Publisher: Disney Hyperion.
Release Date: December 18, 2012.
When Ruby wakes up on her tenth birthday, something about her has 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.
To say that I've been excited for this book since she announced it would be a ridiculously large understatement. Brightly Woven is one of my all-time favorite books and The Darkest Minds sounded like it wouldn't disappoint either.
Aaaand it didn't. Of course it didn't!
The Darkest Minds ... where do I even begin? I know a few people are probably rolling their eyes and saying "she's probably only gaga over it because that's that author she annoyingly raves about all the time!" *said in a high-pitched, mocking voice* But that couldn't be farther from the truth. This book is a thrilling, epic, fast-paced beauty wrapped in awesomely snarky and charming characters with a whole lot of amazing, flowy writing on top. Not that this is a sandwich or anything. (But if it were, can you imagine how delicious it'd be?)
This entire story fascinated me. The whole kids with strange powers aspect reminded me of an expanded, more developed, more concentrated X-Men but that only made me love the book so much more. (Marvel enthusiast over here!) The system of colors that coordinate with powers was so engaging and interesting and I kept wanting to know more. Also - and this will sound totally confusing - there were times that things were revealed toward the middle but they were really revealed in the beginning (are you dizzy yet?) and I would have to put the book down for a moment to reel in my shock. There's only one other author that has successfully pulled that off for me and her name is J.K. Rowling.
I loved the entire cast of characters. Ruby starts off this frightened, paranoid mess. The way she evolves into such a strong, courageous heroine is absolutely amazing. And Liam ... be still, my heart. He's not a bad boy or a brooder or moody or anything of the sort. He's adorable and normal and nice and he had a hold of my heartstrings since the moment he was introduced. Of course, I also loved Chubs and Zu. They each have their own differing personalities but the dysfunctional little group is like a family and I wanted them to be real so badly so I could be a part of it.
That ending ... oh my god, how could you do that to us, Alex? Cruelty. Plain cruelty. I don't think I've ever been so desperate for a sequel before in my entire life.
Overall, The Darkest Minds, although wildly different from Brightly Woven, is equally as amazing. It's action-packed, emotionally powerful, and 100% epic. I was a jumbled mess of emotions. I was laughing and gasping and screaming and sobbing and ... you get the point. It joins my list of favorites and is definitely one of the best books I've read in 2012 so far. I definitely urge all of my readers to check this one out!