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The Rising Dark: A Darkest Minds Collection

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Three exclusive stories from three amazing Darkest Minds characters: Liam, Vida and Clancy. Liam and Cole have the kind of bond only brothers share. But the League demands a lot from its members, and even the closest bonds can be broken. Vida has been on the run a long time. So when she and her sister find a place with a crew near Venice Beach, it feels like they might fina Three exclusive stories from three amazing Darkest Minds characters: Liam, Vida and Clancy. Liam and Cole have the kind of bond only brothers share. But the League demands a lot from its members, and even the closest bonds can be broken. Vida has been on the run a long time. So when she and her sister find a place with a crew near Venice Beach, it feels like they might finally have a home. But Vida's powers are growing, and if she can't control them she'll put everything at risk. Clancy Gray's mind is a place nobody would dare enter. There are secrets hidden there, about his past, about his motives ... but in every mind, there's a doorway ... This is the perfect addition to the hit series that's soon to be a major motion picture starring Amandla Stenberg and Mandy Moore. Have you read every book? The Darkest Minds, Never Fade, In the Afterlight and Through the Dark are all available now.


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Three exclusive stories from three amazing Darkest Minds characters: Liam, Vida and Clancy. Liam and Cole have the kind of bond only brothers share. But the League demands a lot from its members, and even the closest bonds can be broken. Vida has been on the run a long time. So when she and her sister find a place with a crew near Venice Beach, it feels like they might fina Three exclusive stories from three amazing Darkest Minds characters: Liam, Vida and Clancy. Liam and Cole have the kind of bond only brothers share. But the League demands a lot from its members, and even the closest bonds can be broken. Vida has been on the run a long time. So when she and her sister find a place with a crew near Venice Beach, it feels like they might finally have a home. But Vida's powers are growing, and if she can't control them she'll put everything at risk. Clancy Gray's mind is a place nobody would dare enter. There are secrets hidden there, about his past, about his motives ... but in every mind, there's a doorway ... This is the perfect addition to the hit series that's soon to be a major motion picture starring Amandla Stenberg and Mandy Moore. Have you read every book? The Darkest Minds, Never Fade, In the Afterlight and Through the Dark are all available now.

