Friday, February 14, 2014

The 5th Wave. Dystopian Done Well.

I realize I haven't done an actual book review in forever. I've actually been reading one book in that forever, because a. the book is thick, b. the book was kind of hard to get into, c. I have a very busy life, and usually, whenever I'm done with what really needs doing, I'd rather sleep than read. So. This book.

You've probably seen it floating around, because I know Putnam Juvenile spent quiiiiiiiiite some money on promoting it. They had faith in it, and they were right. It's gotten great reviews, everybody's happy, and it was a runner up for Goodreads Choice Awards. People liked it. I did too. But a few days ago, I happened across the casting for the movie (already!), and there is absolutely nothing I hate more than seeing the casting for book characters before I've finished the series. Which I clearly have not. Major disappointment, since my fictional characters always look better that their actor counterparts. But anyway, the book.

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

 This book is dystopian, but it also has an alien invasion, and is incredibly action packed. Science fiction, but not in the classical sense. I found it somewhat hard to get into, partly because it's somewhat slow paced, building up to the action. I was also skeptical of the aliens - I knew the book had aliens from the reviews I'd read, and I don't like alien books. It's more of The Host aliens than green, 4-eye atrocities. I almost gave up, actually, when I started, but you have to realize that this book is quite complex, and without the background/feelings/building of characters that happens in the first quarter of the book, the story would not have ended up that good. 
It's also written in multiple points of view - 3 or 4, and while that usually gets messy and confusing, this is done really well. Of course, the point of view change always happens at the climax, so that's annoying and frustrating, but in a good way. 
But what I think really makes this book so amazing is Yancey's writing style. It flows smoothly, super descriptive, and ahh the metaphors. Yancey also does that thing were you go in a circle when writing - it has a name, I know - like mentioning something somewhere towards the begging, and then making a connection somewhere towards the end of the story. Like in movies, when the hero puts something is his pocket, and then uses it to escape later towards the story. Except much more subtle and less cliche.
The plot is irrelevant - read it, al least half way through, and I promise you'll enjoy it.