Cover image for The darkest minds
The darkest minds

The darkest minds ;

Darkest minds ;
The darkest minds
Personal Author:
Publisher Info:
New York, New York : Hyperion, an imprint of Disney Book Group, [2012]
Physical Description:
488 pages ; 22 cm.
The darkest minds ; [1]

Darkest minds ; bk. 1.
General Note:
Pagination may vary.
"Sixteen-year-old Ruby breaks out of a government-run 'rehabilitation camp' for teens who acquired dangerous powers after surviving a virus that wiped out most American children"-- provided by publisher.


Call Number
Material Type
YA F BRACKEN New or Popular Book YA Fiction

On Order



Soon to be a major motion picture! When Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday, something about her had changed. Something alarming enough to make her parents lock her in the garage and call the police. Something that got her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government "rehabilitation camp." She might have survived the mysterious disease that killed most of America's children, but she and the others emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.

Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.

But when the truth about Ruby's abilities-the truth she's hidden from everyone, even the camp authorities-comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. On the run, she joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp: Zu, a young girl haunted by her past; Chubs, a standoffish brainiac; and Liam, their fearless leader, who is falling hard for Ruby. But no matter how much she aches for him, Ruby can't risk getting close. Not after what happened to her parents.

While they journey to find the one safe haven left for kids like them-East River-they must evade their determined pursuers, including an organization that will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. But as they get closer to grasping the things they've dreamed of, Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living.

Author Notes

Alexandra Bracken was born in Phoenix, Arizona, on February 27th, 1987.

She graduated from The College of William & Mary in Virginia in May 2009, with a degree in History and English.

She began her first published novel, Brightly Woven, as a birthday present to a close friend in college.

She is also the author of The Darkest Minds Series. Her title from that series, In the Afterlight, made The Young New Adult Titles List. In 2017 she made The New York Times Best Seller List with her title, Passenger.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

Gr 9 Up-When Idiopathic Adolescent Acute Neurodegeneration broke out in the United States, most teens died, and the few who lived manifested psi powers, from telekinesis to mind control. The government, already on edge from political and economic issues, used scare tactics, misinformation, and bullying to insure that parents sent their children to government "rehabilitation" camps. Ruby was placed in Camp Thurmond at the age of 10. Once there, the youths with special powers were punished, not rehabilitated. At 16, she is liberated by the Children's League, but they, too, want to control her, and she breaks from them to join fellow escapees Liam, Chubs, and Zu. They are determined to find the Slip Kid, who is rumored to help kids reunite with their families. This ragtag foursome outfits themselves at an abandoned Walmart, fights off unfriendly youth "tribes," and begins to forge bonds of trust and romance. Ruby makes a thoughtful sacrifice, for the good of those she loves in the final chapters of the book (Hyperion, 2012), the first in a trilogy. Narrator Amy McFadden grows more comfortable with the voices as the title progresses, adding more nuance, particularly to major characters, and the proper note of teenage sarcasm. This dystopian tale will attract fans of Scott Westerfeld's "Uglies" (Simon Pulse) and Lauren Oliver's "Delirium" series (HarperCollins).-Maggie Knapp, Trinity Valley School, Fort Worth, TX (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publisher's Weekly Review

Ruby was nine years old when the IAAN virus struck, killing an estimated 98% of adolescents across the U.S. Many of those who survived developed psychic abilities and face a perilous future, locked in brutal work camps. There are five categories of survivors, ranging from the less threatening Greens and Blues, with photographic memories and telekinetic powers, to the more powerful and dangerous Oranges and Reds. Ruby, now 16, is an Orange who has posed as a Green, and struggles to control her ability to see into others' minds. When an antigovernment group breaks Ruby out of her camp, it's the first step on a violent, unpredictable journey during which she forms a family of sorts with a group of fellow runaways. Bracken (Brightly Woven) has created a gritty, economically devastated near-future America where children are hunted and feared, and danger lurks even in the aisles of an abandoned Wal-Mart. Ruby is a strong and sympathetic heroine, and the story's quick-paced action leads to a heartbreaking cliffhanger that will have readers eager for the next book in this planned trilogy. Ages 12-up. Agent: Merrilee Heifetz, Writers House. (Nov.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Booklist Review

In the not-so-distant future, most of America's children have died; but those who live find that they have psychic abilities that range from moving objects to getting inside people's minds. Sixteen-year-old Ruby, using her powers as an Orange, has escaped the survivor facility she has lived in for six years. She has also used her abilities to make the doctors believe she is a more docile Green. Now Ruby intends to keep her secret, even from new friends, including handsome Liam, persnickety Chubs, and the mute but sweet, young Zu. This ragged band searches the Virginia countryside in hopes of finding the Slip Kid, who seems to have outsmarted the government. Instead they find trouble on almost every turn of the page, but eventually discover what seems to be a youth utopia. Bracken is skilled at ramping up the action, but there is so much going on here, it's hard to keep it all straight. Still, the character development is good, and the book's ability to tackle larger issues is solid. In the end, Ruby must make an important decision. Then it's on to book two.--Cooper, Ilene Copyright 2010 Booklist