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Mind Games

Mind Games - Visit BOOK BRATS for more reviews, giveaways, discussions, and bookish fun.STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS DOES NOT A BOOK MAKE"I have no idea. My plans changed about five minutes ago." I look over my shoulder to see the men, three (tap tap tap - I hate the number three), thick shoulders, one gun between them based on the way the guy in the middle is walking (that was a mistake, they should all have guns - guess they'll find out) matching our pace and getting closer.The narration style of MIND GAMES starts off annoying and only grows increasingly more annoying as the story goes on. In the case of both sisters, the narration is done in first person present tense stream of consciousness style. It takes a great hand to effectively deal with first person present tense, and that great hand generally has to go to lengths to make it not seem like, “I brush my teeth, I say hello to my cat, I go to sch- SQUIRREL! Ouch a rock! I go to school.”The draft for MIND GAMES was written in nine days, and it shows. The writing is extremely random, with forced bouts of conscious thoughts that have no place in a book. When you remove the random inner monologue and flashbacks that have no place in guiding the story (only serving to make the reader very, very confused), the actual story is maybe 100 pages.I hate stun guns, I hate them so much. LET GO OF MY RIBS.Here in lies the main problem with MIND GAMES, the problem which ruined my enjoyment of it. The writing was juvenile, forced, incoherent at times, and seemed like a cheap rip off of SHATTER ME stylistically, a book which I should note I was not a fan of for reasons of prose AND plot. But that’s a different story. MIND GAMES suffers because of the very problem that makes it fast paced. There is little plot going on, little cohesion between past and present, and little differentiation between the sisters. Told in two first person present tense POVs over the course of several years, the story lacked any real focus.ANNOYING CHARACTERS = ANNOYING BOOKMy second biggest concern with MIND GAMES was the characters. Firstly, as I mentioned, Fia and Annie were basically the same character. Even with chapter headers identifying each character’s chapter, there were times where their similar narration style would confuse me into thinking I was in the mind of the other character. Both characters had similar problems. They were self-obsessed, irrational in their decisions, selfish, irresponsible, and childish. The ending was another one of these times, where the irrational decision by one character – and the irrational acceptance of such thing from another – completely annoyed me to no end. And these characters never change. They’re still as whiny on the last page as they are on the first.And our side characters? With the exception of James, who spends the entire story as a love interest for Fia and the object of my pure and utter hatred, the characters are bland and lifeless. James, however, has found himself as a new member of the “Boys I Hate” Club. Plying a girl with alcohol to get her to “loosen up” (well, that’s implied at least) is sickening. End of story.Although Annie’s power seemed rather interesting, if a bit bland, Fia’s fell short of something that could have been much better. If your gut instinct is always right, let’s think of the things you could do (in theory): intense math equations, the secrets of the universe, Olympic fencing, solving murder mysteries, making people lots of money. But what do they use an insane 16 year old girl for? Killing people. Because Jason Statham with a gun probably wouldn’t do the job as well as her.A LACKING STORYYes, ladies and gentlemen, I have decided to give MIND GAMES only one star. This book, in my opinion, needed a lot more work to bring it up to the standards I hold for my books. The writing was extremely rushed and under-nourished with the things we need as readers – pizzazz, control, flourish, and meaning. It read like a 10 year old girl’s diary after her boyfriend (i.e. Justin Bieber) started dating someone that isn’t her.Ms. White is a New York Times Bestseller for the PARANORMALCY series, but in MIND GAMES, I do not see anything that makes me want to run out and buy this book. At 250 pages, it came off as something that could have been done in one book instead of a duology – a rip off, if you will. The story does not satisfy, it does not make one feel, and it does nothing besides leave a lasting anger and annoyance at wasting a few hours hoping to find something within the pages that will make up for the whining. Skip MIND GAMES. The action might be good in spurts, but when it makes up a tiny portion of a story devoted to the ramblings of a girl who may or may not be an insane narcissist, it’s not worth your money or time.VERDICT: MIND GAMES falls short on every level, from the characters to the action to the romance. I felt completely gypped by the last page thanks to heroines that never leave the stage of “whiny children”.