30 review for The Rising Dark: A Darkest Minds Collection

  1. 4 out of 5

    ♥ℂĦℝΪՖƬΪℕÅ

    4 I save myself ★'s Buddy read with Nancy “If we don’t feel any responsibility for each other, who’s ever going to care about us?” This has got to be the shortest novella in The Darkest Minds series but it's also one of my favorites. There is just something... well not so much as something as it has EVERYTHING to do with ♥Liam Michael Stewart♥. This freaking guy! He is the shining star in this entire series for me. I can't get enough of his character. I loved reading something in Liam's POV, hell 4 I save myself ★'s Buddy read with Nancy “If we don’t feel any responsibility for each other, who’s ever going to care about us?” This has got to be the shortest novella in The Darkest Minds series but it's also one of my favorites. There is just something... well not so much as something as it has EVERYTHING to do with ♥Liam Michael Stewart♥. This freaking guy! He is the shining star in this entire series for me. I can't get enough of his character. I loved reading something in Liam's POV, hell I'd honestly read anything that has this southern charmer in it :) Even still I could only bring myself to give it 4 stars. I needed more, there was just something missing. “It’s been so long since anything really went my way that I can’t really remember what “easy” feels like anymore—maybe like breathing without inhaling the ash of the world burning around you” Liam's Story takes place right after the end of the first book right up to where the second book starts. His mind is still disoriented and fuzzy. He isn't entirely sure about a few things that had happened, his memories aren't making sense. Liam was so dispirited and so so lonely just trying to survive all on his own. It was such a gloomy read and my heart went out to him. A few parts even made me all misty-eyed 😭. I just wanted to give him a hug. This installment broke my heart little by little. I'm not gonna go into any of the details just read it. You wont be disappointed. “There’s something I forgot to do. I know I left something I didn’t mean to. But when I look back in the rear-view mirror, no one’s there. There’s nothing at all. Nothing.” *You can read it for FREE all you have to do is sign up to be on Alexandra Bracken mailing list. Then it will be sent to you by email. It only takes a couple days. You can sign up for it HERE :) Enjoy “Some guy on the radio called us the “lost generation” the other day. I wanted to find a payphone and a few quarters and tell that fool that we aren’t lost at all. We’re exactly where they put us.” Merged review: *All in all, I'm gonna give this book as a whole 3 ★'s* Buddy read with Nancy 0.5 Liam and Cole 3.5 ★'s “The first real memory I have is of my brother.” This first short story is in Liam Stewert's POV. It takes place before The Darkest Minds. It starts out when Liam is very young, in a car with his mom and older brother Cole and how their mom meets Harry. Then the story jumps to where Cole is picking him up in the middle of nowhere to take him to join the Childen's League. During his short time with this League, it shows the kinds of training the recruits are put through and how they are treated. It was nice getting to see what caused him to leave and why he has such strong opinions of them. It gives a better understanding as to why he doesn't like the group and doesn't want people joining it. We also, get a little glimpse into the strained and rocky relationship between the two brothers. In just a few short pages, I fell for Liam even more. Liam is just an all-around standup guy :) I really enjoyed this short read but it just felt like it was missing/lacking the extra edge it needed to make it great. 0.6 Vida 4 ★'s “Enjoy your nice long trip, bitch.” Wow, I can't believe how much I actually enjoyed Vida's short story but it really was damn good! Here are a few new things I learn about my favorite gal. Her last name is Bautista, She has a 16-year-old sister named Nadia, and they are both from Mexico. This story takes place before... before Vida ends up with Cate at the Children's League. As you can imagine just like all the other kids in her situation it was horrible. With only she sister to care for her and to protect her things were not easy. Food and water were scarce and keeping a roof over there heads were even harder. Anyway, things go from bad to the absolute worst thing that could happen (PSFs). I loved getting to see and to understand first hand why Vida loves and is so fiercely protective when it comes to Cate. Cate came for her as she had promised and when she needed her the most. Cate rescued her, was there for her and kept her word. Now I get it her loyalty to Cate. I love Vida so much and I like that even back then she was pretty much the same. She still has a mouth on her, she's sarcastic, witty, offensive and tough as nails :) 4.5 Clancy 2 ★'s “A heartbeat, and it's gone.” I was looking most forward to reading Clancy's story but sadly it was just a disappointment :( I just could not get into it. I really liked the first couple page's but that was is. Most of this short story was just a repeat of useless crap I already knew from previous books only this time it was in Clancy's POV. It was nice getting inside his head and to see some of the horrors he had gone through. Although it did not change how I felt about his character. I did like the format once I realized what was going on. Because it does tend to jump around a bit. I like how everything was laid out. But... I felt like it dragged on and on, I thought my god it's never going to end. By the time I got halfway through I just said to heck with it and started skimming just to get the jiff of what was going on.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Dannii Elle

    This is the second novella in The Darkest Minds series. At just 49 pages it is the shortest installment, and it is also my favourite. This follows one of the trilogy's main character's, Liam Stewert, and takes place directly after the close of the first book. I won't go into the events that occurred there, but I will say that they were pretty harrowing. Liam is dejected and alone, still fleeing from his persecutors and searching for his family. The rest of the series has a fast tempo, is action-or This is the second novella in The Darkest Minds series. At just 49 pages it is the shortest installment, and it is also my favourite. This follows one of the trilogy's main character's, Liam Stewert, and takes place directly after the close of the first book. I won't go into the events that occurred there, but I will say that they were pretty harrowing. Liam is dejected and alone, still fleeing from his persecutors and searching for his family. The rest of the series has a fast tempo, is action-orientated and leaves little time for character study. This short story is exactly the opposite. This is a quiet and distressing read that highlights the horror of what has been inflicted upon the characters, in the first book. There is still, however, and in true Bracken style, full of unprecedented and unsettling twists to the narrative. Whilst not exactly adding any further understanding to the plot of the main trilogy, this was an interesting insight into one of the character's psyches and made my affinity with his plight that much more real.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Andie

    It's official, Alexendra Bracken is the queen of novellas! How she's able to convey so many emotions in such a short period of time is mind boggling to me! The girl has mad skills! I think most of us have been wanting to know a little more about Liam in the time between 'The Darkest Minds' and 'Never Fade', and I'm so happy Alexandra delivered! Being inside my favorite southern boy's mind really hurt my heart. But so so good. "I just couldn't resist her gorgeous shade of ruby red." The FEELS!!! It's official, Alexendra Bracken is the queen of novellas! How she's able to convey so many emotions in such a short period of time is mind boggling to me! The girl has mad skills! I think most of us have been wanting to know a little more about Liam in the time between 'The Darkest Minds' and 'Never Fade', and I'm so happy Alexandra delivered! Being inside my favorite southern boy's mind really hurt my heart. But so so good. "I just couldn't resist her gorgeous shade of ruby red." The FEELS!!! Thank you, Alexandra for revisiting TDM! I enjoyed all 49 pages of it!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Chesca (thecrownedpages)

