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The Last 8

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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 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.


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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 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.

30 review for The Last 8

  1. 4 out of 5

    C.G. Drews

    \\\ deleting my review and opinion (which was a very soft and mostly praise; only critical about one thing) because being subtweeted by author/her readers is v. terrifying

  2. 5 out of 5

    Laura Pohl

    if I don't rate if 5 stars who will amirite Content warning: Clover struggles with both PTSD/depression, and even discusses a suicide attempt. There are several LGBT characters, and Clover, the main character, is bisexual/aromantic (it's an ownvoices story). 05.28.2018 update: My cover is live! It also has an excerpt from the first chapter if you want to read it. https://www.barnesandnoble.com/blog/t...

  3. 4 out of 5

    Elise (TheBookishActress)

    ✨Arc received from the publisher via Netgalley for an honest review. | releases: 5 Mar 2019 | →young bi/aro Latina pilot and marketed as full of plot twists 👀👀

  4. 5 out of 5

    Rafael Fulanetti

    This book is amazing! I was breathless and I couldn't let go of it until it was finished. The characters are so real and interesting. I was eager to have more and more information about them and watch their interactions. It's fun, it has drama, a well structured story, aliens , spaceships and friendship. Go buy this book as soon as it lands the market. I promise you won't regret it!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Iris

    This book is amazing! Laura has a fresh writing and she managed to create awesome characters. It's diverse, funny, but also emotional. I loved Clover, but my favorite one is Iolanthe. Full of plot twists and almost no romance, it's the alien adventure I wanted. Friendships takes a big role on this book, just like family. There are physics, adventure and spaceships. Everyone is so clever! She put together an incredible group of people with the same goal. This book is a must read and I can't wait f This book is amazing! Laura has a fresh writing and she managed to create awesome characters. It's diverse, funny, but also emotional. I loved Clover, but my favorite one is Iolanthe. Full of plot twists and almost no romance, it's the alien adventure I wanted. Friendships takes a big role on this book, just like family. There are physics, adventure and spaceships. Everyone is so clever! She put together an incredible group of people with the same goal. This book is a must read and I can't wait for 2019, so I can talk about it to everyone.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Sofia Soter

    I knew I was going to love this, but I had no idea how much. the story, the characters, the writing (and some passages in particular) will stay with me for a long time. my heart is now bursting with love, pride and a spark of much-needed hope. read this as soon as you can, I promise you it's worth it.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Vicky Who Reads

