cover image The Infinite Sea

The Infinite Sea

Rick Yancey, read by Phoebe Strole and Ben Yannette. Dreamscape Media, , unabridged, seven CDs, 8 hrs., $39.95 ISBN 978-1-62923-459-5

The second book in Yancey’s the 5th Wave series offers an action-packed science fiction odyssey, in which Cassie Sullivan and her cohorts struggle to keep the Others from exterminating the human race. The belief that survival, taking risks, and keeping promises are the only things that matter comprises the philosophy Cassie employs as armor in her search for her brother, and her romances and interactions with the Others. The story involves a diverse group of characters with an array of nicknames and veiled identities, making it hard for listeners unfamiliar with the series to keep track of who’s who. Adding to the confusion are alternating narrators, which hinders the book’s ability to engage listeners and allow them to readily distinguish one character from the next. While Strole’s narration is clearly enunciated, her voices for the adults are not distinct enough. She fares better with the children. Yannette’s narration is straightforward and easy to listen to primarily because he portrays more fully developed and clearly written characters. Both Strole and Yannette’s presentations of the battles are invigorating, and there is a genuine interest in how each conflict will resolve. Ages 14–up. A Putnam hardcover. (Sept.)