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Book Review: The Last Star By Rick Yancey

Book Review: The Last Star By Rick Yancey

The Last Star is the third and final book in The 5th Wave trilogy by Rick Yancey. This is a post-apocalyptic young adult series that follows the lives of various teenagers and their part in the events that follow the five waves of an extraterrestrial invasion. You can find my review of the first book in this series here, The 5th Wave.

Keep reading for my review of The Last Star

The premise of the story is that the Earth is being invaded by aliens called The Others. One day a massive spaceship appears in the sky and at first it appears harmless and does nothing. But then the waves of destruction begin. With the first wave, the power goes out. The second is a literal wave, a tsunami. The third wave brought a deadly plague. And the fourth wave brought The Others down to earth – in human bodies. At the beginning of The Last Star, the fifth wave is about to begin.

Whilst Rick Yancey set up a very exciting and unique story back in The 5th Wave, I couldn’t help but feel that The Last Star was a little lacking. The final part of this story takes place over a mere four days and these four days are packed with action, but not much excitement. For me, it felt like there was just more of the same stuff that we’d seen in the previous two novels but with more experienced and hardened characters.

That said, there is one huge plot twist about two thirds of the way in that really made me sit up and pay attention. The problem was that this plot twist, which had the potential to make this story really interesting, wasn’t followed through. It didn’t impact the way this story ended nor did it really come to a close itself.

This secret ends up buried with the death of a crucial character but to me that was a thoroughly dissatisfying way to round off that plot line. Yes, it’s interesting that we, the reader, know something that the surviving characters do not and that is always exciting. But without the characters knowing this piece of the puzzle, it sort of made this plot twist completely redundant and it may as well not have been revealed.

The Last Star may not have been as explosive as I wanted, but Yancey gives us a fascinating look into the minds of humans who have had everything taken from them, and what they will do to take their planet back. It really makes you think about how you would change if you lived in a world in which you couldn’t trust anyone. One in which everything you’ve known since birth has been destroyed and most of the people you love are dead. I had the pleasure of meeting the author, Rick Yancey, a few years back and he had some very interesting things to say about what inspired him.

All three books in this series are told from alternative perspectives but it is in this book that Rick Yancey seems to finally strike a good balance between all the different characters. In the previous books, I often felt like the narratives switched too often between different characters which made it very difficult to get into the minds of each individual.

However, by the time we get to The Last Star, enough characters are now dead that this really isn’t a problem anymore. We get a much clearer view of what each character is thinking and feeling and it’s really interesting to compare these characters to those that we met at the beginning of this story. Cassie, Ben, Sam and Ringer are extraordinarily different people now, which is rather disturbing and saddening.

I’ve never felt that this story is for kids and these insights into the minds of the surviving teenagers only reinforces that idea. Yancey’s series is, of course, fiction, but what if it wasn’t? This story fits into the young adult category because of the age of the protagonists but if they were a mere ten years older, I’m sure this story would be considered a hit for adults as well.

The things that these ‘children’ do are, quite frankly, horrific, and they may not even be as far-fetched as they first seem. If humanity was turned on itself, I’m sure it would be a bloodbath akin to the one Rick Yancey has written about in his books.

All in all, The Last Star was a bit of a disappointment for me. The 5th Wave is one of my all-time favourite young adult reads and I had high hopes for this series. However, with each new novel, the story got less and less exciting and I didn’t get the explosive ending I wished for.

That said, I would still highly recommend this series to people looking for a young adult read, particular the first in the series, as it does really make you think about some important issues related to morality and what it means to be human. The Last Star isn’t bad by any means but Yancey set the bar for himself very high with the first book in this series and unfortunately he didn’t quite manage to keep the momentum going through to the end.


Buy The Last Star by Rick Yancey:
Amazon | Book Depository

Have you read any books by Rick Yancey? What are some of your favourite young adult reads?

If you liked this post, check out these:
The 5th Wave Book Review
The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey
Earth Star by Janet Edwards
The 100 by Kass Morgan
I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
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Laura is a culture and travel blogger based in London. She studied French at Oxford University and now studies Law in London. She’s an avid reader and traveller and loves to combine the two with literary travel. Find her tips and reviews on the best reads, eats and destinations on whatshotblog.com.

