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The Darkest Minds Hardcover – 18 Dec 2012

4.3 out of 5 stars 48 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 488 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion Books (18 Dec. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423157370
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423157373
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.8 x 22.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 217,660 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

A mysterious disease has killed most of America's children, and those few who survived have developed stunning new powers, including telekinesis and mind control. Suddenly terrified of its own children, the government rounds up the young survivors, confining them in camps where they are strictly monitored and controlled. Sixteen-year-old Ruby, imprisoned since her tenth birthday, has been keeping secret the true extent of her mind-control powers. Rescued by the Children's League, she quickly realizes that the League has plans of its own for her future and escapes her rescuers, joining up instead with a ragtag group of fellow fugitives led by would-be hero Liam. On the run from government agents, bounty hunters, League members, and even other runaways, Ruby and her companions search for the Slip Kid, the leader of an underground safe house for kids. The Slip Kid turns out also to have an agenda, and Ruby is faced with deciding how much she will sacrifice for her future and her freedom. Heart-wrenching but completely riveting, the novel pulls no punches, creating a bleak world where the best that children can hope is to escape those who would imprison or manipulate them is the best that children can hope for. Resisting the urge to overexplain, Bracken carefully employs hints and flashbacks to reveal essential background information, and the gradual revelation of the story's many secrets ratchets up the anxiety. The resolute harshness, though, is tempered by genuine emotional connections between the survivors and playful banter between friends; a blossoming romance emerges between Ruby and Liam but never overshadows Ruby's personal emotional journey. Fans of the darker elements of Collins' The Hunger Games (BCCB 11/08) and Shusterman's Unwind (BCCB 2/08) will want to pick up this inventive new take on the science fiction survival story. AM BCCB"

Imagine a not-too-distant future in which 98 percent of America's 10- to 17-year-olds have fallen victim to disease, and the remaining 2 percent are imprisoned in "rehabilitation camps," thanks to a paranoid government that fears the powers they possess. In this haunting novel, 16-year-old Ruby joins up with a small group of fellow camp escapees in search of the Slip Kid, a near-mythical figure who promises shelter and protection for kids on the run. Ruby is hoping for even more-someone to help her understand and control the tremendous power she possesses. Bracken (Brightly Woven, 2010) creates a gripping and terrifying dystopian world. Ruby is a reluctant heroine, strong yet vulnerable in equal measure, who will endear herself to readers. Each member of the small band of runaways traveling with Ruby is equally compelling and distinct, making the danger they face all the more terrifying. If readers can force aside nagging questions about the origins of these empowered teens and any implied connection between their powers and the illness claiming their peers, they are in for a great ride. Be prepared-the darkest minds do indeed "hide behind the most unlikely faces." (Dystopian thriller. 14 & up) Kirkus"

Gr 9 Up In this dystopian future, most preadolescents and adolescents are dead, brought down by a new disease, Idiopathic Adolescent Acute Neurodegeneration. Ruby Daly and other survivors from her town are taken to Camp Thurmond by the Psi Special Forces to be tested, categorized, and, according to the PR, "rehabilitated." There is no rehabilitation, though, in the concentration camps for young people with special powers, just drudgery and punishment. Ruby hides a secret from the PSF she is not a Green, but an Orange, someone who can affect other people's minds. Members of the Children's League help her to escape but she is soon on the run from them as well when she learns that they intend to use her to commit violence. She joins the small band of Liam and Chubs, who are telekinetics, or Blues, and Zu, who is a Yellow, a person who can control electricity and machinery. Together the four seek East River, a sanctuary whose leader, the Slip Kid, can supposedly get messages to their parents. Before they can find the camp, they have to evade PSF soldiers, bounty hunters, and the Children's League, as well as solve the riddle of its location. While this story is full of action, it is also given depth by the difficult choices that Ruby faces. There are some fairly disturbing events and images (torture, rape, blood splattering, etc.). This book is a natural for dystopia fans but romance readers will also enjoy the blooming love between Ruby and Liam. Eric Norton, McMillan Memorial Library, Wisconsin Rapids, WI SLJ"

In the not-so-distant future, most of America's children have died; but those who live find that they have psychic abilities that range from moving objects to getting inside people's minds. Sixteen-year-old Ruby, using her powers as an Orange, has escaped the survivor facility she has lived in for six years. She has also used her abilities to make the doctors believe she is a more docile Green. Now Ruby intends to keep her secret, even from new friends, including handsome Liam, persnickety Chubs, and the mute but sweet, young Zu. This ragged band searches the Virginia countryside in hopes of finding the Slip Kid, who seems to have outsmarted the government. Instead they find trouble on almost every turn of the page, but eventually discover what seems to be a youth utopia. Bracken is skilled at ramping up the action, but there is so much going on here, it's hard to keep it all straight. Still, the character development is good, and the book's ability to tackle larger issues is solid. In the end, Ruby must make an important decision. Then it's on to book two. - Ilene Cooper Booklist"

About the Author

Alexandra Bracken is the #1 "New York Times "bestselling author of The Darkest Minds series and Passenger series. Born and raised in Arizona, she moved east to study history and English at the College of William & Mary in Virginia. After working in publishing for several years, Alex now writes full time and can be found hard at work on her next novel in a charming little apartment that's perpetually overflowing with books. Visit her online at www.alexandrabracken.com and on Twitter @alexbracken.


Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
(Source: I won a hardback copy of this book.)
16-year-old Ruby was taken from her parent's home on her 10th birthday, and taken to a camp for kids with psi abilities.
One of a small number of kids who actually survived a disease known as IAAN, Ruby had no idea that the American government was afraid of what she could do with her mind, and ended up in camp with around 3000 other kids and held there like a prisoner for 6 years.

After being busted out by a member of a terrorist group intent on using Ruby's abilities for harm, Ruby manages to get away, and ends up with another group of kids in a similar situation.
How long can they run from the government and bounty hunters though? Can Ruby learn to use her abilities to her advantage? And will she ever make it home?

This was a 3 star story, with a 5 star ending.

Ruby was an interesting character. She was strong even when she didn't think that she was, and she was resourceful when things mattered. I felt sorry for her over the way she had been treated by her parents, then by the PSF (people in charge at the camp), and then by plenty of other people. I liked how she became more confident though, and how she began to see the way forward, even when the way forward was hard.

I liked the storyline in this book, but I did feel that it was pretty slow in places. Maybe it was the lack of zombies or something, but I didn't feel the urgency or adrenalin in this story the way I expected to, and although stuff happened, it didn't make me desperate to keep reading, which was a shame.
There were some twists and turns in this story, but I felt like I saw a lot of them coming. The last 10-15% of the story was really good though, it was a shame that the rest of the book couldn't have been the same!
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Format: Hardcover
My review:

I received The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken as an ARC during BEA 2012 and I have had it on my shelf waiting for me to pick it up. I did pick it up more than once, but decided to read it in the beginning of 2013. Boy, was I glad I did that!

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken is an intriguing novel which is amazingly well written. I loved the world and the characters which author created and I was literally stunned by it. I used to read Science Fiction books seldom, but now, after reading The Darkest Minds and few other YA Science Fiction books, it seems I have turned into the sci-fi fan. Let me rephrase it, I have turned into the fan of YA Sci-fi authors and that definitely includes Alexandra Bracken!

Plot:

The opening scenes of The Darkest Minds take you to rehabilitation camp where you meet Ruby, a sixteen years old teenage girl working. Thurmond, a camp which gathers few thousands of kids who have survived the age ten. There is a virus which either kills you when 10 years old and if you survive this virus, you get abilities which the government is scared of and you are sent to the camps run by military.

Kids are divided into colors according to how dangerous their abilities are considered. Ruby has survived for 6 years by hiding who she really is and which abilities she has. When the leaders of the camp are getting suspicious about her, she is in severe danger. Ruby manages to escape with the help from the member of the League which is a rebellion movement saving the kids. At least that is what they want her to believe. What they don't know is, that Ruby can read minds.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Review originally posted on my book blog: https://afrolicthroughfiction.wordpress.com/2015/12/05/the-darkest-minds-by-alexandra-bracken/

RATED 4.5/5 STARS!

Since this was a reread for me, going back into this book all I could remember was how much I loved it the first time. And now the second time round, I feel like I love it even more.

I really like the backstory behind the book. As the synopsis tells us, it starts off as a disease, and once children hit the age of 10, they will most likely die. But the problem is if they don’t die. These kids end up with abilities, and the government becomes scared about what they can do, so they all get locked away in rehabilitation camps. From the beginning you can really see how Thurmond (one of the camps) has affected our main character, Ruby. She has no confidence and is afraid. It really does show how bad this place must have been.

As the story goes on, you see more of the world as it is. Although the descriptions didn’t blow me away, there were quite a lot of comparisons between the past and present that were hard-hitting. The happy memories from the time before everything went wrong overshadowed by the events of this dark world. But it was scarily realistic. The idea behind it was explained so well that I had no problem believing it could happen.

I loved the characters in this book. Loved them. They developed so well through the story, and each of their personalities were different but genuine. I especially liked how the friendships developed. each of the characters had to adapt to the world, and deal with anything that came their way. Gradually they all became braver and tougher, but still had their weaknesses that made them seem like real people.

The story really was addictive to read.
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