The Eye of Minds (Mortality Doctrine Series #1)

The Eye of Minds (Mortality Doctrine Series #1)

by James Dashner

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From James Dashner, author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Maze Runner series, comes the first book in the bestselling Mortality Doctrine series, an edge-of-your-seat cyber-adventure trilogy that includes The Rule of Thoughts and The Game of Lives

Includes a sneak peek of The Fever Code, the highly anticipated conclusion to the Maze Runner series—the novel that finally reveals how the Maze was built!
    The VirtNet offers total mind and body immersion, and the more hacking skills you have, the more fun it is. Why bother following the rules when it’s so easy to break them? But some rules were made for a reason. Some technology is too dangerous to fool with. And one gamer has been doing exactly that, with murderous results.
     The government knows that to catch a hacker, you need a hacker. And they’ve been watching Michael. If he accepts their challenge, Michael will need to go off the VirtNet grid, to the back alleys and corners of the system human eyes have never seen—and it’s possible that the line between game and reality will be blurred forever.
Praise for the Mortality Doctrine Series:

“Dashner takes full advantage of the Matrix-esque potential for asking ‘what is real.’” —
“Set in a world taken over by virtual reality gaming, the series perfectly capture[s] Dashner’s hallmarks for inventiveness, teen dialogue and an ability to add twists and turns like no other author.” —
“A brilliant, visceral, gamified mash-up of The Matrix and Inception, guaranteed to thrill even the non-gaming crowd.” —Christian Science Monitor

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781467649766
Publisher: Random House
Publication date: 01/28/2015
Series: Mortality Doctrine Series , #1
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 7.30(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range: 12 - 17 Years

About the Author

James Dashner is the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Maze Runner series: The Maze Runner, The Scorch Trials, The Death Cure, The Kill Order and The Fever Code, as well as the bestselling Mortality Doctrine series: The Eye of Minds, The Rule of Thoughts, and The Game of Lives. Dashner was born and raised in Georgia, but now lives and writes in the Rocky Mountains. To learn more about him and his books, visit, follow @jamesdashner on Twitter, and find dashnerjames on Instagram.

Read an Excerpt

Michael spoke against the wind, to a girl named Tanya.

“I know it’s water down there, but it might as well be concrete. You’ll be flat as a pancake the second you hit.”

Not the most comforting choice of words when talking to someone who wanted to end her life, but it was certainly the truth. Tanya had just climbed over the railing of the Golden Gate Bridge, cars zooming by on the road, and was leaning back toward the open air, her twitchy hands holding on to a pole wet with mist. Even if somehow Michael could talk her out of jumping, those slippery fingers might get the job done anyway. And then it’d be lights-out. He pictured some poor sap of a fisherman thinking he’d finally caught the big one, only to reel in a nasty surprise.

“Stop joking,” the trembling girl responded. “It’s not a game—not anymore.”

Michael was inside the VirtNet—the Sleep, to people who went in as often as he did. He was used to seeing scared people there. A lot of them. Yet underneath the fear was usually the knowing. Knowing deep down that no matter what was happening in the Sleep, it wasn’t real.

Not with Tanya. Tanya was different. At least, her Aura, her computer-simulated counterpart, was. Her Aura had this bat-crazy look of pure terror on her face, and it suddenly gave Michael chills—made him feel like he was the one hovering over that long drop to death. And Michael wasn’t a big fan of death, fake or not.

“It is a game, and you know it,” he said louder than he’d wanted to—he didn’t want to startle her. But a cold wind had sprung up, and it seemed to grab his words and whisk them down to the bay. “Get back over here and let’s talk. We’ll both get our Experience Points, and we can go explore the city, get to know each other. Find some crazies to spy on. Maybe even hack some free food from the shops. It’ll be good times. And when we’re done, we’ll find you a Portal, and you can Lift back home. Take a break from the game for a while.”

“This has nothing to do with Lifeblood !” Tanya screamed at him. The wind pulled at her clothes, and her dark hair fanned out behind her like laundry on a line. “Just go away and leave me alone. I don’t want your pretty-boy face to be the last thing I see.”

Michael thought of Lifeblood Deep, the next level, the goal of all goals. Where everything was a thousand times more real, more advanced, more intense. He was three years away from earning his way inside. Maybe two. But right then he needed to talk this dopey girl out of jumping to her date with the fishes or he’d be sent back to the Suburbs for a week, making Lifeblood Deep that much further away.

“Okay, look . . .” He was trying to choose his words carefully, but he’d already made a pretty big mistake and knew it. Going out of character and using the game itself as a reason for her to stop what she was doing meant he’d be docked points big-time. And it was all about the points. But this girl was legitimately starting to scare him. It was that face—pale and sunken, as if she’d already died.

