Author: Kate Kaynak
Release Date: 18 June 2010
Series: Book #1 in the Ganzfield series
Number of pages: 249 pages
Publisher: Spencer Hill Press
Source: review copy provided by author
Purchasing Info: Goodreads, Author's Website, Amazon, Kindle store
Grade: 4.5 stars
Sixteen-year-old Maddie Dunn is special, but she needs to figure out how to use her new abilities before somebody else gets hurt. Ganzfield is a secret training facility full of people like her, but it's not exactly a nurturing place.
Every social interaction carries the threat of mind-control.
A stray thought can burn a building to the ground.
And people's nightmares don't always stay in their own heads. But it's still better than New Jersey. Especially once she meets the man of her dreams...
My thoughts: I remember seeing glowing reviews of Minder when it was released and so I was very curious to see what all the hype was about. Well I can say in all honesty that Minder deserves every single one of them, it definitely lived up to all the praise, hype and excitement!
I found the mature portrayal of the teenagers while still staying true to their youthful and playful characters refreshing and yet realistic.
The relationship between Maddie and Trevor was endearing and heartwarming, and though it sure progressed rather quickly, it can be understandable under the very different situation and circumstances.
The honest and fresh tone of the novel kept the story unpretentious and captivating, especially due to its simplicity.
The set of secondary characters were well developed and varied, I loved all the small details Kate Kaynak put into each one of them, thanks to these they certainly gained dimension and stepped off the pages.
What I must ablsolutely highlight as one of the most amazing things about this novel is the original universe Kate Kaynak created. Besides the different "castes" of the inhabitants of Ganzfield (minders, sparks, charms, healers and telekinetic); she developed each category with their own specific traits (loved all the spark related games, precautions, details), and can't wait to discover the other sections in more depth and detail in the following novels!
Verdict: All in all Minder is a fantastic debut to a new (and I'd bet amazing) series. The Ganzfield series is not only for teens, it is for anyone who loves a thrilling, action packed read but still care for emotional depth, humour and three dimensional, layered characters and the development of their relationships. Having read Minder and entered the universe of Ganzfield I feel I gained a whole new set of buddies that I can't wait to spend some more time with!