The 1st Wave only lasted a few seconds. The lights went out and half a million died.
The 2nd Wave put that number to shame. Surf’s Up. The aliens targe...moreThe 1st Wave only lasted a few seconds. The lights went out and half a million died.
The 2nd Wave put that number to shame. Surf’s Up. The aliens targeted the coastlines resulting in 3 billion dead.
The 3rd Wave took awhile longer. There are around 300 billion birds in the world, making them the perfect carriers of the virus that only the fortunate and immune can survive.
The 4th Wave was the silencers. The Others have took upon a human appearance and their mission is to rid the Earth of the last surviving humans.
The 5th Wave is unknown. But it’s coming.
Cassie has survived the first four waves and now is alone in the woods. She believes she might be the last human left on Earth; her mother died during the third wave and Cassie’s certain her father and little brother are gone too. But Cassie made a promise to her brother and she intends to keep it. With his favourite teddy bear in tow, Cassie sets off to keep the promise she made. She doesn’t know if she will live long enough to see out her task, especially with the imminent fifth wave pressing upon her, but she won’t give up too easily. Even though the world she knew is gone and there isn’t a soul she can trust, Cassie must keep going even if there appears to be no hope left…
I must be one of the only people who didn’t hear about the hype surrounding Rick Yancey’s The 5th Wave until after I’d read it. I randomly came across it in my local book shop, read the synopsis and thought it might be something I’d like. It was basically an impulse buy; I hadn’t read anything by the author before and I didn’t know an awful lot about it. Then I started reading and boy, wasn’t I pleased I’d picked it up. Reviews like this one are difficult for me to write. When I’ve really enjoyed a book, I struggle when it comes to putting those thoughts down into words.
First of all, I must point out that The 5th Wave is so much more than your typical alien invasion story. It is focused a lot more on humanity’s perspective of the invasion and as a result, readers will get to know the novel’s main characters in a lot of depth. I think that’s why I enjoyed the novel as much as I did. I felt a strong connection to its characters. I cared about them as individuals and I became invested in their lives.
So, speaking of characters, I have to point out that The 5th Wave isn’t told solely from the point of view of Cassie. Granted, her voice is perhaps the strongest but Yancey also incorporates the viewpoints of other characters. While this might sound a bit confusing, Yancey’s writing allowed the plot to flow from one character to another with ease. As a result, I was able to delve deeper into the lives of the characters and the plot overall. I developed respect and admiration for a number of the characters, as opposed to a sole protagonist. It’s my opinion that it takes an amazing writer to be able to successfully shift from character to character, past and present, and still write with such depth and clarity. Yancey – you delivered on this one!
I could list all the amazing things about The 5th Wave and trust me, there is a lot. However, I still don’t feel it would do the book justice. Yes, it has relatable, believable characters and yes, its original spin on alien invasions makes for an action-packed and exciting plot, but it’s the emotions I felt while reading that proved to me that this is a book which deserves to be read. Have you ever had that feeling while reading a book when you’ve had to stop and think, ‘WOW’? Well The 5th Wave made me do this. What am I reading? A book can’t make me feel like this surely? It did. I felt such an emotional connection to it that when it ended, I felt like screaming NO YOU CANNOT END! For this reason, I am so pleased it isn’t a standalone; I am impatiently counting down the days until the sequel is released.
I mentioned that I find reviews like this difficult to write. I guess it’s because I believe you can’t understand my thoughts unless you actually pick up the book and read it yourself. If you haven’t yet, please go out and get a copy right now. You may agree with me or you may not, but regardless The 5th Wave will take you on a journey that I feel all readers should experience.(less)
Delirium by Lauren Oliver is one of those books that I’d been meaning to read for awhile. I’d heard great things about it but for one reason or anothe...moreDelirium by Lauren Oliver is one of those books that I’d been meaning to read for awhile. I’d heard great things about it but for one reason or another, I never quite got round to reading it. So, under the insistence of a fellow blogging friend, I finally decided to pick it up and see what all the hype was about…
Delirium focuses on a seventeen year old girl called Lena. Lena lives in a society where love, or amor deliria nervosa, is considered a disease. Upon the age of eighteen, everyone must undergo a procedure that will cure them from the disease. Lena, with ninety-five days left until her eighteenth birthday, cannot wait for her procedure. She longs for a normal, simple, risk-free life where she can’t catch the disease. But then she meets Alex and things begin to change. Alex is the guy who will make her question everything she has been brought up to believe and the guy who will bring out the forbidden emotions she has spent all her life so far afraid of.
