Thursday, November 5, 2015

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff


Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Review by Lauren

Source: copy from BEA; all opinions are my own

Official Summary: 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 one of the 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.

 
Review: By now you have probably read a ton of reviews for Illuminae, but I am hear to add that this book is fantastic and you all need to read it. I was lucky to get a physical copy at this year's BEA and I'm so excited, because otherwise it might have taken me a whole lot longer to read this one. I don't normally read books set in space, because they freak me out, but I was so curious about this one, I knew I had to try. It was well worth it!

I have not read books by either Kaufman or Kristoff but I do know that together they have created such an exciting and unique novel. As you probably know, this book is not told in a conventional format. Instead, it is told through IMs, emails, military documents, transcripts, etc. If you aren't sure about this, I suggest giving it a try. I love these type of books but I know they are not usually for everyone. However, I think it works really well for this type of novel.

source
Main characters Kady and Ezra have just broken up when their planet is invaded and they are forced to flee. Now on two separate ships, they cannot communicate face-to-face. Kady is a fantastic hacker and uses her skills, and a new mentor, to try and figure out what happened on her planet as well as what the plan is now for those that have survived. Everything is not okay and those in charge are desperate to keep certain things secret. While Kady is investigating on the science ship, Hypatia, Ezra is on the Alexander, becoming a pilot to make up for a lot of lost workers. He's not as willing to break the rules as Kady, but eventually, he realizes he has to do what he can to keep them safe.

I don't want to go into too much more detail as this book is full of little twists and surprises. It was an exciting, suspenseful read. I loved that the authors were willing to face death and destruction head on. They weren't afraid to kill off characters, even if you had grown attached to them and felt their loss. This is a war and these are things that happen. It felt realistic in that regard.

This is a book you need to read in a physical format. I can't imagine getting the same impact by reading some of these pages on a screen. I might have an ARC from BEA, but this is a title I would love to get in a finished edition. It's just so beautiful, you have to have it on your shelves!

Highly, highly recommended!

20 comments:

The Bibliophile Babe said...

I've heard such good things about this! It's not really my thing, but I may have to get to it!

Erika Sorocco said...

This actually sounds intriguing, but I rarely enjoy futuristic novels, so I think I'll pass. :/

xx

Kindlemom said...

So glad this lived up to the hype for you as well!

Diva Booknerd said...

This would have to be young adult book of the year wouldn't you think Lauren? My goodness it was amazing and I echo everything you've already said. That format was incredible too! I've read a few books where they've been a little left of the middle with their layouts, but this was more than just another read, it really was an experience. I'm thrilled you enjoyed this too Lauren and incredible review hun <3 <3 really enjoyed it.

Tracy Terry said...

Hearing lots of good things about this, thank you for sharing your thoughts on a book that whilst I will probably read it only plan to do so once the hype has died down a little.

Melliane said...

I'm quite curious about this one but my guest reviewer sent me a review aout it and she was a bit mixed so I was a bit sad too

Heidi Rainy Day Ramblings said...

So glad you love this. I thought it was fantastic. Both authors are outstanding. I hope you try something else by them.

Grace @ RebelMommyBookBlog said...

Glad you loved this too! I feel like everyone has. I need to get it!!

Lexxie Lin said...

Apart from the very last line of your review, I didn't read anything here. Just very glad to know you loved it, Lauren! I can't wait to get my hands on Illuminae and delve in myself!
Lexxie @ (un)Conventional Bookviews

Midnight Cowgirl said...

I just got this and can't wait to read it!

Christy LoveOfBooks said...

I was wondering abut that ... physical vs ebook for this. I looked at a sample and could see things fine, but didn't couldn't sample the diagrams and stuff. So I might just break down and buy the physical book.

Claudia Arroyo said...

Like everyone here, I too have read glowing reviews for this one. It's definitely on my Christmas wishlist, so I'm hoping I'll get a copy :) Wonderful review Lauren!

Jennifer Humphries said...

This sounds fantastic! So I will need to get a copy of this book STAT! Thanks for sharing your review.

Emily @ Forever Literary said...

You're right - I definitely HAVE heard many amazing things about this one, and your review makes me even more intrigued. I LOVE books that inspire reviewers to say "I don't want to go into too much detail" and stories that are told in unusual narration styles, so it sounds like I need to pick up a copy. Your review may have been the one to push me over the edge on trying this book, so thanks for the lovely recommendation!

Lisa @ Lost in Literature said...

I'm so curious about this one!! It's not something I would normally read, but all of these amazing reviews are causing me to reconsider. I'm glad to see how much you enjoyed this! :)

Jennifer Svoboda said...

Thanks for visiting my WoW! (Which was Illuminae.) Update: it came in the mail FOUR DAYS EARLY so I'm pretty sure the book gods want me to read this ASAP. I'll let you know! Great blog!

Sharons Book Nook! said...

Sounds like something I might enjoy too. Glad you loved it. Great review!

Shannon Miz said...

Totally agree with you, this was amazing, and definitely something you need in physical form. I imagine it would lose so, so much of its charm and appeal as an ebook. These authors... I just can't even imagine how much time and effort, and creativity this book took. Not just to tell such a great story, but in such an epic way! I am so glad you loved it too, great review!
Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight

Sarah Johnson said...

Great review! Happy to hear that you really enjoyed it. I love the little things about this novel, it's what makes it so appealing.

Spinning Jenny said...

I can't even begin to tell you how much I loved this book.