Book Review: The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

The 5th Wave by Rick YanceyThe 5th Wave: What it is about

The publisher says: “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.”

The 5th Wave: What I thought

It seems there is more! I mean: it’s the first book in a series. I didn’t realise that while I was reading, but I think it’s good news. Or at least, it’s news. Really, it can only get worse, and going by the Goodreads description, it will get worse. That is, the situation gets even more desperate for the main characters. But what I really mean is, when the first book is so good, how good could the second possibly be? I loved, loved The Passage, but didn’t even finish its sequel, The Twelve. So, we’ll see.

First things first: yes, I loved this book. It starts really strong. You know when you have this foreboding feeling in your stomach? I had that in this book. Not the whole way through, but especially at the beginning. There is this girl, Cassie, living all on her own in the woods. There are alien drones that may spot her. There are aliens in person who may find her. Any moment may be her last.

Now, this was really silly: there’s this 400+ page book in my hands and I worry about the life of a main character in the beginning chapters? Well, I did. And worse, because I had no idea what really was going on, I adopted the strategy, Trust No One. And I did. It was terrible! How can you live if you can’t trust anyone? Well, at first Cassie doesn’t actually meet many people, but at some point she does come across others. It was scary! 🙂

The story is actually told from more than one perspective. For instance, we also get a look inside a camp where young people are trained in a military fashion. Again, I didn’t trust the camp leaders and their explanation of what they were being trained for.

Anyway, I love the story. On the other hand, I almost totally agree with Roof Beam Reader, who had quite a few remarks on the book. He’s right. And still… I loved it.

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars (very good)

Number of pages: 480

First published: 2013

I got this: from the library

Genre: dystopia, SF, YA


About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

9 Responses to Book Review: The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

  1. Leslie says:

    I read this last summer and was one of the few that didn’t LOVE this book. It was ok, the action was good and it was entertaining, but not what I expected from all the hype.

  2. Stacy says:

    This sounds like an interesting read, but it does bother me that it’s not clear that it is part of a series. I know series books are a big trend right now, but I find myself turned off by them. I really prefer to have a book be a complete experience and find that is often lacking in series books. I’ve been wondering if there are others out there who feel the same?

    • Leeswammes says:

      Stacy, I don’t think you’d have this problem with The 5th Wave. You can read this book just by itself. If you don’t want to, you don’t have to pick up the next books, because the story is complete at the end of the first book.

  3. Lisa says:

    I loved this book, and can’t wait for the sequel!

  4. Marie says:

    This one has passed me by – I’m not sure how I’ve never heard of it before, because it sounds right up my alley! I know there are so many of these YA series out there now but I’m always willing to give another one a try. I’ll definitely keep an eye out for this.

  5. Charlie says:

    I loved Yancey’s story from Rags & Bones and have been on the look out for a novel, so I suppose I’d give it a go even if everyone said it was bad (maybe I liked the story too much!) I love what you said about the feeling you got – for a book to create that is pretty awesome.

  6. sounds like an intersting book. I put it on my list!

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