Gemina by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Publisher/date: Knopf Books for Young Readers (October 18, 2016)
Genre: YA Sci-Fi
Series: The Illuminae Files: Book 2
OK, so here's the cool thing about this series. The protagonists in the first book are not the same as in the second. If you read my post about Illuminae, you know that Kady and Ez are the main characters. Well, although I missed them greatly, this book is about Hanna and Nik, and Ella too, on Jump Station Heimdall. But don't worry. You're gonna like these chums.
"The family that eats together maintains a successful interstellar criminal organization together!" -Nik Malichov
"I know 1/6 of 3/10 of absolutely fuck-all. They're pro. Their decker is top-tier. They do the shooty-shoot first, and don't ask questions after." -Ella Malikova
"Now I am become death, the destroyer of worlds." -Quote from Hanna Donnely's journal
We wondered all during Kady and Ez's epic adventure if Heimdall would even be there when they got there. And now we get to find out what BeiTech's plan for Heimdall was. We still don't know what their real motivation behind the original Kerenza attack was, but we will likely learn that in the third installment of the series, Obsidio.
Kay, so. Lemme start with this - this is an end of your seat type series. Like, buy the whole set before you start to make sure you can jump right into the next one immediately. I'm kinda glad I was late jumping onto this ship, because now I don't have to wait for the next book to come out. Each one picks up exactly where the last left off. (Yes, I've broken my personal rule for not starting the next book in a series before I write the review. #worthit) You've been warned!
When I read, I make little notations throughout the book. This book has a lot of those. Some simply say what I was feeling when I read a particular part. For instance, one of my notations, at the end of Chapter 145, just says "it is perfectly normal to scream, 'OH FUCK!' whilst reading a book." Yeah. Can't throw an audiobook now can I?*
Into the meat of it. BeiTech (who should be called EvilCorp, just sayin) has sent a kill-squad of "auditors" to cover their screw-up at Kerenza. Hanna is the station chief's daughter, his 18yo little princess. Nik is the local dealer for the House of Knives, the space mafia. Not your most likely heroes. But Hanna and her daddy have been playing strategy games and practicing Krav Maga for "fun," and Nik may not be the cold hearted killer his juvie record says. And with Nik's younger cousin Ella, a mafia hacker, BeiTech's "auditors" are about to learn that these teens are the kind with which one does not fuck.
"She is stubborn, and moves, even when it seems she cannot. But sometimes, as she crawls along, she cries slow, fat tears. And other times, she looks at her palm pad. And other times, she closes her eyes and meditates, or wishes, or simply grieves. But always, always, she crawls."
Clinging to life by the ends of their nails, the trio is faced with a catastrophic number of punches. Just when you think the situation can't get any worse, well fuck-all, there's another plot twist. Jay and Amie, are you trying to give me a heart attack?**
"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. A lot can happen between breaths, after all."
I know it's only January. But I feel like this series will be my best read this year. I kinda hope not, because I'm enjoying it immensely and don't want it to be over. Then again, there's always Aurora Rising, so...
5/5, this series is amazing and Amie and Jay deserve any and all devotion that their readers (i.e. me) give them. Amie, will you adopt me?
*I am listening to the audiobooks in my commute. They're so good I went ahead and bought hardcovers for a reread. They are so cool looking!
**I feel like as readers we are emotional masochists. We enjoy being destroyed over and over again, and going back for more, even more loyally to the ones who destroy us. Weird much?