The Eye of Minds

Michael and his friends are gamers. Entering the Sleep every day, they hack and code their way through games, levels, and programs, intent on their goal-to enter Lifeblood Deep, the ultimate level for gamers of all ages. But not everything is fun and games in the Sleep. A new cyber-hacker has emerged on the scene, and his designs are more sinister than thieving food from cafeterias and bringing weapons into different games. This hacker holds gamers hostage, and then forces them to remove their cores-which kills them both in the Sleep and makes them brain-dead in the real world. The VirtNet Security is unable to track down this hacker, so they hire teams of coders to find him and stop his evil schemes once and for all. Michael and his friends Bryson and Sarah are chosen as one of the teams-but the hacker already knows who they are. He has targeted them, and they have only a short while before he finds them. Can the friends escape the KillSims, hack through the Firewalls, and discover this hacker’s identity before it’s too late?
The Eye of Minds, written by James Dashner (New York Times best seller and author of The Maze Runner Series) and published by Random House Children’s Books in 2013, is a highly imaginative, edge-of-your seat read. This book falls under the sci-fi and virtual reality genre.
I would highly recommend this book for ages 14+. There is some mild mature language, a few inappropriate jokes, and intense violence to watch out for. This book is very well written with no dull spots and colorful descriptions. A gripping read with fun cyber-world delving and gritty action scenes. 4 out of 5 stars.

Artemis Fowl

Brimming with action, intrigue, crime, technology and fairies; Artemis Fowl is a gripping read for teen booklovers. Written by Eoin Colfer and published by Disney • Hyperion, an imprint of Disney Book Group; this book would fall under the fantasy genre.
Artemis Fowl is a 12-year-old child prodigy. His family-the Fowl family-are legendary criminals, and have made a fortune dealing on the wrong side of the law for generations. Artemis is no exception, and neither was his father, Artemis Senior; who mysteriously disappeared some time before, after his ship exploded while it was at sea. Artemis is convinced his father is still alive and is determined to find him. However, what he intends to do requires money…something the Fowls are running low on. Artemis knows just how to attain the funds he needs: kidnapping a fairy to acquire fairy gold. The fairy he kidnaps just happens to be an Elf named…Holly Short.
Captain Holly Short is a female officer in LEPrecon. Known as “leprechauns” in human lore, they are an elite division of the Lower Elements Police force. They protect all the fairies that live beneath Earth’s surface in huge cities that (they think) humans know nothing about, and they are determined to keep it that way. If the humans found out that there were armed and deadly fairies living below them, there would surely be consequences. So far, they have succeeded in remaining hidden; or so they think…until one of their own is captured by a juvenile human.
How did he know where to find them? Will Holly be able to escape the boy genius’s grip and foil his evil plot? The fairies are bound by ancient laws and have specific boundaries regarding humans…but what if they stop playing by the rules? Will Artemis attain what he needs to locate his father?
Eoin Colfer writes with excellent imagery and a good dose of comedy. His use of dialogue is fairly good; and the story flows very well with no dull spots. I would recommend this book for ages 13+; as there is an occasional inappropriate word and some mild rude humor.
Artemis Fowl is a riveting story with genuine characters and is a thoroughly enjoyable read. 3.5 out of 5 stars.