Sunday, 14 December 2014

The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey: Review

Title: The 5th Wave
Author: Rick Yancey
Publisher: Penguin Books 
Buy this book: Amazon / Book Depository 
The Passage meets The Hunger Games in a gripping new series from Carnegie-shortlisted Rick Yancey. 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. 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, until Cassie meets Evan Walker. Beguiling and mysterious, Evan may be her only hope for rescuing her brother and even saving herself. Now she must choose: between trust and despair, between defiance and surrender, between life and death. To give up or to get up. Cassie Sullivan gets up. 


Yes, I'm really late to The 5th Wave party. Fashionably so, if you ask me at least. I was actually nervous to read it, which probably explains why it has taken me so long to get to it. It feels like the hype surrounding it just gets bigger the more time that goes by, especially with a movie adaptation in the works. The more amazing things I heard about it, the more I put off reading it. Too often I feel disappointed in a read that is being seen as the next big thing. The hype doesn't seem justified and then you end up feeling like that guy, you know, the one who hates what almost everybody else loved. But, thankfully, I actually did really enjoy The 5th Wave.

I haven't read many alien invasion books, at least not many that I can remember. I liked the idea of the different waves of the invasion. Although, I must admit, the virus aspect of it had me wanting to vomit because the descriptions were too detailed for me. This book kept me reading because I wanted to find out more. No matter how much I found out, there were still questions that needed answering and I was desperate for those answers. I wanted to know why the aliens were there, what they wanted and what the end goal was.


I know that my feelings for The 5th Wave changed a lot over the course of the novel. I had a much higher opinion of it at the beginning, but by the halfway mark I started to enjoy it less. That probably had more to do with Cassie than anything else. I really loved her character in the beginning, she seemed so strong and determined. She's surviving on her own, with no idea if there is even another human being alive, and unable to trust that any human she does come across is actually even human. In the beginning I really loved her because of her strength, determination and will to survive.
'I am the one not running, not staying, but facing. Because if I am the last one, then I am humanity. And if this is humanity's last war, then I am the battlefield.'
My Evan feels.
My problems with the book started as soon as Cassie was brought together with Evan Walker. Her character changes so much after that, she loses so much of who she was at the beginning. I don't think that would have bothered me so much, if it wasn't for the fact that it's for a guy who is beyond creepy. The romance aspect between then is just so wrong, it feels so horribly forced and doesn't work at all. Evan is probably one of the creepiest guys I've come across, he stands outside of any room she is for ridiculously long periods of time, just listening to her. He's been watching and following her, so he's basically her stalker, not her romantic love interest. I was hoping an alien would suddenly appear and blast his face off, maybe then Cassie would go back to being the tough girl she was at the start of the book.


I was also surprised that we don't just stay with Cassie in this book, we get another characters narrative as well. I was a little surprised when that happened, but at least it was a way to get away from Cassie for a while once she started to bug me. We get Ben's story, who's found himself at a camp, where he is training to kill the aliens. Everyone at the camp gets the world's crappiest nicknames though - Ben is Zombie, then we have people like Oompah, Teacup, Dumbo, Tank, Flintstone and so on. Those are just terrible! Why would anyone want to be known by such awful nicknames. I just read Zombie as Ben every time because otherwise it would have drove me crazy.

I enjoyed the book, but I definitely wouldn't count it as a favourite. I liked the mystery aspect when it came to the aliens, the questions that their invasion raised. Wanting to get answers to my questions is probably what kept me reading. I did feel that there were quite a few plot holes in this, things that didn't completely make sense. The main one was the fact that the first wave got rid of electric and all methods of communication. But by the end of the 4th wave, Cassie and everyone all know the statistics of how many people have died across the world. HOW?!? How do you have such detailed statistics about the waves when you have no way of communicating.


 4/5 Butterflies

This was an enjoyable start to a series and had me itching to pick up the next book and see what would happen next. I was disappointed with how Cassie changed over the course of the book, I didn't like seeing her suddenly become weak and dependent as soon as she finds a guy. I was also left confused by some of the plot holes in this book and unanswered questions. I don't think it lived up to the giant hype surrounding it, but it is an enjoyable read and I will be continuing the series. 


30 comments:

  1. I've been meaning to read this for ages but haven't gotten around to it.
    Like you I'm worried I won't like it (especially as this year I've been disappointed by books that people have raved about).
    Great review :)

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    1. I really did enjoy it, but the sequel didn't work for me. So I am pretty unsure about the series, but I'm probably still going to continue the series.

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  2. You liked this book much more than I did.. damn that sequel - not good. BUT ANYWAY. It's great that you liked this like you did, I'm pleased :)

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    1. I did enjoy book one for the most part, but I was not a fan of book two. SO DISAPPOINTING!

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  3. I really enjoyed The 5th Wave and I really liked Evan, although I could see why he would come across as stalkerish. I hope you enjoy then next one even more. Great review! :) x

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    1. Haha, I don't even want to get to what I thought of book two. I'm nervous to write my review!

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  4. If it makes you feel any better I haven't started this series yet either. I am sure when the movie gets closer to being made and released I will read it but until then, I will probably hold off. I do love that so many people have loved this though and I do want to read it...soon.

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    1. I did enjoy it, but wasn't a fan of the sequel and that's making me nervous for book three. I'm not sure how I feel about the series just yet.