“Just go away!” she yelled. “You don’t get it. I’m trapped here. Portals or no Portals. I’m trapped! He won’t let me Lift!”

Michael wanted to scream right back at her—she was talking nonsense. A dark part of him wanted to say forget it, tell her she was a loser, let her nosedive. She was being so stubborn—it wasn’t like any of it was really happening. It’s just a game. He had to remind himself of that all the time.

But he couldn’t mess this up. He needed the points. “All right. Listen.” He took a step back, held his hands up like he was trying to calm a scared animal. “We just met—give it some time. I promise I won’t do anything nutty. You wanna jump, I’ll let you jump. But at least talk to me. Tell me why.”

Tears lined her cheeks; her eyes had gone red and puffy. “Just go away. Please.” Her voice had taken on the softness of defeat. “I’m not messing around here. I’m done with this—all of this!”

“Done? Okay, that’s fine to be done. But you don’t have to screw it up for me, too, right?” Michael figured maybe it was okay to talk about the game after all, since she was using it as her reason to end it—to check out of the Virtual-Flesh-and-Bones Hotel and never come back. “Seriously. Walk back to the Portal with me, Lift yourself, do it the right way. You’re done with the game, you’re safe, I get my points. Ain’t that the happiest ending you ever heard of ?”

“I hate you,” she spat. Literally. A spray of misty saliva. “I don’t even know you and I hate you. This has nothing to do with Lifeblood !”

“Then tell me what it does have to do with.” He said it kindly, trying to keep his composure. “You’ve got all day to jump. Just give me a few minutes. Talk to me, Tanya.”

She buried her head in the crook of her right arm. “I just can’t do it anymore.” She whimpered and her shoulders shook, making Michael worry about her grip again. “I can’t.”

Some people are just weak, he thought, though he wasn’t stupid enough to say it.

Lifeblood was by far the most popular game in the VirtNet. Yeah, you could go off to some nasty battlefield in the Civil War or fight dragons with a magic sword, fly spaceships, explore the freaky love shacks. But that stuff got old quick. In the end, nothing was more fascinating than bare-bones, dirt-in-your-face, gritty, get-me-out-of-here real life. Nothing. And there were some, like Tanya, who obviously couldn’t handle it. Michael sure could. He’d risen up its ranks almost as quickly as legendary gamer Gunner Skale.

“Come on, Tanya,” he said. “How can it hurt to talk to me? And if you’re going to quit, why would you want to end your last game by killing yourself so violently?”

Her head snapped up and she looked at him with eyes so hard he shivered again.

“Kaine’s haunted me for the last time,” she said. “He can’t just trap me here and use me for an experiment—sic the KillSims on me. I’m gonna rip my Core out.”

Those last words changed everything. Michael watched in horror as Tanya tightened her grip on the pole with one hand, then reached up with the other and started digging into her own flesh.

