Authors: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

Grade: C/C+

This book is the second in a series that began with Illuminae: The Illuminae Files 01 and actually concerns what’s going on at the jump station that the survivors of the first book are trying to make their way too. Basically, the same idiots who perpetrated the crimes of the first book are continuing their meticulously documented conspiracy to cover up those crimes in Gemina.

Luckily there are two snarky teens on the station to try to stop them. The boy from the wrong side of the space station and the Commander’s “spoiled” daughter up against the highly trained operatives sent to secure the station and lay a trap for the incoming ship.

I don’t want to make it seem like I didn’t enjoy the book. It definitely falls into my typical summer movie kind of category. Like Illuminae it’s one of those found footage and documents books that make it extremely fast-paced and easy to read. In that regard it’s beautifully presented.

It does do a good job of actually continuing the story from the first book. I didn’t feel like there were any holes in the expanding larger story. Kady and others from Illuminae make an appearance and at times, at least, the action is very taut and very well-done.

Unfortunately this book drove me crazy in some two big other ways. One: I would say a good 95% of the characters sound exactly alike. I get that the main characters are all teenagers but good Lord, knock it off with the constant snark. It’s only funny for the first four hundred pages. (If that.) I totally get that some people would maybe respond like that in times of stress but not everyone and again you’re in a very high stress situation that you aren’t prepared for why on Earth are you wasting so much precious time teasing you’re cousin. You’re using a system that you know has been hacked and deadly people are looking for you are you really going to also waste time changing his user name back and forth amongst all the rest of it?

That kind of thing was so constant that it really took me out of the situation.

Also Illuminae had a fake out death that I think it should have kept that really annoyed me because it robbed the book of a good emotional moment. Gemina does it several times. Like once was not enough? At this point in the series I just can’t believe there’s any actual stakes for the main characters. Bad guys and plenty of red shirts yes. Everyone else I’m not the least bit worried about.

Recommend: 50/50 If you liked Illuminae or consider yourself already committed to the series sure. Like I mentioned the presentation is well done. But otherwise, I’m not even sure if I’m going to bother with the next book.

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