I actually enjoyed a sci-fi book for once. HURRAYYYY this is one rare even people !! And growing attached to a mass murdering psychotic piece of artificial intelligence it’s totally normal right?
Rating : 4.25
Holy smoking raviolli!
This ended up surprising me on so many levels!
My blurb: Two teens break up an it’s the literal end of the world. Explosions, fires, biochemical weapons that then turn the population into sick mindless zombies, the whole deal. Also there’s an evil robot because of course there is.
This book is basically Star Wars but you throw Wall-E and The Walking Dead in the mix in the most spectacular galactic mess!
Little fun fact: I started reading the book before bed, ya know for some “light relaxing reading”…yeah that certainly did NOT end up happening…I read about 200 pages when my competitive streak decided to kick in and see if I could FINISH the book in one night…YES I MAKE SMART DECISIONS LIKE THAT SOMETIMES!
….I actually DID so I have bragging rights now. Where is my cookie my cake my celebratory party and golden award huh? Just crown me already I mean COME ON!
Yeah, I am amazed I’m not actually smashing my face into the keyboard in the most sleep deprived way possible at this very moment too pal.
Look I “don’t do” sci-fi. At all. Ever. (Ok maybe rarely, BUT I just want to say that it never ends well…I am not a complete monster). My brain just sees the computer stuff and suddenly decides to take 3 trips to Hawaii and learns to tap dance because it just cannot deal.
I was also reading (!!!) at 3 AM (!!!) and at that point I am surprised I even managed to see the words correctly and not a jumbled mess of letters. I was gripped ok my eyes didn’t DARE close!
I…didn’t really understand..too much…and yet?? I still liked it a lot??
The first few pages are heavy handed with exposition and I did not understand a thing to be honest (not that THAT changed until the end somehow. nope still confused). If you think that world building would be terribly hard to do right in the format of this book than CONGRATS you are right!
The world is…confusing at best. And by confusing I mean “anything outside the big spaceship doesn’t exist”. Even some things IN the big spaceship didn’t make much sense so.
And the plot wasn’t much better. Anything that WASN’T connected to our characters directly wasn’t explained or developed. WHY was their planet destroyed? WHY is BeiTech after them? WHY WHY WHY??
“Chum, the Kerezena mine operated detected for twenty years. Whole families lived there. You know how far from the Core we are right?
“Maybe further than you might think…”
…WHAT?! (Is this explained untill the end of the book? or is it something important from the next books? Am I missing something??)
Also the romance instead of being good and tragic, ended up being cheesy and just plain boring. The reason for the initial break up was pretty darn stupid.
I was wayyy more invested in the characters and their struggle than the actual plot. They are developed and go trough complete interesting arcs on their own, being interesting enough that it keeps you reading and rooting for them!
- Ezra was my saving ray of sunshine the whole book. He is what kept me invested for the whole ride, otherwise I would’ve put it down after the first 100 pages. He is hilarious, snarky and a pure cinnamon roll. He has a personality and the way he reacts is justified. Also there’s this quote:
plz excuse me a moment while i do a small victory dance around the room
YEEEK ISN’T HE THE MOST ADORABLE?!
- Kady was…just ok. She’s your typical YA protagonist. She’s a hacker anddd that’s…kinda it. No reason for her actions, no “driving force”. She broke up with her boyfriend so points for having initiative. Look I’m not saying she didn’t have a personality
but she didn’t have a personality. In the end of course SHE WAS QUEEN AND I LOVED HER but until that point I didn’t really like her that much. Which is pretty bad considering I only liked her for about 120 pages out of 599. (I am glad she has a diary that has a skull on it. It’s hilarious.)
- Aidan was a murdering psychotic sweetheart. So cute, so murderous. I liked the way his thoughts were formatted, it was really poetic (EVEN THOUGH reading those flowey sentences at 3 AM (!!!) when I couldn’t even read STRAIGHT LINES was another version of THE 9TH CIRCLE OF HELL). Everybody loves his and with good reason: HE’S AN INTERESTING and REFRESHING CHARACTER! WOOOW! Those rare giraffes exist I know.
What they don’t tell you about this book: IT CREEPY OK! IT’S SO CREEPY!! I may be a huge softie BUT BOY I WAS SCARED OF THE SPACE ZOMBIES MATE! It has some geniuenly disturbing scenes THAT I LOVED and had to read 2 times to fully let IT SINK IN! It was incredibly clever! And thriller-ish. Which I didn’t expect at all!
All that was good and dandy. HOWEVER I think the book dragged a little bit at the end. It didn’t have to be 599 pages (at least my copy). Everything was good to end already with a pretty bow on top…and yet there were 100 pages left. And they didn’t do anything except drag the whole plot.
Or that just may be because at 5 AM I was just ready for it to end…WHO KNOWS.
And THE END. The whole book would’ve been a whole full 5 stars if it HAD ENDED WHERE IT DID. No “
weak plot twist”. I am not a fan of mass murder of fictional characters ok (I support my smol fragile beans and bake them cookies) but it would’ve packed a bigger punch if Kady died. Or, at least, barley lived.
The whole end just prepares you for EVERY .SINGLE. CHARACTER. TO. DIE. And it actually looks like it might do good on that promise. But than at the very end NOBODY DIES! NO ONE! Ok I get not “everyone” but at least “SOME”. Give me someee death here terrible book. GIVE IT TO ME!!!
I would’ve been fine if Erza died. The way he came back was terribly cliche and generic and even though he is my favourite character it just annoyed me. And you know it’s bad when you’re sad to see your favorite character coming back from the dead (cough…supernatural fandom…).
END OF SPOILERS
Overall: YOU SHOULD ALL READ THIS BOOK IT’S SOSOSOSOOS GOOD! I cannot wait to pick the next one up and every single book by Jay Kristoff ever. Just sayn’. Nevernight it’s time Ioana finally stops procrastinating and actually starts reading you!
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.
BRIEFING NOTE: Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.