Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Book talk: The Hypnotists by Gordon Korman

If 12-year-old Jackson Opus sat next to you in class, you'd think he was pretty average. He's okay at school - but not great, he's okay at basketball - but not great, he has a best friend and normal parents, and he has really cool eyes that change color sometimes. Hey, we all have quirks. But something weird has been going on with Jackson: he's been having these brief visions in which he sees himself from another person's eyes. Immediately after these brief visions, the person acts unexpectedly: the bus driver lets all hell break loose to speed (like a maniac) Jackson to Jackson's destination on time, and the basketball player on the opposing team misses shots that he never, ever would've missed normally. Sounds like mind control? It was! But Jackson wasn't doing it on purpose! He was just inwardly wishing for these people to do his bidding. It wasn't as if he was actively trying to control them. It's scary, but it sounds like fun, doesn't it? You could get your teacher to change your test grade, and you could get your parents to buy you that computer you've always wanted. But this novel is called The Hypnotists -- plural. Other hypnotists? You mean there are other people who can do this? So why is one of them particularly interested in Jackson? 

The Hypnotists by Gordon Korman. 232 p. Scholastic: 2013. Booktalk to intermediate grades (3rd-5th) and middle school.

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