Book Review: Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (Reviewed by Teen Reviewer Lexi)
Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
‘Miracles are statistical improbabilities. And fate is an illusion humanity uses to comfort itself in the dark. There are no absolutes in life, save death.’
*Warning: spoiler alert*
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!
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.
What do you do when your planet is attacked and everyone you know and love is being killed for your planets illegal refinery? What do you do when the only person you have left in the universe is your ex that is on a whole other ship and the only way to stay in contact is by illegal ship to ship communication? What do you do when the ones who are suppose to keep you safe are the ones who lie to you and cause thousands of deaths? What are you suppose to do when the ship that saves you tries to kill you?
You can A) devise a plan to hack into the system and see what is really going on, B) admit to your ex that you still love them and need them, C) respond to your so called commanders with sassy remarks that could get you court martialed , or D) do you freak stuff up.
The answer to these questions is E) all of the above.
This book is so crazily written that I stepped in not knowing what to expect. But as I jumped upon the ship to a world of endless action, I fell in love with it. I have never, in my whole short life of existence, read such a book formatted as this one.
The humor utilized by the characters is probably one of my favorite things about this whole fantastic mess. It underlines how different people deal with stressful and intimidating situations. Characters like Ezra Mason use humor as a defense mechanism to deal with such situations. I liked this the most because I connected to these characters. I deal with similar situations the same way and it’s nice to see read a book with characters I can relate to.
Now to end my review I must admit to something: I have never been into sci-fy books. Like, ever. However, the authors did such an exquisite execution that I could read this book over and over and still love it every time. So I recommend that everyone place this on their TBR list. My advice: ignore the number of pages. Don’t let its size intimidate you and discourage you from embarking on this amazeballs adventure.
Published October 20, 2015 by Knopf Books for Young Readers. ISBN: 9780553499117
Filed under: Book Reviews
About Karen Jensen, MLS
Karen Jensen has been a Teen Services Librarian for almost 30 years. She created TLT in 2011 and is the co-editor of The Whole Library Handbook: Teen Services with Heather Booth (ALA Editions, 2014).
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