Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Book Review: Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Author: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Series: Illuminae Files (Book 1)
Publication: Knopf Books for Young Readers; 1St Edition edition (2015)

Description: 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 a speck at the edge of the universe. Now with enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to evacuate with a hostile warship in hot pursuit.
But their problems are just getting started. A plague has broken out and is mutating with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a web of data to find the truth, it’s clear the only person who can help her is the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.
Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, maps, files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

My Thoughts: ILLUMINAE was an amazing book. It is told through a variety of hacked documents and details what happens after a planet is invaded. Kady Grant had just broken up with her boyfriend Ezra Mason when the attack happened. They watched their planet get bombed, people die all around them, and barely made it to the shuttles taking them up to rescue ships.

Kady and Ezra get loaded onto two different ships. Kady finds herself on the research ship Hypatia while Ezra ends up on the United Terran Authority battlecruiser Alexander. The third ship that took in refugees was the freighter Copernicus. The Alexander was damaged in the fight with the BeiTech dreadnought Lincoln which is actively pursuing the three ships with refugees.

Because of the damage to the Alexander which included damage to the Artificial Intelligence called AIDAN which controlled the ship, they needed to travel for months to get to a place of potential safety. Ezra gets conscripted into the UTA as a pilot for one of the Cyclones which protect the Alexander. Kady is a gifted computer hacker but not a team player. She isn't conscripted but she works secretly with other hackers in the fleet to try to find out what is going on.

They soon learn that BeiTech was using biological warfare on the planet and that many of the evacuees were infected. Because of the level of infection, AIDAN decides to destroy the Copernicus which had the most refugees. The Alexander tries to cover up the destruction by blaming it on the Lincoln.

Despite its unconventional style, this book was surprisingly intense emotionally as we see the kids face loss after loss. Ezra's father didn't make it off the planet; Kady's mother had been transferred to the Copernicus before it was destroyed. Both lose friend after friend too. They do manage to reconcile and try to cling to each other as the only one each of them has left.

Fans of science fiction will enjoy this excellent story with a couple of interesting twists at the end.

Favorite Quote:
Mason, E, LT 2nd: i meant the 1st time i kissed u in my head


Mason, E, LT 2nd: yeah. i had to work up the guts to actually DO IT. so i practiced in my head. every time i walked you home.

Mason, E, LT 2nd: you were pretty good, in case you were wondering
I bought this one. You can buy your copy here.

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