The concept of Delirium was without a doubt an intriguing one. The idea of love as a disease just blew my mind and its concepts such as this one that are responsible for my love of dystopian fiction. Love is such a big part of everyone’s lives, that I couldn’t even fathom living in a world where I could be ‘cured’ of it. Perhaps this is why, for me, Delirium was an interesting read. I was gripped by the concept. I wanted to know how things turned out in the end. I wanted a happy ending. So, it should come at no surprise that I flew through its pages.
The beginning of the novel was quite slow. It took awhile for the plot to get into full swing but this is only because the author takes the time to set the scene and give readers the necessary background information. As a result, as the plot did progress, I found I was able to clearly imagine the world and really connect to the novel’s main characters.
Speaking of the characters, I loved them. I am a character fanatic, meaning the characters have to be great for me to love a book. The main protagonist, Lena, was realistic. She wasn’t perfect and she was well aware of this. Witnessing her experiencing certain emotions for the first time made me connect to her. Her story is an interesting one and I look forward to seeing her character grow even further in the subsequent instalments. Alex was sweet and I enjoyed reading about his interactions with Lena. I loved how the relationship between these two characters; it was the classic forbidden love but it was realistic and compelling.
Another character I feel I have to mention is Lena’s best friend Hana. Hana is rebellious, outgoing and makes Lena aware of another side to the world they live in. As a secondary character, she was great. I found myself happy when she appeared in certain scenes of the book.
In its entirety, Delirium is a novel I feel every fan of YA and/or dystopia should experience. It’s a deep, emotional story which is beautifully written. The ending might shock you; don’t think you have it all figured out because it’s likely you won’t. It completely broke my heart. I can’t wait to read the next instalment, Pandemonium, to find out what happens next!(less)
Anna Whitt strives to be a good person and do the right thing. Most of the time she is successful but sometimes she feels an unexplainable pull toward...moreAnna Whitt strives to be a good person and do the right thing. Most of the time she is successful but sometimes she feels an unexplainable pull towards the not-so-good. She doesn’t understand it but a temptation towards drugs and alcohol is a part of her. Add that to the fact that she is able to see and feel other people’s emotions, well Anna doesn’t have a clue what or who she is.
Then she meets British drummer Kaidan Rowe. From their first meeting, Kaidan makes it clear he knows exactly who – or rather what – Anna is. As the two grow closer, Kaidan introduces Anna to a world she has always been a part of without even realising it. This is the world of the Nephilim, beings whose sole purpose is to be a bad influence on others. Anna might want to be the good girl, but when Kaidan helps her discover her true heritage it becomes clear that being the person she wants to be might not be possible.
When I came across Sweet Evil randomly one day, I was immediately drawn to it. I mean, the synopsis hinted that this was a book that I would like. Yet, there are a lot of books out there that are centred on the Nephilim theme. So I didn’t know how this was going to be any different. It’d be safe to say that the Heaven/Hell divide has been extensively covered in YA. Therefore, I wasn’t expecting anything particularly unique with Sweet Evil but hoped I’d still at least get an enjoyable read.
I was wrong! Sweet Evil taught me that I shouldn’t assume I know it all and partly write-off a book before I’ve even read it. I hold my hands up. I did think Sweet Evil would be your typical Nephilim story and yet, it was anything but. Wendy Higgins’s take is refreshingly unique and resulted in me becoming totally engrossed into the world she created. I don’t want to go into detail about the ins and outs as I really do think that the experience of discovering this world as you read is one of the most enjoyable parts of Sweet Evil, but I will say this: she perfectly blends old and new beliefs to create a stunning, flawless plot that will make you eager to learn more. I was hooked. I wanted more and more as the book progressed and even when it finished, I still wanted more.
Then there were the characters. Higgins once more surpassed my expectations with her strong cast of both main and secondary characters. Our protagonist, Anna, seemed like someone I might like when I read the synopsis but I didn’t fathom relating to her as much as I did. Her voice was distinct and her character was strong. She wasn’t a goody-goody; there were moments when she wasn’t right but she knew it. She wasn’t unaware of the impact her actions have which is very great to see in a YA heroine. I thoroughly enjoyed reading from her perspective and in some respects, I feel like I know her. I know this might sound a little weird – or a lot – but it’s like I gained a friend while reading Sweet Evil.
