Review: Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Illuminae (Illuminae Files #1) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Illuminae

Genre: Young Adult Science Fiction Publisher: Knopf Format: ARC
Source: Received from the publisher through Red Ballon’s Teen Book Club in exchange for an honest review Rating:  (5/5 Stars) Synopsis: 

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.

I was so blown away by this book.

The thing that I found to be so cool about Illuminae ever since I first picked it up is how it’s written. Illuminae isn’t written out in first or second person like most books. Instead it is a large compilation of files and emails and instant messages and activity logs and diagrams, all crammed together to create an absolutely amazing and breathtaking narrative.

After reading it, I have to say that one of the most amazing parts about it is that I had no trouble at all following the story of the book. Even though it was told through many different styles and formats, the plot made total sense to me. The only part that I had any difficulty with was keeping track of minor characters- but that is something that’s difficult in many normally formatted novels.

But enough about the mechanics. Because there are so many great things about the story itself. For one, the plot. The action, the conspiracies, the mystery and above all the tension. I read this book almost entirely in one five hour sitting. I couldn’t stop. It was that fast paced and exciting and great.

Another great thing was the characters. They each had their own amazingly unique voice, and even though I only learned about them through files that mentioned them or through their Instant Messaging dialogue, I found myself caring for them very much.

Before I finish, I also have to mention the art and design of the book. I loved it. Each type of file was formatted differently so you could easily tell what it was, but the different formats were all so cohesive and blended together so well. And as you move farther into the book and arrive at the pages where more artistic liberty was taken, the book becomes very beautiful and the pictures really portray the chaos or the calm of each scene. I could frame the page spreads of this book on my wall. They’re amazing.

This book is a must read for sci-fi fans, for alternative format fans, for fans of fast paced action, and for anyone looking for something a little bit different. Illuminae is a glorious book, and the second installment of the series can’t get here fast enough!

Illuminae will be released on October 20th, 2015. I know it’s a long wait, but you need to read this one!

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