I adore this series. When the first book (Illuminae) started appearing on Instagram, I wasn’t at all convinced this would be something for me. It’s build from chats, analysed video, dossiers, message boards and Aidan’s insane but entertaining ramblings. It’s not a format I usually enjoyed reading, as it often pulls me out of the story. With the Illuminae Files (the entire series) it doesn’t bother me one bit. It makes the story more amazing, to be honest. I always tell people not to take anything away from how it’s built, but to just start reading it. Because you. Have. To. Read. It. This year, after a really long wait, the final book in the series finally came out. And I had a lot of hopes pinned on Obsidio.
And boy, did Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff deliver again. I am in love with Obsidio, and it was a terrible moment when I had to close the book and realise this series was over and done with. Luckily, the acknowledgments section in the back revealed a whole new Andromeda Cycle already planned. The section was also funny as hell, which is a big plus for this entire series. No matter what amazing, horrifying, desperate and gory things are happening, there’s always room for romance, snarky comments and a big dosis of humor.
Both Illuminae and Gemina have gotten 5 stars from me, so I’ll start with the obvious: why have I given Obsidio only 4 by comparison? Because this book is the final one, and it needs to marry the conclusion of the overall plot with the introduction of new characters Rhys and Asha, in a completely new environment. I think the series would have been done justice more if Rhys and Asha fully controlled this third book, and a fourth would have wrapped up the whole of the series with all of them finally together. So it’s a bit much to put all in one book. But that, really, is going to be my only criticism of Obsidio.
Well, that and maybe that we didn’t get something to top the Lamina parasites. That cow insertion (and births) in Gemina was about the grossest thing I’ve ever read and I’ve read it with a sort of horrified glee because only Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff will go there. I thought it was awesome. But it is hard to top such a thing, when you have to focus on the Kerenza IV rebellion as things come to a close.
What I’ve always loved (and also hated because poor Hannah), is that the series is not afraid to kill off a whole bunch of people. Who do not deserve to die at all. Aidan is fully at it again, and I have real respect for the way Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff manage to keep bringing him back online (justifiably!) even though we all know death and destruction is a real possibility. The characters just don’t have any real choice. Aidan himself is an extremely interesting character, of course, who develops even further in this book. You could write a psych paper on that character and I actually wish I was still studying it, because I would have.
I also really loved finally finding out how they pull it all off. Getting back for the trial against Leanne Frobisher, who the video technician is. I always kinda thought it was going to be who it was, but on a more subconscious level. It clicked when Ezra and Nik started talking in the hangar bay after Aidan’s hilarious attempt at a practical joke. The epilogue-like part at the end was a dream come true to read: just the group joking and laughing together.
How it was going to end was never a surprise (UP YOURS, LEANNE), but that doesn’t mean it wasn’t intensely satisfying to read.
I can’t get around it: I love Obsidio and I will not apologise for idealising it. There are probably things to pick apart, but it was an amazing end to an amazing trilogy. I adore the fun with which these books were written, and they are so amazing in their build-up of suspense, their unapologetic murder of innocents and the gore. OMG, the gore is amazing. Also, can Winnifred McCall please be in the Andromedia Cycle? And cameo’s for all the rest of them?
I’m going to say it again: read this series. It is so going to be worth your time. Obsidio did suffer a bit from too much cramped in there – the new additions, the new setting ánd the wrapping up of the overall story. I would have liked it better if there had been four books. But I would always like books to be longer.