ARC Review: Gemina

Posted October 10, 2016 / Book Reviews / 6 Comments

I received this book for free (hey, thanks!) in exchange for an honest review. I promise that this does NOT affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review. For real.

ARC Review: GeminaGemina by Amie Kaufman
Series: The Illuminae Files #2
on October 18th 2016
Also by this author: These Broken Stars, Illuminae, Obsidio , Aurora Rising , Aurora Burning
(608 pages) • GoodreadsAmazon Barnes & Noble

The highly anticipated sequel to the instant New York Times bestseller that critics are calling “out-of-this-world awesome.”  

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.

But relax. They’ve totally got this. They hope.

Once again told through a compelling dossier of emails, IMs, classified files, transcripts, and schematics, Gemina raises the stakes of the Illuminae Files, hurling readers into an enthralling new story that will leave them breathless.

Initial Excitement

Unlike most people, I wasn’t utterly blown away by ILLUMINAE. I definitely REALLY enjoyed it and gave it four stars, but it wasn’t perfect like it was for so many other people. I was pretty excited for GEMINA when I saw some early reviews roll in and the lovely Wendy let me borrow her copy.

Summary in a Second

This book is a companion to ILLUMINAE and seems to take place right after the events of the first book. There are different main characters, which was sad at first but got much better. GEMINA follows Hanna, the attractive daughter of the ship’s captain, and Nik, a criminal from a criminal family doing criminal things a lot of the time. Their ship (Hypatia) is the next victim of BeiTech’s siege of all the ships and space things I don’t know how to describe.

Storytelling & Setting

Like ILLUMINAE, this book is told through various documents, files, IM chats, radio transmissions, and video camera footage (transcribed).  Because I read an ARC, there were some final drawings and pictures missing from the book but it didn’t make much of a difference for the actual story itself. The space setting is really fun because it pulls me right out of my comfort zone. I don’t do a lot of sci-fi because I get confused, and honestly this series is no exception, but I just enjoy these more because of the format.

The actual plot for this book was incredibly engaging. It featured one of my very favorite plot devices, but I won’t say what it is because SPOILERS probably. Just a huuuuge fan of everything happening with the wormhole. I loved the relationships between characters and the reemergence of old characters and other THINGS. Ugh, spoilers spoilers spoilers.

About those Characters

I loved Kady and Ezra SO MUCH in the first book but oh god Hanna and Nik are the fucking best. I never thought neck tattoos were attractive but holy shit Nik is a new book boyfriend so quick. I loved their banter and the major opposites-attract-thing going on. They were so different but the way they talked to each other and the romance built up was so perfect.

All the Feels

SO MANY FEELS. Primarily mind=blown feels. I love the twisty-turny relationships that everyone has with each other and seeing how certain things progress. I was literally on the edge of my seat with anticipation and just full of tense energy. Once I got about halfway through and the action really picked up, I didn’t want to stop reading for anything. Seriously. Feels. Rollercoaster.

So, What’s the Problem?

It’s hard to come up with any, honestly, but I think there are still some confusing parts. When I read the first book it was somewhat hard to understand what was going on at times. I know a lot of that has to do with the format. It may be easier to really GET if you’re reading a regular book. However, I wouldn’t change the format of these for ANYTHING. It’s so incredibly interesting to read with the different IMs, radio transcriptions, etc. So yeah, if there’s a flaw it’s just me being kind of confused.

How it All Goes Down

THE ENDING. Again no spoilers but talk about another cliffhanger. After the first book I was definitely ready to read the next one, but the wait between GEMINA and the next book will be god-awful. I love everyone and need to see how it all goes down. I’m thinking the final book will feature a bunch of main characters together. I’m curious to see if they introduce another 2 characters like the previous books.


Alright, I’m sold on this series. GEMINA knocked my socks off when ILLUMINAE impressed me a bit. The format makes for a fun and quick read, but there’s still so much to take in. If you somehow haven’t read these yet, I’d definitely recommend them. I don’t read a lot of sci-fi (or really any, to be honest) and these are no problem for me.

Quick & Dirty

Describe it in a word: mind-blowing

Recommended for readers who: loved the first one

Drink this beverage with it: alcohol after finishing it

Recommended overall? HELL YA

Thoughts in a Gif

Rating Breakdown

Plot & Premise
Writing Style
Pacing & Flow
Feels or Swoons
Addiction Level
Overall: 4.6

6 responses to “ARC Review: Gemina

  1. Glad to know I’m not the only one who though Illuminae was in the like- not love- category. I did love the format though. Which is probably most of the reason I liked it as much as I did. I’m a sucker for letter, transcript, email, text, etc. format books. I’m excited to read Gemina though. Glad to know you liked it even better!!

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