Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
In 2575, a mining company destroys the planet of a rival mining company. Three ships hear and respond to the distress cry, picking up survivors, and being pursued by the one attacking ship that is left. Illuminae tells the story of two of the survivors, Kady and her ex-boyfriend Ezra; by sharing their story, the fate of the three ships is shared as well.
Illuminae is one of those books that nearly defies description. The plot is told in a variety of ways such as interview transcriptions, emails, documents, and security camera footage. This is an ambitious format, but Kaufman and Kristoff do an amazing job. The story flows quickly, makes perfect sense, and all the pieces fall into place just when they should. It is funny--I laughed out loud often and had to read parts to my husband--and touching (yes, I cried). It is also heart-poundingly exciting and nerve-wracking. I was completely invested in the characters and engrossed in the plot.
Due to the format and the length (nearly 600 pages), Illuminae may look intimidating. Don't be put off; this is an accessible book that is easy to follow. I give it the highest recommendation.