The Hypnotists: Book 1 Book Poster Image

The Hypnotists: Book 1

Fast-paced tale of a boy with hypnotic eyes and evil mentor.

What parents need to know

Educational value

Kids will learn a bit about hypnotism.

Positive messages

Outside appearances can conceal the truth, any action (or non action) has consequences, and sometimes help can come from unexpected and unlikely sources.

Positive role models

Jax Opus confronts a challenging dilemma as he struggles to halt a possible threat to the country and to outwit an evil authority figure. He shows tremendous courage when necessary, as well as critical thinking abilities and a keen sense of ethics. Tommy demonstrates great loyalty to Jackson through thick and thin.


No actual violence, but lots of evil plotting, suspense, and scary situations. Dr. Mako hypnotizes two people in an attempt to cause their deaths in front of an oncoming subway train. And he hypnotizes another character, hoping to cause a fatal 200-foot fall.

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Drinking, drugs, & smoking
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Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that The Hypnotists is a gripping novel about a man who aims to control the world by misusing a teen's gift of hypnotism. Jax, a 12-year-old boy who can hypnotize people with his eyes, faces off against the evil Dr. Mako, who forcefully threatens the boy to do his bidding. An exciting, suspenseful start to a new fantasy series.

What's the story?

Twelve-year old Jax Opus has odd eyes that can change color and somehow hypnotize others simply by staring at them. When he's recruited for the Sentia Institute, Dr. Mako wants to develop Jax's natural gift as a hypnotist, supposedly for the good of everyone. At first Jax is honored, then confused. All he knows is that the expensive offices are filled with photos of Dr. Mako and celebrities. No one will explain exactly what the institute does or why he's there. When he discovers what's at stake, it's up to him to stop a disaster before it's too late and to try to save his family and his best friend.

Is it any good?


THE HYPNOTISTS is a fast-paced, thoughtful suspense novel that kicks off a new series of the same name. Jax's battle to maintain his integrity at times resembles a David and Goliath contest, but here it's minds that are at stake.

Though the premise may seem far-fetched, and the initial scenes, in which a bus careens madly uptown barely avoiding a collision and a star basketball player is strangely subdued, are somewhat off-putting, once past that segment the novel sails surely and swiftly on course. The writing is taut and the characters believable. The Hypnotists -- the first book in a planned series -- is indeed mesmerizing.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about why books featuring kids with special powers are so popular. If you could have one superpower, what would it be?

  • How significant is the media in our lives today? Can you think of times you've  influenced to buy an item or to do something that you hadn't thought about before?

  • What are the responsibilties of someone who has an extraordinary gift or talent?

Book details

Author:Gordon Korman
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Adventures, Friendship, Great boy role models
Book type:Fiction
Publisher:Scholastic Inc.
Publication date:August 1, 2013
Number of pages:232
Publisher's recommended age(s):8 - 12
Available on:Nook, Audiobook (unabridged), Hardback, Kindle

This review of The Hypnotists: Book 1 was written by

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Kid, 12 years old September 16, 2013


I think this book is ok, but it is kinda violent.
What other families should know
Too much violence
Teen, 14 years old Written byLeviosa Pixie June 26, 2014

I quite like this book

It's not the best, but it is a long way from being the worst that I've read. It's a pretty good book, if you're into fantasy. However, at times, I find myself wondering how Jax (The main character) could be so blind and naive. As all stories go, this is a decent book, but probably not for teens my age (15), best for tweens from 10-13, I think.
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Kid, 12 years old September 4, 2014

great book

this might be one of the best books I've ever read, although it might be heavy or scary for CERTAIN kids under the age of 7. if your kid can handle a kind of violent (not that violent) plot, then you're good to go.