What kid doesn't want to have special powers, especially the ability to hypnotize adults?
With a large helping of humor, Gordon Korman (Ungifted; Schooled) introduces 12-year-old Jackson Opus, who has eyes that change color. Lately people have been doing strange things just because Jax wants them to. At first, the boy shrugs it off. But when the Amazing Ramolo starts strutting across the stage and clucking in his own chicken act, Jax must admit that something very strange is going on. He's invited to join the Sentia Institute, where he learns that he has the power to bend people's minds. Its founder, Dr. Elias Mako, wants to teach him how to control it. "We'll nurture and develop your gift in every way," Dr. Mako says. "And together we'll change the world."
At first, all Jax has to do is make people jump up and down, and other harmless tasks. But when Dr. Mako asks Jax to hypnotize his subjects remotely, using a video camera, Jax begins to worry. Jax does a little investigating, and uncovers a plot shocking in its scope. Soon Jax and his best friend, Tommy, are racing to stop Dr. Mako's evil plan, in addition to saving themselves, Jax's parents and the entire country, before it's too late.
Gordon Korman delivers yet another gently suspenseful and funny romp that will satisfy his many fans. Readers will hope that subsequent books in the series are just as mesmerizing. --Lynn Becker, host of Book Talk, the monthly online discussion of children's books for the Society of Children's Book Writers & Illustrators