The 5th Wave (Book 1)

The 5th Wave (Book 1)

4.02 (438,214 ratings by Goodreads)
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4.02 (438,214 ratings by Goodreads)

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*NOW A MAJOR FILM by Sony Pictures, starring Chloe Grace Moretz*

'Wildly entertaining . . . I couldn't turn the pages fast enough' The New York Times

*The 5th Wave is the first book in the bestselling series from award-winning Rick Yancey. Perfect for fans of The Hunger Games, Divergent and Maze Runner*

After the1st wave, only darkness remains. After the 2nd, only the lucky escape. And after the 3rd, only the unlucky survive. After 4th wave, only one rule applies: trust no one.


On a lonely stretch of highway, Cassie runs.
Runs from the beings that only look human, who have scattered Earth's last survivors.

To stay alone is to stay alive, until she meets Evan Walker. Beguiling and mysterious, Evan may be her only hope.

Now Cassie must choose: between trust and despair, between defiance and surrender, between life and death.

'Remarkable, not-to-be-missed-under-any-circumstances' Entertainment Weekly

'A modern sci-fi masterpiece . . . Should do for aliens what Twilight did for vampires.' USA Today

'The pace is relentless' Heat

'Chilling' Sun

'Nothing short of amazing' Kirkus (starred review)

'This book's scary!' Teen Now (5 starred review)

'A twisty survival story that borrows elements from romance, horror and dystopian fiction'Wall Street Journal
'An epic sci-fi adventure about a terrifying alien invasion. You'll read it in one sitting'Bookseller
'Heartfelt, violent, paranoid epic, filled with big heroics and bigger surprises' Booklist (starred review)

'Gripping' Publishers Weekly

'Borrow this one from your teen's nightstand while they're at school.' People Magazine

*Winner of the 2014 Red House Children's Book Award
*2014 Children's Choice Book Awards Finalist for Teen Book of the Year
*A YALSA 2014 Best Fiction for Young Adults
*A YALSA 2014 Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Readers
*A Booklist 2014 Best Fiction for Young Adults
*A VOYA 2013 Perfect Ten
*An Amazon Best Book of the Year

Books in the series:
The 5th Wave (Book 1)
The Infinite Sea (Book 2)
The Last Star (Book 3)
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Product details

  • 12-17
  • Paperback | 496 pages
  • 128 x 198 x 30mm | 344g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 9780141345833
  • 2,745

Review Text

Remarkable, not-to-be-missed-under-any-circumstances . . . JUST READ IT Entertainment Weekly
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Review quote

Remarkable, not-to-be-missed-under-any-circumstances . . . JUST READ IT * Entertainment Weekly * Wildly entertaining... I couldn't turn the pages fast enough -- Justin Cronin * The New York Times * A modern sci-fi masterpiece... should do for aliens what Twilight did for vampires. * USA Today * Nothing short of amazing * Kirkus (starred review) * Chilling * Sun * Action-packed intrigue * MTV.COM * This book is scary! * Teen Now (5 starred review) * Rick Yancey knows his onions... the book packs real power * SFX * This is DAMN and WOW territory. Quite simply, one of the best books I've read in years -- Melissa Marr, New York Times bestselling author ...a twisty survival story that borrows elements from romance, horror and dystopian fiction * Wall Street Journal * Breathtakingly fast-paced and original, The 5th Wave is a reading tsunami that grabs hold and won't let go. -- Melissa De La Cruz, New York Times bestselling author of the Blue Bloods series. Yancey's heartfelt, violent, paranoid epic, filled with big heroics and bigger surprises, is part War of the Worlds, part Starship Troopers, part Invasion of the Body Snatchers, and part The Stand . . . a sure thing for reviewers and readers alike. * Booklist (starred review) * A fantastic read. The 5th Wave is an electrifying page-turner. -- Kathy Reichs, New York Times bestselling author An epic sci-fi adventure about a terrifying alien invasion. You'll read it in one sitting * Bookseller * A gripping SF trilogy about an Earth decimated by an alien invasion... the question of what it means to be human is at the forefront * Publishers Weekly * Borrow this one from your teen's nightstand while they're at school * People Magazine * By turns heart-pounding and contemplative . . . The 5th Wave will thrill you, chill you, and challenge you to keep the pages turning fast enough * * Utterly gripping * Metro Herald * High adventure with mystery and heart * The Sunday Times * A cut above anything else in the genre. * Sunday Telegraph * The pace is RELENTLESS * Heat *
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About Rick Yancey

Rick Yancey ( is the author of several adult novels and the memoir Confessions of a Tax Collector. His first young-adult novel, The Extraordinary Adventures of Alfred Kropp, was a finalist for the Carnegie Medal. In 2010, his novel, The Monstrumologist, received Michael L. Printz Honor, and the sequel, The Curse of the Wendigo, was a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.
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Rating details

438,214 ratings
4.02 out of 5 stars
5 39% (170,146)
4 34% (151,014)
3 19% (82,127)
2 6% (24,247)
1 2% (10,680)

