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on 9 May 2016
What this book is about(if you haven’t read the first book, The Darkest Minds you should skip this review. Spoilers ahead!):

Ruby is now a vital part of the Children’s League as a Leader of a small group of kids. Vida, a Blue girl with a big attitude, Jude, a yellow guy who doesn’t understand danger and the way this horrible world runs and Nico, a Green computer whiz. A few months have past since Ruby swiped Liam’s memory clean of every single representation of her. Now she is a trained agent who is not afraid of her Orange abilities anymore. Now she has to use these abilities to leave the Children’s League and find Liam, the same Liam who doesn’t remember her name, and retrieve from him something of great importance for the future of all the Psi kids in America.

One thing I know for sure about this series is that if I read it when I was 16 I would have absolutely fallen in love with it. This is a great series for adolescents who are into dystopian adventures. As an adult now, I still enjoyed it but it’s not the literary diamont I was waiting all my life to read. This is a fun, fast-paced adventure, full of action and enough twists and turns to keep things interesting until the very end. It is rear from a first-person perspective, as was the first book in the series, and we follow Ruby and her new friends, Jude and Vida. Never Fade is approximately as big as The Darkest Minds and it continues off, some months after the end of the first book.

The story of the first book is, in my opinion, much darker, compared to this second book. Never Fade doesn’t need to introduce us any more to the harsh reality of life for the Psi kids and so we are more interested in the relationships between the characters but also the conspiracies taking place in the U.S. government and the Children’s League. Many things that we didn’t know after the first book are slowly unravelling for us but there are also, still, many new surprises and secrets to find out throughout the book. The story starts of with the first three chapters all ending in cliffhangers that just made me want to read on and find out what is going to happen. And, as you would expect from Alexandra Bracken after reading The Darkest Minds, the last 100 pages of the book really pick up the pace and the action and thrill climb to their peak.

We are introduced to a whole new cast of important characters in this book which was a little strange in the beginning, especially after getting to know Liam, Chubs and Zu so well. But the new guys are a great addition to the story and the writing style of the author really allows the reader to understand and know them in depth. Ruby has become more mature and taken up new responsibilities about her powers that she didn’t want to have. This has opened so many new doors and possibilities for her. Jude is like the little brother that Ruby never had and they are funny and very enjoyable to follow together. Finally, Vida is a character that made the story more realistic. Be warned though, there is a lot of heavy, I would say, cursing in this book that might not be appropriate for very young teens. This is another difference from the first book in the series.

One more thing that really helped this book advance was the writing style. It’s simple but very descriptive and powerful. Alexandra Bracken writes to the point and doesn’t use excessive sentences to get her message across. This makes the book very enjoyable and easy to read and the time flies by before you know it. There is a lot of character development taking place as Ruby comes to accept her Orange abilities. There are new adventures in which our characters get into. There are conversations and confrontations of great importance for the future of all the kids. This book is full of fun, engaging content which the author has efficiently presented in 500 pages without becoming overwhelming or boring.

As I said, as my younger self, this series would have been perfect for me. To be honest, now that I’m thinking about it, this would probably also make a great movie. I had a nice time reading this second book and I’m excited to pick up the third and final novel to see where the story is going to end and where our characters will end up. I urge you to pick this up if you enjoy dystopians or YA sci-fi/fantasy.
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Review originally posted on A Frolic Through Fiction:[...].

Ohhh I left it too long.

I knew this would happen. I’ve been going off so many series lately, I just knew it would happen.

It’s so strange, because I reread The Darkest Minds before Christmas and loved it. But this one? …Meh.

It could just be because of this phase of not-liking-books-I-used-to-love-anymore. It could be because I really wasn’t in the mood for it. I don’t know.

Starting the book, I was really confused. It wasn’t clear to me how much time had passed, and it sort of just seemed like a huge jump had been made. Somewhere between the end of the first book and the start of the second, a whole new bunch of characters made it to “main character” status, and our lead character Ruby had gone through a whole heap of training. But compared to everything else – the situations, the other characters – it seemed not that much time had passed.

This book definitely takes on the same themes as the first. It’s a conspiracy type story, where you don’t quite know who the villain of the story is because what’s the truth? That just seems to be the driving force of the book – what’s the truth?

There’s just constant action. The entire book is a journey to find the truth, and all the “boring” parts of the journey are left out. It’s usually a good thing to have a book that’s non-stop. But for me, it sort of got to a point where I’d be thinking “oh my goodness, what now?!” purely because THAT MUCH goes wrong. There’s so many problems during this book, it got a bit tiresome for me. When it’s just one bad thing after another, one constant stream of problems…it just made the story unrealistic to me. Maybe if a bit more of the waiting period between events had been shown, or the actual travelling around, it would have been better spaced.

This book is much more plot based than the first. But that made me not care about the characters as much as I should’ve. Especially with the amount of arguing. Oh god was I sick of the amount of arguing in this book. It’s understandable. If we were living in their situation, I’ve no doubt arguments would happen thanks to fear and built up tension. But again, because there’s hardly any pauses between events, it all just build up too much. I’d just roll my eyes every time someone started arguing and think *sigh* “Not again”.

Granted, the story did pick up a bit more halfway through. There was a scene with “East River” – if you’ve read it, you’ll probably get which part of the book I mean – that really caught my attention compared to the rest of the book. And I did have hope that I’d enjoy the majority of the book after that. But…then the story moved on again and I fell back into my slump-ish mood.

It just got to a stage for me where so many supposed “plot twists” happened, it made the story predictable. “How does THAT work?” I hear you ask. Well, when there’s so many plot twists of people being betrayed / someone being a bad guy / a much worse event happening / someone being caught / etc etc, you start to expect it. Which means…they’re not really twists anymore. It’s almost like the book was written in a way that tried too hard to be complicated and shocking.

But I am going to say this. This is not a bad book . So so SO many people adore this series. Even while I was reading, I could see why. All the action can make it gripping. The characters can be lovable if you’re invested in the first book. The conspiracies and “what’s the truth” element can make it mysterious. If you have any interest in this book, then I implore you to try it for yourself, and don’t judge just from my (somewhat disappointed) opinion.

Because for me, and my changing taste in genre and books…it’s just a “meh”.
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on 16 November 2015
Never Fade was action-packed and kept me turning the pages constantly. I loved every second of it, it made me laugh and it made me cry.

Cole was definitely a surprise. I did not see that coming. But I'm excited to see his story line in In The Afterlight and how his relationship with Liam will evolve.

I loved how strong Ruby became, she kicked ass, especially in that ending!
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on 2 November 2014
This is a really excellent book. 2nd of trilogy, the first book was quite slow-moving and a bit tedious in places, whereas this one starts off at a pace and keeps it up all the way to the end. Very well written and good characters. If you like books like Through the Ever Night (trilogy), divergent, prodigy etc you will like this.
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on 12 August 2017
Bought the series for my 16 year old who finished it during the summer break. She thought the story was fast paced, even riveting. The characters were well constructed and grew coherently with the books. Loved it.
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on 7 June 2018
great thx
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on 3 December 2017
A great gift
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on 17 April 2014
I love it. every twist and turn, the development of the characters' how they grew stronger. I cannot spoil it for the anyone who has not read this book just do yourself a big favor and buy it you can always thank me later.
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on 27 January 2015
very much stepping out of my usual genre, but a good sideways step. great storyline
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on 20 April 2017
Book arrived with tear in the back cover, bit disappointed but otherwise okay
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