Double Cross (Disillusionists Series #2)

Double Cross (Disillusionists Series #2)

by Carolyn Crane

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780553592627
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 09/28/2010
Series: Disillusionists Series , #2
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 889,938
Product dimensions: 7.14(w) x 11.28(h) x 0.92(d)

About the Author

CAROLYN CRANE lives in Minneapolis with her handsome husband and two daring cats. She enjoys reading and running and loves animals of all kinds. For more than a decade she’s made her living as a freelance writer. Double Cross is her second novel, and follows Mind Games in The Disillusionists Trilogy.

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Double Cross 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 46 reviews.
krau0098 on LibraryThing 7 months ago
This was the second book in the Disillusionists trilogy. I really enjoyed the first book, Mind Games, because of how creative it was. This second book was also very enjoyable but it ends on a horrible negative cliffhanger that will have the most forgiving reader angrily pulling out their hair and cursing this book.This book starts out basically where the last one left off. Justine is dating Otto, Otto is mayor of the city, and Packard is running the Disillusionists to help Otto enforce order in the city. Unfortunately another killer (or killers) are loose in Midcity; this time the group of killers (called the Dorks) are targeting highcaps. Justine (as a non-highcap) is drawn into the investigation to track down the Dorks identity and find out how they are able to combat and weed-out the highcaps. Justine is also using her power to work over a dream controlling highcap and, after a mistake, her and Packard are linked via their dreams. So in midst of everything going on Justine is slowly finding out more about the history between Otto and Packard.Unlike the first book this book focuses mainly on Justine, Otto, and Packard. It was great to finally learn about the history between Otto and Packard. There are a lot of plot threads in this book and they come together nicely. The pacing of the book is great, making it a hard book to put down and a fast read. The writing is well done and easy to read. This is more of a drama type urban fantasy (kind of like Kitty Norville series) and there isn't much action.Again I liked the creative ideas behind this book (characters using their psychosis to fight crime) and enjoyed how the complicated plot was woven together so well. I thought characterization was a bit inconsistent though. Packard is a great character and his growth throughout the novel is wonderful, I wish he had been in the story even more than he was. Otto as a character remains kind of stagnant throughout, he is predictable and doesn't change his view much. Justine's character is kind of all over the place. The other characters talk about how giving she is, yet she makes a lot of selfish decisions. Then at one point she suddenly becomes all mature and realizes a bunch of things; which realistically should have been a more gradual and consistent process.Despite enjoying the book overall I had a couple other quibbles. The first is that this book is full of evilness, none of these characters are good. They are all manipulative, confused, and only venture from the blackness to shades of grey...there really aren't any moments of real happiness in this book. The whole thing is kind of bleak and depressing. My other big quibble is the predictability and the ending. Half way through the book I figured out what was probably going to happen, but I really didn't want it to happen. Guess what it happened. The fact that I was able to predict this sad and disturbing ending just made me sadder. The end of the book left me feeling angry, disturbed, and just let down. I understand that Crane wants to keep her readers engaged, but this wasn't the way to do it. If the book had ended two chapters earlier then the next book could have started off with this huge horrible twist. As a reader I would have been left with a marginally upbeat and happy ending. The twist would have surprised me in the beginning of the next book and then I would have had a chance to read its conclusion and not been left so...sad.Overall this was a good installment in this series. Some of the characterization is a bit inconsistent, but the plot is well done and it is very creative. This is a bleak book and there is nothing here that leaves the reader feeling good. My recommendation would be to hold off on reading this book until the third one is released; otherwise at the end of this book you will just be left feeling angry, depressed and downtrodden. Fans of urban fantasy should enjoy this creative take on super heroes.
SmashAttack on LibraryThing 7 months ago
My 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
ReginaR on LibraryThing 7 months ago
