Illuminae is the story of the destruction of the Kerenza colony and the intergalactic fallout subsequent to those events. It is hard core science fiction, but it is also a story of friendship, family and love. There is so much heart and warmth in this book that is told largely in the form of emails, interviews, audio recording dictation and military/security files.

I predict that the #1 adjective that reviewers will use to describe this novel is AMBITIOUS. The formatting of this novel is unlike anything I have ever seen. It is made to appear as one comprehensive dossier of a multitude of differing documents. Personally, I looked at this book and thought there was no way that I could possibly enjoy such a gimmick. However, the authors beautifully wove a story out of the documents presented, which can, in one page, tell you more about a character than whole books have been able to do. They far superseded my expectations.

I’m pretty sure the world will label this a Science Fiction, but, in my humble opinion, it’s a Romance set in space, through and through. Wherever the action lies, whatever we are focused on, you will come back Kady and Ezra, who are the central forces of this novel. They are surrounded by colorful characters, such as middle-aged, overweight hackers, corporate suits, military officials (both good and bad), highly contagious viruses, artificial intelligence that should be named Hal, space ships, dread noughts, to name a few, but your main concern will always be for them and root them on in making up.

“I’m not ready to die just yet. Too many things left to do.” My personal hero of the story is Kady. Kady is the girl who gets shit done. She lines up her list of ‘to-do’s,’ hones in on them like a lazer and destroys it. Kady is amazing. The kind of girl you want in your corner because she’s just absolutely fantastic, but, conversely, you’d be terrified to have her pitted against you.

While the story spans an entire galaxy’s political and corporate system, the stories take place on just a couple of spaceships—the battlecarrier Alexander and the science vessel Hypatia. However, the action is big, the egos are bigger and you won’t believe how it all plays out. This was an incredibly thrilling ride that won’t let you sleep much or think of much else while you’re in the middle of reading it. You’ll want to keep some stickies aroung to mark the sections you will definitely keep coming back to, which I hadn’t done since my college days. But, trust me, Amie Kauffman and Jay Kristoff have written a book that you’ll want to get your doctorate in. It’s an instant classic.  Out on October 20th, you can pre-order your copy of Illuminae here.

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