Goodreads Spoiler Free Summary: Ruby never asked for the abilities that almost cost her her life. Now she must call upon them on a daily basis, leading dangerous missions to bring down a corrupt government and breaking into the minds of her enemies. Other kids in the Children’s League call Ruby “Leader”, but she knows what she really is: a monster. When Ruby is entrusted with an explosive secret, she must embark on her most dangerous mission yet: leaving the Children’s League behind. Crucial information about the disease that killed most of America’s children—and turned Ruby and the others who lived into feared and hated outcasts—has survived every attempt to destroy it. But the truth is only saved in one place: a flash drive in the hands of Liam Stewart, the boy Ruby once believed was her future—and who now wouldn’t recognize her. As Ruby sets out across a desperate, lawless country to find Liam—and answers about the catastrophe that has ripped both her life and America apart—she is torn between old friends and the promise she made to serve the League. Ruby will do anything to protect the people she loves. But what if winning the war means losing herself?
My Thoughts: This book is on a whole new level in comparison to the first in the series. It was much more politically based on both the government and the virus instead of the relationships. The plot moved about so quickly because of this which kept the story fast paced and extremely exciting. It was so hard to put down because every chapter ends in a cliff hanger that made me continue saying “just one more” until it was wayyy past the time I should be asleep. It was really great to see Ruby develop even more in accepting herself and her powers without a lot of focus on Liam. Ruby struggles a great deal in coming to terms with her strength since she does learn a great deal about herself and what she can do.
I also really loves all of the new characters introduced. Vida is someone that made me so angry in the beginning and I could not stand her but I started to see that a lot of what she does is to protect those that she loves and her sass and fiery personality came to be quite entertaining. I was super suspicious of Cole in the beginning and I really thought that he had some deeper motivations but turn out he’s just a big flirt that is just looking out for everyone and willing to step up to the plate when he needs to. And then there’s Jude…Jude had my heart from the beginning. He is so down to earth and the way he looks up to Ruby warmed my soul. Seeing him take the initiative to play his role in OPS when he was needed always made me so happy because he feels so special whenever her can step in.
Spoilers Here (scroll to next paragraph if you haven’t read the novel): And now I go back to Jude…ARE WE KIDDING?! When Ruby realized he wasn’t there I could not stop panicking and to this moment as I type this I’m still frantic because he didn’t deserve this. I wish Clancy was under that scaffolding not poor baby Jude. On a brighter note, I’m still in love with Liam and Ruby’s relationship. The fact that everything Liam is feeling is all deep down and instinctive makes it 10000x more passionate because he can’t even remember all he went through with her and makes me root for them even more. Chubs and Liam also have such a great bromance going on. Their bickering just makes me laugh so much and when they have all their reunion moments I can’t hide my smile. Lastly, the ending makes me so pumped to read the last book. I have it being delivered tomorrow and I can’t contain my excitement since I’m so consumed in this world.
Wrap Up (Spoiler Free): This book topped all of my expectations going into it and I have to say I enjoyed more than the first. I still feel that the beginning was a bit slow which is why I took off half a star but the rest is so good which makes me really want to give it a full five. The bonds between all of the children is just so overwhelming and seeing them work their way out of fatal situations never fails to stun me. I strongly recommend this series to anyone who loves dystpian fantasy, you can thank me later.
Happy Reading! -Catherine 🙂