Monday, 15 July 2013

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken [Review]


The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken

Title: The Darkest Minds
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
SeriesThe Darkest Minds #1
Release Date: December 18th 2012
Rating: ★★★


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.


This book had been on my TBR list for ages, but I picked it up after I won an ARC of the sequel Never Fade. And I really liked it!

The world building was a bit lacking. Certain questions I had were never answered. How did the Psi's get those abilities? What exactly was that virus and why were some children not affected? How was the government planning on continuing the country when all children are dead or locked up? The writer did not give much explanation about the world and the origin of the abilities, this disappointed me. I hope the next book clarifies these questions.

Even though I still had these questions the characters and the story made this book awesome.

The characters were great! We have 2 main characters: Ruby and Liam. 
There were of course many side characters, but not many of them made an impression on me like the MC's, they were not really developed (Chubs & Zu are the exceptions), though they did all add something to the story and were very realistic.

Ruby was a strong heroine. She had been through so much and seen horrible things and it only made her more likeable  From the beginning she has this secret she is guarding, slowly the reader figures out what it is. She really grows as a character throughout the book. She gets stronger, more trusting and more confident in herself and her abilities.

Liam was so sweet! He was genuinely good and wanted to help everyone. He is the ideal YA love interest for me. No bad boy, no incredible hotness, no arrogance, just a kind and honest guy.

I did like the side character Chubs. He was maybe a bit mean sometimes and did not want to help Ruby, he did it to protect the ones he loved. In the end he turned by and that's what counts.

The romance between Ruby and Liam was really sweet. There was a lot of build-up and it was realistic. Their chemistry wasn't forced at all and there was no instalove or anything.

The story was fast-paced, action-packed and constantly revealing new things. There was never a dull moment. Nothing is really explained at the beginning of the book, most of the time I hate this, but here it made me want to continue and find out more.

I loved the sort of supernatural abilities the Psi children had. Mind reading and manipulation, telekinesis and much more. Some were afraid of their power and others used it freely, even misused it. I liked seeing Ruby develop her powers and learning to use them for good.

The end was so sad! It wasn't really a cliffhanger, but it did make me want to read the next book. I'm curious how Ruby is going to be acting in Never Fade..

I would definitely recommend this book. It has a bit of everything; supernatural, romance, humour, action. It is maybe a bit less good as dystopian, but overall I loved it.

Stars: 4 out of 5

Little opinion question: do you guys like it if I give a quick recap/synopsis of the book before starting the actual review or not? I did this first, but I felt like I was rewriting the blurb or spoiling the whole story.


  1. Great review! I loved The Darkest Minds and the ending just killed me. It was just so sad. I actually just read Never Fade yesterday and it kept me on the edge of my seat the whole time--stressful! I do like the short blurb because sometimes I don't know what the book is about and so the review may not make as much sense. ~Pam

  2. Well I don't want to read the review if I has spoilers, but I've been dying to read this book and can't wait! :) I have a copy but need to find the time to get to it.

    Janina @ Synchronized Reading

  3. I really enjoyed this one too! Ruby was great and wasn't Liam just adorable? I also loved that it was action packed with great twists, too! Glad you enjoyed it, too! :)

  4. I rated the book 4 of 5 stars too! My main issues were with action scenes. I had a hard time following along especially during the van/truck/shooting scene. There are definitely some world building issues, though I can't remember if not all the children were infected? Wasn't it either they got powers or died? Definitely a great point - how was the USA going to continue if they're controlling all the children? So many questions to be answered! I hope some of it is answered in Never Fade!


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