Review: Mindjack Short Story Collection by Susan Kaye Quinn

Posted April 26, 2016 by Lola in Review, Sci-Fi / 14 Comments


Mindjack Short Story CollectionMindjack Short Story Collection
by Susan Kaye Quinn

Mindjack Short Story Collection
Companion stories to the bestselling Mindjack Trilogy

This collection contains all the Mindjack short stories – five novellas, two deleted scenes, two flash fiction pieces, and more.
Novellas – Mind Games, The Handler, The Scribe, Keeper, The Locksmith
Deleted Scenes – two scenes from Free Souls
Flash Fiction – Leaving Gurnee, Seeds of Promise
Original Trilogy – Open Minds, Closed Hearts, Free Souls
Mindjack Short Story Collection

Mind Games: Raf, a regular mindreader, wants to take Kira—the only girl in school who doesn’t read minds—to the mindware Games, but his friends have other plans.

Leaving Gurnee: flash fiction of a scene that occurs between Open Minds and Closed Hearts, told from Xander’s point-of-view.

The Handler: The first recruit in Julian Navarro’s mindjacker revolution threatens to derail his plans to ensure jacker freedom in a mindreading world.

The Scribe: Sasha Rimbali stopped using his mindjacking skill to erase souls in order to keep from going mad, but when a beautiful female jacker is threatened, he has to decide if there is any cause worth the cost of using his ability one more time.

Keeper: Seventeen-year-old Kira Moore is determined to be part of the second-chance mission to free her fellow mindjackers from FBI Agent Kestrel’s secret prison, but Jacker Freedom Alliance leader Julian believes she’s too valuable to risk in the operation.

Seeds of Promise: Anna Navarro, leader of the Jacker Freedom Alliance, spends her time in FBI Agent Kestrel’s secret prison enduring his torments… and awaiting the time for her revenge.

DELETED SCENE: Kestrel’s interrogation
DELETED SCENE: Drinking the Water

Locksmith: In a world filled with mindreaders, Zeph is a mindjacker who wants to stay hidden—even if it means the cute mindreader in his Latin class is forever out of his reach. He locks and unlocks minds for a ruthless mindjacker Clan in exchange for protection and the chance to have a normal life with his parents and little sister. But when a girl he doesn’t know reveals the existence of mindjackers to the world, Zeph is forced to make a choice: unlock—and ultimately destroy—the mind of a young jacker changeling… or turn his back on everyone he loves.

My Review:
I received a copy in exchange for an honest review

As this is a short story collection I will review each novella in this collection and include the summary of my review here. For my full length review of each novella look on goodreads or amazon. At the end of this review I sum up my thought of this collection as a whole. Before I started reading this collection I had already read and reviewed Keeper and the Locksmith. So I used the review of my first read for those. I did re-read both stories while reading this collection. Mind Games I already had read, but not yet reviewed, so I did review that one now. The other short stories I hadn’t read before and reviewed after I finished them.

About the collection itself:
This collection is really nicely formatted and build-up. Before every short story there’s a bit of info about the short story and it’s place in the series. This helped get a feel for where the story would be about and when it takes place. The order is mostly chronologically and how the author recommend you read them. I read most of the series before I started the short stories and it works great to read them that way, but you can also read the short stories in between the full length novels depending on when the short stories take place.

Mind Games
I really enjoyed this novella. We get to see Raf his point of view and how mindreaders think and treat Zero’s, it’s really appalling to see how they think of zero’s and also a bit about Raf as he’s having feelings for them. It really shows how the society things about zero’s. It’s a nice addition to the series.

The Handler
I really enjoyed this novella, we get a feel for Julian, his mindjack power and the start of the revolution and the why behind it. I felt like we got a good feel for Julian his character in this novella and I feel like we understand him better now and why he is so determined to get this plan of revolution started. We also see Anna and Sasha and understand how they got involved with the movement. And Julian has to make a difficult decision in this novella. I also liked how this novella illustrated how powerful and frightening the mindjack powers are. A great addition to the series!

The Scribe
I really enjoyed this novella/ Sasha stays very mysterious in the full length novels and I enjoyed getting his point of view. I thought it really added something and I got a good feel for his character and it was interesting learning more about Sasha and how his ability works. It shows an interesting point of view we never get int he full length novels and shows us the beginning stages of the revolution and also how Ava joins. There’s a difficult decision Sasha has to make in this one and it’s even a bit dark and shows the frightening impact of Sasha his mindjack powers on others and the effect using them has on him. And I really liked seeing Ava though Sasha his eyes.

Keeper is a nice short addition to the Mindjack series. I would recommend this short story for fans of this series. It gives some extra background and depth to Kira and her new powers.

The Locksmith
This is a fun little novella set in the Mindjack world where we get to know Zeph, what he can do and the situation he’s in. I read this in one sitting and after finishing it I can only say I am looking forward to more Zeph and am excited Susan is writing more books about him. There is a mention of Kira, but this novella can be read as a standalone or anywhere in between the other novels and novella’s in this world.

Deleted Scenes – two scenes from Free Souls
These were two scenes that got deleted from the final edition of the book. I did enjoy reading them and it was interesting to have read these scenes, but they also aren’t as vital to the plot so I guess that’s why they got removed. Still I am happy this way we still get to read these tow scenes. The first one Kestrel’s Interrogation gives us a disturbing view into Krestel’s mind. The other scene Drinking the Water shows a conversation between Julian and Kira and I did enjoy this one and it made me curious what the effects of the water will be.

