This review has been x posted at The Book Twins
From the very first instant I heard about this book I knew I wanted to read it. The world building that Alexandra Bracken has created in this novel is simply divine. It's a class act of just how brutal a post-apocalyptic world would be.
Tragic. Horrifying. Dark and real.
The moment Ruby woke up on her tenth birthday she knew something was different. She didn't understand how different until she was then shipped off to a government 'rehabilitation' camp. After being one of the few kids who survived the epidemic illness that killed off the majority of her classmates, Ruby knew there was a reason she was left alone.
Just when she begins to think she has made a friend in such a lonely world she and these new kids have found themselves in; Ruby does the impossible: she erases her best friend's memories without even realizing it.
Thurmond is split up into different colours depending on what sort of risk they think you are or might be in the future.
The treatment of these kids are so horrible. It becomes to the stage where you are not afraid of the adults --- they are afraid of YOU.
After managing to escape from Thurmond, Ruby finds herself on the run until she stumbles upon a group of other runaways just like herself, others who have each escaped from camps just like she did with Thurmond. They are on search for East River, which is rumored to be a safe place for kids like themselves.
Not only is this an action-packed story full of surprises at every end, it's also very character-building. You begin to understand what lies beneath the heart of Ruby. Why she doesn't want anyone close to her and how she will protect those she does care about to the very end.
She doesn't start out as a strong character.... but it's something that gradually grows into something so much bigger than an outright kickass heroine.
Ruby is someone I think we can relate to. A scared girl who was taken from her family at a young age and is trying to find her way in the world. A place for someone like her can belong.
It's also with the help of Liam, the leader of the runaways can she truly see what is worth living for. Slowly, the more she is around him... she begins to open up her heart in a magnificent way.
I definitely look forward to the second book in this series... especially with we are indeed left with a cliffhanger that makes you yearn for more.
I enjoyed this book so much, and I thank goodness I found this story in my life.