Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff

The basics

Title: Aurora Rising

Author: and

Series: The Aurora Cycle #1

- Aurora Rising (2019)
- Aurora Burning (2020)
- Untitled (2021)

Add it: Goodreads

Goodreads Summary:

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 techwiz 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.

Read a full summary of Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff below. If you can’t remember what happened in Aurora Rising and you need a refresher, then you’re in the right place.

What happened in Aurora Rising?

  • Tyler Jones, an Alpha at Aurora Academy, goes on a flight the night before the Draft. There’s a storm in the Fold, and he gets caught as he tries to save people on another ship. He manages to get ARi out of cryo, but everyone else dies.
  • Ari wakes up. When she was frozen, she was heading to her dad on a terraforming base called Octavia. But everyone thinks her ship was heading elsewhere. She meets a few people, Tyler being one of them. He gifts her a smart tablet, and she starts researching.
  • Tyler and his crew go on their first mission, which is a supply run to Juno. They’re not happy about that. They’re also not happy about having Kal on board.
  • Kal is part of the Warbreed Cabal, so when Sagan stationlearns he’s on the ship, they aim missiles at the crew. The crew manages to board the station after some negotiating and find only 100 people there.
  • One of the Syldrathi refugees telepathically scans Kal and grows suspicious.
  • An Unbroken ship arrives. And so does Auri, who was hiding aboard the crew’s ship. The Unbroken threaten the crew.
  • Aedra keeps having a go at Kal and I really don’t think now is the time.
  • Auri’s eye goes white?!?!?!
  • Auri tells the others that her colony has been wiped away.
  • The GIA tries to take Auri away, claiming to be taking her home. Princeps escorts her away and chains her up.
  • The crew are detained. Cat tells the others that the TDF destroyed Sagan station. They all wonder if Auri is now psychic. They escape, rescue Auri, and become outlaws.
  • Scarlett bumps into Auri when she appears to be sleepwalking. Auri’s nose starts bleeding when she takes over the ship’s controls. Scarlett is unable to move to stop her.
  • Zila arrives and stuns Auri.
  • Auri, while in her trance, put in the coordinates for Sempiternity, a trading hub. Basically, pirates!
  • Auri wakes up and can’t remember anything. She watches the recording of herself back and the crew sees that she was speaking backwards.
  • When the crew tries to turn the ship around, Auri goes into another weird trance and shuts off the engines. They head to Sempiternity and Auri seems happy with that.
  • Scarlett tells Auri that Octavia is uninhabitable, so clearly something dodgy has been going on there. Auri suggests they check it out anyway.
  • Upon arrival at Sempiternity, the crew stay with Fin’s third cousin Dariel. Some of them go to a bar, and Kal explains cabals to arui, and tells her how a lot of his fellow Warbreed started calling themselves the Unbroken. Their leader is called Caersan, the Starslayer. I wonder if he named himself…. His Unbroken made a star collapse and killed ten billion Syldrathi.
  • They end up having to fight off some Unbroken at the bar.
  • Meanwhile, Fin is trying to explain to Dariel how exactly they are third cousins.
  • Dariel tells them about an art dealer called Bianchi. Ari starts drawing pictograms in her sleep. They figure out that Ari has been drawing a sculpture called the Trigger, which is also what she was mumbling about on the ship. Tyler and Kal kiss at some point to distract the guards.
  • The crew attend Bianchi’s masquerade and steal the Trigger from Bianchi. Tyler brings up the fact that if there’s a Trigger, there must be a Weapon. insert Sam Winchester lock/key gif here They have to leave the party quite abruptly, but they all manage to escape.
  • Zila shows the crew a dead GIA agent. Their uniform was removed, and beneath it is a dead woman who Auri recognises from back in the day. It’s Patrice, Auri’s dad’s partner. COINCIDENCE?! She has a plant growing out of her eye, which is gross. Kal says this has happened before, and they think something is chemically controlling the GIA agents’ bodies.
  • Maybe this is why Octavia is uninhabitable?!?! Just a thought.
  • Zila knocks Auri out, and Scarlett interrogates her when she enters her weird zombie-like state.
  • Kal starts waffling on about a mating bond with Auri.
  • Auri starts talking about the Ancient Ones and then she telekinetically lifts the Trigger, which shatters and reveals a diamond which shows a map of the galaxy.
  • Kal tells the Ancient One to release Auri. It says “All burn.” and then leaves. Kal then expains mating bonds to Auri, which he calls the Pull. It’s like Twilight all over again.
  • Cat has mapped out the Trigger’s galaxies and has realised they’re weak spots in the Fold. They’re very cloe to Octavia right now, so they head there.
  • The GIA realise what the crew are doing. They follow them, but then the GIA ship is attacked by Bianchi’s ship, as he’s now after the Trigger. Phew.
  • There’s a fire fight and the other ships are destroyed. Cat lands the crew’s ship near a settlement on Octavia. Fin’s suit is damaged.
  • The crew explores Octavia and tries to salvage parts for their ship. The plants on Octavia look like the one that was in Patrice’s eye, and there’s pollen everywhere.
  • Auri thinks all this is very strange because she doesn’t think Octavia was supposed to be covered in plants and pollen like this.
  • A chimpanzee attacks the crew and injures Cat, exposing her skin to the pollen. Zila shoots it. Cat is taken to the nearby med centre by Tyler, Scarlett, and Zila in case there’s medicine there.
  • Auri, Kal, and Fin continue to search for parts. Fin leaves Kal and Auri alone. Kal and Auri discuss the bond, and Auri asks Kal to give her time to think things over. Fin interrupts over the com so they go to find him. They’re attacked by three plant zombies, but Kal saves them.
  • At the med centre, Cat is deteriorating. Zila looks around for medicine and Scarlett starts hearing voices.
  • Fin tells Tyler over the com that their group is going back to the ship. Tyler’s group heads back too.
  • Auri goes into Cat’s mind and figures out there’s something in there. It’s the same thing that’s controlling the plant zombies and everything on Octavia. The Ancient Ones tried to fight it but they failed.
  • Another ship arrives with Princeps on board. The leader of the plant zombies takes off his mask and reveals his face – it’s Auri’s dad. Auri wants to go with him but logically knows it’s a bad idea. Cat, however, fully joins the plant zombies.
  • Tyler is super upset about not saving Cat. Auri reassures him, and says that Cat saw this defeat as a victory. She says the Ancient Ones plan to use her to defeat the plant zombies – aka the Ra’haam. But I like plant zombies better.
  • Fin points out that the whole government could be infected and shouldn’t be trusted.
  • The crew heads to find the Weapon.

This is a full plot summary of what happened in Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff. Check out our recap list for more recaps. If you can’t find what you need, you can request a recap from us!

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