Aurora Burning by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Aurora Burning (The Aurora Cycle #2) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Publication Date: May 5th, 2020
Publisher:Knopf Books For Young Readers
ISBN: 9781524720926
Genre: 
YA SCIFI
Rating: 
5 Stars
Audio Rating: N/A

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DISCLAIMER:
This e-book was sent to me for free by Penguin Random House via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This in no way impacts my rating, all thoughts and opinions are my own.


[SYNOPSIS]
This synopsis contains spoilers for Aurora Rising, Book 1 in The Aurora Cycle

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.


NON SPOILERY REVIEW

“I’m the girl who’s going to save the damn galaxy…”

Where do I even begin? It’s so hard for me to review this book without leaving spoilers so I’m going to have to keep this pretty simple. This book will make you laugh, cry, it will emotionally break you… and I can’t thank Jay and Amie enough. To be able to feel all of these emotions and to connect to characters so deeply — characters who stay with you once the book is long over, that’s truly an amazing reading experience. I haven’t stopped thinking about Squad 312 since I finished the book and I am already itching to re-read it because I’m not ready to let them go.

This book was truly explosive, action packed from beginning to end. There were so many times were I actually laughed out loud and times were I had real tears streaking my face. This book is more mature than Aurora Rising, but due to the nature of their circumstance it makes sense. All of the characters grew in their own way and I loved seeing their personalities shine. I loved the twists and turns — I just couldn’t get enough.

“I am not feeling nothing.”

Thank you so much for allowing me to read an advanced copy and for leaving this burning hole in my chest. This book goes on Sale 5/5/20 and is up for PREORDER now!

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Topic Tuesday – Top 10 Audiobooks

Welcome to Topic Tuesday! Today I am going to be talking about my Top 10 favorite audiobooks!

Audiobooks to me are a unique experience. It wasn’t until last year that I really started getting into them. I had listened to some here and there on my way to and from work, but that was almost out of necessity – I needed something to fill the time of driving 1.5 hours both way! In order for me to really love an audiobook and invest those hours into it, it has to have a phenomenal narration. I am so picky with my narrators. My top 10 favorite audiobooks will include the voice actors that I love and why these books are so great!

  1. The Nevernight Chronicles by Jay Kristoff, narrated by Holter Graham – Holter Graham gave an Oscar winning performance when narrating The Nevernight Chronicles. There was never a time where I questioned his artistic choices. His cadence is so unique, his voice for Mia is spot on – honestly, her sass would not have come through nearly as much without him! Sex scenes usually make me uncomfortable on audio, but not these!
  2. The Illuminae Files by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, narrated by a full cast of 20! – This is narrated by a full cast, not narrators switching with POV. It is literally like listening to an awesome SCIFI movie on in the background. Need I say more?
  3. Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, narrated by a full cast – The full cast in this SCIFI adventure switches narrators with each POV! You will hear a lot of your Illuminae favorites in this one! Zila’s narrator is ICONIC.
  4. An Ember in the Ashes series (soon to be quartet) by Sabaa Tahir, narrated by Fiona Hardingham, Steve West, and Katherine McEwan – AEITA is a YA fantasy filled with action, drama, and heartbreak. The narration switches with each POV. You really get into the grit of the story in A Torch Against the Night when we are introduced to Katherine McEwan. Her voice is one of my favorites. She is saw gritty and raw, you can feel all of the characters emotions. I also love her in The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein!
  5. Strange the Dreamer Duology by Laini Taylor, narrated by Steve West – This is an audiobook I can fall asleep to every night. Steve West has a dreamy, lyrical voice that matches the way the books are written. There are a lot of female characters, but his voice wasn’t distracting. I think he did a marvelous job! He also narrates in Gemina as well as AEITA!
  6. Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin, narrated by Saskia Maarleveld and Holter Graham – I just finished listening to this book and I am ready to listen again. Saskia Maarleveld has one of the most breathy, beautiful, and addicting voices. There are books I’m not really interested in, but after finding out she narrates them, I am adding them to my TBR. Her french does not sound forced or fake in this book, which sometimes can easily be ruined with the wrong narrator. Lou would not be the same without Saskia! Holter Graham delivers a perfect performance as the male POV!
  7. The Mistborn series by Brandon Sanderson, narrated by Michael Kramer – Michael Kramer took some getting used to. When I first listened to his voice in The Final Empire I honestly was kind of… turned off by it. I was unsure of his deep voice. It sounds like a older guy reading to you by a fireplace and he’s almost falling asleep. It’s weird, I know, but TRUST ME. His narration is GOLD. I am addicted to his voice. He narrates all of Mistborn and I am currently reading the Stormlight Archive in which he narrates them, too along with his wife!
  8. The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman, narrated by Neil Gaiman – This was the first audiobook I ever listened to. Neil Gaiman has a wonderful voice for reading out loud. Especially since he likes to narrate his own books, he understands the character, how they would sound in that scene, what their feelings are. It’s truly amazing to listen to him. He narrates Coraline and The Graveyard book as well!
  9. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, narrated by Jim Dale – Can we sing enough praises about Jim Dale? Not only does he give an iconic performance throughout the Harry Potter series, but his tone and accent are perfect for this whimsical tale. I will say, if you aren’t paying attention, you can lose your place very easily with this one!
  10. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by JKR, narrated by Eddie Redmayne – This super short audiobook is a companion book to Harry Potter and it is SO FUN! The fact that Eddie Redmayne narrates it should say enough. There’s also sound effects!

