Thursday, 1 October 2015

Review: Illuminae by Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufman

GoodReads: 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.

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 Expected publication date: 22/10/15

"Am I not merciful?"

There has only been a small handful of books that have given me that -oh my god I can't put this book down- feeling this year, and Illuminae is one of them. This is the YA sci-fi book I've been waiting for! I loved the action, humour, and general style and layout of the book.

Illuminae is told through interviews, IMs, military files, dairy entries and more - which all make for an interesting read. The format won't work for everyone, imo, but it really worked for me. It had me sucked in from beginning to end. Apart from the fact that they are no longer speaking to one another, for Kady and Ezra it's a typical school day. Things start to go cray, however, when an enemy fleet begins firing down on them. The two are forced to evacuate onto a fleet with the enemy hot on their pursuit. There troubles don't end there though, once on board there are a whole new host of problems. A deadly plague breaks out, the fleets AI (the bits from its perspective were so fascinating!) seems to have taken on a personality of its own, and those in power may be hiding something. So, Kady, not one to sit around and take orders takes matters into her own hands and tries to uncover the truth...

I loved the banter between Kady and Ezra, but I didn't really care for the romance. I honestly would have been happy if they had just been friends, because, hey, we need more platonic relationships. Also, something that made me roll my eyes was the way Kady and Ezra were described. Kady was basically described as being a strong, small, underestimated girl and Ezra as a big jock. I don't know, it just seemed so cliché. Having said that, however, I did like both characters. Although sometimes I was kind of torn with Kady - I loved her need to seek out the truth and do so by any means possible, but at the same time it felt like there was too much effort being put into creating this persona of a snarky and aloof heroine, so much so that she felt a bit like a cardboard cutout.

The writing style really worked for me, I loved the dry humour and thought that the teen voices felt authentic and natural - like the text talk and such didn't feel at all forced.  Overall, the fun layout and interesting plot had me hooked and flying through the pages!



  1. Ooh nice! Saw a LOT of buzz over this and one and am definitely intrigued based on the hype! Sounds like an interesting read too! Great review!

  2. Glad you enjoyed this one! I am both very intrigued by the format, and worried that it might not be for me. I'm glad you liked it though, and I'm looking forward to trying this one out. Great review, thanks.

  3. The writing style of this one just didn't work for me, so I wasn't able to enjoy it as much as I'd have liked, but I'm glad to see you really loved it, Renu! Great review! :)

  4. I adored this one to bits!! I could barely put it down to eat and go to the bathroom! I was not sure about the format at first but wow, it worked great for me!
    Sorry to hear the romance didn't work for you... I'm a big Kady & Ezra shipper!

  5. Gorgeous review Renu. <3 So thrilled that you liked this book a lot :D YAY! I loved it so much. But aw, I'm sorry you didn't like the romance :\ I loved it, lol. But a bit sad we didn't get to see them together much. Sigh. But glad you liked the book so much even so :) Thank you for sharing. <3

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  7. “Am I not merciful?”

    YES RENU. YES. I completely agree with everything you’ve said here. This was such an amazing book. Kady was an amazing and kickass lead, Ezra was a hilarious love interest, and the twists and turns at the end were just pheonominal. So glad you felt the same way! ♥ Thanks for sharing and, as always, fabulous review! xD

  8. Aww I'm sorry you didn't love the romance, but yes this book was very unputdownable! I stayed up until the wee hours to finish. I can't wait for book 2!

    Great review, friend!

  9. I have this book sitting on my shelf and can't wait to read it! I've heard nothing but good things about this book :D I'm a little wary about the different formatting, but I'm definitely interested in trying something new! Thanks for the review!


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