Aurora Rising (Aurora Cycle #1) by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

Am actual trash for Jay and Amie’s works. Which means ALL THE STARS IN THE UNIVERSE FOR THIS!!

Aurora Rising centers around a squad of misfits. When Tyler Jones, the Golden boy of Aurora Academy misses the important Draft ceremony, he is left with the bottom of the barrel, his sister and friend, Cat. Why did he miss the ceremony? Because he was saving Aurora O’Malley from a Fold Storm. Who is Aurora? That’s what everyone wants to know. Aurora left Earth in a cryopod heading for a colony on Octavia III yet that’s not what the history books say. Many mysteries and baffling occurrences commence after the formation of Squad 312.

This book is basically all about Squad goals. While Squad 312 has quite the rocky start, by the end of the book I came to love each and every member on it. I don’t know how to deal with the ending, or waiting for the answers I know book 2 will contain. I spent a lot of this book constantly asking it “Why?” or “What?”. Sadly, it did not answer all of my questions; however, I am very intrigued by the answers it did give me.

While it is tempting to compare this to Illuminae, these stories are galaxies apart (see what I did). What was the same was how quickly I consumed both of the stories. Illuminae takes place in one single solar system whereas Aurora Rising spans galaxies. Aurora Rising also introduces alien races and galactic travel via the Fold. I loved how Aurora Rising dives into other sci-fi aspects that weren’t present in the Illuminae Files.

Squad 312 found their way into my heart after reading about their misadventures. They’re definitely the heroes no one wanted. It was hard for me to connect to Tyler and Cat at first. Scarlett I liked because of her flirty nature, but I wasn’t really crazy about these three for some reason. Then there’s our awkward babies: Aurora, Finian, Zila and Kal. I loved these four so much. Aurora was basically a constant “WTF did I do” emoji the whole book and I loved how she never gave up. This girl is going places. Finian was the wonderful bisexual Betraskan, who also had a physical disability, and the snarkiness of a snark fish that I needed in my life. Zila was described as a sociopath by the authors and I could definitely see it at times. Mostly, she was level headed–about everything it was freaky–quiet and had a penchant for blasting anything and everything. Kal was such a fascinating addition. He was clearly better than all the pesky humans he was surrounded by as a Syldrathi. He is an arrogant teddy bear…mostly.

All in all, a fantastic tale about finding your squad even if you feel like you don’t belong at first. I am currently debating if I want to reread this already.

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