, there was a great sense of loyalty in the group. Their banter was cute too. As for the villian Kaine, well, not too much is explained about him (figure that's coming in the second book). He seemed like a formidable foe, though. 

The frustrating part about the plot was that it was in fact intriguing, but underdeveloped. It was like Dashner was trying really hard to make his complex ideas simple. It backfired as I would have liked more details. But at the same time I was getting confused during certain parts. As you can tell, it is hard to please me. The variety of worlds and scenes that the trio visit was amazing and it was very easy to visualize them. It was a crazy set of events they went through. Cra-zy. The pace really picked up by the middle of the book and it totally engaged me. A couple times my butt was even on the edge of my seat. And the twist at the end was surprising! But even when things were explained towards the finish it was hard to comprehend how everything fit together. 

suggest The Eye of the Minds to readers who enjoy books that center around gaming (obviously) because in that regard it lived up, as well as those who like adventure. There was a lot of that! It's still under debate as to whether I'll be reading the second book.


 Mikethespike: Just meet me back at the deli. One hour. Get Sarah there, too. I gotta go shower. I smell like armpits.
Brystones: Glad we're not meeting in real life, then. Not too fond of the B.O.
Mikethespike: Speaking of that - we need to just do it. Meet for real. You don't live THAT far away.
Brystones: But the Wake is so boring. What's the point?
Mikethespike: Because that's what humans do. They meet each other and shake real hands.
Brystones: I'd rather give you a hug on Mars.
Mikethespike: NO HUGS. See you in an hour. Get Sarah!
Brystones: Will do. Go scrub your nasty pits.
Mikethespike: I said I SMELL like them, not... Never mind. Later.
Brystones: Out.