Kind of just meh.
I’ve finally come to the conclusion of this series and I’m a little disappointed to be quite honest. I didn’t really enjoy it as much as I thought I would.
Ruby and the remaining few who survived the attack at Los Angeles travel north to the ranch to meet up with Cate and regroup. With Clancy in tow under Ruby’s control for now, she unites with Cole to somehow try to save all the kids that are still under lock and key in the camps.
I found Ruby to be very unlikeable in this last book. Every decision she made and every time she sided with Cole over Liam just grated my nerves. Every time Liam, Vida or Chubs would confront her about keeping secrets and making plans with Cole without their input she would always deflect and say they wouldn’t be able to understand. I get that her heart is in the right place and she does genuinely want to save the children but she just really rubbed me the wrong way throughout the course of the storyline.
I did like how we have the meeting between Vida and Zu and how Vida is jealous that Ruby has kind of forgotten about Jude. I did say in the last book that I thought Jude kind of felt like a replacement Zu to me. But I like that we gradually see them grow closer and how Vida helps Zu gain the confidence to speak again. That was a touching moment.
All of the maneuvering and scheming at the ranch was kind of slow paced to me. It wasn’t as engaging and exciting as I expected it to be. I wanted more action and adventure and a grand scheme that is slowly orchestrated with several layers and manipulations involved. It kind of just felt like they didn’t know what they were doing half the time and a lot kind of happened outside of the ranch that we don’t get to see. It’s a lot of reactions and emotional turmoil and it was a little boring.
I did like that the ending wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows that there is still progress to be made in the world but for now they were safe and together. I’m happy that Ruby gave Clancy the chance to live a normal life especially after everything that he’s been through.
⭐️3/5 a bit too slow paced and not enough flair, kind of average for me
This was so tragically beautiful, I definitely got emotional.
I really enjoyed this book. I was a little sceptical and hesitant going in because when a book is just super hyped for me I find myself not wanting to like it for some reason. But lo and behold I loved it! It was witty and effervescent and even though you have this event looming over their head it doesn’t become too dark and macabre.
We follow the perspectives of Mateo and Rufus and they live in a near futuristic world where they are able to pinpoint the day that someone is going to die. Mateo and Rufus have both just received their calls that they are going to die sometime within the next 24 hours and we join them as they make their way through their final day.
Mateo and Rufus as the two main protagonists in the book were wonderful. I like how they complement each other and grow this bond over the course of the day and finally bloom into this relationship they both needed. I like that we are given a backstory for each of them and we see how they eventually make contact through the app, I thought it was very up to date and connected to the present.
I also enjoyed that we get a multitude of small different perspectives from people throughout the book and we see little by little how they all link back to Mateo and Rufus. I thought it was very well done and it really helped to expand the world outside of the two boys and how everything seemed destined to happen the way it did.
The concept of the book is so unique and interesting; it did have me invested from the start. It was also a very fast paced book that I found quite easy to read. Knowing what was going to eventually happen really kept the stakes high and kept me turning the pages. I found myself towards the end trying to predict how they were going to die. The foreshadowing was definitely there but it was subtle enough that you didn’t notice until the very end and then everything comes flooding back to you. It was not pandering in any way and kept true to the concept. I thought for a second one of them might get miraculously saved and I’m happy that wasn’t the case.
⭐️4.5/5 stars I loved it, it was different, it was unique and the fact that we are not given a happy ending really topped it off for me.
I am soooo glad I finally have my hands on this book! Ever since I read One Dark Throne and Three Dark Crowns earlier this year I have been highly anticipating this read! There were so many unanswered questions at the end of the last book and I honestly cannot wait to get stuck right in and see what will happen next. This series is super atmospherical and is quite dark. I think Arsinoe is definitely my favourite of the sisters, I just found her to be the most relatable of the three. I am very much invested in the characters and the premise of the series as a whole is creative and captivating. I am very excited to get stuck in to Two Dark Reigns and see what Kendare Blake has in store for us next!
*Not really any spoilers*
It was just kind of ok.
Never Fade starts about 6 months after The Darkest Minds ends. Ruby has now been trained by the Children’s League and is used regularly by them to extract/torture information out of their enemies they capture.
We are given a lot of information about the league and how they operate pretty much straight out of the gate and I found myself kind of struggling to remain interested. The first half of the book was kind of boring for me and I really had to kind of force myself to keep reading, hoping that things were going to pick up.
We are introduced to some new and I think pretty integral characters to the series, mostly children who have either escaped from the camps or avoided detection and was found by the league. Vida I liked, I thought she was a good contrast to Ruby as she is so blunt and kind of overly aggressive and direct. Jude was just kind of like another Zu. He is younger than Ruby and she kind of takes him under her wing and dotes on him as she did Zu. Again, I liked these characters but I didn’t really spend enough time with them to form a bond or really care about them.
I think I just went into this book a little bit biased, as I didn’t quite like the choices Ruby made at the end of The Darkest Minds and how she has come to be in this situation now. I didn’t like that she ended up at the Children’s League and how she manipulated Liam and kind of just abandoned Chubs. We literally don’t hear about him for the first half of the book and when he finally reappears its then explained how she checked what happened after the hospital. I didn’t really feel any kind of progression from Ruby as a character for most of this book. I thought she still seemed very naïve and passive and made a lot of choices that just kind of bugged me. She second-guesses herself constantly and I just want her to assert herself and be the strong, powerful, confident character I know she can be. I see the potential there but its just lacking a bit for me at the moment.
I will still be continuing on the series as I am curious as to how it ends and I want to see some form of conclusion for Ruby, Liam and Chubs. I want to know where Alexander Bracken will take the plot from here and I still have hope that In the Afterlight will be the stand out novel of the series for me.
⭐️3/5 stars not great, not terrible just ok
Ultimately I thought it was a lot better than Shatter Me. I felt most of the characters progressed well throughout the novel but I definitely still feel like there is room to grow.
Unravel Me continues two weeks after Shatter Me concluded. Juliette how started her training and is discovering how much power she actually has and how to control it whilst still remaining herself and not turning into a monster. She’s having trouble fitting in and socialising with everyone and has found herself to be kind of ostracised.
I still enjoy the premise of the story and how its unfolded so far, its just a little bit too angsty for me. There is only so much I can take of Juliette agonizing over every single decision she makes in regards to Adam and then her guilt and remorse over her feelings for Warner. She is kind of just getting on my nerves at the moment. Adam as well not taking the news of his powers and its limits well and how he crumbles in on himself and won’t communicate. All of that side of the book annoyed me, however, the action and the politics and schemes were entertaining and interesting.
I like that we got a full backstory about Warner and his father and that plot twist was juicy and necessary at that time in the story! It gave us a lot of context in relation to Warner’s motives and why he acts and thinks the way he does. I’m kind of starting to like him to be quite honest. He’s unpredictable and unforgiving and he’s exciting to read as I don’t know what he is going to do next. I also like that he is so endearing and loving towards Juliette, I like the dynamic they have together and how different it contrasts to her and Adam’s relationship.
All in all, it was a pretty fast paced book that I finished very quickly. I am still intrigued and I definitely want to know what happens next. I just felt like it could of been a lot more high stakes and engaging than what it was.
⭐️3.5/5 stars I’m still enjoying the series, just hasn’t blown me away yet