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I have been an avid reader from as early as I can remember. Since becoming a Christian in my early 20s, my passion for reading led to specifically Christian fiction and this has developed into reviewing them on this blog. I love reading debut author's novels or those author's who have not had many reviews thus providing them much needed encouragement 
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Saturday, 19 November 2016

Mind Writer by Mike Lynch and Lisa Godfrees

Mind Writer


Born with a rare genetic mutation, Eighteen-year-old Rinee Newburgh has been kept in a secret government facility all her life. Trained to enhance her skills as a Mind Writer, her unique talents give her the ability to transfer a person’s thoughts, memories, personality—their soul—into a clone created for those deemed vital to society’s continued survival.

When Rinee’s friend and right hand to the President, Andrei Malotetnev, is nearly killed in an assassination attempt, she discovers the terrible truth—that Mind Writers are regarded as disposable, and life outside the Facility is nothing more than a pollution-filled world on the brink of collapse. She also learns of Malotetnev’s plan to kill millions of people as a means of freeing up dwindling resources needed by the government. Horrified at the thought of a modern day holocaust, Rinee escapes the Facility in a desperate attempt to warn the people of his evil intentions.

Locked in a race against time, Malotetnev sends his most trusted assassin with orders to eliminate Rinee at any cost before the truth can be revealed. What he didn't count on was an assassin with a conscience.

The Guru's Review: 


This is the first novel I have read by Lynch and Godfrees and I am glad I have done so. I have seen Lynch's books around Amazon and have another of his in my kindle but not read. It was this new novel that encouraged  me to read from this author. This is the first of anything I have read of Lisa Godfrees.

I love this novel. Lynch and Godfrees write well and seem to be compliment each other in writing and developing this futuristic, science fiction, dystopian, medical based story. In a novel such as this, it needs to flow well, without any overly descriptive narrative. Having the latter, would only derail the plot and its flow and detract from the reader's enjoyment and attachment to the characters and story. This novel does not suffer from this. The authors are very competent in this aspect. I would not hesitate to read another novel of theirs either individually or if they team up in the future. Of the latter, I hope they do. They are a writing dynamo together!

I don't believe that in today's world with its advancements in medical/science, technology and research, and how the experts in these fields seem to push the envelope and ignore all boundaries on ethics, morals etc, that any reader would be surprised or shocked with the premise of this story. To use a well used and common cliché, it seems to be a case of not if but when! It is against this background that makes novels like Mind Writer such great escapism and enjoyable experience, but gives the reader an introduction into what could be an example of our future.

What I especially enjoy about Christian fiction is for its authors to take such futuristic and/or speculative topics such as what is in this novel and develop it against a Christian worldview.

The authors spend a considerable amount of the novel developing the antagonistic and protangonistic characters, the medical technology and practice of mind writing and the corruptness and deceit of those in charge of this, including a world depleted of resources on every level and suffering from the environmental effects of world war. We become endeared to the protagonists especially Rinee, Clixon, Saminy, her daughters and even the very sick Tory.

We also learn to despise, dislike, (or hate!) the antagonists of Blackstone, Malotetnev and others, and be angered at their evilness, corruption and deceitfulness. When the authors have the protagonists coming to the end of themselves and in dire circumstances with no apparent way out, the authors then introduce the spiritual aspects that make up this worldview.

Who do Rinee, Clixton turn to when they only have each other to rely on and that is becoming self limited? Which protagonist holds the key to the future of the circumstances that they find themselves in? It is here that this protagonist introduces these characters to the Three, (the Trinity of the biblical God) and the underground Christian church. The church members come to their aid, allowing their active faith to be a platform for the presence of The Three to destroy the actions and plans of the antagonists. Here also, the authors introduce the biblical ethics of the practice of mind writing and whether this is compatible with The Three's Sovereignty and veracity of His Scriptures.

For me, reading the last quarter of the novel, where all aspects of the plot come to a head, it was inevitable that some of the protagonists find the salvation offered from God. This not only reflects what happens in real life, in most circumstances, but also honours the Gospel of Jesus Christ and its power unto salvation.

From this point of view, I applaud the authors for what they achieved in presenting the Christian worldview of this medical practice and the Sovereignty of God. However, I would have liked more of the biblical ethics of mind writing to have been explored from this worldview. I just felt that what was presented was too short or too concise and thus run the risk as being seen by a reader as a weak biblical worldview.

I do believe that this may not have been what the authors intended. What they did present is relevant to the biblical ethics of transferring a person's soul into another. Would more of the biblical ethics of this issue detract from the action, suspense and flow of the story? I don't think so. I feel more would have challenged both the Christian and non-Christian reader to consider on a deeper level the biblical ethics of this practice, the nature of God and how totally Sovereign He is. I don't believe this would have detracted from any of the novel's construction or the reader's enjoyment of it.

I offer this as positive feedback. I realise that any Christian author would find it a fine line striking a balance between how much spiritual/biblical content to present and how much not to. Too much or too in-depth presents as preachy to the reader and derails the plot, its flow and characters. Too little, or none at all, presents the novel with questionable Christian/biblical content and whether it can be considered Christian fiction at all.

I have stated in many other reviews that I am not a fan of romance as a genre. However, I do enjoy romance when it is a subplot or a minor plot line. My enjoyment is even more pronounced when written by a male Christian author. Such was the case with the romance developing between Clixon and Rinee. If this was mainly developed by Lynch, then I am one happier camper than if it was mainly by Godfrees. No offence intended to you, Lisa Godfrees! The inclusion of romance not only added some light relief to the suspense and tension of the action scenes, but added more depth to these two characters. 

A thoroughly entertaining and thought provoking glimpse of what our future could look like when medical science is manipulated through greed, deceit and the boundaries of morality and spiritual ethics are ignored or suppressed.

I am very much looking forward to the next novel (or a previous one) from each of these authors.

Strongly Recommended.

World Building 5/5

Characterisation 4/5

Story 5/5

Spiritual Level 4/5

Enemy Spiritual Level 3/5

Average Rating 4.2/5 Stars

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Spiritually, based on my review and on the following reference booklet, A Spiritual System for Rating Books by David Bergsland, and that Mind Writer contains elements of the criteria of what constitutes Christian Redemptive Speculative Fiction outlined in this booklet, I award Mike Lynch and Lisa Godfrees with

The Reality Calling Christian Redemptive Speculative Fiction Award


Congratulations Mike Lynch and Lisa Godfrees!


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