And then there is Kaidan. Oh, Kaidan. Where do I even begin? I have to be honest here, bad boys are my guilty reading pleasure and you haven’t met a bad boy until you’ve been introduced to Kaidan Rowe. For starters, it’s literally his job to seduce. I won’t say any more but please take my word for it, Kaidan might possibly be one of the best YA boys you will ever meet. He might be a bad influence, distant, cocky and sometimes you might end up wanting to hit him, but his character has a lot of depth and I can’t wait to get my next Kaidan fix in the subsequent instalment.
The interaction between Anna and Kaidan will guarantee that you will keep reading. There were some pretty sensational scenes between them and their relationship is far from the insta-love that I really hate in YA fiction. Their chemistry is undeniable and perhaps one of my favourite YA couplings. Its obvious things aren’t going to be easy for these two, but their romance is addictive. I’m eager to learn more.
Overall, Sweet Evil was, in a word, amazing. I wasn’t expecting a lot when I began reading, but I finished with discovering a book that has become a firm favourite of mine. For me, it’s the kind of book that I will have no worries reading again… and again… and again… You get the picture.(less)
Ethan Wate was born and bred in Gatlin, a small town in southern America. In Gatlin, there are no secrets. Everyone knows everyone’s business. It’s be...moreEthan Wate was born and bred in Gatlin, a small town in southern America. In Gatlin, there are no secrets. Everyone knows everyone’s business. It’s been this way forever and it isn’t about to change anytime soon. Ethan is fed up with his life living in a town where nothing changes and is counting down the days until he can move far away for college. The only new occurrence in his life is the dreams – or nightmares – he is having of losing a girl he has never met.
Then a new girl comes to town. Ethan’s not sure why but he feels he needs to find out who she is. When he does he learns that the girl is Lena Duchannes, the niece of the town’s disturbing shut-in Macon Ravenwood. All of the residents of the town repel against Lena, expect Ethan. Ethan feels a connection to Lena and wants to get to know her.
He soon learns that Lena is different – not only for being an outsider of the town and having a recluse uncle – but different because she is a Caster. She and her family all possess varying supernatural abilities. But Lena’s powers are far from being an advantage; a family curse means that at the age of sixteen she will be claimed for the light or the dark. Lena’s birthday is fast approaching and so is the claiming that will alter hers and Ethan’s life forever… For better or for worse.
I only heard about Beautiful Creatures when the news of it’s movie release came out. I guess I’d seen it in passing before this, but it wasn’t until I knew that a YA novel was going to become a movie that I decided to check it out properly. Even then, it did take me awhile to finally get round to reading it, for no other reason than the length of it seemed intimidating. I wanted to wait to make sure I had the time to read it without a million other things going on.
So, when I finally started reading, I felt somewhat deflated. While I was immediately drawn into a vivid setting which allowed me to visualise the story perfectly, it seemed a little slow in pacing to begin with. I must have read a few chapters before I thought that maybe this book wasn’t for me. But I’m not one to start a book without seeing it all the way through. So I continued, hoping it would pick up…
It did! I am so glad I kept reading because once the necessary history and background information was laid out, the action really began to happen. As the plot progressed, I began to learn more about the characters and their circumstances and as a result, I seemed to fly through the pages.
Character wise, the main characters were nothing more than ok. Our protagonist is Ethan and it was a surprise to me that the story was told from his perspective. Male points of view are rare in YA – although they do seem to becoming more common – so I haven’t really read too many books with a male lead. While I don’t mind the male POV, I do feel it hinders my ability to fully immerse into the story. For me, I guess it feels as though I am hearing the story from someone else, rather than being able to place myself into the story itself. Don’t get me wrong, Ethan was a perfectly good character and I admired him in some respects, but I didn’t feel the connection to him that I like to have with my leading character.
I thought perhaps I would relate to Lena with more ease. However, I didn’t really click with her. I’m not sure why this was but to me, she just felt a little distant. I can’t even pinpoint a reason why and she didn’t act in a way that would make me dislike her. Beautiful Creatures is only the first instalment in four part series though, so perhaps if I read on I might develop a connection with her. Only time will tell.
Despite being unable to click with the characters in a way I might have liked, I still enjoyed the story. There was a perfect blend of mystery and humour which allowed me to read the story quicker than I thought I would when taking into account the sheer length of the book. Speaking of which, I do feel there were moments that could have been left out in order to reduce the length for the first instalment. In parts, some scenes seemed to drag somewhat and didn’t really offer much towards to overall plot.
