Written by Jay Kristoff

Published by Knopf, May 29, 2018

My star rating: 5 stars (is anyone surprised?)


On a floating junkyard beneath a radiation sky, a deadly secret lies buried in the scrap.

Eve isn’t looking for secrets—she’s too busy looking over her shoulder. The robot gladiator she’s just spent six months building has been reduced to a smoking wreck, and the only thing keeping her Grandpa from the grave was the fistful of credits she just lost to the bookies. To top it off, she’s discovered she can destroy electronics with the power of her mind, and the puritanical Brotherhood are building a coffin her size. If she’s ever had a worse day, Eve can’t remember it.

But when Eve discovers the ruins of an android boy named Ezekiel in the scrap pile she calls home, her entire world comes crashing down. With her best friend Lemon Fresh and her robotic conscience, Cricket, in tow, she and Ezekiel will trek across deserts of irradiated glass, infiltrate towering megacities and scour the graveyard of humanity’s greatest folly to save the ones Eve loves, and learn the dark secrets of her past.

Even if those secrets were better off staying buried. Find it on Goodreads

spoiler free graphic


When it comes to Jay Kristoff, there’s something vital that you must understand – Always expect the unexpected. But, even though you think you’re prepared, he will still find a way to catch you completely off guard! And Lifel1k3 is a shining example of that! I am absolutely fascinated with every detail of this book. From the earths destruction, how people are living now, the robots and AI’s, the other things created by big companies….. all of it! There was just so much to soak in and I was loving it every step of the way! I might also mention right off the bat that this seemed to be an Anastasia retelling…… so there’s that!!!!! So exciting right?!

First of all, this book starts with a bot fight – a legit BOT FIGHT! I mean…. I was sold on this book as soon as it had Kristoff on the cover, but this first introduction sealed the deal! This is a little more into the science fiction genre than Illuminae was. There were a lot of robots, genetics, and things created by the players of the plot. It was never overwhelming for me though, but I can see how this will be a little over the top for some people who don’t necessarily love science fiction. But it all made sense and worked so well throughout the story. I appreciated that he used the tech as the plot points throughout the whole book. There are regular robots and then there are Lifelikes. Each of these beings (who were put in place to assist humans), must follow 3 simple rules. It’s those rules that govern and propel the plot and it’s genius!!!

The other thing that was done so well was the female friendship between Eve Carpenter and Lemon Fresh…… that’s right ladies and gents, there is a character named Lemon Fresh! Yes, there’s a reason, but I won’t be telling you! These two were true friends in every way. They were there in the best and worst of times, but especially in the worst. They acted out of pure trust and loyalty, taking action without complaint or question. They had a saying – “Stronger together, together forever” – and it was said and done in the most sincere way.

Along the same lines of relationships, there was also the relationship between human and machine. The lines were blurred and seemed different depending on the situation. On one hand the machine was created for assistance and protection. The machines needed to follow direction and would place themselves in harms way before letting their master/mistress get hurt. But, along the way, humans started to feel for their machines. Some agreed while others strongly disagreed. Though the machines were “created”, it wasn’t believed that one should have feelings for another. It was incredibly interesting to see who fell on what side of the line and why. I can’t say any more without spoiling something, but it made me consider a lot of things. Eve had a robot named Cricket and a mechanical dog named Kaiser, and it was through her relationships with them that we understood that machines may be more human than human.

The writing was in true King Kistoff style. Even though it was a little higher up on the science fiction end, it was never confusing. In fact, some of my favourite parts were the info dumping parts where we were either learning about the world or the tech. But it’s his humour and one liners that made this book shine! The dialogue from the characters (more specifically Lemon Fresh) was so funny and it was as if they were hard asses speaking without a filter. My favourite line was:

“You shake that thing at us again, your sisters going to bed disappointed tonight”

Not only was Lemon and Eve well developed, but they all were! There were main characters technically, but they all felt like a giant cast/team. We learned so much about all of them, they all just felt so multi dimensional! He was even able to write the machines/robots so well that I often forgot they weren’t human….

