You know you have to read a book when you get the following email, “I am very proud to say I bought the book “Illuminae” from Barnes and Nobles and finished it in one night! I started at 8pm and finished at 1 am. It is my new favorite book and I actually finished a book! ”
And so I purchased it as well, and then promptly forgot all about it. After all, I had had enough of dystopian thrillers for a while. Yet, my student’s email kept haunting me, drawing me back in. If this book had finally made her finish a book, then it had to be worth my time, right?
Illuminae does not disappoint. The whole format is inspired, with deleted files being the whole book as the story is told under a directive to uncover all information. The characters make you care about them. The story is action packed and yet understandable. But the violence, oh the violence. The thing is this is like a science fiction almost zombie like book, think Walking Dead type of violence. So yes, I will place it in my 7th grade library but not until I book talk it and let kids know what to expect when it comes to maturity level. For some students this will be a selling point, for others it will make them steer clear, but the violence is graphic at times.
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 a speck at the edge of the universe. Now with enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to evacuate with a hostile warship in hot pursuit.
But their problems are just getting started. A plague has broken out and is mutating with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a web of data to find the truth, it’s clear the only person who can help her is the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.