Wednesday 29 December 2010

Review: Mind Games - Carolyn Crane

The Disillusionists Trilogy #1
Genre: Urban Fantasy
Pages: 371
Published: 2010


Justine Jones has a secret. A hardcore hypochondriac, she’s convinced a blood vessel is about to burst in her brain. Then, out of the blue, a startlingly handsome man named Packard peers into Justine’s soul and invites her to join his private crime-fighting team. It’s a once-in-a-lifetime deal. With a little of Packard’s hands-on training, Justine can weaponize her neurosis, turning it outward on Midcity’s worst criminals, and finally get the freedom from fear she’s always craved. End of problem.

Or is it? In Midcity, a dashing police chief is fighting a unique breed of outlaw with more than human powers. And while Justine’s first missions, including one against a nymphomaniac husband-killer, are thrilling successes, there is more to Packard than meets the eye. Soon, while battling her attraction to two very different men, Justine is plunging deeper into a world of wizardry, eroticism, and cosmic secrets. With Packard’s help, Justine has freed herself from her madness—only to discover a reality more frightening than anyone’s worst fears.

The blurb does say it as it is.

My thoughts:
I can say one thing, and that is original. What a great use of powers and magic. So strange, so freaky.

Justine, oh she is nice, a crazy hypochondriac, but that is not her fault. Though of course in real life I am sure we would not make it as friend, at least not before her zing. When she got zinged she no longer have to constantly worry that she is gonna die from something. But then pre-Justine is fun to read about too.

The crew, nice crew, but who cares about the crew when there is a boss, and oh what a boss. I liked Packard from the start, then I had my doubts and then I went all rawr! There is also police chief Otto, who I kind of admired from a distance and had theories about.

Oh the magic, Justine gives the bad guys they are after all her own dark thoughts about illness. She is free and they are doomed. There are no big action scenes instead they infiltrate the lives of these people, try to be friends with them and then go into attack mode time after time. How to describe in the end, it is not kick-ass UF, it is mental warfare UF. And I like it.

Hard book to put down, and it even made me giggle.

My final thoughts and recommendation.
I hear book 2 has a big cliffhanger, scary! This one ended good with things to come, but nothing that I went crazy over. I of course really want to know what happens, but I I am kind of scared of that cliffhanger now, perhaps I should wait until book 3 is out...if I can make it, cos come on, the thing Packard said at the end, damn, I want to read more!

Ok where was I, yes I do recommend this series. It is certainly original, and so far there are only people with magical abilities around.

Reason for reading:
People said it was good

very UF


  1. I haven't read much UF but your review put this title on my buy list. Great review! LOL "who cares about the crew" :-)

  2. Glad you liked it! I love this series and yes - book 2 has a huge cliffhanger!! I do (heart) Packard :)

  3. "Mental warfare UF" - you said it perfectly. I am happy you liked this's one of my favorite reads of the year. And book two will play with your mind too! Bwa ha ha...

  4. Which team are you on? Hmm cucumber.. :P

  5. Mental warfare UF- does sounds interesting.

  6. UF is not my thing but this book keeps getting my attention, I think I may just try it.

  7. I definitely want to try out this series :)

  8. This sounds SO fun! I'm definitely adding to my list :)

  9. I'm so glad you liked this one. I didn't think I would and now Carolyn Crane is one of my favorite authors. Love does not describe how I feel about this series!

  10. I have this one on my shelf to be read!! it looks awesome!!

  11. Mary
    Hihi, well he was just so awesome! ;=) And I do think you need some UF, it is fantastic

    Ohhh cliffhanger *hides in fear* But I so want the next book!

