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.
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!