Review 258. Kaufman & Kristoff – Illuminae.

23395680Title: Illuminae.
Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff.
Pages:  599.
Published: October 20th 2015 by Knopf Books for Young Readers
Sort: Part one of The Illuminae files.
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.

It took me a long time to read this book. I love the unique formatting and how this book is like anything I've ever read before, but at the same time it made this the type of story I could not read in one sitting. It was a book that made me want to read a couple of pages, before moving on to something else. That does not mean it was bad, not at all. I was hooked to the story, especially towards the ending where everything seems to be doomed, but it took me on a longer journey than other books.

This interesting way of telling a story was brilliant. Big credits to the overall design and how it eventually came together as a story. In the beginning I felt like I was floating around; all kinds of stories, different pieces of information and nothing seemed to be connected, until it all came together. I really started to enjoy it the moment it started to make more sense.

I LOVED the virus (surprise) and the tension it added. The people with the Phobos virus were terrifying and I never thought there would be so many tense and scary situations, especially when Kady tries to save the day. This girl was so brave and intelligent, I really admired her strength. The downside was my disconnection from her. Despite liking her, I never felt I truly got to know her because of this formatting. I also wasn't a fan of her chat conversations with Ezra. They both had a funny voice, but there is just something about chats that doesn't work for me. This also gave me a certain don't-care attitude towards their romance, I didn't ship them that much.

The ending was a bit disappointing. I first thought the authors were brave by the twist they pulled, but then they decided to go with the oh-so-cliched untwist and mweh, I wish they had stayed true to the story; bleak, dark and many deaths. I am curious about the sequel and I can't wait to see how the story continues, but I don't think I'm as much in love with this book as everyone else. It was good, but it did not reach the FANGIRL status for me.


  1. Nice! I've heard amazing things about this one so I decided I wanted to give it a go! Sorry to hear you didn't enjoy as much as you had hope. There was a lot of SQUEE over this from what I heard. Hoping I'll find enjoyment in it too! Again, great review!

  2. I didn't LOVE this one, either. It was an okay sci-fi novel for me and I wished I could connect more to the characters.
    I also didn't know it would be as gruesome, I don't usually go for these kinds of tales (like I would NEVER watch The Walking Dead or whatever), so it came as a bit of a nasty surprise. I'm not sure I'll be reading the sequel.
    But I am glad I gave it a try because otherwise I would keep wondering about it - there was just so much hype around it!

  3. Actually, yeah, I think it could have been interesting if they'd actually died. Although I probably would have died. But omg I keep seeing everyone with Gemina ARCs from BEA and I am sooooo jealous. Loved this book <3

  4. Like you, I was confused at first with all the pieces and information but when it clicked? Boy did it click! I know what you mean about the format not lending to really connecting with the characters as much, but the format, suspense and darkness made up for it for me :) I'm glad you ended up enjoying it for the most part though Mel!! x

  5. I had a totally different reading experience because I couldn't put this one down! I also loved the ending!! I'm sorry you didn't love Illuminae, but I'm glad you still enjoyed it! :)

    Tracy @ Cornerfolds

  6. Oh, sad face :( I'm so sorry that you didn't love this one sweetie. But so glad you liked it a lot even so :D Yay for liking the writing style. <3 But aw. I would have been SO ANGRY if that very ending had not happened, haha :) Thank you for sharing your lovely thoughts. <3

  7. I have seen this EVERYWHERE and still can't believe I haven't read it yet. I must check it out because the format looks so unique! Thanks for the great review!

  8. Awesome review Mel! I absolutely loved The unique formatting and Kady and Ezra as a character, but I completely agree their romance was kind of cliche. Can't wait for the next book!

  9. Awesome review Mel! I absolutely loved The unique formatting and Kady and Ezra as a character, but I completely agree their romance was kind of cliche. Can't wait for the next book!


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