Flash Fiction – Leaving Gurnee, Seeds of Promise
These two flash fictions were really short, but still added a bit to the main story. They aren’t long enough to really say a lot about, but I was still happy we got these two stories. Leaving Gurnee is about Xander, I couldn’t remember much about the first book and how these events tie in with the rest of the story, but it does show an event we don’t get in the book.

Then there is a small piece about Jackertown slang, not all of which end up in the full length novels and a conversation between Julian and Raf, which was quite interesting and fun to read. This never happens in the story, but it was a fun what if these two talked with each other about Kira.

To summarize: I really enjoyed the Mindjack series and it was great to be back in that world for a bit with this short story collection. Mainly it gives us the background story from some characters who’s point of view we don’t get in the book: Raf (Mind Games), Julian (The Handler) and Sasha (the Scribe). Then there is a short story from Kira her point of view (Keeper) which shows us some events that explain Kira her new power. And a short story that is a set-up for a new spin-off series told through Zeph’s point of view (The Locksmith). All in all these were all great short stories, they aren’t necessary to read to enjoy the main series, but I did think they added some interesting bits and I am definitely happy I read these. I would recommend this short story collection for fans for the series or for people who are new to the series to read alongside the main series.



Do you enjoy short stories as part of a larger series?


14 responses to “Review: Mindjack Short Story Collection by Susan Kaye Quinn

  1. This was a neat concept. I wish more authors would release the deleted scenes. I really need to give this entire series a try.

    As for enjoying short stories, I usually love them. There’s been a few that just seemed like the author was releasing them just to have something to sell, but overall, I’ve had really good experiences reading short stories. And I have to say, I love it when Harlequin includes the authors short stories in the printed book with the authors next release. I wish more publisher did that.
    Angela @Simply Angela recently posted…Recipe Box: Cocoa SnickerdoodlesMy Profile

    • I hope you’ll give the series a try, i really enjoyed it and Susan Kaye Quinn is a great author!

      I agree I’ve had a few short stories that felt like the author releasing them to have something to sell or they felt rushed, but I also read a lot of great short stories. So I definitely am on the side of enjoying them. I hadn’t heard of publishers doing that, that’s great harlequin includes the short stories in books like that.
      Lola recently posted…Review: Mindjack Short Story Collection by Susan Kaye QuinnMy Profile

  2. I’ve read Mind Games, but not the others as I’ve still got to start the series and planned to read them in chronological order.

    I do love when an author writes the little stories like this whether from another POV or just to fill in with extended scenes for series I love. I didn’t realize all the shorties were in a handy box set. I’ll have to snag this one.
    Sophia Rose recently posted…Iced by Karen Marie Moning #Review #OldieButGoodieMy Profile

    • Oh that will be fun to read the series in chronological order. As I read the novels a long time ago I had forgotten a few things.

      It was really handy to have all the shorts in one box set, really handy and it’s mentioned here as well how to read things in order and where to read what. It’s fun when an author writes little extra’s like these that add to the series!

    • I’ve read the first book in her steampunk series, bought the other two, but haven’t read them yet. All three books are already released as far as I know. I have read most of her other books so far and really enjoyed all of them, so I’ll have to continue her steampunk series soon.

  3. Thanks for sharing. I don’t know this series, but in general, I think short stories or novellas related to larger series can be fun but it depends. If the story is funny or adds something to the characters, etc. then yeah, it’s great. But I don’t like when you HAVE to read them to understand a novel or series because 1. I don’t always know they exist and 2. they tend to be online only and that’s not fair for those that just read physical novels.

    Let’s Get Beyond Tolerance recently posted…Waffling On About Belgium by Catherine HumeMy Profile

    • The first book Mindjack is free, in case you want to give the series a try ;). As I read both physical and ebooks I never really thought about your second point, but yes that is a good point. Then again if they are short enough you could still read them on the computer.
      I once ran into number 1 you mentioned once when I didn’t realize there was a novella to read before book one in a series and I felt really lost when I read the book, wish I had known about the novellas.
      I think short stories are the best when they add something to the story, but aren’t necessary to understand the novels. Like these. I am glad this collection was so well done and added depth and background that wouldn’t have had a place in the novels, but did add something.

  4. I’m glad you enjoyed these, Lola. I know how much you enjoy this author. I still have to make time to read her – I one-clicked several of her books at your recommendation. 🙂 I do like short stories as part of a series as long as it’s clear where they fit in the timeline of things. The Kate Daniels series confuses me sometimes with the novellas. 🙂
    Bookworm Brandee recently posted…Release Day Review ~ Mr. Perfect ~ JA HussMy Profile

    • She’s one of my favourite authors :). I am so glad to hear you one clicked a few of your books and I hope you’ll enjoy them!
      In the collection it’s very clearly explained where each novella fit in and they are lined up in chronological order, so if you want to read the novella’s, this is definitely the best way. When there are a lot of novella’s in a series it sure can get confusing at time.
      Lola recently posted…Lola’s Ramblings: What’s your preferred Book Length?My Profile

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