on December 18th 2012
When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something frightening enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that got her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that had killed most of America’s children, but she and the others emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they could not control.
Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones. When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. She is on the run, desperate to find the only safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who have 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 having a life worth living.
It’s been a while since I actually read this book to bare with me for a minute. This is one of those books which after I read it I had to let it sit for a minute to let the thoughts coalesce into something coherent. And then I kind of forgot, well shoot me. Yet this book has sat there on the edge of my mind ever since, waiting to be talked about and the series continued. Not many books have that much staying power for me so I have to give it its due.
This book was a quick read. I think I read the whole thing in a couple of days or so. A lot of that has to do with the pacing, which was absolutely perfect. It was at the perfect level, never too fast but also managing not to drag along in an irritating manner. I only hope that the later book are also well paced enough to keep up with this first installment.
When people talk about this book I always hear an XMEN comparison. THE DARKEST MINDS definitely has that component to it with the powers but I think it’s more complex than that. I mean sure, they learn to deal with their powers at camp but I wouldn’t consider it like Professor Xavier’s School or anything. Besides, this book is far more dystopian than any X-Men comic.
I love these characters so much, particularly our MC. I really like her, in fact she might be one of my favorite female MC’s outside of a strictly high fantasy genre. I just enjoy the way she speaks to the other characters, I thought it was one of the more real sets of dialogue in a YA novel. That’s not something I usually think about but I definitely noticed it here. Her dialogue made her so much more corporeal for me, even more than the description did.
Even though it has been a while since I’ve read this book my excitement for the later books has not dwindled. I have found that if I leave a series for a while I’m often not that motivated to come back to it (which is why I have so many uncompleted series on my shelves) but this one is always in the back of my wind when I look for my next read.
I recommend THE DARKEST MINDS for fans of Robison Well’s BLACKOUT series, RED QUEEN, and of course, X Men.
What did you think of this book? Share your thoughts in the comments.
From my shelf to yours,