Monday, November 23, 2015

Review: Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Title: Illuminae
Author: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Publication Date:  October 20th, 2015
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Source: Bought it
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
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 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.
“Perhaps bravery is simply the face humanity wraps around its collective madness.”
This was an amazing book. While it started off fairly slow and I was not sure where it was going, once it really got to the plot and what was happening, everything clicked and I loved every aspect of the story. This book is highly unique in how it tells the story of Kady and Ezra. I loved how every page was filled with something different, whether it was a chat log, video transcript, email transmissions, or readouts from an AI. This was a great reading experience unlike anything else I have ever read.

That being said, the first 150 pages or so of this book were a struggle for me. I felt that we were place in this world with little background and immediately were thrust into this story about this evil corporation attacking a hidden colony. It took me a while to come to love the characters and understand them and what their goals were. But let me tell you, once that happened I did not want to put this book down. 

I have no idea where the rest of this series is going to go moving forward, but I'm excited to see what happens next with this characters and this unique storytelling. This book is also massive which may scare you when you see it, but just remember it is not your typical book with words covering every page completely. Since it is chat logs and other documents, it is a quicker read than most books. The size of the book should not at all factor into your choosing to read this.

Finally, I just want to comment on the plot and the story itself. I have no idea how you would classify this book other than saying it is an epic space adventure. There are so many aspects to this book, whether it is the survival aspect, the science fiction space aspect, or the technical computer aspect. There were so many layers to this story and how it was told. I'm not the most technical person, but I had no problem following some of the more technical aspects of this book. I think this was mostly accomplished through the dossier style of the book and the idea that the documents would need to be simplified for that.

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