Saturday, July 5, 2014

[Book Review] Never Fade by Alexandra Bracken

Never Fade (The Darkest Minds #2) by Alexandra Bracken

Publication Date: October 15, 2013
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Genre: Young Adult Dystopian
Source: Library


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?
(Courtesy of Goodreads)

My Review

I was sadly disappointed with Never Fade. I had high expectations for the second book in the Darkest Minds trilogy, seeing as I loved the first book. However, the book did not meet my expectations.  At best, it was a slow read with minimal action that mattered and at worst, it was downright boring. I struggled to get through the book and while the ending was exciting and action-packed. It did not make for the 400 pages that could have been condensed. Nevertheless, I will be picking up the sequel, In the Afterlight, because I want to find out what happens to Ruby, Liam, Chubs, Clancy and the rest of the cast of characters.

Personally, I felt that there was little to no character development throughout the length of the second book. If I were to compare Ruby at the end of book to Ruby at the beginning of the book, she has barely changed at all. I think it’s a result of the fact that while there was a decent amount of action, none of it was pivotal to character development. Of course Ruby has changed as a result of being part of the Children’s League but most of that happens before the book actually starts.

It was the last 100 pages or so that turned this book from a two star to a three star for me. It is in these pages that the life-changing action occurs and sets the stage for the third book. I just wish the rest of the book had felt as important because honestly, I struggled to get through the 400 pages that preceded it. However, because of the nature of the ending and the cliff-hanger that we were left with, I want to know what is going to happen as a result of the action at the end of Never Fade.

Overall, Never Fade suffered a serious case of second book syndrome. I loved the first book because I felt like there was always something important happening, but that just wasn’t the case with the second book. A lot of the action felt like filler material just to get the characters to the important part that happened at the very end. I wanted to like the book, but I just couldn’t get into it. However, I still have high hopes for the conclusion of this series and will be picking up In the Afterlight when it comes out this fall.

My Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

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