    "I make a choice. I save myself." Liam's Story is a fulfilling read. In this short story, readers will get a glimpse of what Liam went through after the cliff-hanger ending of The Darkest Minds. With this, I have seen and understood Liam's character deeper. He is a very heart-breaking character because his strength as a person is actually his weakness too. "I make a choice. I save myself." Liam's Story is a fulfilling read. In this short story, readers will get a glimpse of what Liam went through after the cliff-hanger ending of The Darkest Minds. With this, I have seen and understood Liam's character deeper. He is a very heart-breaking character because his strength as a person is actually his weakness too.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Elena Salvatore

    Rip out my heart and stomp on it, why don't you? Oh Liam Michael Stewart.... you are the cinnamon bunniest bun of them all!!! Rip out my heart and stomp on it, why don't you? Oh Liam Michael Stewart.... you are the cinnamon bunniest bun of them all!!!

  6. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

    This novella was amazing! Alexandra Bracken writes the best novellas that cause me to feel so many emotions. Reading this made me miss the entire series and I even want to reread it now. I miss Liam so much and especially Cole. This was beautiful and heartbreaking!!

  7. 4 out of 5

    Lizzie

    UGH this was so emotional to read! Not only because of the contents of the story, but also knowing that this may be the last new Darkest Minds writing we'll ever get. Don't ever want to let go of my favorite trilogy. (P.S. First read of the year- whoop whoop!) UGH this was so emotional to read! Not only because of the contents of the story, but also knowing that this may be the last new Darkest Minds writing we'll ever get. Don't ever want to let go of my favorite trilogy. (P.S. First read of the year- whoop whoop!)

  8. 4 out of 5

    Marnie (Enchanted Bibliophile)

    Just as I was about to start Never Fade, I realised that there is still one short story to read. A Liam story.... This was a fun read, so typical of Liam. Now hopefully I'm ready to move on to Never Fade Just as I was about to start Never Fade, I realised that there is still one short story to read. A Liam story.... This was a fun read, so typical of Liam. Now hopefully I'm ready to move on to Never Fade

  9. 5 out of 5

    Cody Pavlick

    It was a cute little mini story liked how she did it. It’s sounds like Liam I can picture it. I liked it

  10. 5 out of 5

    Rachael

    Carving my heart out with a rusted spoon would hurt less than the pain Liam Stewart causes me.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Susy

    Liam 3.5 stars Vida 3.5 stars Clancy 4.5 stars Nice background stories. I especially liked Clancy's due to the way it was executed. Liam 3.5 stars Vida 3.5 stars Clancy 4.5 stars Nice background stories. I especially liked Clancy's due to the way it was executed.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Lexie

