Review: Never Fade

Never Fade (The Darkest Minds, #2)Never Fade ARC
(The Darkest Minds #2)
by Alexandra Bracken
YA Dystopian
October 15th 2013 by Disney-Hyperion

Goodreads summary:
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?

What I thought:
I loved The Darkest Minds when I read it back in February (you can see my review here - I can't believe how much my post format has changed!), so I was super excited to get to read Never Fade, the second book in this series, early!

The Darkest Minds ends with quite a cliffhanger, which I won't tell you here since you just need to read it. In Never Fade, Ruby is working with the Children's League, which she had previously tried to avoid doing. She has mostly accepted where she is and what she's doing, although she doesn't like her powers and how dangerous she is. You can kind of get that from the blurb as well. What you have to understand is that Ruby has fought so hard and has done so much to protect others. She is afraid of herself and doesn't feel she is safe for anyone, but she is doing what she can to survive. She has pretty much lost all of her innocence and has seen even more of the darkness and evil that exists in the world since the first book ended. I really felt for her and what she is trying to do in protecting the innocence of others.

We meet a bunch of new characters in Never Fade. Bracken does such a good job in fully fleshing out her characters. They are each so unique and have such depth with their own stories. There aren't any cookie-cutter characters here. I ended up liking all of them in one way or another, although the original group from the first book are still my favorites.

What can I tell you about the plot? It was crazy, intense, unbelievable, sweet, heroic, desperate, troubling, joyful, and powerful. My emotions were all over the place. There were kind people who tried to help these dangerous children at their own risk. There were evil people who didn't care that they were just kids. There were kids turning against each other in the most terrible ways. There was friendship, love, and sacrifice. There were people plotting and manipulating for different purposes. There were battles with lives lost. Yet, there was still humor and hope. That is really why I have loved this series so much - because it has great contrasts of emotions, but especially because it isn't all dark. It actually has places that show love and also the good in the world and that's what makes these characters push on through all these terrible things that they have been faced with and have no control over.

Here is a favorite quote:
     "I used to wonder, you know, all the time, if it was all because you felt sorry for me. Because you pitied me or were looking for another person to protect."
     "And you could never see another reason?" he whispered in a fierce voice. "It couldn't have been because I respected how hard you fought to survive? Because I saw how kind your heart was? Or that you were funny, and brave, and strong, and you made me feel like I was all of those things, too, even when I didn't deserve it?"
This one ends with some closure in some ways and not at all in others. I am eagerly awaiting the third book in this series, which looks like won't be coming out until December 2014. I really don't want to wait that long!

If you like Dystopians, then I definitely would recommend reading this series! It is violent in parts, but I would say that it is much less violent than The Hunger Games.

Content: There is a lot of language due to the military-type characters in this one and there is some intense violence at certain points.
Source: NetGalley

Thank you Disney-Hyperion and NetGalley for this copy! Have you read The Darkest Minds or are planning on reading Never Fade?

Disclosure: This review is of a book I was given for free by an author, tour host, or publisher, or through NetGalley or Edelweiss. This in no way influences the opinions shared in my review. You may see my complete policy on my policies page. This post also contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase of any type using these links, I receive a small kickback.

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