REVIEW - Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

sci fi, review, five stars, illuminae

Title: Illuminae

Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

Publisher: Rock the Boat

Release Date: 22nd October 2015

Source: Own Copy
The year is 2575 and two mega-corporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice covered speck. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them Ezra and Kady have to make their escape on the evacuating fleet. But their troubles are just beginning. A deadly plague has broken out on one of the space ships and it is mutating with terrifying results. Their ships protection is seriously flawed. No one will say what is going on. 

As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth its clear only one person can help her. Ezra. And the only problem with that is they split up before all this trouble started and she isn’t supposed to be talking to him.

A fantastically original, heart-stopping adventure where everything is definitely more dangerous than it seems.

How the fuck do I review the fucking delight that is Illuminae??

Well I could start by telling you that this book is like nothing I have read, ever.

I could then tell you that it is set in the future, a future which sees a colony of humans mining on a remote planet called Kerenza.

I could tell you that the planet is an illegal mining colony and that it is attacked by a huge mega corporation aka the fucking bad guys.

I could tell you that this is when shit hitteth the fan.

OK enough of talking in sentences, long story short after the attack on Kerenza the survivors of the attack flee the planet taking refuge on three of their spaceships, the Alexander (the big daddy warship), the Hypatia (sleek and shiny science ship) and the Copernicus (big, bulky freighter ship). Illuminae tells the story of two of those survivors Kady Grant and her ex boyfriend Ezra Mason.

They are split up, with Kady ending up with her mother on the Hypatia and Ezra finding his new home on the Alexander.  Their new homes are by no means safe, following the battle on and above Kerenza, they are being pursued by the Lincoln, one of the ships that helped end the colony.

They are fleeing for their lives, trying to outpace the Lincoln and trying to get to a portal to jump to safer space but the course of escape is not going to be easy.  The crew and passengers of the Copernicus start to fall ill, the illness is spreading quickly.

Nobody is saying anything about anything but Kady has an ace up her sleeve, she is a computer whiz and she easily finds out what is going on.  What she finds out, well you can read for yourself but she does need Ezra's help to try and make sense of it all.  The vastness of space is not going to keep them apart.

Illuminae is truly immense, I am not going to tell you anymore about the story because quite frankly I don't want to spoil it for you, what I do what to tell you about is the layout of the book.

I have the paperback copy and it feels gorgeous first of all, inside it is truly a thing of beauty.  This is not a normal book, the story is told through memos, journals, emails, surveillance footage and wonderful pages of artful text.  

This makes for an incredible, all consuming read.  It is really effective, there is a section in which the fighter pilots are out in their planes and the text really makes you feel a sense of urgency, it really is genius.

So much detail has gone in to this book from the schematics of the ships to the blacking out of all those fucking swear words and the scoring out of the unnecessary details in the rookies reports.

This has been one of the most hyped novels I have seen in a long time, hype can mean an end result that is awful, it can be mean an anti climax but Illuminae deserves the hype, it is above and beyond the hype.  It truly does, plus I feel it gives a little nod to some of my favourite sci-fi fandoms most notably Battlestar Galactica.

If you love sci-fi, you MUST read this, if you hate sci-fi, still read this - it has romance, young love, humour, horror, thrills and suspense.  Oh and it made me cry too, be warned.

The worst thing about this book, well that has to be the wait for the next book in the series.

God I loved this book! I think this will be my book of the year by miles.


Random Redheaded Ramblings


  1. You're the first reviewer who gave me an idea where the story is about instead of how it is written. So thanks for that! Not sure if I will enjoy this book as I heard the writing style is very different and I usually don't like that, although it does sound like it works here and most reviews I read so far say it's well done. It's definitely an original way to tell a story. We'll see maybe I do pick it up eventually, I do love sci-fi but so far I am not in a hurry to get it. Great review!

    1. It is very different but very easy to follow the story! I love it so much but it also looks like there is going to be two more books, I'd wait till you have all three to read back to back!

  2. Wow, that's quite the review. I love the x'd out swear words LOL. This sounds so fun, I think I'm going to read it this week. It'll be a perfect review for SciFi Month next month too. :) I read the beginning at amazon and was already sucked in, so I'm pretty sure i'll like it.

    1. It would be great for scifi month unfortunately I couldn't wait to read it!!

  3. Yes to everything in this review! You totally captured everything about this book that I loved.

  4. I am so excited for this one. It sounds so original. I will definitely have to get the hard copy version of this. Great review!!

    1. I think a physical copy is the way to go, have seen a couple of comments on other blogs about it being harder to read on the kindle.

  5. It seems like the style and formatting of this novel is very different than what you usually get, and that it seems to have worked well for you! I am glad of that, and I am so SO happy to know you loved it. I can't wait to go out and grab this one for myself so I can love it too. That cover as well DD:

  6. Wow, high praise! Fantastic review! I am planning to read this in print. I have heard the ebook version isn't as good because of the format of the story.


Thank you for taking the time to comment, I appreciate it and will make the time to come and visit your blog, maybe not today but soon as I am always behind!

Sorry due to lots of Spam I am moderating all comments - no spammers I don't want to buy whatever it is you are selling!