Why, oh why, must I always wait to read books that end up being completely fabulous? I put off reading The Darkest Minds (I don't even know why) until now (because I had to read it for readers' choice) and I really just want to kick myself. The Darkest Minds is a new favorite of mine and by far one of the best dystopian novels I've read.Alexandra Bracken first won me over with her writing in Brightly Woven. I adored that book before I even became a fan of fantasy, which is saying something. That same style of writing is present throughout The Darkest Minds and it didn't take me long at all to remember why I adored it. Alexandra Bracken's writing really made Ruby, Liam, Chubs, Zu, and their story come alive. This isn't a book that you can read in a matter of hours but to me, I loved that about it. It's a slow building story that takes some time to get into but will have you completely hooked before too long.I can't gush enough about the characters in The Darkest Minds. Ruby may start off shy and afraid of herself but it's easy to see that she's a kick-ass girl who you couldn't help but want as a friend. She's brave and loyal and funny. She would be willing to die for her friends. She's a strong heroine who also has a majorly vulnerable side. It will make readers really come to love her. Liam is immediately easy to like. He's sweet, funny, smart, and a natural leader. He helps Ruby when he knows he shouldn't. Their relationship builds quickly but it is far from being a case of insta-love. As for Chubs and Zu, I adored them. Chubs has a prickly attitude at first but he's just looking out for himself and his friends. Zu is so cute and everything she went through just made me want to cry. I definitely want to know more of her story.The plot itself is a little slow but by the end of the book you will be dying to know what's going to happen next. There is enough action and suspense to keep everyone hooked and there's even a little mystery thrown in for good measure. There truly is a little bit of everything in this book which will make it easy for readers of all kinds to find something enjoyable about it.Overall, The Darkest Minds is a must-read for all readers. I cannot recommend it enough. I will be reading the sequel, Never Fade, as soon as I possibly can. Oh and you might want to have some tissues handy when you get to the end of this one. Just saying.