Monday, March 17, 2014

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken

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Goodreads Summary

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.


I want to get my one complaint out of the way before I fangirl:

The summary gives away everything. It's literally a summary. You know how it's just supposed to reel you in so you can read the book to find out more? This one reveals pretty much the entire plot. My advice: DON'T READ THE SUMMARY. Otherwise, you'll be like me and wait for everything to happen. It was pretty annoying, actually. I wish I had stayed away from the summary.

That being said, jeez this book was incredible. Yes, it took me a while to feel emotionally invested. But sometimes that's okay because by the end I was hooked. And it wasn't like I was bored in the in-between time. It had a pretty good pace and I loved the background. The world building was pretty perfect for me. Most of it was Ruby's recollection from when she was little, so it wasn't quite accurate or up-to-date. But once she gets back out, the world was set up wonderfully. I really felt like I could visualize it, like I was right next to her throughout the book.

Ruby herself was a pretty decent mc. Usually I have trouble liking girl mc's. (Which is actually funny since most mc's are girls.) But with Ruby, I didn't have that problem. It just took a while to connect completely. For the most part, I think she acted pretty normally and she wasn't overly stupid. Maybe there were a few exceptions, but I have no complaints. As per usual, I loved the guy in the story. Liam was just great. He was sweet and protective. But I have to admit, he had me second-guessing him a few times. I was pretty sure he liked Ruby (read: don't read the summary), but it was super subtle. And it just got worse when some other guy shows up. I won't reveal who it is. But I will say I totally knew who the mysterious leader was. It was disappointing that I figured it out, but I give her props because I recognized it as a good twist.

What I loved most about this was the concept, the world-building. I alluded to this before but I want to emphasize this: adults are horribly abusing these children. Think about that for a second. It's not like parents are smacking their kids because they did something bad. No, this is actually abuse, where death is a very real threat for these kids. As if it's their fault. And the parents are okay with it. Admittedly, it's because most don't know. But that's not the point. The point is, they should know. They should care enough to find out and do something.

One final note: that mysterious thing Ruby did to her parents? Well, it actually was mysterious. And I will leave it at that.

Overall, I loved it. It just lost stars for that stupid summary thing *sigh*

Rating: 3 stars

Recommendation: those who love sci-fi and questionable ways of dealing with issues


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