The Darkest Minds
Author: Alexandra Bracken
My Rating: 4/5
This is one book I went into completely blind. I knew it had good reviews and seen many people reading it but did not have the slightest idea what the story was actually about. I am so glad that I picked this up from a library shelf on my way out, I am extremely hopeful that this book has gotten me out of a slump just in time for the holidays…
The Darkest minds is a YA Dystopian book which takes place in America (like many do). It follows Ruby, the main character, a 16 year-old girl in a world in which children now have abilities they can control with their minds. The abilities are classified into 5 colours blue, green, yellow, red and orange known as Psi. Ruby is a green and lives in Thurmond which is almost a concentration like camp for those children who are considered ‘diseased’. During the course of a few weeks we delve into Ruby’s past as she overcomes various struggled in her attempt to gain her freedom back.
Okay So first off though I loved this book I did accidentally think the main character was 10 first half the book which led to some confusion. Despite this the storyline was super easy to follow but wasn’t too simple that it was boring. I was also under the impression that it was a stand alone however am very excited I have another 2 books to read after this.
The book begin in the camp which really made you emphasise with Ruby and made it possible to have a strong connection with her as the book went on. The conditions and what the children were put through were awful especially considering that many of the punishments put to the kids have happened to minorities in the past and present. We then move on to learning that although labelled a Green (telekinesis), Ruby is intact an Orange who are able to get into peoples minds, control them and erase memories which has accidentally lost her friends and family in the past. We also learn the those labelled as red, orange or yellow have most likely been killed due to the danger they pose to the government.
After Cate (a rebellion fighter posed as a nurse) helps Ruby and another boy escape the camp she is outside Thurmond for the first time in 6 years and unsure how to interact with males or adults who are trying to help her. Though she doesn’t fully trust her new hosts which leads her to run away and hide finding herself with 3 psi children Chubs, Liam and Zu. The whole middle of the book follows her gaining trust from these new characters and gaining a new family she cares about deeply as they travel the country in search for safety and to find a legend known as the ‘slip kid’. They of course run into danger and various barriers across their way but eventually do in fact find the slip kid and find a safe place for children, or so they think.
Their new paradise soon starts to have close resemblance to the rules and hierarchies that were held at the prison camps. Ruby at this point although taken with Liam and their new bond has slowly been brainwashed by the ‘slip kid’ who is an orange like her but far more powerful. Ruby endures some non-consensual interactions with the ‘slip kid’ before anyone releases what has happened. When her friends do catch on they make a desperate attempt to escape however are captured by those loyal to their leader and are taken back to the ‘safe-haven’ unfortunately on the same night those capturing the children attack the camp ending in many casualties. Except for our main characters of course who drive away in search of their families and friends. However before Chubs reaches his family he is shot and they are all taken by the rebellion.
This is where book one ends, will Chubs live and how will Ruby help the rebellion? I’m very much eager to find all of this out in book 2, and if you are looking for a fast paced YA thriller this is definitely a book you should give a try!
Please give me book recommendations, I need more procrastination material….