Title: The Last 8
Author: Laura Pohl
Released: March 1st 2019
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Genre: Science Fiction, LGBT
Goodreads Rating: 4.15 (of 55 ratings)
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A high-stakes survival story about eight teenagers who outlive an alien attack—perfect for fans of The 5th Wave
Clover Martinez has always been a survivor, which is the only reason she isn’t among the dead when aliens invade and destroy Earth as she knows it.
When Clover hears an inexplicable radio message, she’s shocked to learn there are other survivors—and that they’re all at the former Area 51. When she arrives, she’s greeted by a band of misfits who call themselves The Last Teenagers on Earth.
Only they aren’t the ragtag group of heroes Clover was expecting. The group seems more interested in hiding than fighting back, and Clover starts to wonder if she was better off alone. But then she finds a hidden spaceship, and she doesn’t know what to believe…or who to trust.
Disclaimer: I received this ARC courtesy of Sourcebooks Fire. I am grateful for the opportunity to review an ARC for my readers, but this will not influence my final rating. All opinions expressed in this review are my own and based solely on the book.
Triggers: our MC is talks a lot about suicide throughout the book. She attempts it a few times, and she has severe depression. I mean, who wouldn’t after alien invasion, but it definitely could be triggering.
I…I read an alien book that actually had a fabulous amount of alien content??? I have to say that I’ve been alien baited before, and then all of a sudden, we’re just talking about idk regular people, and I’m just sitting here going, BUT ALIENS??? This book, though? LOTS OF ALIENS – even though I wasn’t so much scared of them because I kept imagining them looking like that weird little thing from Toy Story that had the mechanical spider legs and plastic baby head on top. So, um, yeah. Aliens???
The amazing alien content was not the only thing that this book had to offer. It brought so much goodness. Shall we list the ways?
1) AMAZING AMAZING AMAZING diversity. Our MC is bi/asexual and Latina, and Pohl gives us lesbian, Native American, and more rep.
2) Clover’s family. Omigosh, I loveddddddddddddd her abuela and abuelo. Her abuela reminded me a lot of my grandma at parts, and I was definitely dying. I absolutely loved their interactions, and I wish we had more time on it.
3) Clover. She was one strong and fierce heroine. She doesn’t hold back and tells it like she is. Pohl made her such a layered protagonist. This has to be one of the most realistic portrayals of how one would deal with the end of the world. I’ve read a few apocalypse stories, and some of the writers have definitely painted some sunshine and rainbows on how the characters react, but Clover felt so true to how it would actually be. I definitely loved reading her, and she was so easy to root for.
4) The story was fast paced and so easy to read. Pohl did such a great job setting everything up so I was invested in Clover and got a good background before diving into each of the big events that would change everything. It was so easy to read, and I easily binge read this entire story within a few days.
5) The twists and turnsssssssssss. There were so many, and they all had me go, oh, huh, well that’s interesting, I need to find out more. Then I was promptly suckered back into the story.
6) The world. It was easily captivating and just thinking about the book easily conjures up so many images and details and thoughts in my mind. I fully immersed myself in this world, and the whole aliens and landscape is so easy to see in my head.
7) This story focuses on struggles and characterization and important topics and crazy end of the world issues – and doesn’t have a deep dive into romance that would halt everything. Like, don’t get me wrong – I can get down for some romance, but like, when spaceships are descending from the sky and killing everyone, I think I can abandon a romance ship??
There were a few minor things that did bug me. I liked the gang of characters, but I really never deeply connected with them. They were just kind of there. Like, I liked them, but I was never like YAASS VIOLET. Also, there were times that Clover’s inner monologue got really deep really fast and I didn’t see where that came from when we were talking about other things.
Overall, this was a great story, and I really enjoyed. It’s part Fifth Wave, part Independence Day…and apparently part Toy Story with the images I created in my brain?? If you are looking for the next great alien and/or end of the world story, this is the book. Can’t wait to see where we go next with it. 4 crowns and an Ariel rating!
So, what do you think? Do you love alien books? Are you excited about this? Let’s discuss in the comments below!