Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Book Review: The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

The 5th Wave (The Fifth Wave, #1)
Title: The 5th Wave

Author: Rick Yancey
Genre: YA post-apocalyptic, aliens.
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Publication Date: May 7th

The Passage meets Ender’s Game in an epic new series from award-winning author 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, 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.

After reading so many five-star reviews for this one, I was expecting it to be amazing, one of the best books of the year. I tried sooo hard to love it the way I expected, but unfortunately I just couldn't. The best I can say about this book is that if was good.

I'll start with what I did enjoy in the book, which was the idea. The author had a really great idea for a post-apocalyptic world, one I've never read before. He took the whole aliens genre into a new level, that's for sure. When someone says an alien, people imagine a green creature that travel in a spaceship and can't do much harm... well, not anymore!!! In this book aliens are extremely smart, are a thousand years ahead of us in technology and are dangerous, vicious creatures. Their plan was to wipe out the entire human population, and they did that in such a systematic way that that I was truly creeped out. They knew how people think and attacked them in their weaknesses, which made me think about some of the human natures, like finding comfort in groups, giving in to desperation, easily trusting.

I think that what made me disappointed with this book was mainly the writing. This book was written in a really weird way. I think it was supposed to resemble speech,  with a lot of speech-like sentences, but it didn't really work. All the fighting and action scenes were hard to follow because of that. I had to re-read parts a lot of times.
The alternating POVs bothered me. I usually like getting different perspectives on the plot, but here it was done in a very confusing and hard-to-follow way. I didn't have time to really connect to any of the characters.

Talking about the characters, I had some issues with them, too. Cassie was okay. She was very brave and strong, just like I like main characters to be, but I just didn't really CARE about her. I can't explain why, really. She just felt too distant and didn't really pass as a teenage girl in the way she thought and spoke.
I liked the other main character better than her (I can't tell you who that is, because it's a spoiler) and that's why I enjoyed his parts better. His life story was described in a way that made me feel for him and unlike Cassie he really changed and matured during the book, .
The other characters were pretty unimportant, which was also not so good. I always enjoy great supporting characters, but in this book there weren't any.

The book started to get really good only 70% through. Finally I got some answers and everything became less confusing. That's when I started to really enjoy the book. Even the writing got better. This book gained one more star from me only because of the last 30%.

As I said, despite its flaws, this book was good and I don't get me wrong, I did enjoy it. I can see the potential it has to be something phenomenal and I really hope its sequels will be much better.
I don't think it deserves all the hype, but I do recommend you to read it and see for yourselves.

  • Great, intriguing idea.
  • The last 30% were awesome.
  • Quirky writing.
  • The action scenes are hard to follow.
  • The main characters were hard to relate to.
  • Shallow supporting characters.



  1. Don't worry Sapir, you're not the only one who was expecting to like The 5th Wave a lot more.
    I agree, the different POVs were confusing. They sounded so alike and when Ben's POV began, I had no idea it was even Ben at first, until the last page of his chapter.
    And the writing! It just failed to really grab me.
    Great review! (:

    1. They really sounded a like! They were a guy and a girl, and they thought and acted the same. That was pretty weird.
      Thanks for visiting my blog and for the nice comment (:

  2. Hey Sapir! I agree with you about the writing, it was pretty weird!
    K @ My Favorite Escape

  3. Interesting review. I've only just started and so far I like it. We'll see how it goes! By the way I've seen a few so-so reviews so you are not alone in your thoughts :-)

    BookishTrish @ Between the Lines

    1. I feel quite alone. Everybody keeps raving about it. xP
      Thanks (:

  4. Great, thoughtful review! I really liked this one, but I agree that it's gotten a bit overhyped. I also really like what you said about the concept. That IS the best part, as well as the creepiest. It totally freaked me out. I didn't have as much trouble with the narration, but I agree that it took some time to get the story going and make it exciting. My favorite narrator was Silencer, though I know people have mixed feelings bout the person. I'm excited to see where this story goes!

    1. The concept was really scary. It felt so real that I could actually picture it happening in our world.
      I like Silencer too, but we barely got to read his point of view, which was sad because he had a very intrigued life story.

  5. Great review Sapir, one of the first negative reviews I've read so go you! It's really hard to get around the hype surrounding a book and going in with major expectations. Shame you didn't like it as much as you wanted to, I think characters are generally harder to relate to in a Dystopian because they're in such a different situation than we have ever experienced.

    1. Thanks!! lol
      You're right, people in dystopian books are going through a totally different reality than ours. Maybe that's why I couldn't really connect to them...

  6. Sorry you weren't able to enjoy The 5th Wave as much as you'd hoped Sapir, it did take me a while to get into too, but I think I was able to relate more with the characters and thus enjoy it a little more than you did. I love that we ended up liking the same character, the one who we can't mention, I hope we get a lot more of him in the next book! Great review! :)

    1. Yeah, the one we can't mention was great :-)
      I do hope we'll get to know him better in the next book!

  7. Good review. Its interesting to find a blogger who didn't give this one 5 stars.

  8. I appreciate your honesty. I mean, no one loves every book….
    Thanks so much for stopping by! Jen @ YA Romantics