    4 stars I sped through this way faster than I expected, especially given that (1) I was not in a sci-fi mood (I want to read more romance right now) (2) I read 50% while sitting in direct sunlight, sweating sunblock and sweat profusely (3) Did I mention that I really wanted to read a romance novel? BUT. I actually really enjoyed this. As much as I love romance-focused books, I greatly dislike books with other main plots that decide to pick up romance too, and I wholeheartedly stand by the idea th 4 stars I sped through this way faster than I expected, especially given that (1) I was not in a sci-fi mood (I want to read more romance right now) (2) I read 50% while sitting in direct sunlight, sweating sunblock and sweat profusely (3) Did I mention that I really wanted to read a romance novel? BUT. I actually really enjoyed this. As much as I love romance-focused books, I greatly dislike books with other main plots that decide to pick up romance too, and I wholeheartedly stand by the idea that a traditional YA romance would have deteriorated the experience of reading The Last 8. Before I get into this though, let me start by saying that this book was great and action-packed and really pulled through in being enjoyable. I loved the action and the level-headedness Clover kept all throughout the story, which made it really focused on the plot, and let the reader think a lot about the mystery and the aliens and why these teens managed to survive on Earth when everyone else did not. The action was there, it was present, and even though sometimes it was just Clover driving at the beginning of the story, it was still engaging as there’s a lot of things that had happened with everyone being killed by aliens, and I really enjoyed that engagement Pohl wrote into the story. This was the book’s strongest point in my mind–I really enjoyed all the entertainment value in it, and that’s what made me keep on reading this novel. As for the romance, there wasn’t really anything grand or sweeping that took up page time or made me want to tear my hair out, which I greatly enjoyed. None of that “we’re about to die let’s kiss at the WORST POSSIBLE MOMENT” stuff going on, thank goodness. Plus, this book features a really diverse cast of characters, which was great to see. What ultimately made me drop a star was how I felt like the characters weren’t dynamic enough. I didn’t think Clover really grew a lot as a character? She didn’t get that YA growth arc, and I personally wish she learned more in the duration of the story. She’s smart at the beginning, smart at the middle, smart at the end. She knows what to do. And as much as it was nice getting to read a competent main character, I did feel like The Last 8 was missing a bit of the “teens are growing and learning” portion of the equation. I wanted Clover to be more dynamic–I wanted her to really get that nice growth arc. So ultimately, although I think The Last 8 really pulled through with the plot arc, it was a bit lacking in the character portion. But I still love the characters, especially the scene where we got to see Clover and some of her almost self-destructive thoughts, already deciding that the other teens didn’t like her and preemptively cutting herself out of the group. That scene really resonated with me, because I think that sort of destructive behavior is something a lot of people experience and go through with, despite the varying levels of rationality of their conclusion. Overall, The Last 8 was a super fun read that somehow made me enjoy and speed through sci-fi when I was in a very much Not Sci-Fi mood. I’d recommend to anyone looking for an action-packed story feat. aliens and the last teens on Earth! NOTE: The author has acted in ways that I don't necessarily condone, (see Cait @ PaperFury's review and Destiny @ Howling Libraries's review), so it's up to you whether you should read. It is a good book, although I'm hesitant to try her future work. Thank you so much to Netgalley and Sourcebooks FIRE for providing me with a digital review copy in exchange for an honest review! Blog | Instagram | Twitter

  8. 5 out of 5

    Robson Gabriel

    HOLLY MOTHER OF ALIEN APOCALYPSE! Laura Pohl is a breathe of fresh air in YA science fiction, her book should definitely be on everyone's radar. With strong and diverse characters, Laura's narrative is something new and unique. It got me always wanting more and more about the Aliens and the teenagers survivors. Theres always a element of suprise in her writing. The Last 8 is told in Clover's point of view. She needs to deal with the end of the world as she knew it, the loss of her grandparents and HOLLY MOTHER OF ALIEN APOCALYPSE! Laura Pohl is a breathe of fresh air in YA science fiction, her book should definitely be on everyone's radar. With strong and diverse characters, Laura's narrative is something new and unique. It got me always wanting more and more about the Aliens and the teenagers survivors. Theres always a element of suprise in her writing. The Last 8 is told in Clover's point of view. She needs to deal with the end of the world as she knew it, the loss of her grandparents and her ex boyfriend. In her journey, Clover understands the real meaning of life and it's importance for her and the other survivors. Laura built a world full of chaos, giving the reader a full survivor story filled with adventure and science. Once you read it, theres no turning back!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Amber (The Book Bratz)

