Aurora Rising
by Kaufman, Amie; Kristoff, Jay

Relegated by a misguided act of heroism to a squad comprised of his school's hopeless misfits, a graduating cadet in a 24th-century space academy rescues a centuries-hibernating girl from interdimensional space only to be swept up in an interstellar war millions of years in the making. By the best-selling authors of the Illuminae Files. Simultaneous eBook.

Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff are the New York Times bestselling co-authors of the Illuminae Files. Amie has also co-written (with Meagan Spooner) the Starbound and the Unearthed trilogies. Jay is the author of the LIFEL1K3 series, as well as the Nevernight Chronicle and the Lotus War series for adults. Collectively, Amie and Jay stand 12'5" tall and live in Melbourne, Australia, with two long-suffering spouses, two rescue dogs, and a plentiful supply of caffeine. They met thanks to international taxation law and stuck together due to a shared love of blowing things up and breaking hearts. You can learn more about Amie at or @AmieKaufman; look for Jay at or @misterkristoff.

*Starred Review* At the Aurora Academy, in the year 2380, cadets train to become part of a six-member squad. Tyler Jones is a born Alpha-a squad leader-but as the day of the Draft arrives, when he's supposed to get first pick of his squad members, he's in space rescuing a girl frozen in cryo on a ship full of bodies. Aurora Jie-Lin O'Malley has been asleep for more than 200 years; part of a doomed settlers' mission, her vanished spaceship is legendary. As Tyler deals with the consequences of missing the Draft-sure, he's got his twin sister, Scarlett, and his best friend, Cat, on his side, but his squad now includes a techie with an attitude problem, a scientist that shoots people out of curiosity, and an alien combat strategist who's really, really violent-Auri tries to adjust. When she reencounters Tyler and his squad, the whole crew find themselves wrapped up in a mission that's bigger than any of them-and maybe a little bigger than they can handle. The brains behind the Illuminae Files team up for another high-concept, higher-­stakes sf adventure. Rotating perspectives and never-flagging energy propel this narrative forward, which, if it weren't compelling enough on its own, is given illustrious life by its ragtag, always-at-odds cast. Frequent inserts from the iPad-like uniglass provide little nuggets of detail about this future world. Now if only we could get it to leak book two.HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Independently, Kaufman and Kristoff make pretty big splashes in sf; together, they made the Illuminae Files, which hit best-seller lists and garnered critical acclaim. This new series starter is already generating buzz. Grades 9-12. Copyright 2019 Booklist Reviews.

When Legionnaire Tyler Jones follows a distress call to rescue a cryogenically frozen girl from a 220-year-old lost transport ship the night before the squad Draft, he ends up with much less-and much more-than he expected. Having missed the Draft, overachieving Tyler is stuck with a squad of leftover misfits that now represent the Aurora Legion, an interplanetary peacekeeping coalition. The six teammates, each with an area of expertise, include four men and women of varying skin tones as well as two members of alien species. On the motley crew's first mission, however, they discover a stowaway: biracial (Chinese/white) human Aurora Jie-Lin O'Malley, recently rescued girl out of time. Trouble follows immediately. This first installment of Kaufman and Kristoff's (Obsidio, 2018, etc.) second series is a high-octane, thrilling, snarky adventure through space, combining the best elements of the heist genre with space opera. Nonstop action, intrigue, and drama will kee p readers turning pages as the squad seeks answers to questions about Aurora's past, her superhuman powers, and why the entire Terran Defense Force is after her. Meanwhile, the seven shipmates blossom into a true cohort as their pasts are revealed and their bonds (romantic or otherwise) grow. A satisfying ending reveals the truth, both terrible and beautiful, with the promise of many more adventures ahead. This intergalactic space opera has it all: action, thrills, suspense, laughs, and all the feels. (Science fiction. 13-18) Copyright Kirkus 2019 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.