Our customer reviews

Wow, very nice! Fresh, fast-paced, thrilling while also witty and with great characters. Definitely for the fans of Hunger Games etc. Can't wait for book 2!show more
by Klemen20
The 5th Wave has received plenty of hype and advertising, and my biggest concern when I began reading it was that it was undeserved. And while this first book in a new series wasn't quite what I anticipated it to be, I was enjoyed it so much and I truly believe that all this hype is well-deserved. The 5th Wave reads like a great introductory book to science fiction and apocalyptic tales, because it's set in a world so very similar to ours just with an alien invasion taking place. But surprisingly, I didn't feel like that was the entire focus of the story which made it an even greater novel. Reasons to Read: 1. A fresh take on aliens and the end of the world: I typically enjoy reading stories in an apocalyptic setting, and I'm always intrigued by aliens because they always freak me out a little bit. I loved that Rick's aliens aren't your standard martian fare. They're eerie and disturbing, but also seem very plausible. It really struck me how real this story felt, which lends to its horrifying nature. And I appreciate that he used aliens to bring about the end of the world in The 5th Wave, because I love zombies and natural disasters but it's nice to read something different too. 2. A heartbreaking story of survival: Cassie is kinda like a more cynical, sarcastic Katniss. It's a fair comparison. I loved her sense of humour, which stood out even at the worst of times, and you could really tell how much heart and inner strength she has from her story. But her life is filled with so much tragedy and such difficult challenges, I can't even imagine being in her place. It really helped me connect with the book though, and I think reflected some of the more thoughtful aspects of the book. 3. Something for every reader: You want action? There's PLENTY of that. Crazy fight scenes. Tense excitement through the entire. darn. book. Teensy bit of romance? Just enough to appeal to those who love it, and distract readers from all the depressing deaths and dismal future. Super BIG secrets and plot twists? I kept trying to guess and I couldn't keep up! There are plenty of shockers, but they fit so well with the story. Plus there are a number of different characters featured, all different from each other and you're bound to find one you relate to or just prefer reading about. 4. Strong character relationships: I've noticed recently that one of my favourite things to read about in books are sibling relationships. I seem to connect really well with them, and I appreciated that Cassie's relationship with her brother was one of the driving plot lines in The 5th Wave. And to me, The 5th Wave is really about our relationships with other people and community more than anything else and that's why I found the book to be so striking. It's a struggle to connect with others, because of the setting, and it becomes increasingly obvious how terribly lonely this is for the characters. And how it just might very well be their downfall. I had a harder time with Evan as a character though, and I struggled with how conflicted my feelings were towards him. I have to admit I was always completely intrigued by him, although I didn't find him to be terribly surprising and I really hope we see more development for him in the next book. He was the kind of character I really wanted to like, and at times I did but there were others when I was skeptical... He's just a seriously complicated guy. And honestly, the book wasn't as scary as I had anticipated. It's dark and very disturbing, but it didn't thrill me the way I expected. That may not be such a bad thing, but I just didn't expect such an introspective type of read when I picked it up. But this is still exactly the kind of book I've been saying I want to see in the YA genre for a while now, and the release of this book is just so timely for where my tastes currently are in literature. I love creepy and exciting, and I love that Rick Yancey is such a talented author to pen this book. ARC received from Penguin Canada for review; no other compensation was more
by Brenna Staats
We are The Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club, to know more about this book, go to the post in our website: If you are interested, you can visit our website: The Unofficial Addiction Book Fan Club's Review: About The Book: Cassie will never forget the day Them arrived. Some optimists, like her father, thought they would be friendly. Why not? And then, the first wave arrived. No cell phone, no car... nothing than runs with electricity works. But the worst part is the planes falling from the sky. That was the day they first attacked. They all waited. Wait for what? It was like they have almost forgotten about what they were doing. But the second wave came and only the lucky ones escaped from it. The third, however, you could say the unlucky ones were the ones that survived. At least they didn't see their loved ones bleed until death and madness took them away from them. They thought they couldn't create more creative attacks, but they were wrong. The forth wave make no shame to the others. Knowing your grandmother could be one of Them or your father, your mother... create one unbreakable rule: trust no one. Now Cassie is alone. They took their brother, kill her father and make her mother bleed until death. She now lives with a gun in her hands constantly and a bag that is her home. She's been living ok, by now. She's still alive, so pretty much we could say she's the best in surviving. However, she needs to leave her safe spot. She made a promise and she has to make that happen. However, after been shot and taken care by a mysterious and gorgeous boy, Evan Walker, she starts to forget her unbreakable rule. She needs to stay alive to find her brother, but now Cassie has more problems than before. Now she's not alone. Review: We have to confess. Alien story? Not a Summer Read for us, at all. However, just watching the cover and reading the description of the book made us want to read and know more about this story. And we weren't wrong. This is totally and completely amazing. This story goes way beyond aliens and fights. It blowed our mind. While reading Cassie's point of view we were beyond amazed. We don't know how Rick Yancey did it, but he nails the main female character. Sometimes is really difficult writing about the other gender without leaving traces of your own. We don't really know how guys think or act or if there's an encyclopedia for that, but it seems that Yancey