Series: The Darkest Minds #2
Published by Disney Hyperion on October 15th 2013
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Ruby never asked for the abilities that almost cost her her life. Now she must call upon them on a daily basis, leading dangerous missions to bring down a corrupt government and breaking into the minds of her enemies. Other kids in the Children’s League call Ruby “Leader”, but she knows what she really is: a monster.
When Ruby is entrusted with an explosive secret, she must embark on her most dangerous mission yet: leaving the Children’s League behind. Crucial information about the disease that killed most of America’s children—and turned Ruby and the others who lived into feared and hated outcasts—has survived every attempt to destroy it. But the truth is only saved in one place: a flashdrive in the hands of Liam Stewart, the boy Ruby once believed was her future—and who now wouldn’t recognize her.
As Ruby sets out across a desperate, lawless country to find Liam—and answers about the catastrophe that has ripped both her life and America apart—she is torn between old friends and the promise she made to serve the League. Ruby will do anything to protect the people she loves. But what if winning the war means losing herself?
There has always been a certain something that Alexandra Bracken books have brought to the table. Due to this, going into this sequel, I knew that something major would go down… and it did.
With The Darkest Minds, I was captivated with the world that Bracken created. Kids surviving a hellish virus only to discover they now are gifted with powers. From being able to control tech to mind reading, these kids not only could change the world, they could destroy it too.
Never Fade opens shortly after the mind-blowing events of The Darkest Minds. I will be honest here and say that in the beginning I had no clue what was going on. It had been some time since reading The Darkest Minds, and while I had an idea still of the first book's overall plot, I felt a bit lost. While some authors will start the second, third and possibly so on books with a small rehash or rehash as the book goes on, Bracken does not, or not at least to the degree that I can sometimes need. So, for me, Never Fade wasn't off to a good start. However, this is a personal issue and nothing against the book itself.
Like The Darkest Minds, Never Fade had to grow on me. Bracken has a really interesting writing style that I adore 100%, but sometimes I just have to settle in with her books, blocking out everything else to really get into the groove of the book. And while I am not too surprised that this happened again with Never Fade, I have to say that it disappoints me a bit. I would have loved for the action to have picked up exactly where The Darkest Minds stopped and gone full force from there. But it doesn't. Which makes me question if the third book will do the same thing, and if I can take another installment with this format. At this point, I just don't know.
Never Fade has plenty of twists, turns, and heart-stopping moments. However, the lack of action and a few other small nitpicks at the beginning almost spelled the end for Never Fade and its series for me. But despite my issues early on Never Fade turned out to be on rockin' read. Ruby is still such an amazing character and I loved watching her grow and develop. Plus, the addition of a few new characters didn't hurt too much either.
At this point, I love this series whole-heartedly, issues and all. I just have some major reservations about the third book. Not the plot so much, but the plot format. I hope that the third installment will be kickin' from page one, but I will have to wait and see.