However, I can’t deny that I did enjoy reading Beautiful Creatures. Did I hate it? Not at all. Can I say it is a favourite? Not really. Would I recommend it? Maybe. It depends if you are a person who is willing to see the series out. By this I mean, while Beautiful Creatures was ok, I feel it has the potential to develop. Therefore, I am going to persevere and hope the subsequent instalments transform the series from ok -so-far to downright amazing.(less)
In Under the Never Sky the world has been plagued with destructive Aether storms which have created a divide in the population. There are one group of...moreIn Under the Never Sky the world has been plagued with destructive Aether storms which have created a divide in the population. There are one group of people, known as the Dwellers, who have sought protection from the Aether storms in underground Pods designed to separate its residents from the dangers of the outside world. Those living in the Pods can never leave and are warned that no one can survive in ‘The Death Shop’: a term used to refer to the outside world. Although residents can’t leave, each has a Smarteye which enables them to virtually transfer themselves to experience anything they want. Aria has lived in a pod called the Reverie her whole life with her mother Lumina, who she checks-in with virtually everyday. But when her mother leaves to visit another Pod – Bliss – and doesn’t return, Aria begins to fear the worse. Determined to find out more information, Aria finds herself in trouble and is banished from the Pods and dropped in the dreaded outside world.
Aria knows she can’t survive in the outside world. The Outside is place ridden with disease, storms and Savages. The Savages are those who aren’t residents in the Pods and have often been described as animalistic beings. Aria can’t believe she is stranded in the Outside and knows her death is imminent. But then she meets Peregrine, also known as Perry. Perry is one of the Savages she has been warned about. It becomes apparent that the Dweller and the Outsider share a similar goal and can help each other. So, the pair set out to the Bliss pod in search of the help they both need and thus, an unlikely alliance between these two very different individuals is formed.
Under the Never Sky is the book that everyone seems to have read. So I’m coming a little late to this party, but I felt I was missing out. I started reading with very high expectations that I’d be kicking myself for not reading it sooner…
First of all, I need to point out that for the first few chapters of Under the Never Sky I was completely at a loss. I did not understand the world or its terminology. I was kind of put off by this but decided to persevere in the hopes that it would start to make more sense eventually. It did. As the plot progressed I became more accustomed to the world Veronica Rossi had created, so I’m pleased I didn’t give up too easily. I would have like a bit more background into some of the details, such as the technology, but regardless I soon was able to follow the story without feeling confused.
The story is told from the alternating point of views of Aria and Perry. When I first realised this I was a little wary, especially as I’m a reader who likes to get to know her protagonist in a lot of depth. Yet, Under the Never Sky surprised me as I actually really liked reading from two different characters. The two perspectives flowed well from one another and allowed me a greater insight into the thoughts and feelings of the two main characters. I can’t really decide which point of view I preferred; both brought something different to the plot and overall, I looked forward to each character’s chapters.
Initially, I didn’t quite know what to make of Aria. Part of me wondered whether she would be a weak character. However, as the plot developed, so did Aria. Her determination to survive, keep going and finish what she started was admirable. By the end of the story she had become a strong woman who I held a lot of respect for. Likewise, my initial feelings towards Perry proved unwarranted. At first, his character came across as too stubborn, full of anger and generally, the type of character I don’t really have a lot of time for. But he too developed throughout and in the end, I saw him for who he was: a loyal, determined and deep individual.
It was the relationship between Aria and Perry which formed my favourite part of Under the Never Sky. Thankfully, Rossi didn’t throw in any insta-love. I cannot stand insta-love. Instead, Aria and Perry began as enemies and rightly so; each of them are from different worlds where they have grown up with the mindset to fear and hate the other. It wouldn’t have made sense for them to fall in love so quickly. It is only as the story continues and their prejudices towards each other begin to thaw that the pair begin to form a connection. While Aria and Perry are different, in some respects they are the same. Each has their minds set on achieving their individual goals and each share the determination to succeed. Their relationship was compelling to read about and I loved how it was gradual, not forced.
In its entirety, Under the Never Sky is well worth the read. In my opinion, it brings something refreshingly new into the YA genre and I feel that this book is only the beginning. I’m extremely pleased that Aria and Perry’s story doesn’t end here and I’m eager to see what happens next. If you haven’t read Under the Never Sky yet and you’re late to the party like I was, please don’t put it off any longer. It is definitely worth checking out.(less)