Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Book Review: Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Title: Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1)
Authors: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Release Date: October 20, 2015
Format Read: Hardcover

Description from 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 one another-- 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 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.

Ever since ARCs came out, I've been dying to read ILLUMINAE. I tried my best to trade for an ARC, but that didn't happen, so I pre-ordered the book and waited, painstakingly, for release day. Except that I then remembered why I don't pre-order. It's the whole thing where books don't actually arrive on release date. 


I did eventually receive my copy, and I devoured it in hours.

ILLUMINAE is absolutely breathtaking. The way it's written, with the documents and IMs and interviews... it's definitely one of the most exceptional reading experiences I've ever had. The style kept you from getting too far inside the characters' heads, but also let you in just enough to grow attached to them all-- even the side characters. In fact, I hadn't even realized how attached I was until it came to a set of scenes and I found myself in tears.

If you follow my blog at all, you know that I'm not a big sci-fi fan, but ILLUMINAE is straight up based in the solar system, and it was easily one of my top reads of 2015. It's the most perfect combination of action, mystery, romance, and sci-fi, and I cannot recommend it enough. If you like sci-fi at all, you need to read this. If you don't like sci-fi at all, you still need to read it. Because this is one that will go down in my record books, and I need everyone to read it and support it. 

Though, I already mentioned it, I want to take a second to go back and touch on the subject of the writing style. I think one of the things that made this book so enjoyable was the way it was written. Not every page was full of writing. Some pages just had a few words. Some pages were full of code. Some pages were lists of casualties. But no matter what the page held, they were all unique and gave the story an amazing perspective. 

I loved ILLUMINAE so much, and I hope that you'll go out and pick up a copy of it. If you do, please tell me what you think. I know that not everyone likes the same books, but I also know that this one is worth the attempt, and though it may be 500-600 pages long, it's truly a pretty quick read, between page format and story building. 

Go out. Get it. Read it. Flail. And then report back to me.



  1. “Am I not merciful?”

    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

    ~Zoe @ Stories on Stage

    1. YES AGREED! I'm glad you enjoyed it as much as I did! And thanks! You're so sweet :)