Review | The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey

How do you rid the Earth of seven billion humans? Rid the humans of their humanity.

Surviving the first four waves was nearly impossible. Now Cassie Sullivan finds herself in a new world, a world in which the fundamental trust that binds us together is gone. As the 5th Wave rolls across the landscape, Cassie, Ben, and Ringer are forced to confront the Others’ ultimate goal: the extermination of the human race.

Cassie and her friends haven’t seen the depths to which the Others will sink, nor have the Others seen the heights to which humanity will rise, in the ultimate battle between life and death, hope and despair, love and hate.

3 cupcakes

It’s been quite a while since I’ve read The 5th Wave, so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from The Infinite Sea. As a result, I found the first ~2/3 of The Infinite Sea to be rather confusing, especially since nothing seemed to be happening in terms of plot progression. Thankfully, the latter portion captured my interest a bit more, if only because of the many twists, turns, and promises of desolation and desperation that it contained.

The Infinite Sea consists of multiple shifts in perspective, including Cassie, Poundcake, and Ringer. I wasn’t a huge fan of Cassie – her infatuation with Evan Walker was more annoying than it was in the first book, as it seemed to plague her every thought, so I was glad that her narration only took up a small portion of the story.

Ringer’s narration, on the other hand, took up the majority of the book. At first, I wasn’t too fond of this switch: she was very straight-forward and distant in The 5th Wave, so I loved seeing the reasons for this coldness. Ringer is determined, intelligent, and very, very angry, so I can’t wait to see where she goes next.

My favourite POV definitely belonged to Poundcake, even though it was absolutely heartbreaking to read about his backstory and the reasoning behind his nickname.

As with The 5th Wave, I loved the themes that Rick Yancey chose to explore. Over the course of the novel, I found myself thinking intently about the importance of hope, the nature of humanity, and the instinct to protect the young against all costs. More than that, though, I loved how these philosophical musings were tied into the aliens’ grand plan, even if they did raise more questions than answers.

Overall, I’m incredibly conflicted about The Infinite Sea. Although there were several aspects that I really enjoyed, it felt rather unfocused and seemed to contain more filler than substance. Here’s hoping that the next book is much better.

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Book Review: The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

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.

3.5 cupcakes

The 5th Wave is exactly how I like my post-apocalyptic worlds: dark and with high stakes. There’s this prevailing feeling of hopelessness that, coupled with the intrigue of what the 5th Wave could possibly contain, certainly makes for an intense read.

This creepy factor peters off towards the middle of the book when our protagonist, Cassie, forgets that survival should be her main priority and falls into an unfortunate case of instalove with Evan. Not only is the romance severely lacking in chemistry, but it also serves to weaken Cassie’s character and any previous admiration that I had for her. Any suspicions that Cassie (rightfully) had about Evan were swept out the window whenever he so much as smiled at her, causing the plot to drag in many places, and ruining the effect of the subsequent plot twist (if it can be called that, given that I had guessed it fairly early on).

I wasn’t really able to connect with any of the characters. While I appreciated having multiple perspectives, the fact that they weren’t labelled led to a bit of confusion on my part, since Cassie and Zombie sounded quite similar; if it weren’t for the fact that they were in much different settings (and of different genders), I wouldn’t have been able to tell their voices apart. I really enjoyed seeing the world through Sammy’s eyes: the naive voice of a child brought much-needed light-hearted, aww-worthy moments to the story.

Some of my favourite parts of The 5th Wave were the philosophical musings on moral ambiguity and the notion of humanity. It posed some questions that I’m still considering: what does it mean to be human? Is humanity something that one can gain or lose?

Overall, I enjoyed The 5th Wave for the most part; if it weren’t for the romance, I feel as though I would have loved it just as much as everyone else. That being said, I’m still looking forward to reading The Infinite Sea , if only to see how much more intense the alien invasion can get.