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. Well this little tidbit was mildly heartbreaking. Definitely worth reading! I love Liam and it was great getting to read something from his POV. There's some real heartbreakingly emotional stuff as we dive into Liam's thoughts at the beginning. Then there's a quick bit of adrenaline-pumping action which was pretty unexpected. Then it goes into tragic and just "Oh my God" ending. But bloody hell it cuts off at a cliffhanger, what is with that?! It's slightly confusing too. Things don't seem to ad Well this little tidbit was mildly heartbreaking. Definitely worth reading! I love Liam and it was great getting to read something from his POV. There's some real heartbreakingly emotional stuff as we dive into Liam's thoughts at the beginning. Then there's a quick bit of adrenaline-pumping action which was pretty unexpected. Then it goes into tragic and just "Oh my God" ending. But bloody hell it cuts off at a cliffhanger, what is with that?! It's slightly confusing too. Things don't seem to add up to where we find Liam again in Never Fade. And it was just slightly confusing. This story was good but some of it was also kind of different to what I expected, and it felt like some things were missing, I don't know. But nevertheless this was a very enjoyable little read. Poor Liam though, all those emotions he was feeling, and how he couldn't remember Ruby, but he kept feeling he couldn't leave, that he wanted to stay, how that little voice in his mind kept telling him to 'turn around'. So sad though. Great God Liam! SPOILERS But ohh god that part when Remy and his sister lead Liam into a trap and the skip tracers almost get him holy crap! And Remy at the end! That was so terribly tragically sad! Oh God poor Liam! Absolutely brutal though God! Alexandra Bracken is not afraid of anything. Admiration right here. Spoilers End. Anyway this was a very enjoyable little read. A 7/10 for this. Merged review: So I bought the whole main trilogy purely just because I saw they each had exclusive stories inside and I bought all three at once and was so excited. I was especially freaking out when I saw the exclusive Clancy story. So The Darkest Minds had Liam’s story, Never Fade had Vida’s story and In the Afterlight had Clancy’s story, so as I was rereading the series in time for the movie I read each of the stories straight afterward too. The only reason this is 4 stars and not 5 stars is just because I kind of wish we could have more from the stories. While what we got was still great, incredible even, I would’ve loved some more especially since this is sort of the only glimpse we get into especially Vida and Clancy’s POV and I wish we could have learned a little more about things more clearly. I will talk about this for each specific story below. Let’s talk about each of the stories! Liam’s story So I’ll be honest I actually thought Liam’s story was going to be after he left Ruby and the stuff that happened with those kids before the events of Never Fade, but that was the story published on wordpress or something, which is now sadly gone and we can’t ever read it again and I really wish it was still available because I loved that story I so wanted to read that again. Nevertheless this story was interesting as well and it was definitely great to have an insight into Liam’s time in the League and why he hated them so much. This story just shows more how Liam is so precious the poor kid didn’t even like fighting to defend himself against kids who were bullying him because he hates hurting people so much and I just want to grab Liam and hug him forever he is so so precious! And then Cole is just such a fitting contrast with how determined and admittedly hot-headed he is and he does not hesitate to fight. It’s quite beautiful how they have the same temper and style of charm and many of the same things but they differ at their cores. Of course I also knew obviously that Cole is Red since this was a re-read of the series for me and at some point you could see that being hinted at and aww the feels! All in all a very worthwhile insight into Liam’s time with the League and the nature of his relationship with Cole, so beautifully complex and messy! What I would have liked to get a little more of was more about why Liam and Cole’s relationship was so rocky at the time the story started, I mean was it just because they’d differed in opinions their whole lives with Liam hating fighting and Cole being more easy-going with fighting and if so well I can take that I just wish it was a little clearer, I might read back on it again to clarify or something. I love how it ended so abruptly though and with Liam practically naked lol. So great. Vida’s story So Vida’s story was SO interesting and I loved it. Loved the atmosphere and Vida in it and it was just really great, watching Vida’s struggle and as things were only starting and the fear of kids of that age hadn’t yet fully settled in but kids were starting to be taken. Basically nothing to fault in this story and I really enjoyed it. The only thing I would have liked to learn more about was the deal with Vida and Nadia’s parents and how come they only ended up with each other? Like what happened to their parents really? But either way, so sad how Vida’s sister just ended up calling her in, really gave an insight into Vida’s hostility and mistrust in the main books, she was always brought up that she had to be tough – lol she swears as a 12 year old even – and grow up quick and then well after her sister did that to her of course she’d be reluctant to let anyone else in. Her story was just really great. Clancy’s story Oh boy and finally Clancy! I was SO damn excited to read his story, probably a little too excited that I was a little taken aback by it but then I ended up still loving it anyway. It was certainly really interesting how it was kind of late the sequence of events was just made backwards and we got to see some big scenes with Clancy from the main series in his POV and then a few actual new scenes from his childhood and well, before, during and after the treatment he received. But damn it was all so emotional. For some reason the scene where Clancy was doing the speech sticks out to me, all his inner thoughts and the way he was made to speak positively about the rehabilitation program he was horrifically put through. You have to admit Clancy was really tortured his whole life, and as such you can see how it’s all affected him psychologically and while of course it doesn’t justify the things he’s done you can see his reasoning and why he was driven to all of that, how much damage was done to him and all the horrible things done to him can you really blame him for hating the world so much? When he was humiliated and felt so pathetic and helpless while being experimented on and he was quite literally violated by those doctors, on top of not receiving adequate emotional care and love from his parents well his father definitely and it kept saying his mother abandoned and neglected him though it seemed she at least gave him love when she was there but then she and Clancy had vastly different views of what was best for him. And obviously being harassed and bullied at school as a little kid that’ll do damage as well and just oh my gosh the poor thing was going through so much it’s no wonder he turned into a monster. As I believe I mentioned in ITA, I love those kinds of dark characters, the ones who are tortured so much and then are determined for revenge, and Clancy’s scars run deep. I was so affected by all those scenes of him being experimented on and then when he came out his parents didn’t even meet him and of course the speech, also every moment with Nico was just oh my god. Heartbreaking what Clancy and the other kids who would have been with him went through. I love Clancy so much I just wish some of the scenes in his earlier childhood could have been clearer, like the dinner with his dad seemingly just before they found out he had symptoms of IAAN, apparently his father was about to belt him I guess? And then the tiny scene after that I wanted to know more, my question is did Clancy’s father actually abuse him? And what was the nature of his relationship with his parents? I wish we could have got more information and more clearer at that. But it was still so great and stirred so many emotions, I absolutely loved the insight into Clancy’s mind, the mind of his beautifully dark character. Loved it so much! I would literally read limitlessly about Clancy. You know a scene I so wish we could have his POV on, when Ruby took him prisoner, and more times he was imprisoned, would have loved that! But what I really wish we could have had, a scene taking place after Ruby took away all his bad memories and his new life with his mother. But then that brings up something else, when Ruby takes memories doesn’t she only take away the memories and not the feelings associated with them, so wouldn’t Clancy still have all the hatred and stuff still in him to everything and towards his mother, and then just be confused as to why he feels that way? Eh either way. Like I said, I would just read and read about Clancy, I so hope for the tiniest possibility that Clancy might be in the new fourth book. Pretty please! Anyway, the more and more about this world I read the better it gets, this world is just amazing and I’ll never get tired of it, all the characters are just so deep and well-built and so so beautiful, and there are so many interesting aspects of the story. This has to be one of my favourite series and worlds of all time. This collection of stories gets an 8/10 from me. So enjoyable though as I said would have loved more, but what we got was still great.

