Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Release Date: October 20th 2015
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopia, Science Fiction, Romance
Rate: Loved it (5 stars)
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.
Illuminae is a book full of firsts for me. I haven't read anything written by Jay Kristoff yet and even though I have Amie Kaufman's books, the Starbound series, I haven't had the chance to read them. So it's the first book I read from these authors. Also, I haven't read anything like this: full of files and mysterious notes that end up compiling the whole story.
I have to confess that I was absolutely terrified to start reading this book as well as excited because I haven't read a similar book before and I was worry I might end up hating the design in which was written the book. However, this was not the case. The files are all hacked files such as private conversations, security footage, etc., all classified, and they tell the story without making it tiresome or annoying. It was quite the opposite. You just keep reading more and more and end up "absorbing" all the details and when you notice what has happened you're ending the book and you're screaming a: "No, no, no. This can't be happening. I was just on the first page a few minutes ago!" So, yes, the story is that good.
It is true that due to the format in which Illuminae is presented, the characters feel a bit distant to the reader, because you are not constantly "inside their heads". However, the story progresses and keeps going just like the synopsis promise us.
There's romance, too! Kay and Ezra broke up but they know they have feelings for each other that cannot banish in a day and, more important, they know that they story is not finished. I just love it when characters are in love and they just can't help it.
To sum up a bit and not give anything away for those future Illuminae readers, Amie and Jay's story is mind-blowing, original and a must-read. With a great plot and a world that even though it might have been hard to develop it through the files, they did it wonderfully.
I think that everyone deserves to read this book and give the story a chance, because even though we are not used to this type of narrative, the story is presented in an original way and the authors created a fantastic, thrilling and brilliant story.
Amie Kaufman is the New York Times bestselling co-author of These Broken Stars and This Shattered World, and Illuminae, the first in a new series starting in 2015. She writes science fiction and fantasy for teens, and her favourite procrastination techniques involve chocolate, baking, sailing, excellent books and TV, plotting and executing overseas travel, and napping.
She lives in Melbourne, Australia with her husband, their rescue dog, and her considerable library. She is represented by Tracey Adams of Adams Literary.
Jay Kristoff is the award-winning author of THE LOTUS WAR trilogy, a Japanese-inspired steampunk fantasy. Part 3, ENDSINGER, is out now. He's also co-author of the upcoming ILLUMINAE (with Amie Kaufman), a YA Sci-Fi... thing, to be released by Knopf/Random House in 2015, and NEVERNIGHT, the first part of a new fantasy trilogy kicking off in 2016.
Jay is 6’7 and has approximately 13380 days to live. He abides in Melbourne with his secret agent kung-fu assassin wife, and the world’s laziest Jack Russell.
He does not believe in happy endings.