Marcus Gipps's Reviews > Mind Changer

Mind Changer by James White
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's review
Oct 10, 2010

really liked it

This seems to be one of the last of this series, and so it isn't really fair to be reading it having only read a couple of the others, but what the hell. White takes a possibly risky decision, in that the book is about the retirement of one of his most entertaining characters, and the search for a replacement for his job. The risk is two-fold - a book about filling a job doesn't exactly sound inspiring, and the lead character is one whose main role in previous books has been to be acerbic, unapproachable and aloof. White manages to sidestep both of these problems by coming up with some interesting alien/medical problems for the candidates to solve, and by giving us some insight into the workings of the retiree's mind. The ending is really rather touching (and I haven't read most of the books, so am less attached to the characters than I might be), so something must be working here. It probably isn't the prose, which is solid but unsentimental, and the plot is really just a series of incidents strung together, but nevertheless, it's all well done, and the final reveal is well managed.

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