Release Date: May 7th 2013
Series: The Fifth Wave #1
Genres: Dystopia, Young Adult
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 FIFTH WAVE was, hands-down, my most anticipated book of the year. When I saw the book trailers (one for each Wave) I knew I had to have this. Needless to say, I was incredibly disappointed, and I know I am in the minority. *Dodges tomatoes* Here’s why I gave up around page 154:
You know the expression “it was more entertaining watching paint dry”? Well I didn’t have paint to watch dry, but I sure wish I did. Instead, I spent three hours at the car dealership waiting, and I still didn’t pick this up. Yes, I picked staring at a blank wall over THE FIFTH WAVE. It’s just that boring.
There’s a girl named Cassie, Cassie for Cassiopeia-remember that-it will only be mentioned like 1000 more times. Oh, you’ll also get a backstory explaining why she has that name, why she has that nickname, and all about the constellation Cassiopeia. In addition to this completely irrelevant, useless information, you will also get various other backstories and histories in the form of flashbacks that are done in the way you almost don’t know what is a memory and what isn’t.
Heck, let’s just say the first one hundred pages are about 98.5% in the past tense. Not to mention, once we switch POVs (which is also done in a way you can’t tell and in the POV of the weirdest characters [seriously just stay with Cassie’s next time]) you also get to hear their backstories.
And you know what made all those pages of flashbacks go from mildly frustrating to absolutely intolerable? Almost no dialogue. Because everyone loves to read books that look like a dissertation.
In addition to all of this, THE FIFTH WAVE also is completely predictable and cliche. Oh, yes. There are many tropes and such hiding behind all those clunky paragraphs. The major point of predictability here (and the major source of my anger for this novel) is a (highly predictable) SPOILER. Highlight here: The Silencer, yet another POV we are privy to, is Evan Walker, the love interest. He is an alien hiding in a human body.
What a twist. I didn’t see that coming, at all. In fact, in took me all of TWO pages into the Silencer’s POV to figure out who he was!! What is this-THE HOST? Seriously! How do people think this is an, original, amazing concept? It’s basically the definition of forbidden love. Not to mention the Silencer’s extremely awkward obsession with a girl who he is supposed to kill. It’s not romantic, it’s actually kind of creepy.
Speaking of Cassie, for Cassiopeia-don’t forget-her character seemed way out of the norm. I felt like Yancey was trying to be all “here, take this awesome YA heroine -she’s badass
and not like Bella or Bethany or Ever because I wrote her that way.” Now, I’m all for an author writing a novel in the POV of their opposite gender. But I shouldn’t be able to tell that the author is trying to write in the POV of a girl. Because Cassie for Cassiopeia-I hope you didn’t forget-didn’t come off as strong and competent, but she came off brutish and manly.
The exact quote that made me give up on this book is below:
“He’s looked better.”
“Like most things.”
“I assume he’s talking about the world in general, not my body.”
One last final comment, authors-teenagers do not think in acronym curse words.
Yancey, give us an example:
“God, like WTF?”
Okay, I’m done.
Some of my favorite reviewers sing their praises for this book to the heavens, so I respect the fans of this book and your opinion, just as I expect you to respect mine.