Title: Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1)
Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Publication Date: October 20th 2015
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars
“Miracles are statistical improbabilities. And fate is an illusion humanity uses to comfort itself in the dark. There are no absolutes in life, save death.”
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. BRIEFING NOTE: 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. – Excerpt from Goodreads.
OMG! Did I mention OMG?!?!?! I can’t even handle the amount of epicness this book is. Yes, epicness is totally a word.
Illuminae is certainly going to be one of my favorite reads this year, maybe of all-time. The experience I had reading this was amazing. I should state that I do not regularly read Science Fiction. It’s never really been a huge interest of mine, though I have to admit that I don’t really give it much of a chance either. I didn’t know anything about this book, other than that everyone was reading it and gushing about it. I kind of put that at the back of my mind because I really thought it wouldn’t be for me given the genre. I was in the bookstore a couple of weeks ago and saw it sitting there in all of its hardcover glory and it was just too beautiful to turn away from. I mean this book is stunning, the jacket is super cool and the actual book is very unique. I would be happy to have this one on my bookshelf even if I hated the book (now you know the shallow truth).
Now this has been said time and time again by other reviewers – you will probably be confused for the first 75-100 pages. Like REALLY confused. I thought I was a complete idiot while reading this at first because I had no clue what was going on. It’s a learning curve and the jargon can feel defeating at first. STICK WITH IT! It will pay off, I swear. Once you are further in and this book finally clicks with you, it really clicks. Everything suddenly becomes easy to read/understand and even though it’s 600 pages, you will just start flying through it once it gets going. I read this book in two sittings and I wanted to read it in one, it was so intense. I dropped my jaw a couple of times from shock in this one.
I loved all the characters. The side characters were just as interesting as the main. I loved that we were fed information through a completely different format, it really worked for this book. We read what is going on through instant messages, reports, interviews, etc. It was fascinating to read, it felt like I was eavesdropping on a conversation or something. I really liked that the teenagers talked like teenagers! Most of the time I find that teenagers are written like adults, these people weren’t and it was refreshing as hell. Adian was perfect, loved him/it. My hero in this one was probably Zhang, loved that he was an actual human being and not an unusually good looking bland hero. It was great that he was a middle-aged, average looking male. He was someone you could imagine knowing and he was incredible in this story. He kicks complete ass! Go Zhang!
This book does have gore in it but I don’t think it’s anything too gruesome. The story itself is very intense, so if you don’t think you can handle that then this may not be the book for you. If you enjoy that kind of thing then I would HIGHLY recommend this book. I can’t wait for the next to come out! I’m getting it on release day!