  13. 5 out of 5

    ♡Julalicious Book Paradise♡

    Rating: between 3.75/5 and 4/5 I really enjoyed this short-story on Liam. This takes place between the first and second books. We see Liam has he struggles with some confusing memories due to the event of the first book (if you haven't read the first book, please stop reading this or it will get spoilery :)). Even if the main plot of this short-story isn't about this, you can tell that it is still present because every decision made seems to come around the fact that he feels something is missing Rating: between 3.75/5 and 4/5 I really enjoyed this short-story on Liam. This takes place between the first and second books. We see Liam has he struggles with some confusing memories due to the event of the first book (if you haven't read the first book, please stop reading this or it will get spoilery :)). Even if the main plot of this short-story isn't about this, you can tell that it is still present because every decision made seems to come around the fact that he feels something is missing and that he can't leave. Which leads him in a big of trouble in this and where we see how survival can sometimes make you do things you'd rather not. I know its vague, but I'd rather let you discover this story. Let's just say that even if it is about Liam, other people will have to deal with the consequences of their choice.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Alison Morquecho

    I absolutely love Liam! I feel so bad for him! And all That he is dealing with with his kind. That kind of stuff can’t be easy! I can’t wait to delve into neverfade! 2015. Y'all!!!! This short story was perfect. It made me happy, made me cry and made me laugh all in just 50 pages. Liam was and is still one of my fave guy characters. Something about that southern boy! So being inside of his head was so much fun. I really want to go back and reread the darkest minds series if only to hang out with I absolutely love Liam! I feel so bad for him! And all That he is dealing with with his kind. That kind of stuff can’t be easy! I can’t wait to delve into neverfade! 2015. Y'all!!!! This short story was perfect. It made me happy, made me cry and made me laugh all in just 50 pages. Liam was and is still one of my fave guy characters. Something about that southern boy! So being inside of his head was so much fun. I really want to go back and reread the darkest minds series if only to hang out with old friends again :D

  15. 5 out of 5

    Lydia Herondale

    Thanks to those shortstories I'm once more a mess! Reading about Liam and Cole again was heartbreaking. As were Visa and Clancy! Again Clancys story made me feel bad for him. I know he has done a lot ( and I mean a LOT) of bad stuff but with this past you can't really blame him! All in all it was nice to get more informations and more reading time in this world! Thanks to those shortstories I'm once more a mess! Reading about Liam and Cole again was heartbreaking. As were Visa and Clancy! Again Clancys story made me feel bad for him. I know he has done a lot ( and I mean a LOT) of bad stuff but with this past you can't really blame him! All in all it was nice to get more informations and more reading time in this world!

  16. 4 out of 5

    Althea | themoonwholistens ☾

    "Some guy on the radio called us the “lost generation” the other day. I wanted to find a payphone and a few quarters and tell that fool that we aren’t lost at all. We’re exactly where they put us." So, all my thanks to Alexandra Bracken for making my cry over and over again. Bracken is slowly becoming one of my favorite authors. I don't know how I got so much feels in this 49 paged novella but. . . idk y'all. I love Liam. I love The Darkest Minds. I'm just so amazed of this book and this world. "Some guy on the radio called us the “lost generation” the other day. I wanted to find a payphone and a few quarters and tell that fool that we aren’t lost at all. We’re exactly where they put us." So, all my thanks to Alexandra Bracken for making my cry over and over again. Bracken is slowly becoming one of my favorite authors. I don't know how I got so much feels in this 49 paged novella but. . . idk y'all. I love Liam. I love The Darkest Minds. I'm just so amazed of this book and this world. I don't know what to feel anymore.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Hazel (Stay Bookish)

    I loooove this novella. Bracken packs so much growth in Liam's character in just 40 pages! I'm glad we get a bit of Cole, and we see Liam's own perspective regarding his brother. This one's a vital read for all TDM fans! I loooove this novella. Bracken packs so much growth in Liam's character in just 40 pages! I'm glad we get a bit of Cole, and we see Liam's own perspective regarding his brother. This one's a vital read for all TDM fans!

