Hope you’re ready for some space!
Our heroes are back… kind of. From the bestselling co-authors of the Illuminae Files comes the second book in the epic series about a squad of misfits, losers, and discipline cases who just might be the galaxy’s best hope for survival.
First, the bad news: an ancient evil—you know, your standard consume-all-life-in-the-galaxy deal—is about to be unleashed. The good news? Squad 312 is standing by to save the day. They’ve just got to take care of a few small distractions first.
Like the clan of gremps who’d like to rearrange their favorite faces.
And the cadre of illegit GIA agents with creepy flowers where their eyes used to be, who’ll stop at nothing to get their hands on Auri.
Then there’s Kal’s long-lost sister, who’s not exactly happy to see her baby brother, and has a Syldrathi army at her back. With half the known galaxy on their tails, Squad 312 has never felt so wanted.
When they learn the Hadfield has been found, it’s time to come out of hiding. Two centuries ago, the colony ship vanished, leaving Auri as its sole survivor. Now, its black box might be what saves them. But time is short, and if Auri can’t learn to master her powers as a Trigger, the squad and all their admirers are going to be deader than the Great Ultrasaur of Abraaxis IV.
Shocking revelations, bank heists, mysterious gifts, inappropriately tight bodysuits, and an epic firefight will determine the fate of the Aurora Legion’s most unforgettable heroes—and maybe the rest of the galaxy as well.
Those who have been around for a while will know that the Illuminae Files are high up on my list of favourite books of all time – but I was less than enamoured with Aurora Rising when I read it last year. But I thought I would give the sequel a fair chance, assuming that now that all the characters were now introduced there would be more space to explore some of the plot elements.
And for the most part that was the case.
I thought that the overarching plot of this series is still a little bit…out there at the present? But the individual plot elements of this book, the various missions the squad have to go on, those select scenes were definitely much better than book one. I certainly got to look at these characters with the detail I felt was lacking from the first book.
Did it still feel pandering? Perhaps a little bit – the earlier section in particular. I could maybe do with less of fixation of various character’s cleavage – or at least a note in the margin that lets me know that Jay Kristoff didn’t write those bits cause it’s a tad uncomfortable at moments. It just feels a tad manufactured – which the voice of Illuminae didn’t. It wasn’t quite so bad as in the first book, and it was barely there in the second half of the book – so persevere through those first few chapters if it’s bothering you!
My wife actually listened to the audiobooks of both books and liked them a lot more than I did – so I’m wondering if that might be an approach for those desperate to love these? Apparently, it’s more of a production.
I think I would probably read another book in this series – which I wasn’t necessarily expecting to want to do when I started this book. I’m actually looking forward to reading these characters a little older? I think some of the issue is that the ‘young’ voice isn’t quite working in this book, so a bit more maturity and growth can’t hurt.
I would say these are still a mile away from the calibre of Illuminae but those who were on the fence about book one – I’d say it’s good to read the second one. As a pair, they work much better than the first book did alone.
I’m hoping that we get a bit more meat and maturity in the later books in this series – it feels like this book was on the right track.
My rating: 3/5 stars
I received a free digital advanced review copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. All opinions are my own.
Aurora Burning is out now!
What say you? Will you be reading this? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!