Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Hypnotist by M. J. Rose

In The Hypnotist, Lucian Glass, working with the Art Crime Team (ACT), goes undercover to investigate the destruction of some very old and valuable paintings. While he's undercover he submits to being hypnotized. It's during these sessions that he travels back in time and learns of his past lives. As he does so, he learns new information that just might help him solve the mystery in his current life.

I really enjoyed reading this book. It grabbed me on the very first page, which doesn't usually happen. I usually need a few pages to warm up to a book. Not so with this one. The story remained compelling throughout the whole book and carried me right through to the very last page. There are many facets and plotlines to follow with this one; it's very intricately woven. I found the storytelling similar to that of James Rollins in that both of their stories jump around in time and follow different plotlines simultaneously. I love books written like this as it makes me work a little to follow the story, remember the characters and decipher the plot. In this case, the extra effort was well worth it.

This is the third book in The Reincarnationist Series by this author, but the first one I've read. From reading the outlines about the other books, the stories don't appear to be connected. However, more than a few times while reading this one, I felt like I was missing something in the story, as though something relating to this story had happened in a previous book. It didn't at all stop me from really enjoying this book, but perhaps I should have read the others first.

The book contains interesting information about reincarnation, art work and painting in general. I'm not sure I totally believe in reincarnation, but I do find the subject matter extremely fascinating. As for the art and artists featured in this book, I don't know a lot about it and can't say I'm a huge fan. I do, however, find the whole art scene very intriguing. Equally intriguing was the explanation of Hypnos's third eye and its potential connection to the pineal gland, "which produces melatonin, the hormone that affects the modulations of wake/sleep patterns and seasonal functions"(page 171), as well as other more elegant and mythical explanations. All fascinating stuff.

I love learning new words. This book contained a few that were new-to-me. Here's a sampling:
Persian satrap (page 20): a governor of a province in ancient Persia
partage (page 22): the act of portioning out or sharing
manse (page 57): rectory
ormolu (page 57): gold-coloured copper alloy
ephemera (page 66): something short-lived
aegis (page 88): guidance
oculus (page 128): circular architectural feature
rheostat (page 130): an adjustable resistor
métier (page 158): profession
shtetl (page 203): small Jewish community in Eastern Europe
miasma (page 221): haze
invectives (page 376): criticism

I read this book in eBook form on my Sony eReader.

Highly recommended. I already have The Memorist on my to-be-read bookshelf and can't wait to dig it out and read it. I'll keeping my eye out for The Reincarnationist so that I can read that one, too.

For more information about this book or to browse inside, please visit Mira's website.

For more information about the author and her other books, please visit M.J. Rose's website and blog.

I'd like to thank Tracee Gleichner from Pump Up Your Book and the author for this review copy. Click here for information on the blog tour.

The Hypnotist by M. J. Rose, Mira Books, ©2010. ISBN 9780778329206(eBook), 412p.

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