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Last Updated on June 19, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 240

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One of the themes in The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken is love. In the first chapter of the novel, parental love is displayed when Ruby’s parents do their best to protect her from contracting Idiopathic Adolescent Acute Neurodegeneration (IAAN). For instance, they restrict her from accessing the television among other things so that she can live a normal life without fear.

Conversely, when Ruby is sixteen, she runs away from Thurmond and meets Liam who falls for her. Similarly, Ruby has feelings for Liam too. Ruby’s love for Liam is evident because she protects Liam by not getting close to him because of her abilities.

Another theme in the book is government control. After the government realizes that children are developing special abilities that might be a threat to the human race, it attempts to take control of the situation by forcefully taking the children from their homes to Thurmond.

Furthermore, survival is a theme that is highlighted in the novel. For instance, when the children are first brought to Thurmond, a teenage becomes rebellious and even causes the death of a PSF soldier. The young boy retaliates so that he can free the rest of the children from the camp. The objective, in this case, is survival as the children are unsure of their fate at Thurmond. Furthermore, Ruby eventually runs away from the camp when she is 16 because she does not believe she is safe.