Aurora Rising Book Review

Aurora Rising is the first book of the Aurora Cycle by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff.


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.



I found it slow to start but it got more interesting as the story progresses as we meet Aurora. The story is told by the members of Squad 312 who are a bunch of misfits but somehow when the time counts, pull off the impossible. The plot is interesting and the banter was hilarious.

The relationship between the characters is what makes the book. There are seven main characters in which the chapters alternate between their perspectives but each of their voices are so unique which was great to read. The characters are:

  • Tyler Jones, Alpha: commanding officer and is the golden boy at the Aurora Academy. He is responsible for the success or failure of any given mission as well as the lives of his squad.
  • Scarlett Jones, Face: twin to Tyler and is the diplomat of the squad. She deals with friends or foes and is well versed in the cultures, traditions and languages of many species and is a skilled negotiator.
  • Catherine ‘Cat’ Brannock, Ace: she has known Tyler since they were five years old and is known for missing zero percent of the targets in the pilot stream exam. She is daring, confident and even reckless.
  • Finian de Karren de Seel, Gearhead: he is the mechanic of Squad 312 and is responsible for keeping the machinery and equipment going in the field.
  • Kaliis ‘Kal’ Gilwraeth, Tank: he is a Syldrathi (alien) and is a specialist in martial arts.
  • Zila Madran, Brain: she is the science and medical officer of the squad.
  • Aurora Jie-Lin O’Malley: she was in cryosleep for 200 years and she is confused but has awesome mind gifts.

I ended up enjoyed this book and looking forward to Aurora Burning. I recommend this book to readers of The Starbound Trilogy.

4/5 stars

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