- Author: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
- Series: The Illuminae Files #3
- Genre: Sci-fi
- No. of pages: 615
- Date read: 01.02.19 – 08.02.19
- Rating: 4 stars
- Challenge: 2019 sequels and ONTD Reading Challenge: Feb (Read a romance or a book that includes a break-up)
WOW! What an amazing end to an amazing series!!! This book is incredibly emotional and I nearly cried numerous times while reading this! This is the first series I have finished in a longggg time! I’m trying to be consistent in getting through series hence why I am doing this 2019 sequels challenge. Check out this post to read more about that.
The Illuminae Files is most well know for its dossier style presentation where the pages look like a bunch of files. There are transcripts, drawings and normal prose. I felt that this added to the story so much in terms of enjoyability for me, it made for a really interesting reading experience
I feel that the story handles morality incredibly well. The theme of life and death, murder and survival run like waves throughout the series and not as much as it does in this book. It poses a lot of questions like, “Is it worth sacrificing 100 lives to save 101 more?” What I also loved was how the authors would give names and sometimes a small bit of background to unknown characters who we never meet. For example, The list of people killed on Kerenza IV after BeiTech take control and the names of the pilots who die in the fight to capture the Magellan. I feel this book really shows the reader the horror of war and the countless people on all sides that are left nameless and forgotten.
I loved AIDAN’s role in the plot and his impact on the story as a whole throughout the series. AIDAN is my favourite character. One of my favourite literary characters of all time. I think he is so intriguing to read about. I really liked the sections where we got to read his thoughts, they were very insightful and again made you question morality in so many ways. He was so horrified but also heart-breaking.
All the characters were great! I loved how the authors would make you so attached to every single side character which you know is stupid becuase most of them would die but you can’t help but root for them all the same!
But I would have to say that Hanna and Kady were by far, the best characters in the series as a whole! I loved their strength, their love for their friends and family, their perseverance. I really enjoyed their budding friendship as well, it was good to see two strong women supporting each other wholeheartedly. In fact, all the women in this book were powerful ass women and it was so enjoyable to read about them and also to read about a variety of different female characters, with a lot of women in positions of power!!!
One of the authors strongest suits is their diversity! These books had numerous POC characters, characters from the LGBTQ community, characters with disabilities and characters going through trauma and mental health struggles. There is a lot of representation in this book. That being said I would have liked to see more representation within the core group. The core group is made up of heterosexual, white, characters excluding Asha who I believe is a woman of colour and we do see disability representation in Ella. That being said despite the lack of diversity in the core group it is more than made up for with the rest of the characters. What I also loved is that this representation is normalised and we find out a character is POC or LGBTQ through passing comments o snippets of conversation which is satisfying to read as it’s not done for the sake of it but to show the diverse culture of the world and that also war can affect everyone from race, sexuality, gender etc.
I felt that Kaufman and Kristoff have really mastered writing chaos. I found myself stressing out numerous times when chaos ensued or there was a fight/disagreement. They could really keep you on the edge of your seats! I think this is due to the brilliant characterisation and variety of personalities created as well as incredible pacing.
I was really interested in AIDAN’s obsession with Kady, I thought it was a really cool dynamic to the story. Intially, I wasn’t sure it was going to work very well as I am not a massive fan of AI storylines but again, I think this was done very well.
I loved all the romance. I didn’t feel like any of it was forced. I felt that we were given a couple of different kinds of relationships within this book. You have Ezra and Kady, who have a very secure relationship with a lot of trust and support. Nik and Hanna who start slightly on the rocks, with them trying to come to terms with what happened in Gemina and where that leaves them and their relationship now. You then have Asha and Rhys who are the broken-up couple trying to see if they can give it another shot as well as being star-crossed lovers. And finally, we have unrequited love with AIDAN and Kady. I am glad each relationship was very different and not just the same cliche relationship you see a lot in stories.
Also, the ending was incredibly satisfying!!!
While I loved all the characters within the story, I did feel like Rhys was the exact same character as Ezra. Because the difference between Ezra and Nik is so strong it stuck out to me the similarities between Ezra and Rhys. I did feel Rhys wasn’t bringing much else to the story personality wise, it was a good thing he was initially working for the other side else I would have not been interested in his character at all!
I did find some of the dialogue to be very cringey and it was very obvious it was two adults who don’t know how teenagers speak trying to write teenage dialogue. Certain phrases were used that made me roll my eyes a couple of times which was very disappointing.
The next book I will be reading is The Arm of the Sphinx by Josiah Bancroft. I read his first book Senlin Ascends and it became my favourite book of 2018! Let’s see if this one is just as good.