By Alexandra Bracken
Darkest Minds book #2
Hardcover: 507 pages
Publication Date: October 15, 2013
Published By: Disney-Hyperion
4.4 out of 5 Stars
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 flashdrive 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?
It is almost impossible to review this book without giving away spoilers from book 1, but I figure, if you're reading this review, you've already read book 1. If not, I will go ahead and hide the spoilers (: This book picks up close to where Darkest Minds leaves off. Ruby has teamed up with The Children's League, and is basically under the strict rule of the higher ups in the group. She knows that she cannot trust them, but when the younger Psi in the compound end up dead under strange circumstances, she is at a loss as to what to do. It seems there are a group of adults that do not want the "freaks" to be part of the League anymore, and will do anything in their power to see that they are removed- even if it means killing children. When Cole, Liam's brother is rescued from captivity, they immediately place their trust in each other. Cole is a wonderfully written character- he's no Liam, but he is a good replacement while Liam is on hiatus in this book. Ruby continues to be an awesome protagonist; strong, yet still sensitive to the feelings of the people she cares about. She is also gaining more control over her power, which makes her practically unstoppable. There are a few exciting developments with the way that she uses her mind controlling gift, and I look for her to grow more powerful throughout In the After Light. Clancy does make an appearance in this book, but I don't want to give anything away. All in all, I enjoyed this book more than the first one, as we gain more insight into the characters as well as their back stories. My curiosity is thoroughly peaked with what exactly the book titles all mean together: The Darkest Minds Never Fade In the After Light. I'm going to wager a guess, and I'm not giving away spoilers because I honestly have no idea, but I think that the cure will be found and distributed throughout the camps. All of the children will be cured and lose their powers, save for the most powerful ones. Clancy and Ruby alone perhaps? Sigh. I absolutely cannot wait until the release of In the After Light on October 28! That's all I've got for now! Read the spoilers here...
"I feel like I'm losing my damn mind, like your face has been carved into my heart, and I don't remember when, and I don't understand why, but the scar is there, and I can't get it to heal. It won't go. I can't make it fade. And you won't even look at me.” -Liam
Great. We were the goddamn Rainbow Connection.”
"The kids in the League knew about the camps-vaguely. There were only a few of us who had actually lived in one and experienced the life firsthand, but there was an unspoken rule we didn't talk about it. Everyone knew the truth, but the truth didn't live inside them the same way it did for us. They'd heard about the sorting machines, the cabins, the testing, but most of their stories were gossip, completely wrong. These kids had never stood for hours on end in an assembly lime. They didn't know fear came in the shape of a small black camera lens, an eye that followed you everywhere at all times.”
"It’s just not fair,” Jude said. “None of this is fair.” “Life isn’t fair,” I said. “It’s taken me a while to get that. It’s always going to disappoint you in some way or another. You’ll make plans, and it’ll push you in another direction. You will love people, and they’ll be taken away no matter how hard you fight to keep them. You’ll try for something and won’t get it. You don’t have to find meaning in it; you don’t have to try to change things. You just have to accept the things that are out of your hands and try to take care of yourself. That’s your job.”
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Tags: Darkest Minds, Alexandra Bracken, Dystopian, Urban Fantasy