Friday, September 26, 2014

The Rule Of Thoughts (Mortality Doctrine #2) by James Dashner (Review & Giveaway)

Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia
Publication.Date  August 26th 2014
Published By:  Delacorte Press
AuthorJames Dashner

The Rule Of Thoughts on Goodreads
My review copy:Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
Where to get:

From the New York Times bestselling author of the Maze Runner series comes The Rule of Thoughts, the exciting sequel to The Eye of Minds. Fans of the Divergent series by Veronica Roth and The Hunger Games will love the new Mortality Doctrine series. 

Michael completed the Path. What he found at the end turned everything he’d ever known about his life—and the world—completely upside down.

He barely survived. But it was the only way VirtNet Security knew to find the cyber-terrorist Kaine—and to make the Sleep safe for gamers once again. And, the truth Michael discovered about Kaine is more complex than they anticipated, and more terrifying than even the worst of their fears.

Kaine is a tangent, a computer program that has become sentient. And Michael’s completing the Path was the first stage in turning Kaine’s master plan, the Mortality Doctrine, into a reality.

The Mortality Doctrine will populate Earth entirely with human bodies harboring tangent minds. Any gamer who sinks into the VirtNet risks coming out with a tangent intelligence in control of their body. 

And the takeover has already begun.


"You can't hack your way out of this one."
"Everything he knew was a result of artificial intelligence. Manufatured data and memories. Programmed technology. A created life. He could go on and on, each description somehow worse than the one before it. There was nothing real about him, and yet now here he was, transported through the VirtNet and the Mortality Doctrine program an turned into an actual human being. A living, breathing organism. A life, stolen. So that he could become something he didn't even understand. His view of the world had been shattered. Utterly."

"You can't hack your way out of this one."

(If you haven't read the first book, The Eye Of Minds, please skip the first two passages as they contain spoilers of the first volume)

     The second book in James Dashner's Mortality Doctrine series picks up exactly where the first one left off. After discovering that he is a tangent (a computer program that has become sentient), and that Kaine somehow managed to outsmart VNS and to use everyone for his own purpose, Michael wakes up in the real world, in a body that belonged to a boy named Jackson. His consciousness was downloaded into Jackson's body and he is now - for the very first time - truly alive. And in grave danger. He is the first one, the one who made it into the real world, Kaine's creation and pet project, and the only one strong, brave and stupid enough to try to stop his "creator" from completely taking over the world - and not just the virtual one, but the real one as well. 

     In The Rule Of Thoughts, stakes are higher than ever. Tangents are being downloaded into the bodies of people in "the wake" and Kaine is getting more powerful with every second. On top of that, Sarah's parents are missing - kidnapped by Kaine's minions - and the Trifecta to Dissect-ya (Michael, Sarah and Bryson) are accused of killing them and they are wanted 'dead or alive'. With no one to turn to for help, the three friends will have to go after Kaine all on their own. But are they ready for another battle? 

     James Dashner managed to surprise me yet again. I finished The Rule Of Thoughts and just sat there... completely dumbfounded. While I enjoyed reading the first 3/4 of the story, I can't say it was better or even just as good as The Eye Of Minds. For the most part it was simply entertaining and interesting to read, but I didn't find myself completely blown away. Not even close. But then I read the final chapters and my mind explored. The ending was so good! Beyond anything I ever expected. It made reading The Rule Of Thoughts worthwhile, and I was definitely impressed with Dashner's phenomenal plotting skills

     The Rule Of Thoughts is a fast-paced, action packed and really well-plotted book. A fabulous addition to what is quickly becoming one of my favorite science fiction series. Does it suffer from 'middle book syndrome'? Perhaps a bit, yes, but only in the first part. And the second part - especially the game-changing ending that you just don't see coming - more than makes up for it.

     I still can't say that I feel emotionally connected to the characters or especially invested in their story, but I also don't really feel the need to. This is more of a science-and-action-driven series, set in a fascinating universe, filled with complex ideas and intrigue. That already is more than enough for me to want to read these books. And let me tell you that I am having so much fun getting immersed in Dashner's complex world building and following the cyber adventures of Michael, Sarah and Bryson. 

     The Rule Of Thoughts holds many surprises. The way the book ends suggests that there are things we have no idea about just yet, secrets waiting to be uncovered, mysteries waiting to be solved, and I am giddy with excitement and crazy with anticipation for the final volume. I just can't wait to find out what is really going on here. The wait is probably going to drive me nuts. 

     If you're already a fan of James Dashner (The Maze Runner series) then you will most definitely love his latest literary endeavor. If you haven't read any of his books yet, but are into complex world building, cyber thrillers with a decent amount of science in the fiction, and plot lines that leave you breathless and craving more, then you should give this series a go for sure. The Mortality Doctrine will probably appeal more to teenage boys, but I sincerely believe it can be thoroughly enjoyed by just about any reader out there.


Thanks to the lovely Alisha and Random House Children's we have 2 finished copies of THE RULE OF THOUGHTS up for grabs today!
US only!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the author:

Twitter | Goodreads | Website | Facebook

James was born and raised in Georgia but now lives in the Rocky Mountains with his family. He has four kids, which some might think is too many but he thinks is just right. Once upon a time, James studied accounting and worked in the field of finance, but has been writing full time for several years. (He doesn’t miss numbers. At all.)

In his free time, James loves to read, watch movies and (good) TV shows, snow ski, and read. (Reading was mentioned twice on purpose.) Most of all, he’s thankful that he gets to make a living writing stories and considers himself pretty much the luckiest guy on the planet.
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