Title: The 5th Wave
Author: Rick Yancey
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Publication Date: May 7, 2013
After the 1st wave, only darkness remains. After the 2nd, only the lucky escape. And after the 3rd, only the unlucky survive. After the 4th wave, only one rule applies: trust no one.
Now, it’s the dawn of the 5th wave, and on a lonely stretch of highway, Cassie runs from Them. The beings who only look human, who roam the countryside killing anyone they see. Who have scattered Earth’s last survivors. To stay alone is to stay alive, Cassie believes, until she meets Evan Walker. Beguiling and mysterious, Evan Walker may be Cassie’s only hope for rescuing her brother—or even saving herself. But Cassie must choose: between trust and despair, between defiance and surrender, between life and death. To give up or to get up.
I have to start by saying, I loved every second of The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey. I wanted to lock myself in a room with a do not disturb sign on the door until I was done (sadly, it actually took me five days to read it because I have to do things like go to work and sleep.) I loved it so much that I might even recommend that you stop reading this review and get yourself a copy of The 5th Wave and start reading right now.
All that being said, The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey is a book I had high expectations of going in. In case you skipped over the first paragraph of this review, my expectations were actually exceeded and it really does live up to all the hype. Starting with the characters, we have Cassie, her father, and her five year-old brother, Sammy. Forced to leave their home, the goal is to get to an Air force base where they have a better chance for survival. Cassie is fierce and independent. Rick Yancey lets us in on what Cassie is thinking and she is both smart and funny. The use of humor and sarcasm throughout The 5th Wave gives an otherwise pretty dark book, some levity. Eventually, Cassie is separated from her brother and she spends most of the book plotting to get him back.
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey is broken down into sections that contain chapters in the voices of different characters. I loved this because it really lets you get to know the characters and what their motivations are. Not everyone is what they seem and getting to see into their heads, gives you a much better understanding of what is going on. The dire situation (hello, alien invasion and the world is ending) keeps The 5th Wave in constant motion. There is one lull for a love story but even that serves a purpose in pushing everyone forward.
I love how the different stories interconnect in ways that are surprising. There are quite a few places in The 5th Wave where I was very surprised by a turn of events. It forces the reader to be on the edge of their seat for the entire 480 pages and never lets up. Everything from the dialogue to the action is pitch perfect throughout. The only negative I can mention about The 5th Wave is the massive feeling of loss I have for having finished it and waiting who knows how long for the next book. So please, take my advice and get yourself a copy of The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey. I promise you will not regret it.
Summary and cover image from goodreads.