dystopian, young adult

Book Review: The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken

The darkest minds by Alexandra Bracken

Title: The Darkest Minds
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Length: 488, Paperback
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Rating: 4.5 Folded Pages


When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.

Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.

When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who 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 a life worth living.


I feel a little late to party with the darkest minds since it’s been floating around booktube and other young adult book reviewers for quite a while, but I’m so glad I picked it up! I couldn’t put it down reading it in a total of 3 days. With this being finals week and my job making me work more hours than usual because it’s a busy time, I’d say this is pretty fantastic for an almost 500 page book.

The thing I loved the most about this book was that instead of one big overarching plot with subplots within, it was more like smaller plots that folded seamlessly together. Normally, this would bother me, but Bracken does such a wonderful job keeping the pace up without forcing a “main goal” for the ragtag group of kids.I also loved Bracken’s writing. It is to the point and easy to read while still maintaining depth and allowing the characters to grow with the passing of time.

I did find myself annoyed with the main character, Ruby, which is one of the main reasons I can’t give this book a full five stars. I’m just not a fan of the whole “I absolutely have to hide who I really am” mindset that seems to be a trend in dystopian novels. Still, as frustrating as it was, Ruby is a very dynamic character that you can watch change with each page almost.

No spoilers, but I will say the ending made me cry. I tried so hard not to but I couldn’t help it. I always end up really liking it when a book can give me enough emotion to manifest physically whether it be tears or legitimately laughing out loud and I found I did both with The Darkest Minds.

I say this is one of my favorite YA dystopians, which is hard for me considering out many books are in the genre at the moment. The Uglies series will always hold the number one spot in my heart for that slot but I think The Darkest Minds series might be pulling a close second. We’ll definitely see once I get my hands on the next installment!

4 thoughts on “Book Review: The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken”

  1. I’ve seen this book around though I never gave much thought of reading it. The premise sounds good and I absolutely love dystopian novels so I may just add this to my reading list. 🙂


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