Well, there you have it folks! I’m sure there’s audiobooks I missed or things I forgot I wanted to say, but those are the first 10 that came to my mind so they must be important, right?! Let me know if you have listened to any of these books and what you think! I wouldn’t survive without audio!

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#squad312 forever – Aurora Rising Review

Title: Aurora Rising (the Aurora Cycle #1)
Author: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Genre: YA SCIFI/Space Opera
Publisher: Penguin Random House/Knopf  Books for Young Readers
Pages: Hardcover 480 pages
Available: May 7th, 2019

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First and foremost, I would like to thank Penguin Random House, Jay Kristoff, and Amie Kaufman for providing me with an e-ARC via NETGALLEY in exchange for an honest review; this in no way affects my rating.

With that being said, let’s begin this NON-SPOILERY review! Any specific facts mentioned were pulled from the official synopsis available on Goodreads.

Aurora rising starts off with a BANG. There is action from the very first page until the last. We first meet Aurora, a girl out of time who has just awoken from two centuries in cryo-sleep after being rescued by the Aurora Academy’s star pupil, Tyler. Due to this rescue, Tyler misses a draft and gets stuck with a group of misfits that no one wanted.

*from the synopsis*
“A cocky diplomat with a black belt in sarcasm
A sociopath scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmates 
A smart-ass tech whiz 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”

This space adventure is a YA SCIFI lovers dream! You can tell that the science behind the writing was well researched. The diversity within the book is natural, I love the interaction between the characters – the banter is HILARIOUS. Each character has their own personality and style and you can tell who is talking without reading chapter headers. I was unsure about how I would feel after being set up with the genius that is the Illuminae Files and the Starbound trilogy, but this was perfection. It’s 100% unique, the galaxy is completely new, and I found myself so invested in this story that during the last few chapters, I don’t think I took a single breath! I am ready for the Aurora Cycle #2!

Pre-order your copy from Amazon, Book Depository, Barnes and Noble, Books-A-Million, Target, or other retail sites!

#squad312 forever!

 

My First Big Time ARC!

I received an e-mail yesterday from Penguin Random House stating that I had been approved for an ARC I had requested. I have never requested an ARC from a publisher, especially not one this big – I typically use NetGalley and read those “insta-approve” books because I am just a wee-account on all platforms. To my surprise, I was approved for an e-ARC of AURORA RISING by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff!

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ARE YOU KIDDING ME?

I looked at my phone, I looked around the room, I looked back at my phone, and I just sat silently… I was in shock! Never in a million years did I think that I could get an ARC of something of this magnitude! I am forever thankful for the people at Penguin Random House for selecting me and trusting me with this new space adventure! I will have this read and reviewed soon!! I’m already at 20%!

**Synopsis**

From the New York Times and internationally bestselling authors of the Illuminae Files comes a new science fiction epic . . .

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 tech whiz 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.

NOBODY PANIC.

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Pre-order your copy from Amazon, Book Depository, Barnes and Noble, Books-A-Million, Target, or other retail sites!