Five Survive: A Thrilling Dive Into Pressure


Five Survive: A Thrilling Dive Into Pressure

Photo credit: Courtesy of Amazon

By Connor McGrail, Intern

“Five survive” is author Holly Jackson’s most recent release, which came out on Nov. 29, and it definitely doesn’t disappoint. Readers will be hooked on every twist the book takes through its 388 pages, and it will take each reader on a wild ride

The book revolves around a relatively simple plot where six teenagers are on a spring break road trip. They lose cell service which forces them to turn down a shady road in the middle of the night, and suddenly their tire pops. They replace it and begin driving again until they hear all four of their tires pop. They get out to investigate, and they hear a rifle shot burst into the RV. That’s when the characters realize that in the darkness of the forest, there’s a sniper watching them. From here they are trapped together for the next 8 hours at the sniper’s mercy in their stifling RV. With mistrust from all of them, the twists the story takes are plentiful, but not overdone or unreasonable. 

“Five Survive” is broken up in an interesting way. Of course, there are chapters, forty to be exact, but it’s also separated from 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. allowing readers to fully envision how much time has passed and how long the characters have been forced into the 31-foot RV. I found this way of separating the book very interesting as it’s something I’ve never seen before and helps to further understand the mental stress on the characters. 

All of the characters are understandable and they have a clear progression to how they become, which in my opinion makes the story amazing, as it left me on the edge of my seat throughout my entire reading. I was eager to see what would happen next. The tension kept rising and rising until the very end with a huge breaking point that leaves a lasting impact on all the characters in the story. Each character has their own time in the book to be fleshed out, however, the narrator, Red Kenny’s, wandering mind and tendency to space out gives a great narrative to the story as we see it unfold from her eyes. 

Overall I’d definitely recommend the book to most readers. There are a few scenes that could make readers squeamish, but other than that “Five Survive” is a fun read, and probably one of the best recently released books I have read. The only main gripe I have with the book involves two characters, Simon and Reyna, who I wish had a bit more involvement than what they were given. Although I imagine it was intentional, the main conflict stays overly unclear for a good portion of the book which I dislike. I’d give the book a 4.5/5 rating overall.