[Review] ‘The Darkest Minds’ by Alexandra Bracken


Title – ‘The Darkest Minds’
Author – Alexandra Bracken 
Published – October 22nd 2013 by Disney-Hyperion 
Pages – 488
Format – Paperback

Book Summary –

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

Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones. When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. She is on the run, desperate to find the only safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who have 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 having a life worth living.’

Review –

*Warning – contains minor spoilers*

This book definitely grabbed me. From the first moment I read the summary I was intrigued to say the least. And I’m glad I acted on my gut instinct that this was going to be a good read.

I want to start off by saying that I love Alexandra’s writing style, it flowed incredibly well throughout the whole book. It was written in a manner in which it was very easy to feel the necessary emotions for the main characters. And that was an element in which resembled incredibly strongly with me very early on. Ruby, the main character, was portrayed in such a way that I simply wanted to protect her, guide her… show her the world and society she was so cruelly ripped from at such a young age.

That feeling of simply wanting to protect and guide was actually one I felt for all four members of the little group created and strengthened throughout the book. Chubs, Liam, Zu and finally Ruby. I loved how they all had there own distinctive personalities, ones that in reality where almost completely opposite but bounced off each other so perfectly. They where literally the perfect set of friends, all bringing different elements to the table when needed. Liam the leader, the leader who in reality has a massively large soft spot for wanting to protect and rid himself of guilt. Chubs, the snarky member of the group, the sarcastic one who always makes you think he doesn’t like you… when in reality it just takes him a little while to warm up to you. Then little Zu, I think the feeling of wanting to protect actually resembled most strongly with her… partially because of how young she is but also because she had experienced so much turmoil that it nearly broke her. And finally Ruby, the girl who started off as a little weakling, not believing in herself or her abilities, too trusting in the wrong people and pushing away the right people. She grew into such a wonderfully strong character, the love she had for Liam, and the rest of the group for that matter, was so beautiful to read about.

I think that’s what made the ending so massively painful, first saying goodbye to Zu. Although I’m glad she got out before everything went to hell. Not knowing whether Chubs survived, Ruby letting go of Liam by making him forget her. It all went down in the final quarter of the book, completely action packed and gut wrenching. And can I just say the hatred I have for Clancey is off the scale, such a vile character that was written so well though. The author left in that uncomfortable sensation about him, like something was off, but still kept up the appearances that he was to become a good man, one of the hero’s of the story. Obviously, not everything is as it seems.

I can’t say the ending or other elements of the book surprised me because in reality I expected some of it to happen. It would have been ridiculous if certain situations hadn’t ended the way they had. But the book still had me gripped, the theme in general is something I cling to anyhow so I think there wasn’t really a chance of me not liking it. It was the emotional turmoil of the characters that really set this book apart for me, Alexandra really got the emotions on point particularly with Ruby my opinion.

Would I suggest this book to dystopian lovers? Yes.
Will I be reading the next two books in the series? For Sure.
Am I completely in love with this book? Not far off it~!

[I rate this book 5/5 stars]


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