I'm gonna miss the Draft.
The Hadfield is disintegrating around me. Black arcs of quantum lightning are melting the ship's hull to slag. My spacesuit is screaming seventeen different alarms, the lock on this damn cryogenic pod still won't open, and that's the one thought blaring in my head. Not that I should've stayed in my rack and gotten a good night's sleep. Not that I should've just ignored the damn distress call and headed back to Aurora Academy. And not that this is a really stupid way to die.
Nope. Looking death right in the face, Tyler Jones, Squad Leader, First Class, is thinking one thing, and one thing only.
I'm gonna miss the damn Draft.
I mean, you work your whole life for a Thing, it's only natural the Thing be important to you. But most rational people would consider getting vaporized inside a derelict spaceship drifting through interdimensional space just a little more important than school. That's all I'm saying.
I look down at the girl sleeping inside the cryopod. She has shortish black hair, with a strange white streak running through her bangs. Freckles. A gray jumpsuit. Her expression is the kind of blissful you only see on babies or the cryogenically frozen.
I wonder what her name is.
I wonder what she'd say if she knew she was about to get me killed.
And I shake my head, muttering over the scream of my suit alarms as the ship around me begins to tear itself into a million burning pieces.
'she better be worth it, Jones."
Let's back it up a little.
About four hours, to be exact. I know they say to start your story at the exciting bit, but you need to know what's going on here so you can actually care about me getting vaporized. Because me getting vaporized is totally gonna suck.
So. Four hours ago, I'm in my dorm at Aurora Academy. I'm staring up at the underside of Björkman's mattress and praying to the Maker that our training officers throw some kind of grav-failure or fire drill at us. The night before the Draft, they'll probably just let us get some rest. But I'm praying anyway, because:
(a)       Even though he never snores, Björkman is snoring now, and I can't sleep.
(b)       I'm wishing my dad could be there to see me tomorrow, and I can't sleep.
(c)        It's the night before the Draft, and I. CAN't. SLEEP.
I dunno why I'm so worked up. I should be cool as ice. I've aced every exam. Finished top of almost every class. Ninetyninth percentile of all cadets in the academy.
Jones, Tyler, Squad Leader, First Class.
Goldenboy. That's what the other Alphas call me. Some throw it as an insult, but I take it as a compliment. Nobody worked harder than me to get here. Nobody worked harder once they arrived. And now all that work is about to pay off, because tomorrow is the Draft and I've earned four of the top five picks, and I'm gonna have the best squad a senior class in Aurora Academy has ever seen.
So why can't I sleep?
Surrendering with a long sigh, I climb out of my bunk, drag on my uniform, drag my hand through my blond hair. And shooting a look at Björkman that I wish could kill'or at least mute'I slap the door control pad and stalk out into the corridor, cutting off his snores behind me.
It's late: 02:17 station clock. The illumination is set low to simulate nighttime, but the fluorescent strips in the floor light up as I mooch down the hallway. I ping my sister, Scarlett, on my uniglass, but she doesn't answer. I think about pinging Cat, but she's probably asleep. Like I should be.
I wander past a long plasteel window, looking at the Aurora star burning beyond, gilding the frame's edge in palest gold. In old Terran mythology, Aurora was the goddess of the dawn. She heralded the coming of daylight, the end of night. Someone back in the day gave her name to a star, and that star gave its name to the academy now orbiting it, and the Aurora Legion I've given my life to.
Five years I've lived here. Signed up the day I turned thirteen, my twin sister right beside me. The recruiter on New Gettysburg Station remembered our dad. Told us he was sorry. Promised we'd make the bastards pay. That Dad's sacrifice'all our soldiers' sacrifices'wouldn't be for nothing.
I wonder if I still believe that. I should be sleeping.
I don't know where I'm going.
Except I know exactly where I'm going.
Stalking down the corridor toward the docking bay. Jaw clenched.
Hands in my pockets to hide the fists.
Four hours later, I'm pounding those same fists on the cryopod's seal.
The chamber around me is filled with a hundred pods just like it, all rimed with a layer of pale frost. The ice cracks a little under my blows, but the seal isn't opening. My uniglass is running a wireless hack on the lock, but it's too slow.
If I don't get out of here soon, I'm dead.
Another shock wave hits the Hadfield, shaking the whole ship. There's no gravity in the derelict, so I can't fall. But I'm hanging on to the cryopod, which means I still get whipped around like a kid's toy, smashing my spacesuit's helmet into another pod and adding one more alarm to the seventeen already blaring in my ears.
Warning: suit integrit y breach. h20 reservoir compromised.
Uh-oh . . .
The girl in the cryopod frowns in her sleep like she's having a bad dream. For a moment, I consider what it's gonna mean for her if we make it out of this alive.
And then I feel something wet at the base of my skull. Inside my helmet. I twist my head and try to spot the problem, and the wetness sloshes across the back of my neck, surface tension gluing it to my skin. I realize my drinking tube has ruptured. That my hydration tanks are emptying into my helmet. That even if this FoldStorm doesn't kill me, in about seven minutes, my helmet is gonna fill with water and I'm gonna be the first human I've ever heard of to drown in space.
If we make it out of this alive? 'No chance," I mutter.

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