Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1)

Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1) by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff: Review by Lost in a Book

Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1)

Blurb:

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.

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5+++++++++ Stars

Illuminae

My feels on this book…

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My feels on the audio casting and their execution for this book…

 

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Illuminae is unique, riveting, gruesome, action packed, and intelligent. Throughout the entire “read” I was constantly in awe of the authors and the clever creativity required to write a book like this.

The blurb provides an overall scope of the book with Kady and Ezra breaking up, their planet being attacked, them being rescued by a nearby ship, and some of the things they encounter while trying to escape the enemy warship. Except, the blurb doesn’t do the story justice. This is way more than a romance. I hesitate even calling it that because the MCs are on separate ships for 95% of the book, have to communicate through computers, and much passes before they get on the same page (maybe a SciFi with romantic elements?). I’m not quite sure there’s a label that encompasses what this book actually is. But I damn sure loved it.

Illuminae is downright gruesome and not for the faint of heart. There were moments when I was squirming and others where I had actual tears running down my face. Legit face-leaking was taking place. Lotssssss of leaking.

This story isn’t written in the traditional sense and is instead composed of “a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more.” But don’t let that throw you off and keep you from diving into this addicting story.

AIDAN… Oh, AIDAN. What really surprised me was my ability to love *and* the level of my love for AIDAN. I had moments of rage/hate for “him” and then was swooning and professing my undying love the next moment.

Let’s talk about this audio. Hands down, the BEST audio I’ve ever heard. Ever. For real. It was everything I wish I could experience when I go see a book to movie adaptation. But it was better because it’s the actual book being performed and the only true way to describe what the cast accomplishes is to call it a performance.

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The story is captivating. It took a while to get through because I did audio and there were times I had to hold off because I needed to slow my heart after a nail biter scene or to deep breathe through my tears. Will I go on to book #2? Hell to the yeah… after I surround myself with fluff because this was INTENSE. I’m a fan. I’m amazed by the authors. I’m amazed at the quality of audio. 1 million% recommended.

 

Nachos & Hash

Reviewed for @BMBR

Format: Audio & Kindle edition

3 Stars

Goodness Gracious.

I started out listening to the audio on this book and had to call time of death at 40%. I literally listened to the first 10% and then had to stop, go back and read it because the voices were driving me crazy which ruined my focus. *smh* Along with the errors of repetition and lack of connection with the overall narration, I couldn’t go on. I didn’t feel it would be fair to judge the book based on the audio version so I bought the ebook and sallied forth to give it a fair shot. It was just okay. Maybe I should have gone back and reread the whole thing in print. *shrug* Ain’t nobody got time for that. So here it is, a 40% audio and 47% print review (40 + 47= 87% so color me confused when the book just ends as I turn the page at 87% thinking there has to be more).

Darwin is a 24 year old cancer researcher living in Denver on a grant. He’s a serial dater and ready to call it quits until he sets eyes on Cody, his waiter at Hamburger Mary’s.

Cody, like Darwin is from a small midwest town and came to Denver to be around people like him. He had never knowingly met a gay person until he left home. His father is an abusive alcoholic and his parents would never accept him as he is. Cody struggles with low confidence, self-worth, and is always waiting for the other shoe to drop. Cody has this mentality that good things don’t happen to him and if they do, they won’t last.

Darwin and Cody have a SUPER fast connection. Cody hasn’t been shown tenderness in his life or his hook-ups and doesn’t know how to expect anything different. Darwin is patient, understanding, and calls Cody on his self-hate talk. He shows Cody what it looks like to be treated with respect. They had a balance of patient and affirming Darwin for insecure and skeptical Cody.

This book was sweet. Really freaking sweet and that isn’t typically my cuppa. I’m just not a fan of insta-loveish relationships or cheesy professions of feelings when its been a couple of weeks(unless it’s a mates situation). Another thing that drove me bonkers was how insecure Cody is. Darwin is constantly having to restate his feelings alllllllll the way to the end. I know having a rough upbringing can wear a person down but Cody is an immature 21 year old. Their relationship angst was weaksauce and probably could have been skipped over since there was other drama/serious situations coming along.

Clearly it wasn’t a love match between me and this book. It started off on the wrong foot with the audio and never quite recovered. I’m not sure my opinion would have fully changed had I read it outright from the beginning, but I tried. Oh well, Cody and Darwin got their happily ever after and I’ve learned once again to LISTEN TO THE AUDIO SAMPLE BEFORE REQUESTING. *deep breath*

P.S. There needs to be a trigger warning for attempted suicide.

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Copy provided for honest review.

At First Sight Books 1 & 2

I read the first book in this series back in August and just finished up book two today. As I’ve mentioned before, I don’t always write a full review on each book I read and this is certainly the case for this series. Too many books to read and review… not enough time and all that jazz.

*Read in August*

4 Stars
Soooooooo… I seriously died laughing so many times while reading this book. Full on laughs. I really enjoyed it for the most part. I had to skip through some of Paul’s inner and verbal monologues because holy hell can homeboy ramble with this best of them. I’m really looking forward to Sandy’s story because (s)he is hella fierce and divalicious. Enough said.

4.5ish Stars

You guys!!! This book should come with a warning. Seriously. Maybe something that warns against all liquids, food, and operating heavy machinery while reading/listening to this book. I don’t think I’ve *ever* laughed as hard while listening/reading a book like I did for this one. I was driving along the interstate, listening to this audio, happily sipping my Starbucks while driving my daughter to the zoo and holyyyyy-shit, the opening scene almost caused me to drive off the road while simultaneously spitting coffee all over my car and a tad up my nose. *burn* I’m not even being dramatic, it was that funny and that dangerous. That’s pretty much what all my notes are about too.

So funny

Funny AF

Straight up tears from laughing so hard

See?

Let’s talk audio. The narration by Michael Lesley was AMAZING. I didn’t partake for the first *smh* but I LOVE the life he breathed into the main and secondary characters. It was the first time I wanted to turn on the audio to hear a scene I had just read. (I do a hybrid of kindle & audio) So. Good.

All my fan-girling aside, I had heart eyes for Helena/Sandy & Darren. I was dying a slow death just waiting for them to finally make a freaking move’. That’s where the “ish” in my rating comes in. It could swing to 5 stars or head down to 4.25 stars depending on what I focus on. I really like slow burn but I felt like I had blue balls (figuratively speaking, of course) for 90% of the story. Seriously 90% because they didn’t really kiss until right about then. It was cruel and unusual punishment to have that much scorching chemistry between characters and then nothing. Nada. Zilch. Zero. A sexless, kissless, touchless desert for much of the book. *pouting* Don’t worry, the “blue balls” were eventually rectified by Sandy and Darren but goodnessssss, patience isn’t my virtue.

The humor is OTT and might not be for everyone. But I hope you give it a try and get ready for some laughs. Definitely recommend this series.