As I get ready to see The 5th Wave in theater, I might as well prepare by writing up a review for the second book – The Infinite Sea. Rick Yancey did not disappoint in his second book – and thank god I am only a few months away from the third book. (And the last?) This review is going to have spoilers for The 5th Wave, so if you haven’t read that book yet….geez I thought I was late. I’m going to try not to spoil this book too much….oh boy.
Also, as I have mentioned previously, I have a habit of writing and highlighting my books. I am trying to get used to it with ebooks, as I’ve transitioned to almost solely reading ebooks. So, I’ll have more notes and quotes in the future. But for this book, here’s the quote that meant the most to me:
“It isn’t about the dead,” [Vosch] snaps impatiently. “It never was.”
The Infinite Sea
by Rick Yancey
Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopia, Young Adult
Rating: 4.5/5 Moose
This book picks up near the ending of the first book. The group has survived the first four waves, the fifth wave is in place, and winter is in full force. While hiding in a disgusting, freezing hotel, Cassie, Ben and Ringer are doing what they can to keep their group together and safe while trying to grasp why the Others are attacking in waves rather than one swift motion. Told again from multiple points of view, this book is an intelligent, darker sequel to The 5th Wave.
Cassie Sullivan – Cassie is mourning the loss of Evan while trying to find her place in a militaristic group. She is constantly at odds with Ben and Ringer on trying to grasp what the Others are, if Evan was lying, and how they are to proceed going forward.
Sammy Sullivan – (I don’t remember any of the book being from Sammy’s point of view.) Sammy is going through a difficult time, especially for a post-apocalyptic world.He is torn between loving his sister and hating her, especially for the death of their father, and is clinging to Zombie.
Ben Parish/Zombie – Ben’s struggling with his recent injuries, most of which came from Ringer in order to sneak back into the camp. He’s weak and feverish, but doing what he can to keep charge. Both Ringer and Cassie ponder why exactly he’s called Zombie a few times.
Ringer/Marika – We finally learn Ringer’s name, and get the story from her point of view. She compartmentalizes and strategizes constantly. She always seems just shy of understanding the Others and grasping what they are doing and why. At the beginning of the book, she is out in the woods trying to find a new, warmer shelter for their group.
Evan Walker – Is Evan alive? The group accepts that he has died in the blast. But did he?
Teacup/Allison – There isn’t much on Teacup, but I love that she’s around. She’s another realistic possibility in a post apocalyptic world, where a child is going to try everything to be tough and brave, but really she’s clinging to Ringer for sanity and safety.
Dumbo and Poundcake – I know, I should separate them. But if I do, I am going to spoil the book more than any review should, and without spoilers, there isn’t much to say. But they both make it out of Book 1, and both are important to the story. This book explores why Poundcake no longer speaks, which is so heartbreaking. I hate that prior to that, I probably couldn’t tell you which character didn’t speak.
Razor – A camp refugee that becomes an integral part of Ringer’s plans. He thinks Ringer has gone Dorthy, believing he is still fighting for the good guys.
Vosch – The leader of the Others, runs the camp pretending to be human.
Rants, Raves and General Thoughts
The reviews of this book are a bit polar. Readers either loved it or hated it, and the major complaint of the book is how there is not a lot of action, it’s a filler book, and it dragged.
I will admit that I didn’t read this book as quickly as The 5th Wave, but I still really enjoyed it. I keep comparing this book to The Road in my head, a fantastic post-apocalyptic book by Cormac McCarthy – and anyone who thinks this book is slow should never read The Road. (My correlation is strictly on a type of post-apocalyptic story, not writing quality.) There has to be a point where the story arch slows down; there has to be a point where everyone can catch their breath! And yet, there is still a good bit of action in this book while learning so much more about the Others.
Have they really not said what they call themselves? In two books? That’s….odd.
The other major complaint about this book is that it’s disorganized and jumps around too much. I get the jumping around comments, but I don’t see it as disorganized. I feel that the author uses the jumps to his advantage, to the point where I completely thought I had the ending figured out, only to be surprised that I was wrong.
This book is darker and had notably more language. It’s a bit jarring to realize characters that are 5 and 7 years old are dropping f-bombs as much as they are shooting guns. And yet, there is a part of them that is desperately clinging to their innocence.
The question of this book is simple: Why torment a species that you can wipe out immediately, especially they claim to have been around for millions of years? Why wait for the species to become 7 billion?
Really, the way the Others are going after humanity is horrific. You thought you understood the 5th wave from the last book, but it gets so much worse in this book. How children are used… it’s dark.
I shifted my love to Ringer in this book. I think I relate more to Cassie – constantly panicky and pissed any time someone would challenge what I say, but I love Ringer’s cool exterior. Cassie has a hard time remembering that everyone has lost someone, everyone has horrific backstories, and that she isn’t really the last human on Earth. But really, can you blame her for her train of thought when she was alone or just with Evan for so long?
Ringer’s calculating nature makes her just as pivotal to humanity’s final moments, just as much as Cassie. And I can’t wait to see what happens next between the two of them. I was a little disappointed that they didn’t get along, as Cassie’s first impressions of Ringer are how attractive she is and seems to dislike her on that principle alone.
First of all, I convinced my brother to read this book, and that is consider quite a success. He texted me this morning that he loves it. So, score one me!
I get why people might not like this book, but I loved it. I feel that the characters are well balanced and different enough to make the bonding moments (as rare as they are) and the conflicts quite realistic. If books and story lines like this didn’t exist, people would complain that there is no depth to the story. So, I recommend it, but if you don’t like a little bit of down time, you might not enjoy it so much.