Review: In The Afterlight (The Darkest Minds #3) - Alexandra Bracken

Release Date: November 1st 2014
Published By: HarperCollins
Pages: 485
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Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Synopsis: Ruby can’t look back. Fractured by an unbearable loss, she and the kids who survived the government’s attack on Los Angeles travel north to regroup. With them is a prisoner: Clancy Gray, son of the president, and one of the few people Ruby has encountered with abilities like hers. Only Ruby has any power over him, and just one slip could lead to Clancy wreaking havoc on their minds.

They are armed only with a volatile secret: proof of a government conspiracy to cover up the real cause of IANN, the disease that has killed most of America’s children and left Ruby and others like her with powers the government will kill to keep contained. But internal strife may destroy their only chance to free the rehabilitation camps housing thousands of other Psi kids.

Meanwhile, reunited with Liam, the boy she would-and did-sacrifice everything for to keep alive, Ruby must face the painful repercussions of having tampered with his memories of her. She turns to Cole, his older brother, to provide the intense training she knows she will need to take down Gray and the government. But Cole has demons of his own, and one fatal mistake may be the spark that sets the world on fire.

Review: This review contains spoilers for the previous books.

In The Afterlight is a strong and fierce finale to this amazing trilogy. I recommend that everyone pick this series up if you haven’t already.

After the devastating events at the end of Never Fade, Ruby only has one choice - to move forward. Although this can prove difficult when you have the ghosts of the past chasing you every step you take. With the threat of Clancy over-turning their minds, Ruby and gang must move forward with their plans of freeing the other psi children from their “rehabilitation camps”. Armed with only their powers, and the papers that Ruby saved, the group must move to safety to start preparing for their upcoming battle.

Ruby must also learn to accept the consequences of what she did to Liam, and while she would like to forget it ever happened, in reality, no one can forget it did happen. Liam is naturally a little confused about what Ruby has done to him previously, and this creates an interesting personal journey for both of these characters, in which they both learn a lot about themselves, and their relationship. And to add to drama, Ruby starts working closer to Cole, even starts relying on him, and with the tangible tension between the Liam and Cole as it is, Ruby’s growing friendship with Cole causes more than a few issues. There is no question that Ruby loves Liam, but will Ruby’s need to have Cole lead the way interfere with the one thing that means the most to her - her relationship with Liam.

We also get to meet some interesting new characters in In The Afterlight, but it is more about the ones we know and love. And yes, that means that some older ones return. So much has, and continues to happen to these characters. The complexities of the relationships in In The Afterlight is something that can only be admired. The characters themselves are amazing, but when adding the different dimensions and intricacies of their relationships, it becomes mind-blowing. Ruby and Liam, Ruby and Cole, Chubs and Vida, Clancy and Nico, Clancy and his mother, Liam and Cole… the list goes on and on. I find it absolutely amazing how these relationships continue to grow even this far into the series.

In The Afterlight shows the determination and sacrifices of the characters within this storyline. The strength of the characters (both good and bad) are awe-inspiring and heartbreaking. Each character has faced heart-break in the past, and that has formed who they are today. You can connect with them, understand them and feel for them.

But so many are keeping secrets: secrets about themselves, secrets about their motives, secrets about their actions. And with everyone keeping secrets, how can you tell who the biggest enemy is? Clancy, the President, the parents of the children left to rot in the “rehabilitation camps”, or even themselves?

In The Afterlight is a powerful, nerve-racking and electrifying conclusion this is stunning and colourful series. The conclusion of this trilogy was everything you could want: filled with danger, fear, conspiracy, determination, strength, betrayal, heartbreak, loyalty, and hope. This trilogy is one not to be missed. Fantasically written, strong world building and complex but interesting characters. The story is dark and action-packed, where the “weakest” have the underlying strengths of friendship and courage.

Love or loss, strength or weakness, sacrifice or victory; always remember - The Darkest Minds Never Fade In The Afterlight!



“It rained the day they brought us to Thurmond.
And it rained the day I walked out.”

“Everyone needs reality to punch them in the face every once in a while. Keeps you on guard.”

“It was almost painful, I thought, to have a heart so swollen with gratitude and what must have been pure, untainted happiness. I wanted to live inside the feeling forever.”

“We used our minds like weapons clenched tightly in our fists, struggling to return them back to their holsters without injuring ourselves in the process.”

“They’d never fade, even in the afterlight of all of this”


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