    And here my list was almost ready, but nope, need to get this one in to..must invent another category ;)

    Oh you mean LOVE :D Agree there

  12. Kate
    To be honest, I get the..kebab thing, but cucumber?

    Doesn't it? They can sure mess with your mind

    Peeps to seem to like it...*whisper read it* That is mental warfare to you ;)

    Book V
    Yay, oh please do :)

  13. Melissa
    It was fun, it was fresh and I love fresh when it comes to UF, cos many take the safe road

    I was on the fence too, maybe it just sounded so strange, but now I finally got the courage to want it...and was left thinking, why did I ever wait?

    I am sure you will like it :D

  14. I loved Mind Games. But oh how I hate cliffhangers. There's always the chance the author will throw in the towel with the next book. Yikes! I have Double Cross on order, so it should get here any day. Pretty excited to see what's next. :)

  15. I have been wanting this book for some time now. Now me wants it more!!! I don't know about book 2. So, if I get this series, I think I might get book 1, wait for your review on book 2 and 3 to see if I need book 4 as well. :) See, I'm evil like that. :D

  16. Remember the scene in the hot tub where Justine calls Otto's XYZ a cucumber?

  17. @Melissa from Books and Things - you know I want to join your evilness...Blodeuedd thanks for the review, I think I will wait for your take on book two etc etc...(insert a ridiculously evil grin).

  18. You've read so many great UF's this year that I'm starting to lose track of all of them that I need to read!! LOL!

  19. Nice review hon! Im sure you'll love book 2 much more hehe


  20. Reena
    Thanks for stopping by :)
    Oh yes cliffhangers are pure evil, especially if the book is months and months away.

    You evil thing! Lol, good call, I will try to keep myself calm and...ok I can't, I am so gonna wish for it for my bday ;) So that is in two months, I do not think you will have to wait too long for that 2nd review

    Ohhhh, that explains it, you know I was all Otto, but then he said that about a criminal overlord, and I just went all rawr. I blame it on too many mafia movies, they are so bad for me ;)

  21. Ana
    Oh now you join Melissa in her evil ways, lol, go ahead, I will get book 2 one day *coughs please on my bday*
    And I will tell you like it is

    Lol, I know! I have been on such a roll. This was such a great UF year, I love the genre

    Hm, what does that mean, what happens in book 2, arghhh, need book 2 ;)

  22. Another new author that I need to try!

  23. This sounds really good. I'm going to add it to my shopping list :)

  24. I love coming to your blog to see what you're reading because it's different than me. So often I come away with something to add to my list like this one! Glad you enjoyed it.

  25. There's a ton of adult urban fantasy series that I'm itching to start and this is another one I should add to my list.

  26. Must wait for the third book before I start, because I do poorly with cliffhangers. And I'd hate to bust down CJ's door and menace her to find out what happens next. :)

  27. Elysium
    I am sure you would enjoy it :)

    I hope you like it if you do buy it!

    Yay, I am glad you do, I do love to read a bit of everything, even if it sure has been a lot of UF lately :)

    There are sure so many good ones out there, my fingers are itching too to get started on more

    Lol, I hate cliffhangers too, oh CJ is so evil, a devil in disguise for sure. But hey if you ever tear down her door then tell me some spoilers ;)

  28. aww, i keep hearing this is good and you too! i'm convinced. this will be on my next book shopping trip ;-D

  29. I remember hearing about this book a while ago and thinking that it sounded interesting. As part of my plan for 2011 to try more urban fantasies, perhaps I'll start with this book.

  30. Velvet
    I hope you enjoy it :D It was fun for sure

    I think...yes :D Oh and you must must read Kelly Gay too, I do love her

  31. Nice review B! I loved this book, just loved it. I haven't read the next one yet but I think I'm going to do a re-read of Mind Games then read Double Cross in 2011.. ;)

    Thanks for sharing. One of my best of 2010 for sure.

  32. Lea
    It sure was great, and I am so happy it was too, lol, I was a bit afraid that I would not like it. But then I started it and yay

  33. Hunting a nymphomaniac husband-killer? I must read this book!

  34. Diana
    Lol, oh yes ;) Do read it, you wont regret it



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