The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken

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My rating: ★★★★☆

Since I’ve been in a serious dystopian fiction YA mood I thought I’d finally hop on the band wagon and give this book a shot. In the beginning we meet our protagonist Ruby at the very young age of ten. A disease known as IAAN is spreading throughout the world and killing off children, usually on their tenth birthday. The government does not seem to be very concerned with these children but is rather worried about the survivors who seem to hold new extraordinary mental abilities. In an attempt to control this, children are sent to “rehabilitation camps”, color coded based on their abilities, and treated in an inhumane fashion. After six years Ruby is still here when she starts to realize she is not like the rest of the kids and has some unrecognized abilities which may cost her life. She has no choice but to go on the run in an attempt to reach safety, but how can she do this when no one has every escaped?

Okay so this book was a crazy read for me with plenty of ups and downs. I picked it up awhile back and couldn’t really get into it. I feel like the beginning is quite slow and didn’t offer anything exciting that pulled me in which is why I had to give the book four not five stars. But I pushed through and I’m so happy I did. The book seems to instantly pick up a quarter of the way through with plenty of action and cliff hangers that made it impossible to put the book down.

When Ruby teams up with Liam, Chubs, and Zu I couldn’t stop smiling. Their friendship is so incredible and genuine but not fake at all. It was so sweet to see Ruby and Zu’s connection and how Zu grew into her own person. Chubs and Ruby on the other hand were absolutely hysterical together and total opposites. Liam and Ruby had an instant connection and the relationship between them grew so strong just as friends and later developed into something stronger. I appreciate that the author did not rush all of the relationships and made sure to emphasize the growth.

Another key aspect of the novel I enjoyed was watching Ruby discover herself and what she can truly do. She goes from never using her powers to learning how to navigate her strength. This is also very symbolic for Ruby coming to terms with who she is and even though she may be dangerous she needs to accept that since she will never change that.

Overall this book has a special place in my heart and I cannot wait to go out and get the second book and this needs to happen soon because I’m getting desperate.

Thanks for reading!! -Catherine

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