The aliens have come to claim Earth, and through a series of planned waves of destruction, humans start to lose hope and their lives. The first wave consists of shutting down their power, making their electronics and means of communication useless. Earthquakes and tsunamis were wave two. For wave three, the aliens used birds to spread disease among the humans to decease their population more rapidly. Then there came the Silencers, alien agents in human bodies, who were assigned to hunt down the remaining humans in the fourth wave. In the novel The 5th Wave, readers find out what the aliens have planned next for humanity.
The story is written in first-person through several characters’ points-of-view, but primarily between two protagonists, Cassie and Ben. Some authors who choose to tell their story this way don’t execute it well, and I find myself wanting to skip some characters’ chapters to get to the ones I favour more. But, Yancey does an excellent job using this method. Every time there was a shift in perspectives I always wanted to learn more from the character, but was eager to get back to the other character too. During one moment in particular, it created a perfect and heart wrenching episode of tension.
While I love that the heroine, Cassie, takes center stage during most of the story, I feel like she didn’t have much character growth. She felt like the same girl from beginning to end. The only way you get a sense that she grew as a person was through a series of flashbacks, from shy school girl to cautious survivor. Most of the time, I felt like Cassie was telling me how things happened rather than Yancey showing readers. I believe I would have had a better sense of any character growth if I had gone on the same journey with the characters, experiencing each wave and their losses. Continue reading