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Double Cross (Disillusionists Series #2)

Double Cross - Carolyn Crane Check out this review over at Smash Attack Reads! http://smashattackreads.blogspot.com/2010/11/book-review-double-cross-by-carolyn.htmlMy Plot SynopsisJustine Jones isn’t your ordinary woman. She’s a Disillusionist, someone with an intense amount of a certain emotion – in her case, extreme fear about her health – who can zing that emotion into another person. Now, Justine doesn’t run around zinging just anyone – she does have morals. Justine and gang zing their various fears, worries and emotions into unsuspecting criminals; a psychological hit squad, if you will. She is one of many disillusionists who works under Sterling Packard, a highcap human (in other words, someone with a super human power of sorts) who is out to disillusion criminals so that they can become wholesome humans once more. Packard can see people’s psychological make-up, allowing him to lessen the terror of his gang of neurotic crime stoppers. Little did Justine know that she would have to remain under Packard’s thumb forever because of a few details he forget to mention…Now, Midcity is being terrorized by a group of killers, the Dorks, and they are targeting highcaps! How they are picking out highcaps from regular humans has the gang stumped, but Mayor Otto Sanchez, a very powerful highcap and Justine’s love interest, is determined to put a stop to the madness. In the interim, one of Justine’s targets, a dream invader, links her and Packard’s dreams and begins to uncover some ugly – and steamy – memories…My ThoughtsW O W! What a book! I didn’t want to put it down and kept getting so irritated at life for getting in my way. Carolyn really knows her stuff! She is a fantastic writer who is able to pull her readers into the story, dangling the carrot (or cupcake, if you prefer) in front of our noses until we are a drooling, over-stimulated, emotional wreck. Her characterization was stellar in this book. Some past supporting characters really shined, and Justine, Otto and Packard had some serious, serious scenes!I really enjoyed the dream invader piece of this book, as it allowed us to see into the history between Otto and Packard, and gave us Packard fans glimpses into the short-lived romance he had with Justine. Fantastic idea!I love the whole human rights theme in these books, and it was really talked about in Double Cross. Justine is still questioning whether the disillusionists have the right to zing people and change them. She’s having a discussion with Otto and says “Isn’t it a human right to be who you’ve become"?” I have to agree. You see, Otto has taken it upon himself to trap all the powerful highcaps who have committed crimes with his ability to transform structures (into prisons, in this case). However, have they been given a fair trial to prove their guilt? Pfft. Who is Otto to gauge their innocence or guilt? Otto sprouts BS about law and order later in the book, and it got me fired up! That megalomaniac (to quote Simon, and I have to agree) thinks he’s the one and only say in law against highcaps. Sorry to break it to you, Otto, but you ain’t God!Justine yearns for freedom from disillusioning people because she constantly questions what side she is on, yet she can’t imagine dealing with those horrifying, self-destructive thoughts about her health again. She is in a constant battle with who she really loves. Otto is quite the catch and he and Justine share some intense, deep emotions and understand one another’s neuroses. However, it is quite obvious to the reader that she still loves Packard, even though she would never admit it. We readers feel her emotional conflict and it is a wretched feeling. She begins to grow during the course of the book, and we start to see a new side of Justine. Her constant battle for freedom becomes more of a reality, and it also frees her mind to make the right decision about who she loves.I really loved Packard’s forwardness in this book. My heart burns for that man. I am definitely team Packard, and I feel a billion times stronger after this book. He may have made some ugly decisions in the past and lied to people, but I truly feel he cares and isn’t only looking out for himself. He finally drops some of his bravado and we get a glimpse of his human side. *swoon* However, as with Mind Games, it is quite difficult to know who is good and who is evil. The ending brings with it harsh scenes of betrayal, coupled with killer emotions of love and loss. We finally get to see the true colors of some of the characters, and it is an overwhelming discovery!YOU KILLED ME WITH THAT ENDING, CAROLYN!! *sobs* However, it was about as genius as an ending could be. Quite the cliffhanger and disgustingly brilliant. So, I forgive you. My Favorite Quotes“A kiss with the right person simply can’t be compared to the drudgery of sleeping with the wrong one over and over.”“You have to respect the crows,” he observes.“Why? They eat roadkill and garbage.”“And they don’t pretend different, do they? They don’t play the finches’ game – the cuteness and singing and all that. They’ll never be a state bird, you know? But to the crows, that would be degrading. It’s about who they are.”I feel teeth on my earlobe. Butterflies in the pit of my stomach. The stone of his erection between my thighs.