The 5th Wave – Book vs. Movie Review

Hey all,

This is going to be a comparison review. Please remember these are just my opinions. If they differ from yours, I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments. Our differences in opinions make us who we are. Embrace it. 🙂

I tried my best to avoid spoilers.

The Book:

The 5th Wave by Rick Yancy was released May 7, 2013.

Cassie “Cassiopeia” Sullivan is our main character. When the book opens, we get some back story on Cassie’s life. She was just an average teenager going to high school, with a crush on a boy, Ben Parish, who didn’t even know she was alive. Then, theAlien invasion happened. Fast forward to present day, Cassie is alone, trying to survive Wave 4 and find her brother who was taken to a military base. Waves 1-3 were a hoot. Wave 1 knocked the power out, Wave 2 destroyed the coast lines with tsunamis, and Wave 3 was a virus spread by birds that wiped a crap ton of people out. The Wave Cassie is struggling through now is the 4th. It involves Alien snipers, otherwise known as “Silencers.”

This book switches charter POVs a lot. It’s all in first person, and sometimes it took me a few paragraphs into a chapter to figure out who’s head I was in. After a while, I found it easy to figure out when it was Cassie, but every time a new character was introduced, I found myself confused. I didn’t find this too distracting though. I actually enjoyed the struggle a little. Weird, I know.

Once I knew the characters, I loved them. Cassie is my favorite, by far. She isn’t terribly whiney, she is super sarcastic, and I love her determination to find her brother. Even at her lowest, she pushes through for her brother. The rest of the characters are great in their own right. Zombie is smart, Ringer’s attitude is fantastic, even Bear (yes, the teddy bear), has some great moments with Cassie. All around, I didn’t find myself thinking any of these characters sounded the same. They each had their own, unique voice.

Sarcasm doesn’t appear to work on him him. If that’s true, I’m in trouble: It’s my normal mode of communication. – Cassie

I enjoyed Rick Yancy’s writing style. I found Cassie’s parts, in particular, to be really great. She spoke like a teenager. Just because she’s in a book, and going through an alien invasion, doesn’t mean she would stop speaking and thinking like a teenager.

What were they thinking? ‘It’s an alien apocalypse! Quick, grab the beer! – Cassie

Over all, this book had me questioning everyone, frantically turning the pages to get more answers, and even laughing. I didn’t find the twists to be too obvious. I was on the edge of my seat, waiting for the answers the entire book. Sure, the POV switches were  a little confusing at times, but otherwise, I thoroughly enjoyed this book.


The Movie:

Release date: January 22, 2016
Starring: Chloe Grace Martez

Ugh. That’s it. End of review…

Just kidding. Sort of. I’m so mad at this movie. It stripped away everything, and I mean everything, that made the book so great. The characters were dwindled down to their basic forms…their personalities were just…gone. I ended up finding most of the movie boring.

In the set up scenes where we learn about Cassie’s past, she’s at a party…that isn’t Cassie. She wouldn’t be at a party. Then she leaves the party and runs into Ben Parish and they have this awkward conversation about his phone case. THIS DIDN’T HAPPEN…and it’s stupid that the writers put it in there. Ben didn’t know Cassie existed. WHY ARE THEY TALKING ABOUT A PHONE CASE?!?!

Fast forward to later in the move and there is a scene with Evan in the lake with his shirt off, strictly to have the audience ogling at him. Ugh. I almost shut the movie off at this point.

The acting was okay. I enjoy Chloe Grace Martez. I didn’t really like the guy who played Evan, but I did like the guy who played Ben. The kid who played Sam was a good fit as well. I didn’t find any of their performances horrendously hard to watch (like Twilight…), but I also didn’t find them Oscar worthy either.

Some of the scenes were really nice, visually. I thought it was shot well, and the dark mood of the story line was portrayed well. This might be the movie’s only good point.

Normally, I go into these book to movie adaptations and try to look at the movie as a separate entity from the book. Like The Hunger Games, Harry Potter and The Maze Runner. Things changed in those movies, but I found them all entertaining enough that the changes didn’t bother me. Yes, even The Maze Runner. But that is a whole other review.


That’s all folks. I’d love to hear your opinions in the comment section. 🙂



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