Title: Never Fade
Author: Alexandra Bracken
Series: The Darkest Minds book 2
Genre: Young Adult, fantasy, dystopian, romance
Pages: 507 pages
Rating: 5 stars
Blurb: (via 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 flash drive 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?
I just want to mention at the beginning of this review that I did buy and read In Time, the novella that takes place between The Darkest Minds and Never Fade. So far, the novella has nothing to do with book two, but I have a feeling that it will be useful in understanding the events in books 3. If you have not read it, you can read my review of The Darkest Minds HERE.
Now onto the Review of this novel!
Alexandra Bracken has done it again! Book 2 was an excellent sequel to The Darkest Minds. Immediately at the beginning of the book we see the new life Ruby has agreed to live at the Children’s League. We get to meet a lot of new characters, including Liam’s notorious brother that we had only heard about in The Darkest Minds. I mention this because 1) we get insight as to why there is a rift between Liam and Cole based on Cole’s personality. And 2) because we get to see how much Ruby suffers with the decision she made at the end of The Darkest Minds. Also, we get to FINALLY meet a Red. I now understand why they are called Red’s; I now understand why they are placed as the most dangerous color. (My prediction was way off! But I should have guessed)
As always, the character development in this book was phenomenal. We see Ruby growing as a woman and as a leader while simultaneously trying to cope with accepting who she is as an Orange and continuing to master her ability. In addition, while we have just met a new set of secondary characters, almost all of them subtly, but gradually, develop through the novel. We get to understand these new characters and love them as much as we love Zu, Chubs, and Liam.
Do I even need to mention how great the writing is? Well, not really, because the writing speaks for itself. Alexandra Bracken is a master of words. There is barely any useless fluff thrown in to fill the pages and almost every thought, action, and description has a purpose. The writing was effortless and engaging and completely fluid throughout the novel.
In true Bracken fashion, the novel ends with tears that makes you want to scream and, of course, a killer cliffhanger. There is so much more I want to say about this book, but I don’t want to give away any spoilers. Take my word on it people. You WANT to read this series. Pick it up. Read it. Love it. I can’t wait to read book three!!! This was an easy 5 stars.