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  1. 15th July 2016 / 5:31 PM

    Haven’t read this book but sucks that you found it disappointing! I haven’t read any of Rick’s book but I know of him x

  2. 15th July 2016 / 5:39 PM

    Sorry that the book was a tad disappointing, nothing worse! I’m glad you still got to the end though and like the series overall x

  3. Madeeha
    15th July 2016 / 5:49 PM

    I think with trilogies or series of books, it is very difficult to keep the consistency. Repetition is very common.

  4. LaaLaa
    15th July 2016 / 7:38 PM

    Ah that’s such a shame. Sometimes that can happen with book series but at least you’d still recommend it x

  5. 15th July 2016 / 9:50 PM

    I think if this book was made into a movie it would totally be worth a watch, I love all these alien stuff (to watch but somehow not to read). Lovely review

  6. The Belly Rules The Mind
    15th July 2016 / 10:05 PM

    Seems like a good read. Off late I have been reading too many food / health related books

  7. 15th July 2016 / 11:07 PM

    I really enjoy post-apocalyptic fiction, what a shame you were a bit let down by this one! I’l have to have a look at the series anyway as it does sound like my kind of thing 🙂

    Jess xo | The Indigo Hours

  8. Annie Says
    16th July 2016 / 1:29 AM

    It dosen’t seem like a book I’d read.. You did a nice job on the review tho 🙂

  9. 16th July 2016 / 1:30 AM

    It’s too bad the series didn’t finish off with a great finale. I haven’t read any of the other books but I saw that they were very popular.

  10. Mai C.
    16th July 2016 / 2:35 AM

    It sounds like the Hunger Games, with the last two books feeling like they’re a little lacking. I think this is normally what happens to most novels. But at least you enjoyed the story all the same. Thanks for the review, the series sounds interesting!

  11. Hannah Heartss ❄️⛄️
    16th July 2016 / 1:31 PM

    Such a shame it disappointed you! I havent heard any of these books x

  12. 16th July 2016 / 2:37 PM

    I haven’t heard of these books but it makes me less likely to want to pick them up if I’ve heard they’re a disappointment x

  13. Karla
    17th July 2016 / 6:36 AM

    This is not a genre I will get into at this stage in my life (probably when I was younger – as it is I have at least 20 books I’ve purchased in the last two years but still haven’t read!). However, even with your disappointment, it sounds intriguing and I like your writing style in your review.

  14. Hungry_Healthy_Happy
    17th July 2016 / 10:55 AM

    It’s a shame that you were disappointed with it. I haven’t actually heard of it before.

  15. Tanya Brannan
    17th July 2016 / 12:55 PM

    I love reading your book reviews as they usually point me towards a new genre or author, sadly with this one, I don’t think it’s up my street at all. x

  16. Jessica
    17th July 2016 / 3:39 PM

    Never read a book by Rick Yancey. I do love this genre though too sad this book was a bit of disappointment for you.

  17. Rose Sahetapy
    17th July 2016 / 3:43 PM

    The genre is a bit younger to me, but I like your review. It’s a clear review with a complete the compliment and disappoint. An honest review.

  18. Beautyqueenuk
    17th July 2016 / 6:16 PM

    I think this is possibly a bit too young for me to read, but I do love your review and am sorry it was disappointing x

  19. Lizelle Cruz
    17th July 2016 / 6:45 PM

    I have heard and watched the 5th wave but have not read any book in the series. Your post made me want to read it already!!

  20. 17th July 2016 / 7:41 PM

    Sorry to hear that it did not pan out the way you wanted it to , it can be frustrating when books are disappointing.

  21. 18th July 2016 / 1:04 PM

    I really need to get back into reading again! I think the last book I read was quite disappointing, which why it’s put me off.

  22. 18th July 2016 / 7:33 PM

    I never heard of this book and I am sorry it didn’t go the way you thought!

    Ivelisse | CarnationDreams.com

  23. 19th July 2016 / 9:07 AM

    I never heard of the book. It’s nothing worse like a disappointing book!

  24. 19th July 2016 / 2:46 PM

    Thanks for the thorough and honest review. I was thinking to get some new summer reads and I think I will pass this one.

  25. Eloise Maoudj Riley
    19th July 2016 / 10:56 PM

    nice review, glad you were honest about it! Doesn’t sound like the type of books I read, so I’ll pass on this one : )

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