4.5 to 5 stars. I loved this book. I love this series. The characters in the Disllusionist series are very very likeable. I feel like I know them or want to know them. Double Cross begins where Mind Games ends. We see more of Shelby and Simon, both such funny and interesting characters. There are more targets that need to be disillusioned and Justine continues to debate the morality of what she is doing. Similar to Mind Games Justine and one of her fellow disillusionists (this time it is Simon) try to figure out the true story behind one of one of their targets. As the story develops we learn more about Otto and Packard¿s past. There are a few great reveals before the end of the story ¿ which I had expected and they were nice to learn. The ending of this story is a wham ¿ it is shocking and painful. I am sure it all works out in book #3, but right now the wait is painful! I am looking forward to reading the conclusion of this trilogy.
MelHay on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Justine is free, yet still trapped. As we finished Mind Games it seemed everyone found that happy medium to get what they wanted. Or did they? Justine and the Disillusionists are working for Packard, whose working for Otto, to help rehabilitate the highcaps Otto has locked up in order to help ease the pressure on his head. Justine finds she still has troubles with what she does and rationalizing it to herself. However, one day on the job Justine makes an error with a dream highcap, she touches her with out glove protection, which results in this dangerous woman invading her dreams. And to top it all off Packard pulled Justine away from the woman while they where touching, which then links him in the dreams too. Will the dreams be of that hot steamy night that started so good and ended before it got to far or on the dark past Packard is trying to keep hidden?I'm going to start off by saying, I absolutely love this trilogy thus far. To me it is fresh, new, and a fun nonstop read. Okay. Now that I've told you I absolutely love this series, I hope it's out of my system. I will apologize now in case it keeps coming up.The system of 'magic' here is something I enjoy. It's new to me. Carolyn has built a system based on our worst fears, those worries we always have about health, the world, anger management and even down to gambling addictions. And there is a second magic type here with the highcaps and how they get their abilities. It's all related to the brain thinking process, and it works magnificently.The characters are wonderful mix and complement each other amazingly. They all have unique and individual personalities. Even when they challenge each other they bring out the best, or worst in some cases, to make the book work wonderfully.This book is a great second book. It has its own story told here with the link of the constant growth of the characters wants and lives following Mind Games. There is a story here that makes the book, but Justine is still on her mission to get out from being at Packard's beckin' call as one of his minions. Justine will do just about anything...or will she...I will suggest this trilogy thus far to anyone who loves Urban Fantasy books. It is fun, steamy, and full of wonderful suspense. This book will leave you drooling for the third one, not yet out.
raboyer on LibraryThing 7 months ago
Daring Double Cross*Some spoilers for Mind Games are a part of this reviewThis is one book where the sequel lives up to the original and in some cases is even better because now you know even more about these characters. This book gets a definite 5 out of 5 gnomes for superb characters, a great mystery and one heck of an ending hence the double cross of the title.The book opens with Justine being sent to interact with Ez a dream invader, sadly Justine does not wait for Packard to get there so she doesn't know that she should have worn gloves. Now her and Packard are connected to Ez because her dream invader power is transferred by touch. This lets Ez conference together Justine and Packards dreams so they both see and feel exactly what the other one does while in the dream. Otto is now the mayor of Midcity and now Justine and the other disillusionists because of the agreement Packard and Otto made are going around and disillusioning the highcaps that Otto has trapped around the city. The big bad of this book is a group called The Dorks that is going around killing highcaps. The mystery is that the Dorks are immune to the highcaps powers and they have some way that lets them see who is and isn't a highcap.There is a lot of drama and mystery in this second book of the series. There's a big secret from Otto and Packard's past that must be dealt with. Finding a way to stop the Dorks is a top priority and disillusioning Ez so she doesn't turn them into sleep walking cannibals is also something else to really worry about.The love triangle between Justine and whether she'll pick Packard or Otto gets even more infuriating in this book if that's even possible. There are steamy moments in the dream world and the real world which leave you wondering who she is going to pick. At the end of the book this love triangle may make you want to pull your hair out but it will also leave you wanting the next book ASAP.Shelby and Simon, two of my favorite characters, also have important parts to play in this book and you see more of who they are. Justine too grows more as a character in this book and is in my opinion way too trusting at certain points.There are some huge secrets that are revealed that will most likely change the course of Justine and all the other disillusionists. I believe I said something along the lines holy carp and oh no out loud more then once.I firmly believe that Justine should be with Packard, I never did like Otto. Then by the end of this book I really felt like Otto needed to be punched in the face, repeatedly. Warning the double cross is a doozy so be prepared to yell at the book and want to throw it across the room especially with what happens on the very last page.Overall a fast moving read full of mystery and secrets, I know I'll be waiting impatiently for the next book eager to see what happens next.
