Aurora Rising
Goodreads ratings
4.17 / 5

"Aurora Rising" Characters Analysis

By Amie Kaufman

science fiction | 473 pages | Published in NaN

From the internationally bestselling authors of THE ILLUMINAE FILES comes an epic new science fiction adventure.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 sarcasmA sociopath scientist with a fondness for shooting her bunkmatesA smart-ass techwiz with the galaxy’s biggest chip on his shoulderAn alien warrior with anger management issuesA tomboy pilot who’s totally not into him, in case you were wonderingAnd 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. They're not the heroes we deserve. They're just the ones we could find. Nobody panic.


Estimated read time: 6 min read

Table of Contents

  1. List of Characters

List of Characters

Character NameRole
Tyler JonesSquad Leader
Aurora Jie-Lin O'MalleyStowaway
Scarlett JonesAce Pilot
Cat BrannockDiplomat
Kal GilwraethWeapons Specialist
Finian de Karran de SeelTech Specialist
Zila MadranScientist
MagellanArtificial Intelligence

Role Identification

In the science fiction novel "Aurora Rising" by Amie Kaufman, a diverse group of characters form a squad known as Aurora Legion. Each character plays a specific role within the squad and contributes to the overarching plot and character development. The roles within the squad include:

  1. Squad Leader: Tyler Jones
  2. Stowaway: Aurora Jie-Lin O'Malley
  3. Ace Pilot: Scarlett Jones
  4. Diplomat: Cat Brannock
  5. Weapons Specialist: Kal Gilwraeth
  6. Tech Specialist: Finian de Karran de Seel
  7. Scientist: Zila Madran
  8. Artificial Intelligence: Magellan

Character Descriptions

  1. Tyler Jones: As the squad leader, Tyler is a natural-born leader with exceptional skills in combat and strategy. He is known for his loyalty, determination, and sense of responsibility towards his team.
  2. Aurora Jie-Lin O'Malley: Aurora is a stowaway who wakes up from cryo-sleep after being frozen for over 200 years. She possesses mysterious powers and displays a mix of vulnerability and resilience throughout the story.
  3. Scarlett Jones: Scarlett is an ace pilot and Tyler's twin sister. She is confident, skilled, and fiercely protective of her squadmates. Her piloting abilities and quick thinking prove crucial in many dangerous situations.
  4. Cat Brannock: Cat is the diplomat of the squad, known for her negotiation skills and ability to defuse tense situations. She is intelligent, resourceful, and often acts as a moral compass for the team.
  5. Kal Gilwraeth: Kal is the weapons specialist, a member of the alien warrior race called the Syldrathi. He is strong, skilled in combat, and struggles with his loyalty to his people and his newfound alliance with the Aurora Legion.
  6. Finian de Karran de Seel: Finian is the tech specialist, known for his sarcastic humor and brilliant technical skills. He is a disabled cyborg with a mysterious past, and his expertise with technology proves invaluable to the squad.
  7. Zila Madran: Zila is the scientist of the group, with a cold and detached personality. She is highly intelligent and analytical, often providing crucial scientific insights to solve problems.
  8. Magellan: Magellan is the artificial intelligence that assists the squad. It provides valuable information, guidance, and acts as a source of comic relief throughout the story.

Character Traits

Each character in "Aurora Rising" possesses distinct personality traits that shape their actions and interactions within the squad. These traits include:

  1. Tyler Jones: Leadership, loyalty, determination, responsibility
  2. Aurora Jie-Lin O'Malley: Vulnerability, resilience, mysterious powers
  3. Scarlett Jones: Confidence, protectiveness, piloting skills
  4. Cat Brannock: Diplomacy, intelligence, resourcefulness
  5. Kal Gilwraeth: Strength, combat skills, inner conflict
  6. Finian de Karran de Seel: Sarcasm, technical expertise, mysterious past
  7. Zila Madran: Intelligence, analytical thinking, detachment
  8. Magellan: Information, guidance, humor

Character Background

The characters in "Aurora Rising" come from diverse backgrounds, contributing to the richness and complexity of the story. Tyler Jones has a military background, trained to become a squad leader in the Aurora Academy. Aurora Jie-Lin O'Malley, on the other hand, was a stowaway on a spaceship and woke up centuries later with mysterious powers. Scarlett Jones comes from a family of accomplished pilots, while Cat Brannock hails from a diplomatic family with a strong sense of justice.

Kal Gilwraeth comes from the Syldrathi warrior race, with a conflicted loyalty between his people and the Aurora Legion. Finian de Karran de Seel has a complicated past involving his transformation into a cyborg, and Zila Madran's scientific expertise stems from her upbringing in a research-oriented family. Magellan, as an artificial intelligence, has been programmed to assist and support the squad members.

Character Arcs

Throughout "Aurora Rising," the characters undergo significant character arcs that shape their growth and development. Tyler Jones evolves from a by-the-book leader to someone willing to challenge authority for the greater good. Aurora Jie-Lin O'Malley discovers and embraces her powers, becoming more confident in her abilities. Scarlett Jones learns to balance her protectiveness with trusting her squadmates' capabilities.

Cat Brannock's arc involves grappling with her family's expectations and finding her own path within the squad. Kal Gilwraeth confronts his internal conflict and chooses loyalty to his newfound family over his race. Finian de Karran de Seel confronts his past and learns to accept himself as he is. Zila Madran experiences personal growth, developing deeper connections with her squadmates.


The relationships between the characters in "Aurora Rising" play a crucial role in the narrative's development. Tyler Jones and Aurora Jie-Lin O'Malley develop a deep bond as they navigate the challenges of their respective roles. The sibling relationship between Tyler and Scarlett Jones is characterized by unwavering support and understanding.

Cat Brannock forms a close friendship with Aurora and becomes a mentor figure for her. Kal Gilwraeth and Aurora share a complex relationship as they navigate their different backgrounds and develop trust. Finian de Karran de Seel's friendship with the rest of the squad evolves into a tight-knit family dynamic. Zila Madran's relationships grow as she learns to trust and rely on her squadmates.

In "Aurora Rising" by Amie Kaufman, the characters' roles, traits, backgrounds, arcs, and relationships intertwine to create a captivating and engaging narrative. Each character brings their unique strengths and vulnerabilities, contributing to the squad's success and the overall story's depth.