Quick Picks for Reluctant Readers (#QP2024) Featured Review: Five Survive by Holly Jackson

  • Five Survive
  • by Holly Jackson
  • Publisher: Delacorte Press
  • Release Date: November 29, 2022
  • ISBN: 9780593374160

Red is on a spring break trip with five of her friends, driving an RV to their from Philadelphia to the Gulf Shore. But then the RV breaks down in the middle of nowhere. They have no cell phone service, four busted tires, plenty of beer, but not a lot of food and it’s getting dark. Then, just as they think things couldn’t get worse, someone starts shooting at the RV, trapping the six teens inside. As the scary, terrible night unravels, secrets about each of the six teens will be revealed, and they’ll each be forced to make terrible choices in order to survive because it’s unclear whether the real monster is outside the RV or inside it.

Twists don’t even begin to describe the back and forth, constant plot bombs that happen in this story. Be prepared to think you know what’s going on, only to have the rug pulled out from under you every few pages. Each revelation in the plot pulls the reader in and encourages them to keep going until the final scene. The narration is first person and easy to follow, the characters are relatable and tinges of humor often break the tension.

Fans of Holly Jackson’s other mystery series books will love this new standalone. Readers looking for a twisty mystery with an unreliable narrator would also like The Cousins by Karen McManus and The Counselors by Jessica Goodman. For more survival, trapped in a vehicle suspense, try Girl Overboard by Sandra Block.

-Rachel Adams, Teen Services Librarian, King County Library System

Other Nominated Titles

Release Date: September 20, 2022

The Selected Lists teams read throughout the year in search of the best titles published in their respective categories. Once a book is suggested (either internally or through the title suggestion form), it must pass through a review process to be designated an official nomination.

Each week, the teams feature a review of one of the officially nominated titles. Additional titles to receive this designation are listed as well. At year’s end, the team will curate a final list from all nominated titles and select a Top Ten.