I have fallen in love with yet another novel. Illuminae has been on my shelf since Christmas, because I really wanted to read it and asked for it for Christmas, and then I put it off for months because I tend to do that sometimes. Now I’m glad I waited, because I can start Gemina right away (I got an ARC from BookCon when I met Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, who were awesome by the way). This book was a whirlwind of emotions and action, and I need to know what happens next.
I feel so connected to the character Kady, as she’s a short girl who is always underestimated, but she’s really badass and determined. She is one of my favorite fictional females for sure. Even though they begin the novel with their breakup, I was rooting for Kady and Ezra constantly. As I got deeper into this book, though, it became much, much more than just a book with a teenage romance story.
Illuminae combines a zombie-like plague outbreak, artificial intelligence (AI), an interstellar war, and tons of mystery, all being told through found messages, archives, and transcribed film footage. If that isn’t enough to convince you to read this, I don’t know what else to tell you. Kaufman and Kristoff did an amazing job putting all of these things together, thinking about the order in which to include them and what things to leave mysteries until later on in the plot. There were so many twists in this book that I never expected, and it definitely made me very emotional at many different parts. I became so invested in these characters and this story, and I’m so glad it’s a series so I can continue it.
It’s a thick book, but I flew through it. It’s a fast read because 1) I wanted to find out what happened next constantly and 2) since it’s told through different types of found information, it is very quick to read. It does have a House of Leaves vibe in the way it’s told (though I still need to finish that book, I love this style of storytelling). I definitely recommend it, especially if you love scifi books.