found the girls encyclopedia. The way Cassie thinks and acts and talks it's the normal behavior of a teenage girl. So while reading the book we couldn't stop thinking how the author did it to captivate us like he did. Cassie is a strong character. She's been running, surviving. At first she was with her family. Everything was falling around them, but at least she was not alone. Then her family starts to die. First her mother. It's horrible how she watches her dying, knowing there's no way to safe her. It's really sad, but she keeps her strength and her determination to keep her father and little brother alive. Then they stole her brother and kill her father and almost kill her. Like nothing bad has happened already to her. She keeps pilling up situations where the characters proves to us that she's even more strong than that, because she has a purpose in her life. It doesn't matter that the world is ending, that she may be the last teenage girl alive on Earth, she made a promise and that keeps her fighting back. We really like her attitude and we are glad to see that she kept fighting instead of surrender. It's true that, at first, the story goes slow. You need to know everything about Them and get to know what happened in the different waves to make Cassie act, think and behave like she does and why is where she is now. You kept wondering things, asking things to yourself, like why is she alone, who is the thing/boy/guy/something that is watching her, etc. It kind of feels like a drug. To unravel everything and to finally know Cassie's story and what the fifth wave is about. However, what makes this book different from the other alien-dystopian books is the four points of views in this story. Four different people that gives you a different insight into the invasion. As you can guess, one of them is Cassie. The other is Ben. We met him before reading his POV. He's Cassie's secret crush in High School back when everything was normal. We can see through Ben's eyes. He's in a sort of military camp training for a battle. You can see the change of his life after the invasion, what he thinks and what he feels. His POV's is important because is thanks to him that we know what the 5th wave is all about. Another POV's Sam, Cassie's brother. He's a little kid. He's expecting to see his father and sister again and its a little heartbreaking. He ends up in a military base with another character, Ben. They are in the same military squad and became "brothers!". It's really cute how Ben takes care of him. The last POV's Evan. Mystery Evan Walker. He's troubled. He's here to accomplish a mission and Cassie's making tumble his plans without her even knowing. The best part? He's the bad guy. The one Cassie should be running from and he should have killed Cassie the first time he saw her in the woods. But he did not. We knew from the beginning that he was lying. Shooting animals at night? Really? It's normal that Cassie's instincts where on fire with him. We didn't trust him, but wanted to. Badly! The story is not an expected one. It's not one of those stories that you know how the book is gonna end or what is going to happen or who is going to die or not (OMG, we need the second book. NOW). It's a great story with unexpected twist and unraveling secrets that would make you scream all the time. Like us. Just saying: OMG. Rick Yancey wrote an excellent novella and we are dying to know more about The Fifth Wave. We can assure you, Book Addicts, that you'd be captivated by this story. It would make you feel everything the author wanted you to feel while reading it. So, Book Addicts, don't doubt a second. Read The Fifth Wave. You're going to love it. And that's why it's in our highest ranking with five gorjuss more
5+ stars How can I describe a book with words, when there are no words to describe how fantastic this book was. From the first time I read the blurb of The 5th Wave, I wanted it. The earth has been visited by aliens, and they don't come in peace. And it's not like in the movies, where prominent cities are destroyed but we fight back with nuclear weapons and then we win, no the humans are losing. 7 billion of us are already dead, we're extremely close to becoming extinct, which is apparently, the plan. The 1st wave hit 11 days after the ship appeared above. After a 2nd, 3rd and 4th wave, the few humans who are left, are waiting on a 5th wave, with no idea what it's going to be. They've turned us against each other. The aliens are now in the guise of humans. There's one rule; trust no one! Cassie believes she may be the last human left on the planet. She's alone in the woods, believing her father and brother to be dead, her mother having been killed by the 3rd wave, an airborne virus, The Red Death. But a promise made to her brother keeps her going. With his teddy bear in hand, she won't give up until she finds him. Through flash backs into Cassie's past, we glimpse how she was affected by the previous waves. Sitting in school when the 1st wave came, not realising it would be the last time she'd ever see her best friend, her mother's death, leaving home with her father to search for other survivors, and maybe a safer place to survive. This book isn't just told from the POV of Cassie, though her's is the main voice, we also have the POV from Ben Parish, who was once Cassie's crush, but who has now been taken to an army barracks and trained to fight. And the POV of little Sammy, Cassie's five year old brother, who has been taken to the same place as Ben. There's also an interesting POV from a Silencer, the 4th wave, a silent killer, named Evan Walker. I enjoyed each and every one of these perspectives, but I always looked forward to coming back to Cassie. She is tough, she is snarky and sarcastic, adding a touch of humour to an otherwise dismal narrative. These characters are all doing what they can to survive this hopeless situation, but they aren't very optimistic that they will survive for too much longer. Yancey built the world around these characters flawlessly, easily going from past to the present, and voice to voice without affecting the flow of the story. I don't usually enjoy books that dip into the past and back again, but it really worked for me here. I loved how he effortlessly brought all these characters together at the end. Myself, I found the ending to be quite traumatic, and as I finished up reading this book, I was left with a feeling of despair. To say I loved this book is probably an understatement, if you haven't picked it up already, you really need to. It's my favourite book of 2013, so more
by Suzanne Finnegan
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