shelleyraec on LibraryThing 7 months ago
For me, the second book in a series is the best indicator of what the author and story is capable of, and Crane has shown that she has real talent and an interesting story to tell with Double Cross. I liked Mind Games, it was something fresh and unusual for the genre but I enjoyed Double Cross much more. Justine is no longer obsessed with her health, but her neuroses have fragmented to encompass her feelings of guilt and confusion about her abilities and her relationships with Otto and Packard. I find her conflicted personality fascinating, she is such a mess, but wants so much to be normal and do the right thing. Usually in the UF genre the woman has two men to choose between, the hero and the bad boy. In this case, just when you think you know which is which, Crane reveals another layer to the personalities of Otto and Packard. It's what makes the conclusion to Double Cross so stunning (and frustrating - bring on number 3!).There is more action in this installment with the 'Dorks' hunting highcaps and the Disillusionists working on Otto's captives. The tension is carefully built for both storylines and feeds the brisk pace. The writing is strong and I was relieved to see far less mention of the word minion this time around. There are so many creative touches - the naming of criminals, the glasses, the disillusionists abilities, the twisted nature of the plot threads - okay, the whole darn thing is original. Double Cross is a fantastic sequel to Mind Games and I can't wait for the conclusion. Carolyn Crane still rocks!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Good read from book 1 to 2 but number 2 had loads of wasted writing in paragraphs that went around and around. Many decisions by Justine made your head look like it was at a tennis match. Then bam, youd be back on track with a reasonable idea that Justine would formulate in her crazy mind. Putting aside the fact this was a book of mind control it still took you for synaptic ride. Lets just say, when it was good it was good but when it was bad it was very very bad.
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ReenaJacobs More than 1 year ago
So the saga continues with Justine, my favorite hypochondriac. After reading Double Cross, I have to say, Mind Games is still my favorite in the series. Double Cross wasn’t bad, I think it just lacked the newness I experienced with Mind Games. Justine was pretty much the same gal from the prior book. It wasn’t until the she was backed into a corner that she put her foot down. I don’t know if I’d call it character growth, but more on the lines that everyone has limits. She spent a lot of time getting to understand the inner workings of Packard and Otto. In many ways, Double Cross seemed to be more about those two guys than Justine. This time around I learned so much more about the men in her life. The actions they were willing to take in order to come out on top amazed me. I loved them; I hated them. Packard really showed some character growth, while Otto made quite a showing for himself also. Well, I want to go into more detail, but everything which pops into my head is a spolier, so I’ll just leave it at that. (Sub)plots: The early parts of the novel reintroduced me to the secondary characters. Definitely something I needed considering how long it’d been since I’d read Mind Games, even if it did make for a slow start. I’d say the subplots were mostly setups for the grand finale which ended in a cliffhanger. And what cliffhanger it was. When Justine was saying, “Oh my God” so was I. I’m more than curious to know how this trilogy will end. A couple of my favorite lines: “If you ignore me and nobody’s there to see it, are you really ignoring me?” “Sometimes you have to be a bad person to save yourself, and it takes a little chunk out of your soul, but you do it anyway.” So like I said, I didn’t like it as much as Mind Games, but it was still pretty decent. 4.5 stars
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love you Caroline Crane!!!! I dont think i've ever read such a unique, perfect, and mind blowing blend!!! I'm completely blown away and i honestly didn't expect the second novel to be as good as the first, but i stand corrected. Cant wait to read the next volume and i hope there are plenty more wonderful reads by her to come.
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The only down side about this book is that it doesn't really end just stops at a critical point. I thought it was fitting that Packard would loose Justine through his own scheming. I love the authors twist on creating a superhero from what most people would consider neurotic issues. The ending leaves me sad, frustrated, and anxious for the next. I recommend reading.
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jeri03 More than 1 year ago
Highly recommend this series, Can't wait until the next book to come out