*All reviews I write are spoiler free*
In my attempt to finish some of the series I’ve started, it was time to make some progress with The Darkest Minds series.
I’ve been going through this weird phase lately where I’ve been going off a lot of the books I used to love. So I felt like I needed to read this book as soon as possible, before I lose interest in the series altogether.
Did it work? Ermmm…not really.
But I’ll explain in my review.
Let’s talk about Never Fade!
Title: Never Fade
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian
Series Status: The 2nd book in The Darkest Minds trilogy
Number of Pages: 507 + a novella excerpt
(Found on back cover and Goodreads)
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?
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”.
Rated 2/5 stars
[Available in Paperback, Hardcover and Audio Edition]
Share your thoughts!
Have you read this book? What did you think?
Who’s your favourite character? (Mines Vida, she so different from other characters)
If you haven’t read this book, are you planning to?
Have you read the 1st book, or not started the series?
Let me know in the comments!
Until next time…
Come and visit me!