Obsidio – The Illuminae Files part 3 by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (book review).

‘Obsidio’ is the third and final book in ‘The Illuminae Files’. Please don’t read this review unless you’ve read Illuminae’ and ‘Gemina’, or there may be spoilers and most of it probably won’t make much sense to you neither.

This time, along with some of the people from books one and two, we are following a new couple called Rhys (a BeiTech goon) and Asha (Kady’s cousin), who again are finding that life is a little more dangerous than it was last year. Asha and Rhys are trying to survive on Kerenza while all hell is breaking loose from the BeiTech soldiers and the Kerenza resistance fighters.

Meanwhile, Kady and the other survivors from the previous two books are trying to make it back to Kerenza in order to make it to their jumpgate which will hopefully help everyone escape this hellhole. Oh but there’s not enough oxygen on Kady’s ship and Aiden may or may not make another slightly murderous appearance.

As you can see from the description, there are lots of old faces in this book along with a few new faces who, in typical fashion, you bond with just before they die horribly. This is not a spoiler, not all of them die but, if you’ve read books one and two, you’ll know that this is the normal way of things with everyone in this book, lots of people die horribly. In fact, you might want to look out for some well-known author names in this book as Kaufman and Kristoff are not shy about killing off their fellow book writers as well.

I love how this is told in mixed media with loads of redacted words. Am I the only person who tries to work out what these swear words might be given their context? Just me? Fair enough. I did find that there was a lot more surveillance footage in this book which meant it did take a little longer to read. Talking of which, we finally get to know who it is who had the job of watching and transcribing these horrible videos. Once you know, you can tell exactly who it is from their tone of voice, but this was a nice little extra.

Throughout ‘Obsidio’, as I’ve said, a lot of good and bad people die, such is the way of these books. Which gives the reader very much a sense of waiting for the other shoe to drop in terms of waiting for one or all of the couples to die. I just kept waiting and waiting for this to happen, I’m not going to let you know what happens in the end, you’ll just have to read it to find out, but do read it with tissues, that’s all I’m saying. Even when one or two of the ‘baddies’ die, you feel a little gut wrench as Kaufman and Kristoff have written them some incredible back stories.

Those last 100 or so pages are full of so many ‘feels’, you really can’t put this book down apart from to reach for another tissue. I loved how everything turned out. Well, almost everything. There is that one bit that I wish hadn’t happened and you’ll know it when you read it. Overall, this was a great ending for this series and I’m glad it was all finished off and won’t drag on like some other series out there. Well done, Kaufman and Kristoff, I look forward to reading your next collaboration.

Sarah Bruch

June 2018

(pub: Rock The Boat. 615 page paperback. Price: £ 9.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-78074-983-9)

check out website: www.rocktheboat.london/

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