Gemina (Illuminae #2) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff: Book Review

Title: Gemina
Authors: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Series: The Illuminae Files #2
Publication details: October 18th 2016 by Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
Genre: Science fiction, young adult

Moving to a space station at the edge of the galaxy was always going to be the death of Hanna’s social life. Nobody said it might actually get her killed.

The sci-fi saga that began with the breakout bestseller Illuminae continues on board the Jump Station Heimdall, where two new characters will confront the next wave of the BeiTech assault.

Hanna is the station captain’s pampered daughter; Nik the reluctant member of a notorious crime family. But while the pair are struggling with the realities of life aboard the galaxy’s most boring space station, little do they know that Kady Grant and the Hypatia are headed right toward Heimdall, carrying news of the Kerenza invasion.

When an elite BeiTech strike team invades the station, Hanna and Nik are thrown together to defend their home. But alien predators are picking off the station residents one by one, and a malfunction in the station’s wormhole means the space-time continuum might be ripped in two before dinner. Soon Hanna and Nik aren’t just fighting for their own survival; the fate of everyone on the Hypatia—and possibly the known universe—is in their hands. (Goodreads)

An entertaining, page-turning sequel to Illuminae.

Following new main characters, the probing against BeiTech Industries continues with Gemina. The story revolves around the assault of jump station Heimdall. Just like Illuminae it is told using compiled documents of the Heimdall siege- starting from the court hearing of Dr. Frobisher, the Executive Director of BeiTech Industries, leading to the introduction of the characters and the action-packed events of struggle and survival.

The introduction is rightly-paced and has an intriguing air to it. The story then builds-up to the siege- testing the strengths and weaknesses not only of the main characters, but also of the secondary ones.

There are a lot of interesting plot elements that may seem too much in one book, but I liked it. Some plot elements I had a hard time grasping because I don't find them realistic. But I don't think they affected my reading experience that much.

Before I started reading I know that there will be a plot twist, but I did not expect that there'll be more than one. Some are subtly placed, but still I was quite mind-blown by them. Also, some quite surprising appearances there. ๐Ÿ˜

The ending is exciting too, and promises a good plot in the next and sadly, last book Obsidio. It made me want to read it ASAP! Aaaaaah! ๐Ÿ˜

Plot-wise, Gemina is very entertaining, and action-packed. I never had a dragging reading experience. And I found myself wanting to get to the end to know how things will turn out.

The two main characters are the usual YA heroine and hero. Two characters of different social status are forced together to 'save' the day. Yes, it's very clichรฉ but it's not much of a big deal for me.

I am not sure of the romance element though. I think it was quite forced and hurried, but if there will be longer time to develop the romance I don't think I'll have objections to it.

The secondary characters are interesting as well, especially Ella. I also find the villains intriguing. I actually enjoyed reading about them.

Overall, I think the characters are well-written despite some banality. They are all interesting to read and thankfully, no annoying characters.

Like what I have mentioned in Illuminae, I liked how the story is told. It added more to my reading experience. I had a hard time following some technical terms though, but I did manage. I don't think it had a big impact on my reading.

And lastly, one of the things I enjoyed is the 'villain' tracker. See below picture.


Overall, I really, really liked Gemina. Despite my similarity in rating, I think I enjoyed this more than I enjoyed Illuminae. Again, some elements are quite unbelievable, but the rest of the plot and the writing are very much okay. ๐Ÿ˜

If you want a refreshing, thrilling and entertaining sci-fi read, you might want to read the Illuminae Files! Aaah! I can't wait to read Obsidio next!

Amie Kaufman is the New York Times bestselling co-author of Illuminae (with Jay Kristoff) and These Broken Stars, This Shattered World, and Their Fractured Light (with Meagan Spooner.) She writes science fiction and fantasy for teens, and her favourite procrastination techniques involve chocolate, baking, sailing, excellent books and TV, plotting and executing overseas travel, and napping.

She lives in Melbourne, Australia with her husband, their rescue dog, and her considerable library. She is represented by Tracey Adams of Adams Literary.

Jay Kristoff is the New York Times and internationally bestselling author of THE NEVERNIGHT CHRONICLE, THE ILLUMINAE FILES and THE LOTUS WAR. He is the winner of four Aurealis Awards, an ABIA, nominee for the David Gemmell Morningstar and Legend awards, named multiple times in the Kirkus and Amazon Best Teen Books list and published in over thirty countries, most of which he has never visited. He is as surprised about all of this as you are. He is 6’7 and has approximately 13030 days to live. He abides in Melbourne with his secret agent kung-fu assassin wife, and the world’s laziest Jack Russell.