THE DARKEST MINDS by Alexandra BrackenThe Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken
Series: The Darkest Minds #1
Published by Disney-Hyperion on December 18th 2012
Pages: 496
Length: 14 hours
Genres: Young Adult, Action & Adventure, General, Love & Romance, Fantasy & Magic, Science Fiction, Dystopian
Also by this author: Passenger

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When Ruby wakes up on her tenth birthday, something about her has 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.

Reading time 3 mins

I have been wanting to read this book for so long. I heard about it on BookTube. I finally got it from the library. The Darkest Minds was as good as I had hoped. It was YA dystopian/science fiction, with a bit of romance and I enjoyed every minute of it.

Ruby is one of the last kids in her neighborhood alive. There is a mutation happening which causes most kid’s brains to literally explode when they hit puberty. Ruby doesn’t seem have it. When she wakes up on her tenth birthday everything changes for Ruby. After a kiss goodnight, her parents have completely forgotten her. She gets taken away to a rehabilitation camp “to keep her safe”. When she gets to the camp she realizes that all of the kids alive have the mutation, it causes the kids to have frightening psychic abilities. Six years later Ruby is saved from extinction only to see that her abilities make her more valuable then she realizes.

Okay, first I have to say that Ruby suffers through a lot in this book. For going through all that she does, there is some great character growth for her. We only get Ruby’s POV throughout the story. We have no idea what else is going on behind the scenes. I loved that. I want to be just as in the dark as the protagonist is. They use colors to sort out the kids by their ability in the camp. She is classed with the greens, who can’t really do anything. Green is a safe color, all they are is really smart and able to remember more. So we have blue’s who are telekinetic, yellow’s can manipulate electricity, oranges can control minds/manipulate memories, and the red’s who….well I am not really sure but apparently they have a very dangerous power. The breakdown of colors doesn’t really happen in this story. Ruby just knows that being green will mean more freedom for her. She is actually an orange, but since all the orange and red ones disappeared from the camp she stays alive by believing she is green.

The adults in this story are really cruel. I can’t imagine what it would be like to find out your children have all this power, but they get really scared. Some of them try to keep their kids out of the government’s hands, some actually turn their children in. There are people that just want to control the children which is actually not as bad as the government just trying to contain them. Ruby encounters all of those things in this book. She makes some unforgettable friendships in this story, too. She has never even talked to a boy so she forms this really great friendship with the mute yellow girl she meets named Zu. Zu was so figggin adorable. The romance doesn’t show up until way late in the book when another orange is introduced. Then the story has a more romantic focus, but it still has enough action to keep the story going.

The story moves along at an incredible pace. I didn’t even realize how long this book was until I was almost finished with it. I loved the premise for the story. The author did an incredible job with creating believable friendships and a slow burn sort of romance. I loved all the action and traveling that the characters did. I loved that after 490+ pages there is still so much that author did not reveal. I will definitely be reading the sequel to this book.

My Rating


About Alexandra Bracken

Alexandra Bracken was born and raised in Arizona, but moved east to study at the College of William & Mary in Virginia. She recently relocated to New York City, where she lives in a charming apartment overflowing with books.

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