Author: Alexandra Bracken
Length: 488 pages
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 gets her sent to Thurmond, a brutal government “rehabilitation camp.” She might have survived the mysterious disease that’s killed most of America’s children, but she and the others have emerged with something far worse: frightening abilities they cannot control.
Now sixteen, Ruby is one of the dangerous ones.
When the truth comes out, Ruby barely escapes Thurmond with her life. Now she’s on the run, desperate to find the one safe haven left for kids like her—East River. She joins a group of kids who escaped their own camp. Liam, their brave leader, 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.
When they arrive at East River, nothing is as it seems, least of all its mysterious leader. But there are other forces at work, people who will stop at nothing to use Ruby in their fight against the government. Ruby will be faced with a terrible choice, one that may mean giving up her only chance at a life worth living.
Protagonist: Ruby is a character that grows on you after a time. While I liked her from the start my love for her only grew as she did. She starts off as a character that is afraid to stand up for herself but as the book progresses she starts to take control of her life and how she can help those around her. While this isn't a development that is blatantly seen, she also becomes more selfless and puts the good of others over even her own safety. In terms of protagonists she is phenomenal, she may not be a kick ass and take names heroine that I prefer, I can tell she's well on her way to getting there.
Romance: The romance that happens in this book is low, but ever present for most of the book. The romantic tension between Liam and Ruby is so thick you could cut it with a knife, but barely anything actually happens in the book because Ruby is afraid of hurting him in some way. The tension between them isn't immediate and actually forms through their friendship and while it begins a bit fast for my taste, but since it doesn't move on very quickly at all I was really happy with it. Later on in the book it looks as if a love triangle would form but luckily it turns out that the possible other love interest turns out to be a complete jerk and one of the creepiest guys in YA literature.
World Building: The world that is author has created is beautiful. It's a mix between many popular YA genres and contains elements of the post-apocalyptic, dystopian, and a bit sci-fi. The abilites she describes are just amazing and how she assigns each ability group a color that seems to fit the corresponding powers is amazing. The only thing I wish I'd learned is what those belonging to the least hostile color, purple, can do. We have a basic idea of what the other colors can do but purple is never really explained, so hopefully in the next books we'll find out.
Predictability: The amount of foreshadowing this book had was crazy, it was hard to not know what would happen. The surprise came from when certain things happened and in what circumstances they happened. That was a huge shocker and made for moments that left me speechless. While it was hard to be surprised by the events that happened, or really be surprised that they were going to happen, there were a few things, big things, that seemed to come completely out of the blue and really threw me off about how this novel would turn out and where it was going.
Ending: The ending is absolutely heartbreaking and I found myself yelling at the main character for the choices she made. Granted in hindsight I can see why she made them and that given her circumstances I may have even made the same choices but it still doesn't make them any less depressing to the reader. I absolutely cannot wait to continue this series and see what else this world has to show me.
This book is amazing I can completely see why people love this world and can see why it's so hyped up. I would highly reccomend this for any fans of the Shatter Me series by Tahereh Mafi as they deal with similar issues and both remind me a bit of X-Men.