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  5. If I do pick this book up I would be even later onto the bandwagon. At least book two is there for you to read whenever you feel like delving into it! I am looking forward to it because like you, I haven't read many alien invasion books before. The nicknames seem a bit bothersome but nothing I couldn't cope with. And I hate when the romance makes the main character go all soppy ><

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    1. I really did enjoy the book overall, but the romance really didn't work for me. Sadly I wasn't a fan of book two though. So I'm not sure how I feel about the series overall, we shall see with the next book.

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  6. I NEEEED TO READ THIS BEFORE THE MOVIE. Omg, when does the movie come out? Next year I think....which is ridiculous because next year is so near. Ahhh. *ahem* But yes, focusing, focusing...I so want to read it, but I'm sad about Cassie. Creepy romance? *shudders* That totally is a turn-off for me. I hate it when I can't even ship anything. It's sad. But aliens and apocalypse and scary stuff...it's totally my kind of book. I need to stop procrastinating and just read it. XD

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    1. I have no idea, but I am curious about it. The book was good, but the sequel didn't work for me and so now I don't know how to feel about the series. I really did not like the romance in this book, it just didn't work at all. Evan was so creepy!

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  7. I've been meaning to read this one for a long time but somehow still haven't..... I'm interested to see if my opinion of Cassie will be similar to yours. Definitely need to pick it up soon. Not looking forward to the plot holes but it might be fun to see if I'll notice them too :D

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    1. I did enjoy the book overall, but Cassie was a problem for me and so was the romance. I really didn't enjoy the sequel though, so I am not sure how to feel about the series overall.

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  8. I haven't heard the greatest about this so I'm, glad you liked it. Ages ago I added it to the virtual TBR, then decided I wouldn't read it, then changed my mind (LOL). It seems to have an equal amount of pros and cons. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. I enjoyed it, but the sequel was so disappointing so I am not really digging the series overall. I'll probably still read book three, hopefully that will rescue the series.

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  9. I am THAT GUY. I strongly dislike The 5th Wave. I did read it before all the real hype started and as all these amazing reviews and love came storming in I was like :O. "I don't get it."
    So I shall remain the black sheep. Lol.
    YES! As soon as Evan was introduced the book really went to hell. Evan is the ultimate creep. I don't understand how people are saying, "he's my top book boyfriend." Huh? That's as bad as saying I love Christian Grey and all he stands for.... UGH!
    I could go on, but this is about you. I'm glad you enjoyed it, as no book deserves to be hated on(well most books). Are you going to read the sequel? I've heard you need to really lower your expectations. :/
    Happy reading!
    Brittany @ This is the Story of My(Reading) Life

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    1. Haha, well I HATED the sequel whereas almost everyone else thought it was THE BEST THING EVER! Eh... NO! It was boring, not much happened and the characters get even more annoying then they already were.

      EVAN! I HATE THAT GUY! He needs to die and never come back, he is gross. I don't get how people like him, especially as a romantic love interest.

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  10. Hype is either a blessing and a curse. Oh well... The 5th Wave was good but it wasn't great. I listened to the audio book so that's also a different experience (it got scary when I was listening at night) but I did like this book. I totally agree that the romance is creepy. That was a bit of a turn off for me. But yeah, over all, an enjoyable book. I heard The Infinite Sea isn't as great. - Joy @ The Bookshelf Intruder

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    1. My feelings exactly, I enjoyed it but I didn't love it or think it lived up to the huge hype. I read Infinite Sea and really didn't like it. I thought it was quite boring, some characters get even worse and it just didn't work for me. I'm confused about this series, not sure whether to continue or not.

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  11. YES. So glad to find someone with so many of the same feelings towards this book as I do. I really disliked Cassie's character change after she meets Evan. In fact, I really disliked all her chapters in the second half of the book. I did enjoy reading from Ben's point-of-view, but ultimately my interest in this series isn't strong enough for me to continue with it. (I'll probably still see the film though - let's be real.)

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    1. Cassie just became so awful the longer the book went on, not a fan. She doesn't get better in book two. I really didn't like book two, so you're not missing much!

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  12. Loved reading your thoughts on this one, Charnell! This was the first book I read this year, and while I found it enjoyable, I thought the middle half could've been condensed a bit as it got a bit tedious. I plan on reading the sequel, but I'm not in any hurry.

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    1. Yes, exactly! It dragged in the middle and lost a lot of what I had loved in the beginning. I didn't enjoy the sequel, so that sucks.

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  13. I found your butterfly icon so cute :) Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this book.

    Benish | Feminist Reflections

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  14. I enjoyed this one quite a bit, but I do understand your thoughts about Cassie and Evan. Evan did grow on me. It was different have the POVs change, it seems like most of the time you get alternating ones rather than sticking with one for so long and then switching to another. I do love alien invasion type books, though! ~Pam

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    1. I was hoping Evan would grow on me, but he just didn't. By the time I got to The Infinite Sea I just wanted that boy to die and stay dead. Sadly he lives on though.

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  15. I read this a while ago, and I enjoyed it a lot, but it wasn't the best I've ever read. Though I'm still super excited to read the second book, which came out like four months ago, but whatever. Better late than never. I'm already nervous as it is, so please no one spoil me!

    I didn't hate Evan, but I definitely prefer Ben. Evan was just.. a little on the weird side, and the way this whole alien thing worked really freaked me out. I feel bad to say this, but I didn't really mind what happened to him in the end, I'm sorry but I don't.

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    1. Evan was so weird and he really freaked me out! I definitely prefer Ben to him.

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