The Darkest Minds
By Alexandra Bracken
Series: The Darkest Minds, Book 1
My Rating: 4 Stars
I added this series to my “to read” list a couple of years ago. I’d even checked out the first book but hadn’t gotten around to reading it. Then I saw it come up as the monthly Teen Book Club read for my Library and thought that I’d better read this book since I need to be able to talk about these books. So I picked it up and started reading it. I’ll admit it took me a while to get into this book. It wasn’t that it wasn’t a good read. My mind just wasn’t in it for some reason. But that was short lived. I was quickly drawn into this fast paced story. And once I got into the book it was an amazing read. I simply couldn’t put it down. Such a unique plot and some of the most bad-ass characters I’ve seen in a long time. I loved the character development of Ruby and truly enjoyed watching her grow into a pretty tough chick. Though this fits perfectly into the dystopian genre, it verges on superhero style and has plenty of action, intrigue and suspense to keep you hooked until the very end. In fact, you’ll run off and get books two and three as soon as you close the back cover. I absolutely guarantee it!!
In America, children become afflicted with a disease called IAAN at puberty which is usually between the ages of 10-14. It kills most children but the few who survive are changed forever. They develop powerful abilities that make them dangerous. The children are rounded up and sent to “rehabilitation camps.” Never to be heard from again. As America struggles to survive the after effects of IAAN, the forgotten children must rely on themselves to survive. Ruby, was sent to Thurmond on her tenth birthday after a tragic accident that resulted in her parents locking her in the garage. After six long years at Thurmond, it’s discovered that Ruby has been hiding a very powerful secret. She has to escape if she’s going to live. With the help of an unexpected person, Ruby flees Thurmond. But her saviors aren’t what they appear to be and Ruby must once again get away. During her flight, she stumbles upon a small group of fellow teens who have also escaped from their camp. Together they will seek out the mysterious Slip Kid and his elusive East River. There they hope to find everything they have been searching for. But not everything is as it seems, when they arrive at East River. And it’s enigmatic leader has secrets which may bring more trouble than Ruby and her friends bargained for. In the end, Ruby may have to make choices that will take her further and further from the things that will bring her happiness.
AWESOME BOOK!!!!! Yes, I loved this book. It’s a fabulous start to a series and is sure to draw you in and keep you hooked. Alexandra Bracken may just be one of my new favorite authors. I had the please sure of meeting her at the Young Adult Literature Festival in Charleston, South Caroline a couple of years ago and that’s when I first heard about this series. I’m saddened by the fact that I let this series go unread for so long. But no longer. This is definitely going to be one of most recommended series this year to both friends, family and customers. I’m most certainly moving directly on to the next two books. They will move to the front of my queue in my “to read” pile. And that is saying something since I’ve been focusing on trying to read all the books out in series that I’ve been following. I was determined not to start any new series until I was finished with all the other ones I was reading. But The Darkest Minds has changed all that. And I’m ok with this turn of events. I’m thinking this series is going to be one of my best picks for the year and it’s still relatively early in the year. I have at least 150 more books ahead of me, but I’m confident that this book and this series will still stand out at the end of the year. If you are interested in a great read that is YA but can easily peak adult interest, check this series out. I’m certain you’ll love the plot, the characters, and the vast complexity of the world that Bracken has created. Everything about this book was truly amazing.