Gemina (The Illuminae Files, #2) by Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff and Marie Lu (Illustrations)

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Rating: 8/10

What a freaking crazy ride !! 😱

Okay, let me clear an important point first ! If you’re here for Illuminae characters’ sake, let me tell you right away and save you the initial disappointment I experienced myself : though Gemina is a continuation of the events occurring in Illuminae, it tells the story of a brand new casting ! HOWEVER, are the former involved ? Will you see more of them ?

Well, chums, if you want to know the answers to those questions, you definitely need to read the book ! 😉

KILLJOY: Killjoy, out.
*********************

That being said guys, I had a blast reading Gemina ! Seriously it was so fun !! Despite a slow (but definitely not boring) beginning (totally understandable because of the new setting and characters), the plot picked up to become a crazy, frenetic race against time ! The format helped of course but the pacing and the stakes kept me feverishly turning the pages and left me completely winded (the cold I caught last week had nothing to do with it…).

“It may comfort you to know that your death, while astonishingly violent, will likely be mercifully swift.”

The thing I love most about this series is of course its creative format !! When I started Gemina, I was afraid its effect was starting to wear off. Well, the novelty effect did wear off but I certainly will never get tired of the unique camera footage transcriptions, emails, chats and (in this installment) stunning illustrations !

Illustrations are done by author Marie Lu

I’m sadly not a Sci-Fi reader. “The Illuminae Files” is my first attempt and it’s definitely a convincing one (Red Rising, I’m so coming for you this summer)! Space stations, space ships, space predators and “a whole sky of different stars”… With wormholes playing an important part in the plot, Gemina brushed a few fundamental astrophysics theories (in a similar approach to that of the excellent Interstellar) and though my knowledge in this area is limited, I can only say that it was done in a pretty cool and clever way imo!Friend and fellow reader, if you’re a astrophysics expert, I’d love to know your opinions on what Kristoff and Kaufman might have done wrong ! 🙂

But faced with the choice of living one breath longer or cashing in right now, most folks will take the extra moment. That single extra breath. Even when your world stops spinning and gravity dies and the blood glitters in the air like a galaxy of warm red suns all around you.

But despite all the fun I had with Gemina, there is one tiny issue that I overlooked in Illuminae but that bothered me a bit more here. And that issue is the multitude of small (or bigger) happy coincidences scattered through the narrative and very often being “the right person in the right place and with the perfect timing” ! Once is cool, two are okay, three are still acceptable but after 3 or 4, eye-rolling was definitely called for !

Despite this personal issue, I had an amazing reading experience once again! The pages were gorgeous, the characters were great, the writing whimsical and the pace pretty crazy !

Recommended to all readers, really !

Review by Haïfa.

Read in June, 2017.

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