Written by: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Number of pages: 599
Average Rating: 4.31/5 stars
My Rating: 4/5 stars
Published: October 20, 2015
Read in March 2016
Summary according to Goodreads
This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she'd have to do. This afternoon her plant 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.
Reading this novel was one of the most unique experiences that I have had in a long time. This story is told through instant messages, government files, transcripts, and even the AI's system. It did take me a while to get into this plot, whether it be through the format or that I never read science fiction. This novel was a page-turner, both because of the ploy and because not every page had words from top to bottom. I never felt daunted by the size of the novel, and instead feared it would not be long enough to cover all of the questions I had remaining.
Within the first few pages I was very hesitant about this novel, because of the whole "ex-boyfriend" turn in the plot. However this relationship did prove to be useful to the general plot, and I found myself connecting to these characters - even though they were sometimes foolish and full of teen angst.
I was very impressed with the characters in this novel, through all of the collective development, and how each one had a very distinct voice. Reading through files and transcripts I never forgot whose perspective it was, even when reading the Artificial Intelligence until, it had it's own voice.
As I mentioned, it does take a while to get into the plot, but it is worth it to continue on. Even now that I have finished reading, I do not fully understand what Illuminae is, and hope those questions will be answered in the sequel (which I cannot wait for!) I am slightly disappointed that the sequel will surround different characters, but know this will not be the last time we see Kady.
Overall I was very impressed with this book, and know you will be too! I had thought I was getting over the young adult genre, but this novel brought me back into it. I am also now more interested in science fiction, where I had previously thought it would be boring and not my genre. How wrong I have been! I enjoyed this plot so much, and will be picking up more from this genre, and authors, in the early future.