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The Eye of Minds 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 148 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
From the moment I began reading The Maze Runner, I became an instant James Dashner fan! When I saw he was coming out with a new series, I preordered the book (over 8 months ago). The Eye of Minds does not disappoint! I could not put the book down. It had me on the edge of my seat dying to find out what happened next! One of the most thrilling adventure/survival stories I have ever read, my only regret is that I now have to endure a whole year of waiting for its sequel, The Rule of Thoughts, to come out. Quite honestly, the only book I have read that is still better than this is The Maze Runner! A must read for anyone who can read!
Integrity_Consultants More than 1 year ago
That Which Makes Us Human: Having gotten acquainted with Mr. Dashner's writing style throughout the Maze Runner saga, I feel confident in saying that this new foray into techno-fantasy is a solid effort and really on par with what seems to be the maturation of a gifted writer. Keeping in mind that the intended audience is young adults, I find the concepts explored to be very mature, such as the fears of a technological takeover, pros and cons of artificial intelligence, and even deeper still, the qualities that make us human. Is it our ability to make friends and form bonds? Is it honor, integrity, courage, morality, understanding right and wrong, and the ability to make decisions regarding our own actions and beliefs? Maybe it's the ability to love, to understand our own strengths and weaknesses, to feel pain and joy. If any of these are even remotely accurate descriptions of what it means to be human, then Mr. Dashner will cause many to rethink those ideals. That's the true success of this story and one that was certainly not lost on me. I enjoyed the story very much and will definitely be picking up the sequel.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
When I first started this book, I had high expectations and very excited to read it. I had read the Maze Runner series by James Dashner, and was hoping for another great series like that from this author. Sufice it to say, it didn't even come close to meeting these expectations. While the story had a decent enough plot and the action was mildly entertaining, the story lacked character development and depth in every way, shape, and form. You barely knew anything about the main character, and pretty much nothing about the others. While for some people this may create a mysterious aspect to the book, I just found it to be completely unrelatable and unlikable. The world James Dashner creates seems only half-cocked, and I think some more detail in this area would have been an improvement. Also, more emotional and in-depth scenes between the characters would have allowed the readers to get to know them better, and would have given some contrast to the constant action. However, the best part of this book is the ending by far. Dashner leaves the reader blown away and hanging, and for this reason I will probably be reading the rest of the series. It also creates a lot of potential for the next book, and I now have hopes that the sequel will be an improvement from the first. I don't reccommend this book for readers that need a great hook right from the beginning, but for readers that are willing to stick it out to the end it's worth the read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best books I have ever read Highly recomended to anyone reading this review
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
At the back of Kill Order, another amazing creation, there is a sample of this book. TO DIE FOR! I mean. It is something to look foward to.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I really cannot tell what all the criticism is about this book. Sure, it isn't The Maze Runner, but who cares? It's great! One of Dashner's best so far. Now I can't wait for The Rule of Thoughts!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Another great book from James Dasher can't wait for the next one in the series.
Google More than 1 year ago
The Eye of Minds By: James Dashner The Eye of Minds is a great book that I read and I think others should read as well. You will be excited to know how the story ends. You will also be curious to know how the other books end. This book is very action packed and exciting with a lot of adventure that many people should enjoy reading. The book gets very interesting very quick. What happens is there is a virus in the code of a game in which the story is taken place of that is being controlled by one guy that is named Kane. The virus is causing many people to commit suicide, and three people Michael, Bryson, and Sarah are sent out to stop Kane. They just don’t know where Kane is, they have to find him along with adventuring to him. While on their adventure they encounter many things that stop them and slow them down, but they manage to get through the encounters to get to Kane. Will they make it to Kane and take down the virus? I thought the book was very action packed and it is sometimes sad. The book made me want it read it more and more over the time I was reading it. I think many other people will enjoy this book and have the fun I had when reading it. I would recommend this book to people that are into technology and adventure books. You readers should want to know what will happen and if you read the whole story it will make you want to read the rest of the series which lead on from this book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
They are both fast paced action/adventure books with great plot twists and fantastical settings, and yet both are so different that they are almost incomparable. But you should definitely read both series!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved how every single twist and turn was unexpected and kept me on edge. No matter what this writer writes its always good
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Great twist at the ending!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Eye of the Minds was an amazing book to start off the series. James Dashner didn't disappoint when he wrote this one. This was an other great book from James Dashner. This book has a nice relatable element to modern times. Kids now a-days are more attached to their technology than with human interaction. This is a nice way to draw readers in. Also their was a good element of suspense and kept me entertained while I was reading. The book just kept me wanting more. These ideas with the book involving technology were great. It really connected to the reason I was doing this project. I had a project for computer science class to read a book related to technology. This was a prefect book for that. Also I plan to read the entire series of books. All and all it was a great read and I would highly recommend this book.    
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Lots of action in a believable alternative world. Very entertaining! I wouldn't recommend it for children or those disturbed by graphic descriptions of violence.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A must read!! Its is so realistic, in a way.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I loved it so much read it 10 times
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
One of the best books I have ever read! You gotta read this
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book us personally my favorite by James Dashner. It is one of the best boojs I have ever read, and J stayed up all niht last night finushing it. If I were you, I would diwnliad this actiined packed suspensful thriller for young adults. Ages 12+
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Eye of Minds is one of the best books I've ever read. Anyone of any age can enjoy this damned book. Really it's the best!!! It has so many twisted events and it just makes your heart skip a beat. The book is about a boy named Michael, who thinks he knows who he is, but is really someone else. I really love the setting of the boo, which is in a game-like world. Really I think Dashner has outdone himself by writing this book. Please get this book you wont regret buying it, though i bought as a hardcovered book. Still you have to read it!!! You'll be dying to have the next book just like me. I promise. ;)
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BLEW MY MiND !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was a great young adult read
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I ABSOLUTELY LOVED this book! As much as the Maze Runner series. James Dashner, you are truly amazing. I wish I could meet you in person. I admire you so much, and because of you; I wouldn't read much. Your writing has inspired me to become a writer myself. I think you are great. Although I do wish the VirtNet was real. That would be splendid. Love your favorite fan, Loki Judahia Katomic ~
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is the best book in the world.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Oh, holy cow! I so wish the virtnet was real! I want a place where i can hang out and do stuff with my friends. Top of the line book. Almost as good as themaze runner.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I usually wait to get into a series until it's complete, but made the decision to go ahead and torture myself this time, with this one being the only book of the series available so far. I must say I enjoyed The Maze Runner series more, but I'm not a PC-game nut and still enjoyed it immensely. Hurry up with the sequels, please!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was really good. The plot had an extremely good twist. You should nor look for spoilers because the spoilers run it.