REVIEW: The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken

2 December, 2013

What can I say about The Darkest Minds that will sum up its total awesomeness? I was a little worried about starting it because of how much hype surrounds it, but I wasn’t let down at all and I ended up loving it.

When kids starting coming down with IAAN, and then dying, the remaining children are left with supernatural powers. When Ruby wakes up on her tenth birthday, she has changed, and a freaky accident leads to her being sent to one of the brutal rehabilitation camps. There the kids are sorted into groups and barely survive. Every day brings another struggle. At sixteen, Ruby manages to escape, but is life outside of the camps any easier?

It’s so easy to get lost in the world created in The Darkest Minds. I was so invested in the lives of the characters that I felt what they were feeling. My facial expressions must have been a sight to witness when I read this because the imagery used makes everything feel very realistic. Not to mention that I’m the same age as many of the characters so, if this was real, I would be in the same situation. Let me tell you that I would not survive a day.

The camps reminded me a lot of Nazi concentration camps during the Second World War and there were many similarities – the human testing and the harsh work, for example. I can’t imagine being put into one of the camps, helpless and frightened. The camp that Ruby was in, especially, was extreme and I would have been petrified.

Speaking of Ruby, I loved her. She had so much on her shoulders and I think she’s a truly admirable character. I really want to be best friends with her! Bracken has made her character development very interesting. She comes across as a clueless and naïve young girl but there’s a lot going on beneath the surface that we don’t realise. This is the strongest character development I think I may have ever read and Ruby’s arc was so complex. She goes on one heck of a journey throughout this book and I liked that we got to read about her when she was much younger too.

On to the secondary characters… Zu was such a cutie. I’d really like her to be my sister because she’s one of those people who are just so huggable. I’m really curious as to what will happen to her in the next novel and I’m really looking forward to reading more about her.

Chubs is another character who had such a solid character development. There were so many different layers to his character and all were explored in such depth.

I loved Liam so much. Another character who you got to know so well and I became so invested in him. His and Ruby’s chemistry was so believable and it makes me squeal just thinking about it. I LOVED every scene he was in.

I cannot stop gushing about this book. I really hope it’s published in the UK soon because we’re seriously missing out. Bracken has a rare talent that you don’t see very often and I can’t wait to read more by her.

five-stars

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