Mind Game, by R.L. Copple, is a YA science fiction novel that combines space opera with virtual reality. Jeremy and Mickey get a virtual reality video game for Christmas. Little do they, and thousands of other children, know is that the VR is no game. Their minds get transported across the vastness of space and into virtual bodies, to fight a war for an imperialistic alien race. A rip-roaring space adventure ensues, filled with humor, heroism, and tragedy.
Copple maintains a fast pace, keeping the action going, and provides unexpected but logical plot twists throughout. Even the dialogue feels real for characters of such a young age, in contrast to how some YA novels can be. You will root for the heroes, boo the main villain, and even feel bad for the other villains. He also manages to tackle very adult topics in a manner that keeps it suitable for a YA novel. Overall, Copple delivers.
While there are definitely some moralistic themes to the story, the themes are where they should be: in the background. Primarily written for entertainment, the themes become an extra topping on the pizza.
If you enjoyed Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game, then you will enjoy R.L. Copple’s Mind Game.
Best to read while listening to: the soundtracks to Star Wars and Goonies comes to mind.
Cover Price $15.99
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