Friday, February 22, 2013

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken
Publisher: Hyperion Books for Children
Age Group: YA
My Copy: ARC
Source: ALA
Format: Hardcover, 496 pages
Release Date: December 18, 2012out now
Review by: Alicia


When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.

Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.

When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can’t risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents.

When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living.


I’ve had The Darkest Minds sitting on my shelf for months and I’m kicking myself for waiting so long to read it (I actually read it in January). At the same time though, I’m also glad I waited because the wait for the sequel won’t be as long—and it already feels incredibly long.

I love The Darkest Minds! Just loooove it! I’m pretty much above fangirl level for it. I was really unprepared for how much I was going to adore it. It sounded interesting, and seemed like it was going to be a good fit for me, but I was surprised by just how much I love it. I’m actually kind of obsessed with it—The Darkest Minds is another book that I just can’t stop thinking about.* Also, it’s on the bigger side, and I like big books.

All of the characters were great. Bracken did an amazing job of fleshing all of the characters out and making them real. It was easy to love them (except for the bad people). I just loved Ruby, Liam, Chubs and Zu—they were all awesome. Ruby is one of my favorite heroines—she’s not perfect. She makes mistakes throughout the book and sometimes listens to the wrong people, but she also grows stronger and braver. Liam was amazing—a nice guy love interest? Yes please! He was kind and caring and just perfect for Ruby. Plus, he genuinely cared about their little group and other people and would do anything for them. He was also really positive which offset Ruby and Chubs nicely. Chubs was hilarious, sarcastic and loved bookshe wrote book reviews! Zu made my heart melt, that poor little girl. Some of my favorite parts are just when Ruby, Liam, Chubs and Zu are all together—they all fit together well and were a real family.

Another part I loved was the music in the book**. Like Ruby, I grew up listening to classic rock because of my dad. I can still remember sitting in the car with my dad while the music blared out of the speakers. Actually, my dad still only listens to it in the car, so I do too when I’m with him.

The ending was cruel and heartbreaking. I cried like a baby when Ruby did that thing to that person***. If I was her, I don’t think I would have been able to do it. I just can’t believe it ended there. I am now ridiculously anxious about the sequel. I want it right now!! The wait feels unbearable and I won’t be able to relax until I get my hands on the next book!  

Book two, Never Fade, will be out in the fall with book three in Fall 2014.

Final Thoughts: Honestly, I could just gush about my love for The Darkest Minds all day. It is fantastic and I highly recommend you read it!

Cover Comments: I really like it. It goes with the book.

Overall: 5/5—Can I make it a zillion out of 5? Seriously. It’s a biiig favorite of mine.

*I read it a month ago, and I STILL find myself thinking about it ALL THE TIME!
**Speaking of, there are TWO awesome playlists for the book on the website, here’s a link to them.
***I tried to keep that as spoiler-free as possible—did it work?


....Petty Witter said...

A zillion out of 5? There really is no better recommendation than that.

Brandi Kosiner said...

Ruby was a fantastic main character, and I am right there on the edge of my seat waiting to read the next one right with you.
Brandi @ Blkosiner’s Book Blog

Liviania said...

I agree totally re: that thing.

Eileen said...

I'm SOOO glad you liked this one! I've heard amazing things about this series and I definitely want to start it now because of your review! And that "thing" sounds super intense! ;)

GABY said...

Sounds amazing!! I didn't find myself interested in this book before reading your review, if you loved it so much I should give it a try!