book review

Five Survive by Holly Jackson

Thank you to the publishers for providing me with a review copy in exchange for my honest opinion.

Publication Date: November 29, 2022

Publisher: Delacorte Press


Genre: YA Thriller

Rating: 1/5

This is the last book that I read last year and I’m so disappointed to say that it didn’t work for me. The premise sounds so intriguing. A group of six friends (a mixture of high school and college aged) are taking an RV to get to their Spring Break destination. Along the way they get lost in a remote area where they are then forced into a situation with a sniper. This entire book takes place in eight hours as the group of friends need to figure out who has the secret that the sniper wants.

This book dragged on so long that the less than four hundred page book felt like it was never-ending. In 2022 I feel like I perfected the art of putting down books pretty early on that I knew I wasn’t going to like. However, I decided to keep forcing myself through this one because it’s Holly Jackson and I enjoyed the first two books in the A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder trilogy (I haven’t read the third yet). But that was a mistake and I should have trusted my instincts.

One of my biggest issues with the story is that so much of it just doesn’t make sense. There is a character in this friend group who is so over the top angry and volatile but because he’s the oldest everyone just does what he says for absolutely no reason. Jackson tried to make the main character, Red, unreliable but she really isn’t and it was bizarre how much time was spent trying to make us question her memory because she didn’t know the pattern of the curtains. Also, it was fairly obvious the entire time who was behind everything and what the secrets were.

This book does have over a four star rating on Goodreads though so I’m definitely in the minority of this one. I could rant further about more issues I had but I do still have a lot of respect for Jackson as an author and I hope that I fall in love with her next story.


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