Happy Monday, everyone! Kris here with a review of a novel that takes place in a virtual reality… in more ways than one.
“Who knows the true definition of real?” – James Dashner (The Eye of Minds)
“The Eye of Minds” Review
This post may contain spoilers for the book.
From the Maze Runner fame, James Dashner penned the Mortality Doctrine series of which “The Eye of Minds” is the first. The story revolves around a teenager named Michael who, like the rest of the world, spends much of his time in the VirtNet. There people can live out their fantasies as they want to with no real risk to the own life.
Until, that is, the risks become real.
Enter Kaine, a deranged aspect of the VirtNet that is responsible for other gamers going so far as to kill themselves for real. Michael and his two friends, Bryson and Sarah, are recruited by agents of the VNS — VirtNet Security — to find this Kaine through dangerous codes and programs with their hacking and gaming skills. The entire book is a whirlwind of an adventure with the trio doing their best to follow a thin trail to this Kaine to help the VNS.
The idea of the plot was more interesting to me than the actual reading. Dashner’s writing seemed to be clunky, which worked some of the time due to the main character being a teenager on a crazy ride. With the dangers that surrounded them, it was understandable that Michael’s thoughts were a jumbled mess at times.
There were also parts of the book that I skimmed over for I felt as if the description of Michael’s thoughts and actions weren’t needed as much as the author felt they were. The chapters were short with even smaller sub-chapters, if you will, in them. Many seemed to rehash what we had just read and didn’t reveal anything new to us readers. I found myself wondering why this paragraph or that section was even in the book. Most sections were great for little character developments, but some weren’t enough.
The ending was definitely entertaining and did well in setting us up for the next book. It was a twist that, although hinted at throughout the second half of the novel, was not something that I expected, and it’s certainly a newer idea that I’ve come across in books with virtual realities. I just wish that we didn’t have to sludge through so much narrative to get to, what I believe, was the meat of the story. I will be buying the second book, but it’s not at the top of my list.
“The Eye of Minds” gets a 3 out of 5 stars.