Tag: Rick Yancey

The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

Posted June 9, 2013 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Young Adult / 0 Comments

The 5th Wave by Rick YanceyTitle: The 5th Wave (Goodreads)
Author: Rick Yancey
Series: The Fifth Wave #1
, 2013
Pages: 460
Genres: Science Fiction, Young Adult
My Copy: Personal Copy

Buy: AmazonBook Depository (or visit your local Indie bookstore)

The 1st Wave took out half a million people.
The 2nd Wave put that number to shame.
The 3rd Wave lasted a little longer, twelve weeks… four billion dead.
In the 4th Wave, you can’t trust that people are still people. 
And the 5th Wave? No one knows. But it’s coming.

The aliens have landed; with each wave there are less saviours. Cassie is on the run, not just from the visitors but from everyone else as well. The 4th wave has destroyed all trust and the only people she knows she can trust were her Father and brother. That was until she met Evan Walker.

I’ve said it before; I’ve never really gotten into the whole Young Adult craze; but I keep trying. Alien invasion, I might try some of that. The 5th Wave is your typical run of the mill Young Adult post apocalyptic novel, but the whole time I spent reading this I wondered if this book was written for young adults. This leads me to question if any of the more recent books are written for teenagers. In this growing genre it seems that the average age of a YA reader is not a teenager.

Skynet, X-Wings, Close Encounters, they are all references I don’t expect young adults to make. I do hope they know what Star Wars and Star Trek are or even who Terminator and Darth Vader are, but sometimes I wonder about that too. This feels like they are trying to go for the nostalgic readers much like Ready Player One did but I’m not sure it worked as well here.

This was a really quick read for me, I think I knocked it out in a few hours, so I don’t want to criticise the entertainment factor but there was a lot in the book that I just didn’t like. Children being trained up in combat? Sure, the kids today wouldn’t have read Enders Game but if you are catering for the nostalgic reader try not hiding the fact that you are pretty much stealing huge ideas from other books. I know Hunger Games was a big hit and it is pretty awesome to have a kick ass heroine but I felt like Cassie was too much of a Katniss photocopy and there wasn’t much that was original about her. While we are at it, please stop with the love triangles, it’s very rare to find one that is done in an interesting and unique way; why are they in every YA book?

To me the characters in this book were very underdeveloped, Cassie in particular which is annoying when she is the main protagonist. I liked Evan in parts but I did think that some depth to all the characters would have helped boost my enjoyment. Then there is the plot; it was predictable and never surprising. Entertaining, yes, but there has to be something more to a book, I want to be both entertained and left with thoughts of the book rolling around in my head for days afterwards.

For me it felt like Rick Yancey read all the popular dystopian/post apocalyptic young adult novels then went and watched all those 1980 Science Fiction movies from his childhood and just mashed them all together. Taking his favourite parts from each plot and using it in his own piece and guess what? It’s a triology.

I was entertained, I was nostalgic and it was a fun book to read but now that I’ve had a little vent, I can say I really want something different from this genre. Alien Invasion, yes this is something I don’t think has been done, unless you count The Host (which I don’t). I do like that this novel is a little dark and raw but it really held back in my opinion.

There isn’t enough nostalgia for my taste and the language, sexual references and violence make me wonder just how old you need to be for YA? 15? I’m sure kids will think this is just as fun as sneaking into watch a movie for over 18 year olds but to call this the “Young Adult novel of the year” I feel maybe stretching it a little too far. But what do I know; I’m just that crazy bitter old man that reviews books on the Internet.


Monthly Review – May 2013

Posted May 31, 2013 by Michael @ Knowledge Lost in Monthly Reading / 0 Comments

As May comes to a close, like all months, I want to have a quick look at what happened. First of all I managed to get fully up to date with my reviews; a few months ago I was about 20 reviews behind, waiting to be posted. Now when I finish a book the review will go up within a few days (sometimes more) and this frees me up to do other bookish posts. This is so exciting because I really like to write my thoughts about the world of literature without being confined to reviews. Also as you can see we are smack in the middle of being green with envy of everyone attending the Book Expo of America (BEA). I’m participating in Armchair BEA again and this will hopefully mean new blogs and new people to talk to. I’m also currently overseas so I’ve scheduled all these posts, I still have access to internet but I wanted to be free to comment and read instead of writing blog posts.

As for this month, the book club theme was Supernatural and we got to read the classic Victorian Gothic novella Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde. My review went up yesterday and there have been some interesting discussions about the book and its influences in modern pop culture over at Goodreads if you’ve missed it. Next month’s book is going to be a little obscure, something I’ve not heard of; I’m really looking forward to diving into The Dud Avocado by Elaine Dundy.

Last month I was in the middle of a reading slump so I was worried that May would be a terrible month for me but I’m pleased to say the slump didn’t last long. I was able to read heaps of great books including Invitation to a Beheading, Main Street and The People of Forever Are Not Afraid. Interesting enough the highlight of the month was none of those books, but a reread of The Great Gatsby; I just enjoyed returning to that novel and then picking it apart trying to understand it. I would love to know what your highlights of the month were or even what you read this month.

My Monthly Reading