I also need to mention that there is quite a bit of slang in this book. Both in the way they talk in general and also the tech that’s used. It took me a little bit to get the understanding under my belt enough that I didn’t stutter by reading, but in the end I felt fluent in their language. It actually helped me to dive deeper into the world and the characters! And what an insane world to live in!

And, like I said, expect the unexpected…… the ending had my mind spinning so hard that I didn’t sleep until 3am. It prompted me to ask so many questions!!! And my jaw was on the floor for about an hour.

Safe to say, this book was a glorious masterpiece of science fiction! King Kristoff did NOT disappoint!!! Proved, yet again, why I put him on the throne as my favourite author!!!

Until next time, happy reading!

37 Comments Add yours

  1. Great review! I’ll need to read this book! I didn’t know Jay Kristoff wrote this! That’s so cool 😀 It sounds great

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Birdie says:

    We had the exact same reaction to how this book ended! It was so hard to think of anything else! My mind was blown!

    I’m not a huge sci-fi reader, but this one worked for me. I loved all the characters so much. Definitely another great book by Kristoff. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hours!! I spent hours going through it all and thinking of different theories! I still haven’t stopped thinking about it 😂


      1. Birdie says:

        I know! It was a mindf*ck!


        1. That’s the PERFECT word for it!

          Liked by 1 person

  3. Beware Of The Reader says:

    You really make me need to read his books Shanah!!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s because you really need to!!! 😂


  4. Ashley Rae says:

    I just gave this 4 stars. I’m excited for the next one! Great review ☺️

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wonderful review!! I need to start reading Jay Kristoff’s books! I feel so behind!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I absolutely adore him! If I didn’t make that clear enough in the review 😂 hope you end up loving him as much as I do.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. And I’m a big fan of the cover! I have pre-ordered this one 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hope you love it! I’m going to pick up the UK cover because it’s stellar!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Emmie says:

    I soooo want to pick this book up when it comes out tbh like it sounds really good!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Yaaaas, Shanah! I’m so glad that you enjoyed this! I gave it 5 stars as well. I LOVED the characters in this. Lemon Fresh was my absolute favorite. I can’t wait to see where the story goes next.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lemon was my favourite too!! I’m a little terrified to see where the story goes – there are so many directions!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I agree! I’m really intrigued at how the MC might develop for book 2. I’m almost anticipating that Lemon might shift into a central protagonist figure at some point, which would be really neat.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. That’s what I’m counting on!! I have no idea what he has in store for Eve. This could all be a trick or maybe she really has lost it. So many theories!!

          Liked by 1 person

  9. fictionologyst says:

    Great review! I’m adding it to my wishlist now! I always love Jay Kristoff’s writing, I totally agree with the surprise and twist, he’s the master!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! Hope you love it!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. kyera says:

    Fantastic review, I really want to read this!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know you’ll love it!

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Liv says:

    Great review! I’m adding this to my TBR and we’ll see when I read it haha I heard a lot of good things about it, too, on BookTube!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. shelfishforbooks says:

    Yes! I’m always excited to see well developed female friendships in books! Did this book have footnotes like Kay Kristoff’s Nevernight series?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No there were no footnotes. And I’m still not sure if I like those or hate them… lol

      Liked by 1 person

  13. This is on my to be read list. I loved his Stormdancer, so I was excited for his new one! Great review, can’t wait!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I found the whole Stormdancer trilogy on Book Outlet a little while ago. I need to pick it up soon!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. The Other Weasley says:

    I finished this morning. The audiobook was fantastic. He is now known as the evil weaver in my head- he weaves a rug with his beautiful words and then he YANKS that bitch right out from under you. Damn he is good.
    Loved it and am glad I chose to listen to the audio. But, now I am Kristoff-less which, is just as bad as being Maas-less.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know!!! I’m Maas-less but not Kristoff-less. I plan on starting the Shadowdancer book soon!


      1. The Other Weasley says:

        I really need to pick that series up but I have an irrational fear that I won’t like it as much as his other books.
        I am trying to decide if I want to be eve or Lemon when I grow up.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. You can be Eve and I can be Lemon 🙂
          Same though. I haven’t started that series because I worry I won’t like it as much. Irrational fear! Oh, that and the font is super small lol


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