(YA Review) The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 3.38.20 PM

The 5th Wave (Book 1)
Author: Rick Yancey
Published: May 7, 2014
Genre: YA science fiction/dystopian
Rating: 5 stars (aka I loved it!)
Why’d I read it?:
I love sci-fi and this one is getting phenomenal reviews. Plus a film version comes out in January 2016 and the preview looks awesome (trailer below)
Yancey, Rick. The 5th Wave. G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers. 2013. Print. ISBN-13: 978-0399162411.
Formats available: paperback, ebook, hardcover Paperback $6.99. Kindle $9.99

Synopsis: (from amazon)
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.

My Thoughts:

A chilling look at the human psyche’s capacity to endure. This book was intense. Creepy and suspenseful, this is a dark view of an alien invasion that strikes every fear we harbor from our childhoods. Yancey crafts a richly told tale with wonderfully developed characters, with the bulk of the story told from the alternating viewpoints of two teens who survived the first four waves, and whose journeys take them in different directions that eventually circle back to an inevitable conclusion. Phew this book was a heavy read.

The author pulls no punches with the horror he inflicts on the human population and doesn’t shy away from graphic and detailed enumerations of the effects of each wave of the invasion. The earth’s population is stripped down as surely as our main character’s humanity is stripped down with each trial they overcome, lending to a recurring theme that has the reader constantly redefining exactly what it means to be human? When billions are dead and you can’t trust anyone, how do you survive? More importantly, how do you stay sane and human? The Others don’t only take your life, now they are trying to take your humanity as well. This book is an action packed and psychological thriller that hooks you from the very first chapter. Theres plenty of action, suspense, and even a little romance. There are several twists throughout to keep you guessing, and though I found many of them to be quite predictable, it did not take away from the story for me and I still found myself shocked and surprised frequently. This one will have you on the edge of your seat and keeping your nightlight on at bedtime!

Please note that the synopsis makes it seem like this story is told entirely from Cassie’s point of view, but actually it is dual perspectives between Cassie and another young adult who survives the first four waves and goes an entirely different direction than Cassie to do so. There are also a couple of other snippets from one or two other peoples perspective. This is a form of writing that I really enjoy because it gives us a broader insight into the world.


  • The 5th Wave has its own website at http://www.the5thwaveiscoming.com. There are tons of goodies and extra info to be found there.
  • Here you can find information from IMDB on the movie coming out in January 2016.

Liked it? Loved it? Gotta have more of it?
You might also enjoy:

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s