July 07, 2016

Review: Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Hardcover, 599 pages
Published October 20th 2015
by Knopf Books for Young Readers

This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet's AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it's clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she'd never speak to again.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

Space Opera anyone?!  What about a Romantic Space Opera?!

If someone had told me last year that I would read (and love) a space opera book, I likely would have laughed and even asked what the heck a space opera genre was. Little did I know that Illuminae was waiting for me with its spellbinding storyline and incredible concept.

I’ve never read a book like Illuminae. It takes the reader on a new and incredible journey as it is more than just mere words on a page, it’s an experience. Within the pages of this adventure, you experience disbelief, shock, fear, awe, heartbreak and love. The journey begins before you even open the book as the covers are like nothing I’ve seen before. Before reading the book itself, I’d encourage readers to remove the dustjacket and read the front and back covers. Beautiful, right?!

The journey of Kady and Ezra are told through hacked emails, medical reports, instant messages, schematics and more. While there is romance between Kades & Ez, it is not at the immediate forefront of the story. I actually adored the cutesy, playfulness between these two. You could tell they love each other and could see a progression within their relationship throughout the story; it’s a young love that matured with each page. I’ll be the first to admit that I had my doubts as to whether I’d be able to follow along with the storyline and if I’d actually get a STORY from this method. To my surprise, not only was I able to follow along easily, the story continued to intrigue me with each page. 

Illuminae is a spectacular ride that should not be missed. Book 2, Gemina, is scheduled to be released October 18, 2016. I highly recommend pre-ordering now so that you don’t waste a single day in continuing the adventure of Kady and Ezra. 

This book is written by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman. I’ve not read their previous works (separate works by each) but they have garnered themselves a new and loyal fan. I plan to check out their other books soon.

Here are a few of my favorite quotes from Illuminae:

“Am I not merciful?”

“”Perhaps bravery is simply the face humanity wraps around its collective madness.”

“You have me. Until every last star in the galaxy dies. You have me.”

“He presses the triggers. And like roses in his hands, death blooms.”

“She runs. Not away, but toward.”

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5 Stars!

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