  18. 5 out of 5

    ضحى الحداد

    I believe there no real point of the story except to see how much Liam suffered after the events of The Darkest Minds .. I really didn't expect him to act that way towards Remy, but oh well .. I guess when you are desperate your personality changes I am still excited about the second book .. hope it will be as good as the first one :D Merged review: 2.5 stars so this one was so unnecessary that I really felt bored through it all .. everything there was already explained in the original books so n I believe there no real point of the story except to see how much Liam suffered after the events of The Darkest Minds .. I really didn't expect him to act that way towards Remy, but oh well .. I guess when you are desperate your personality changes I am still excited about the second book .. hope it will be as good as the first one :D Merged review: 2.5 stars so this one was so unnecessary that I really felt bored through it all .. everything there was already explained in the original books so nothing new there

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kami

    At least this isn't a REALLY sad ending. It is sad though. :'( At least this isn't a REALLY sad ending. It is sad though. :'(

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jolly Per

    I don't think Bracken knows the pharse 'happy ending'. I don't think Bracken knows the pharse 'happy ending'.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Katie

    This review will contain spoilers for The Darkest Minds. I really enjoyed this novella for The Darkest Minds series, and it was really refreshing reading something in Liam's POV, but I'm not sure if it was the length (too short) or something else that prevented me from giving it a 5 star rating. This novella takes place between books 1 and 2 of the series (within just a week or so of when Ruby and Liam split up) and it's interesting to see Liam trying to survive when his memories of the past coup This review will contain spoilers for The Darkest Minds. I really enjoyed this novella for The Darkest Minds series, and it was really refreshing reading something in Liam's POV, but I'm not sure if it was the length (too short) or something else that prevented me from giving it a 5 star rating. This novella takes place between books 1 and 2 of the series (within just a week or so of when Ruby and Liam split up) and it's interesting to see Liam trying to survive when his memories of the past couple of months have been so distorted that he's not really sure what's real anymore. In this story, he meets a couple of other kids who survived IAAN and he has a constant struggle with himself between the need to save/protect others and the need to save/protect himself. Since Liam was one of my fave characters in the series, I was really glad to get this novella so that we could see what he did between the first two novels. The end of this novella wraps back around to events that we hear about in Never Fade, so it came full circle. Small rant about something in this novella (probably the reason I dropped a star) (view spoiler)[I still don't understand why Liam couldn't have used his power to move Drew's gun so it wasn't pointed at Remy. I get that Liam needed to put himself first, and while I understand his guilt for doing so, it was good to see him take care of himself. But I still don't understand why Liam couldn't have taken the extra minute or so to save Remy when Liam then collapsed in the woods for hours, where it would have been very easy for the skip tracers who were after him to find him. Liam has pretty good control over his abilities, and I really don't understand how he could lurk in the woods watching the scene for a few minutes, and then just walk away, knowing what was about to happen and not do ANYTHING to stop it. He didn't even need to get closer! He could have moved the gun the moment he saw it, which would have given Remy a chance to get away or fight back or something. I have no issues with Liam doing what was best for himself, but I felt that he could have handled the situation better, but maybe this also has to do with his mind a little murky after Ruby erased herself from it. (hide spoiler)] Definitely recommend this for fans of the series (although I personally recommend you read at least books 1 and 2 before this one, just in case) and the best part is it's free if you sign up for Bracken's mailing list.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Jen

    This little short story on Scribd just breaks my heart. Liam is my favourite character from The Darkest Minds and seeing what he's had to go through kills me for him. He's one of the most real fictional "people" I've ever read. This little short story on Scribd just breaks my heart. Liam is my favourite character from The Darkest Minds and seeing what he's had to go through kills me for him. He's one of the most real fictional "people" I've ever read.

