Book Review: Aurora Rising by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman

Title: Aurora Rising
Series: Aurora Cycle
Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Genre: YA Sci-Fi Fantasy
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Release Date: May 6, 2019
Format: Hardcover
Pages: 473
Source: Personal Collection
Rating: ★★★★★

The year is 2380, and the graduating cadets of Aurora Academy are being assigned their first missions. Star pupil Tyler Jones is ready to recruit the squad of his dreams, but his own boneheaded heroism sees him stuck with the dregs nobody else in the Academy would touch…

A cocky diplomat with a black belt in sarcasm
A sociopath scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmates
A smart-ass techwiz with the galaxy’s biggest chip on his shoulder
An alien warrior with anger management issues
A tomboy pilot who’s totally not into him, in case you were wondering

And Ty’s squad isn’t even his biggest problem—that’d be Aurora Jie-Lin O’Malley, the girl he’s just rescued from interdimensional space. Trapped in cryo-sleep for two centuries, Auri is a girl out of time and out of her depth. But she could be the catalyst that starts a war millions of years in the making, and Tyler’s squad of losers, discipline-cases and misfits might just be the last hope for the entire galaxy.

They’re not the heroes we deserve. They’re just the ones we could find. Nobody panic.


When Aurora Rising first came out, I wasn’t planning to read it. I’ve had a lot of trouble getting into the Illuminae series and thought this might be the same way, since it is from the same authors. Boy am I glad I decided to give it a try.

The characters in this book are easy to love or hate. Squad 312 are an amazing group of characters. My favorites are Kal and Aurora((Yes, yes, I do very much ship them.)), but I really like Cat, Tyler, and Scarlett as well. Finian took some getting used to and I didn’t really like him until the very end of the book, but he finally grew on me. Princeps is an annoying jerk and honestly, I sincerely hope that the rest of the series ends with him getting his butt kicked.

I loved the descriptions of some of the alien species that Terrans((Humans, for those who haven’t tried reading the book yet.)) have come in contact with by the time the story takes place. I love that the alien species here weren’t generic aliens or ones who were taken straight from Star Trek.

The writing style here is perfect. A lot of times I can tell where one author left off and the other picked up, but with Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, I honestly couldn’t tell when one stopped and the other started. Their writing styles are that seamless. For that I am so thankful because I’ll be honest, being able to tell when one author stopped and the other took over is one of my pet peeves with multiple author books.

The story line was innovative and wasn’t a regurgitation of something I’ve read a thousand times before – nor was it just and expanded version of an old Star Trek TNG book. I can’t wait for the next book in the series to come out and I’m kind of sad because I know it’ll probably be at least a year before it does. But then again, that just means I get to re-read this one!

This book was amazing and kept me so interested that I had to give it 5 stars. I didn’t want to put it down.

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