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Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Review: Closed Hearts (Mindtrack Trilogy #2)

Be sure to check out my Closed Hearts Blog Tour post, where Susan Kaye Quinn stops by for a guest post and giveaway!

TITLE: Closed Hearts                     SERIES: Mindjack Trilogy #2
AUTHOR: Susan Kaye Quinn      PUB DATE: 5/23/12
SOURCE: from author in exchange for honest review

When you control minds, only your heart can be used against you.                  Eight months ago, Kira Moore revealed to the mindreading world that mindjackers like herself were hidden in their midst. Now she wonders if telling the truth was the right choice after all. As wild rumors spread, a powerful anti-jacker politician capitalizes on mindreaders’ fears and strips jackers of their rights. While some jackers flee to Jackertown—a slum rife with jackworkers who trade mind control favors for cash—Kira and her family hide from the readers who fear her and jackers who hate her. But when a jacker Clan member makes Kira’s boyfriend Raf collapse in her arms, Kira is forced to save the people she loves by facing the thing she fears most: FBI agent Kestrel and his experimental torture chamber for jackers.

THREE FOUR WORDS: Electric. Relevant. Fantastic Characters

MY REVIEW: Open Minds (book one in the Mindjack Trilogy) was one of my favorite reads last year, so I was super excited to read Closed Hearts. Excited and a tiny bit nervous, worried that Susan Kaye Quinn would not be able to capture again the electrifying essence of the first book…I had nothing to be worried about! Not only does this second volume match the first in excitement, suspense, thought-provoking material and superb world-building, it goes beyond even the awesomeness of Open Minds.

It’s been eight months since Kira Moore revealed to the world the existence of mindjackers like herself. Her family has been forced to go into hiding as the mindreaders’ fears of mindjackers intensify. But Kira secretly continues to see her BFF and boyfriend Raf in secret. But when an old enemy shows up and Kira ends up in Jackertown among a group of mindjacking revolutionaries, Kira must go up against old and new foes to save the people she loves.

I had intended on reading Closed Hearts over the course of several days, but after muttering “Just one more chapter” after each chapter, I found that I had devoured the book in one sitting, simply unable to put it down. It’s THAT captivating and “I gotta know what happens next!” inducing.

In this volume, Quinn continues to expand and explore the frightening, yet completely intriguing world she has created. Kira finds herself in Jackertown, among mindjackers who have been run out of town by mindreaders and I loved this new setting. Quinn adds even more layers to her already intricate and well-developed world by introducing this setting and the complex social issues it brings to light.

And one of the things I find most compelling about this series is how relevant and fresh the social/cultural/political issues are. The world in this series is quite different than our world, but Quinn deftly explores hot topics that mirror many of the ones our society faces today; topics that are really quite relevant in any generation. The mindjackers, people who were born different than most others, are ostracized, feared and punished simply for the differences they have no control over and Quinn crafts a very palpable and realistic look at how this affects Kira’s society as a whole and how it affects people on a personal level.

The story itself continues to be very thought-provoking, but also immensely thrilling and suspenseful. I was completely enthralled by the difficult journey Kira must take in this book and all the unexpected places she ends up. There are quite a few exciting and well-written fight scenes and scenes of peril that had my heart racing.

Most of my favorite characters from the first book make an appearance in this one. Kira remains a very dimensional, engaging heroine  who is easy to like and connect with. But as much as I love her, I really liked getting to know all the new characters Quinn introduces, especially the mindjackers in Jackertown. With these new mindjackers comes new and powerful jacking abilities, and I’m in complete awe of Quinn’s imagination and innovative-ness.

My favorite new character is Julian and I’ll admit that he has me all swoony! I love Raf, but there’s just something so intensely captivating and endearing about Julian. I’ll admit that when he was first introduced I feared that Quinn was setting up a love triangle between Kira/Raf/Julian, but it never felt like that. The feelings Kira experiences for both these guys come across has very natural and believable. She’s simply a girl who is in love with her BFF and best friend Raf, but can’t deny that she has a strong connection to Julian. There’s an absolutely heart breaking event that happens and I’m excited to see what effect this has on Kira’s love life.

I really love where Kira ends up by the end of this book, both the physical and mental/emotional place and I am dying to find out how this trilogy ends!

MY FINAL THOUGHTS: Closed Hearts definitely does not suffer from any sequel slump or second book disappointment. Instead, it surpasses the awesomeness of the first book, making it and the Mindjack Trilogy MUST reads!


Find the author: Website / Goodreads / Twitter / Facebook
Purchase: Amazon / B&N
Susan Kaye Quinn is the author of the bestselling YA novel Open Minds, Book One of the Mindjack Trilogy, which is available on AmazonBarnes and Noble, and iTunes. The sequel Closed Hearts has just been released. Susan's business card says "Author and Rocket Scientist," but she mostly plays on TwitterFacebook, and Pinterest. 

Check out my stop on the Closed Hearts Blog tour

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