  23. 5 out of 5

    sally ✿

    This was so heartbreaking and sad and it was literally only 49 pages. Poor Liam, he's such a precious soul :( "I just couldn't resist her gorgeous shade of ruby red." My heart hurts. This was so heartbreaking and sad and it was literally only 49 pages. Poor Liam, he's such a precious soul :( "I just couldn't resist her gorgeous shade of ruby red." My heart hurts.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Bex

    Vida is the kind of character who kicks butt as well as she slings a sarcastic comment around a room; I love her, of course. This novella is part of The Rising Dark collection and shows what Vida's life was like in the weeks leading up to her joining the Children's League. Largely though it explores what life is like for people on the run from the PSF's as the abilities were only just being discovered - Bracken really captures the kind of tragic desperation people reach when they are doing whate Vida is the kind of character who kicks butt as well as she slings a sarcastic comment around a room; I love her, of course. This novella is part of The Rising Dark collection and shows what Vida's life was like in the weeks leading up to her joining the Children's League. Largely though it explores what life is like for people on the run from the PSF's as the abilities were only just being discovered - Bracken really captures the kind of tragic desperation people reach when they are doing whatever it takes to survive. Vida and her sister Nadia have been on the run for a while, crashing with a dodgy guy who Nadia has to protect from her sister. Vida is only just coming into her powers so that was really interesting to read about, but the pacing and the overall concept for this novella are pretty dry. I didn't feel particularly bothered about that happened to the two sisters; in fact all I liked was the survivalist attitude they both had and seeing Vida adapt that personality trait because of what she experiences in this novella. It's not the best novella, but Vida has a cool narrative voice and I really liked finding out a bit more about her life prior to the Children's League. Merged review: I didn't like this story at all. It's part of The Rising Dark short story collection and is a very limited insight into the relationship between Liam and his brother Cole, and a small snapshot of his wider family life and later his time in the League before he meets Zu and Chubs. It is slow, very superficial and doesn't at all feel like Liam is the same character I liked so much in the wider series. I thought this book would really show the brotherly bond between Liam and Cole, and we'd get some of that southern charm we see in the series, but I genuinely felt very little towards either of them; even Liam's voice gets lost in the story and I hate to say it but it was really slow and dull (which is going some for a novella!). I've really enjoyed the short stories in Alexandra Bracken's other collection (Through the Dark) - they were much longer, really fleshed out and felt like they were part of the same world. But this one just didn't. If you want more time with Liam outside of the series then sign up to Bracken's newsletter and you'll receive a different short story about Liam which is significantly better. Go in with low expectations. Merged review: Do you love Liam, his southern drawl and kind-hearted nature? Want to know what happened to him after the end of the Darkest Minds but before Never Fade? You better sign up for Alexandra Bracken's newsletter then because that's genuinely the only way you'll read this short story (Not to be confused with Liam's story - another one - in The Rising Dark short story collection). I'll try and keep the Darkest Minds spoilers to a minimum...but it's tricky. So perhaps don't read on if you haven't finished the first book (you definitely can't read this short story until you have anyway!). I was DYING to know what happened to Liam after he is sent on his way to fend for himself, memories not quite what they once were, after the first book. This definitely answers that question! Liam has such a distinct voice and I really enjoyed reading from his perspective - I won't say that I like his narrative that much, he isn't the most compelling of characters for me but he's definitely becoming a more complex character than I think I probably recognised before reading this; his good-natured approach to living life clashes with his (necessary) survivalist mindset in this story and I found that so interesting. A good bit of background reading which would be ideal to read between The Darkest Minds and Never Fade. Merged review: Overall I was pretty disappointed with this novella collection. It contains three short stories within, focusing on one character per story: Cole, Vida and finally Clancy. The stories are designed to give you an insight into the lives of the three characters before the events of The Darkest Minds. I like the idea a lot; I love to get inside characters heads and each of these stories featured characters I felt had distinctive voices and more to say in the wider series. But unfortunately, none of the three stories really hit me where it hurts. Or at least, not for good reasons. Liam's story looks at his relationship with Cole in the build up to them being in the Children's League and eventually going their separate ways as we know from the first book. I liked seeing Liam come into his ability, and I was expecting a really interesting brotherly bond to enjoy. Sadly the pacing was slow, Liam's southern voice is completely lost and he could have genuinely been any of the characters and I wouldn't have been able to tell. Nothing about this story stood out for me and I won't bother re-reading it. 1 sorry star. Vida's story is slightly better. It again looks at family relationships, showing Vida and her sister Nadia whilst they are on the run. The best part of this was that it explained how Vida became so hard-faced and strong (and also how she joins the League). It doesn't however explain very much about Nadia aside from using her as a way to illustrate the things desperate people will do to protect their family. It's a 2/3 stars at best. Clancy has the best story of the three. I felt more like I was in his twisted head as he analysed people and situations. I do quite like his narrative voice and find complex villains quite interesting, so this was a nice way to see more of him. The story is quite tangential and hard to follow considering it is so short - the first half feels entirely separate to the second, however it does introduce how Clancy and Nico met, so that's an interesting new dynamic to see. Again, 3 stars at best. This was such a disappointing addition to my Alexandra Bracken collection - I honestly can't believe it has come from the same author! Another short story collection (Through the dark, I think?) is unbelievable in comparison to this- it was so much better! If you're going to invest in a short story collection then I really wouldn't bother with this one.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Olivia

