Monday, August 24, 2015

The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

Cassie hasn’t seen anyone in weeks. She’s lonely and scared and one of the last humans alive on earth. Everything in her life—in the world—has changed in the six months since satellites first spotted the Other’s mothership passing by Mars.

Ten days after that sighting came the first of three waves of death, each more devastating than the previous. Billions of people die, including Cassie's mother, but Cassie, her father, and her five-year-old brother somehow survivied.

Then came the fourth wave: Silencers. Aliens, impossible to identify because they look human, out to kill the few remaining human survivors. They succeed in killing Cassie’s father, and separating Cassie from her brother, Sam.

Now Cassie is desperate to find Sam, and a few other surviving teens are fighting just as hard to stay alive, to stay human, as the fifth wave begins.

So, overall, I really enjoyed The 5th Wave. It's exciting and fast-paced enough that the book doesn't feel as long as it actually is. I was turning pages quickly because I wanted to find out what would happen to these characters whom I quickly came to care about. I also thought the different waves were pretty ingenious, and the way Rick Yancey doled out information about them was really well done.

True, part of the third wave had me raising my eyebrows a bit. I like to call this modified Ebola the Richard Preston version of Ebola: extremely bloody and sometimes explosive. (Read David Quammen's Spillover, or Ebola: The Natural and Human History of a Deadly Virus, which is basically the Ebola section of Spillover with some mid-2014 updates for a more measured take on the real Ebola.) This is me being nitpicky and a bit snarky, though, because despite being somewhat skeptical, I was still more than willing to suspend my disbelief here and go along for the ride.

The second book in the series, The Infinite Sea, was published last year. The final book, The Last Star, will be released next year, as will the film adaptation of The 5th Wave.

Book info
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
post-apocalyptic YA fiction
published May 2013 by Penguin
hardcover ISBN: 9780399162411 | paperback ISBN: 9780142425831


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