Title: The 5th Wave
Author: Rick Yancey
Genre/Audience: Young adult, sci-fi, dystopian
Publication: Putnam Juvenile, 2013
Holy moly, The 5th Wave was completely awesome and I was hooked within the first few pages! Seriously, I knew just a few pages in that this book would be thrilling, and it was.
Aliens have taken over planet Earth in waves, and Cassie wonders if she’s the only surviving human after billions have been killed off. She believes that in order to stay alive, she can trust no one and she must remain alone. She roams the desolate streets, passing dead vehicles and even deader bodies with a gun in her hand and a mission in her heart: to find her 5 year old brother, Sammy, whom she believes is still alive. While searching for him, she must avoid the others, aliens who look and act like humans whose goal it is to kill any and all remaining humans as well as manipulate and deceive. Along the way, she meets the mysterious Evan Walker who saves her life but has dark secrets to hide.
This book was exciting, action packed, and kept me guessing all the way through. There were so many questions and not enough answers. Why did the aliens come down? What do they want? How many people are left in the world? Who can be trusted? Who is one of THEM? And ya know what, I still don’t know all of the answers. I am still wondering, thinking, reasoning in my head about what all of this means. For sure, I am anxiously awaiting the release of the sequel in hopes of discovering answers to my many questions. This is a sign of a good novel.
It reminded me in a lot of ways of The Walking Dead, but with aliens instead of zombies. To me, this is an incredibly huge compliment. The empty streets, hand to hand combat, inability to trust, banding together of people… there were so many similarities so if you’re a fan of one, I’m certain you’ll be a fan of the other.
I have to say, when the story first shifted narration (as there are several narrators throughout), I was a bit thrown. I was confused and slightly disappointed at first, until I discovered who the other narrators were and the information they had… then I was hooked… again. Don’t let the switching narrators deter you – you will be fascinated by the other sides and aspects of the story.
There is so much I could say about this novel: it was gripping all the way through and had me thinking about it when I wasn’t reading it, wondering when I could pick it up next. I read it in all of my spare moments, dying to find the answers. It is scary, suspenseful, mind-blowing, and lightning fast. I am dying for the sequel and will be recommending this to everyone I know (in fact, I’ve already started). Pick it up now – I dare you not to be sucked in!
My Rating: 5/5 reviewed by Steph - our awesome Teen librarian at Barnard Crossing Branch, who also is a recent bride!