Published by Swoon Reads on August 27, 2019
Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopian, Thrillers & Suspense, mystery
Source: eARC from Publisher
A teen programmer at a school for geniuses must join forces with a boy she can’t remember to stop a hacker from deleting their memories in Shana Silver’s action-packed YA debut, Mind Games.
Arden sells memories. Whether it’s becoming homecoming queen or studying for that all important test, Arden can hack into a classmate’s memories and upload the experience for you just as if you’d lived it yourself. Business is great, right up until the day Arden whites out, losing fifteen minutes of her life and all her memories of the boy across the school yard. The boy her friends assure her she’s had a crush on for years.
Arden realizes that her own memories have been hacked, but they haven’t just been stolen and shared… they’ve been removed. And she’s not the only one: her mysterious crush, Sebastian, has lost ALL of his memories. But how can they find someone who has the power to make them forget everything they’ve learned?
Mind Games is a dystopian sci-fi thriller by author Shana Silver. I don’t read a ton of science fiction and I haven’t read a good dystopian in a long while, so I was pretty excited to dive into Mind Games. While I did figure out some aspects of the mystery, I still really enjoyed this novel. It is the first time I have seen swoon reads go in this direction, and I have to say I am really excited to see them branch out from contemporary romances. (though you know I do love a good contemporary romance. But sometimes it is fun to mix things up). Mind Games is a fun ride of a story that fans of sci-fi, dystopians and mysteries and thrillers will all enjoy.
In Mind Games we meet our main character, Arden. Arden and her friends attend a school geared towards science and technology (STEM school) and with the skills that Arden learned at school she becomes a pretty great hacker. But she is no ordinary hacker. Oh no, Arden hacks people’s memories and she sells them, so other people can live out their experiences. This can be anything from someone wanting to experience a cool trip someone else went on, or someone wanting to gain knowledge that another person has. Pretty interesting, right? I have never heard of something quite like this, and I was really intrigued that this concept was going to be the basis of the mystery in the story.
Arden soon learns that someone has hacked her memories, and she sets out to find out who and why. I enjoyed Arden and her friends. Yes, at times the group could be annoying or immature, but I do think the characters (for the most part) were age appropriate. There is a romance in Mind Games, which is what I wanted, because when I read a book from Swoon reads, I do expect a romance of some sort. This romance was interesting because the love interest, Sebastian, were a large part of Arden’s missing memories. So we get to see their romance through memories and real time, and the mixture was very interesting. I liked watching it play out.
I am not going to spoil any more of the story line of Mind Games. It is a book that you just have to pick up and hang on for the ride because it is a fast paced world of hacking, memories and secrets galore. I can’t say I was the biggest fan of the ending, but overall it worked for the story. However; I did love the dystopian/science fiction setting. It was perfect for the world that Shana Silver created. I really enjoyed Mind Games and if you are looking for a young adult science fiction thriller, I think you will enjoy it as well.
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