For Gemma Green’s first time, things should have been straightforward. Find your subject, hold their gaze and push a thought into their head to save them from future disaster – Aversion complete. A pretty simple process given that the subject was to have no recollection of the experience. But Russ Tanner doesn’t seem to want to forget. In fact the more she tries to avoid him, the more he pushes to get to know her. Gemma knows she has a problem but is she facing the side effects of a failed Aversion or has the school’s tennis champ really fallen for her?
Aversion: 1. a feeling of repugnance toward something with a desire to avoid or turn from it. 2.a tendency to extinguish a behavior or to avoid a thing or situation.
In this fast and intriguing read written by Kenechi Udogu, we meet Gemma. Gemma is a Mentalist. The only one of her kind, or so she believes. Female Mentalists are not supposed to exist. Gemma is perplexed by her existence and has never been able to purge her father of details concerning her conception. The past sixteen years of her life have been spent living like a nomad due to Mentalist protocol. Mentalists are Averters. They are assigned to certain people, and can sense and see when someone is going to make a detrimental decision. The job of the Averter is to plant a seed of thought into the assignment’s mind without them having any recollection of it, to keep them from making a tragic mistake.
Under her father’s supervision, Gemma performs her first official Aversion on a classmate named Russ. Everything seems to have gone off without a hitch until Gemma notices Russ is paying attention to her at school. Russ can’t stay away from her. Gemma has played hard at staying under the radar and not forming any friends or attachments due to her inconsistent living arrangements, so when Russ approaches her at school and expresses the desire to get to know her better, warning signs go off in Gemma’s head. Did she do something wrong? Did the Aversion not work? Or, worse. Does he somehow remember the Aversion? This is the catalyst that sets in motion the rest of book one. Gemma is thrown some curve balls and events unfold that force her father to tell her the details about their lives that he has been hiding since she was born. Things can’t ever go back to normal, and now Gemma is the one who can’t stay away from Russ. She has had her first experience of teenage feelings, and struggles to keep them in check since the odds are against her living a normal life.
The Mentalist series shows promise, and I think I will be reading the other books in this series out of simple curiosity and because it piqued my interest. The pacing and writing of this story reminded me of the indie film The First Time. Many things unfold as if they are happening in the same twenty-four hours because the book is so short. Just as I was wrapping my head around the concepts in the story, and feeling invested in the character’s lives, it came to an end. I would have liked more physical description of the characters, and about a hundred more pages to make time to add some depth to Gemma and Russ. To make a long story short (no pun intended), I would have liked more in general from this story. Maybe that was the plan. To leave us wanting more.
P.S. Aversion is only 99 cents for the Kindle and Nook! It’s definitely worth a buy. 🙂
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Classical music nerd by day, freelance writer and blogger by night. When I review books, I don't dish out and rehash every character and detail. What's the point of reading a book if you give most of the deets away in a review??? My reviews are more about my impressions and over all experience with the book. I am also a world-renowned armchair psychologist, and love to psychoanalyze authors.