    I NEED MORE. I don't understand how it's possible for Alexandra Bracken to write such amazing short stories/novellas. I screamed a good eight times throughout the whole 49 pages. Wow. Just wow. I NEED MORE. I don't understand how it's possible for Alexandra Bracken to write such amazing short stories/novellas. I screamed a good eight times throughout the whole 49 pages. Wow. Just wow.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Anya (~on a semi-hiatus~)

    Why wouldn't I read it?! Liam is my babe. <3 Why wouldn't I read it?! Liam is my babe. <3

  27. 5 out of 5

    Lauren Levite

    "I just couldn't resist her gorgeous shade of ruby red." KILL. ME. "I just couldn't resist her gorgeous shade of ruby red." KILL. ME.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Chey

    Poor Liam..

  29. 4 out of 5

    tai

    “Some guy on the radio called us the ‘lost generation’ the other day. I wanted to find a payphone and a few quarters and tell that fool that we aren’t lost at all. We’re exactly where they put us.” I LOVE LIAM STEWART!!!!!!!!!

  30. 4 out of 5

    saskia

    I'm very lost for words especially with that ending...but I am extremely grateful for these three individual short stories. "The first real memory I have is of my brother." Liam's story provides us with a brief look into his time with the League and his rocky relationship with his older brother Cole. I believe he must be around 16, nearly 17, and he's just Liam through and through; he has his integrity, soft heart and a face that gives everything he's thinking and feeling away. We are invited to I'm very lost for words especially with that ending...but I am extremely grateful for these three individual short stories. "The first real memory I have is of my brother." Liam's story provides us with a brief look into his time with the League and his rocky relationship with his older brother Cole. I believe he must be around 16, nearly 17, and he's just Liam through and through; he has his integrity, soft heart and a face that gives everything he's thinking and feeling away. We are invited to a *slightly* closer look at Cole who we still don't know that much about. My position of Cole is that I love him, but he is very much a closed-book and his motivations are never quite clear. In my opinion, I may be projecting onto him because of my own personal experiences, but I think he feels guilt and shame over being abused and having an abusive father and not being able to protect his family from harm. Maybe he felt threatened by Harry who could do what Cole couldn't? i.e., look after Liam and their mother. Furthermore, when he sees something in the league that offers him the chance to do something that seems good, he grabs it with both hands and fixates on it. At 12 he developed his powers so he is also struggling with that, with fear of the unknown...Cole mentions how he just wanted to be a brother to Liam, he wants Liam to join him, he wants his family...WE NEED MORE INFORMATION! VIDA BAUTISTA!! (we got a surname, and we know she's from Mexico!!) Much like all the kids during and after the outbreak of IAAN, Vida has had a hard life. She has only her 16-year-old sister to keep her company and to look after her. Alex really gave us the reason as to why Vida loves Cate so much and is incredibly protective of her. Cate came for Vida like she said she want. Cate stuck to her word and rescued her from the bad guys (PSFs). Another thing I loooooved is how young kid Vida is so similar to teenage Vida: fiery, witty and Strong As Hell. Now, Clancy's story was emotional to say the least. The structure of this short story was excellent, from the end of In the Afterlight to when he was possibly four or five years old and being tucked into bed by his mother. We see him post-treatment, during treatment and pre-treatment. Suffice it to say Clancy Gray has had a terrible life. I am in no way excusing his actions, particularly towards Ruby in The Darkest Minds because that will stay with me always. However, he is the example of how treating people like they are less-than-human, like they are below dirt, taking control of someone else's body; being defenceless and weak, abandoning and abusing your kid can turn them into something monsterous. It was painful to read at times, the scenes with Nico broke my heart, but most particularly where the scenes when he was being operated on in Thurmond, when he left and his parents weren't there to greet him and when his father was about to belt him and his mother sedated him. I will always be sympathetic and empathetic to abuse victims no matter what so that is what I do feel for Clancy. He is the person that he was created to be by the experiences he was forced to suffer through, however, I will never condone his behaviour. While I do see his motivations I just....no.

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