    The full review + more can be found at The Book Bratz Thank you so much to NetGalley and Sourcebooks for the opportunity to review this book! I want to start my review off with this: The Last 8 is a book that you aren't going to want to miss this year. This book is being marketed for fans of The 5th Wave and anyone who knows me, knows I LOVE that book and movie with all my heart. The Last 8 exceeded all of my expectations. Filled with finding friendships, aliens, finding yourself in the face of The full review + more can be found at The Book Bratz Thank you so much to NetGalley and Sourcebooks for the opportunity to review this book! I want to start my review off with this: The Last 8 is a book that you aren't going to want to miss this year. This book is being marketed for fans of The 5th Wave and anyone who knows me, knows I LOVE that book and movie with all my heart. The Last 8 exceeded all of my expectations. Filled with finding friendships, aliens, finding yourself in the face of disaster The Last 8 is the perfect way to bring in 2019 and alien invasions. All of Clover's dreams and actions for working for NASA are thrown of the window when the aliens invade earth and kill off most of earth's population, all except for Clover and seven other teenagers who have been hanging out in Area 51 since the invasion. When Clover hears a radio message that leads her to Area 51 and the other teens, she finally feels like she has a chance to fight back, only: everyone is pretty content with just existing and playing video games and staying safe. Clover isn't having it though and after uncovering some dark government secrets learns that everything isn't exactly what they thought and there might be hope for them after all. *This paragraph is going to discuss Clover's suicide attempts if you would like to skip a head to the next paragraph!* I love Clover's character. Clover is a seventeen year old ace/aro pilot who longs to be in the sky even when it is no longer safe. From the beginning of the novel we see how intelligent and resourceful Clover is and how she continues to be through out the entirety of the novel. Though I know not many people are going to take lightly to the talk over Clover's suicide attempts I did actually appreciate them in the novel. Clover doesn't shy away from the fact that she has had struggles since the invasion, that at times she felt like life wasn't continuing. I loved the part where she acknowledges the fact that Adam is developing feelings for and she explains to him how something between them will never happen because she identifies as bisexual and aromantic. I enjoyed the fact that The Last 8 didn't need a romance aspect to move the plot forward. I never expected a book about aliens to make me tear up but the friendships built between the characters definitely pulled at my heart strings a little bit. The plot of The Last 8 was fast paced and didn't stop for one moment. Each chapter was a new development in the plot to drive it forward. Overall I really enjoyed The Last 8 and I can't wait to see where Pohl is going to take this gang of characters next!

  10. 4 out of 5

    Emily de Moura

    I cried TWICE reading about teenagers and aliens and friendship so, like, read this too as soon as it comes out maybe?

  11. 4 out of 5

    Solaine Chioro

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAÁAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA 😭❤

  12. 5 out of 5

    laurel [suspected bibliophile]

    Trigger Warning: Suicidal Ideations, Suicide 2.5 stars Clover is one of the few remaining humans left after a brutal alien invasion. One of eight, actually. And she wants to fight back. To take back the Earth. Make the aliens pay. - Hmmmmmmmmph. That's my feeling on this book. On the one hand, it wasn't bad. It had just the right amount of action, intensity and emotion to be enjoyable, with characters who were ethnically and sexually diverse (in addition to being Latina, I think that Clover was also ar Trigger Warning: Suicidal Ideations, Suicide 2.5 stars Clover is one of the few remaining humans left after a brutal alien invasion. One of eight, actually. And she wants to fight back. To take back the Earth. Make the aliens pay. - Hmmmmmmmmph. That's my feeling on this book. On the one hand, it wasn't bad. It had just the right amount of action, intensity and emotion to be enjoyable, with characters who were ethnically and sexually diverse (in addition to being Latina, I think that Clover was also aro and I'm so happy for that rep) and became a rag-tag family. I really liked the first couple chapters, with the build-up to and then the actual alien invasion. The tension and despair and lack of knowing what the blisters was going on was so well done. On the other, the rest of it just wasn't good. To me anyways. I know that other people will love this. But I couldn't suspend my disbelief enough to really get into the swing of this book. Sometimes I could, and I found myself enjoying it, and then something happened and I was like lol no. Like air ducts in a spaceship in space. Or the fact that the people at Area 51 kept their planes fully fueled in the hangar, along with fully armed with live ammunition and missiles. What. That sounds like an accident just waiting to happen. Also—when you pull the ejection handle, you remain attached to the seat. The seat is what has the parachute. And also—you're really strapped down in that thing. Can't go jostling around when pulling 7 gees, amiright? And this is the part where the rest is in spoilers because, uh, spoilers. (view spoiler)[Okay. While reading this I was super duper annoyed that home skillet Clover managed to fly—and pull gees that she didn't feel during maneuvers that would make a Blue Angel blush in shame—a Blackbird and an F-15 without any training whatsoever. I get it, I get it. Girl is ~special~ But there are limits to what you can pull off without training or familiarization with your equipment. Like, how do you know what all the buttons do? How do you know that that particular button opens the hatch without trying any other buttons first? And how can you pilot an aircraft that takes years to learn how to operate but can't work a mother-forking car?? As for the rest of the book, it's basically X-Files meets Independence Day meets Ender's Game—with teens. I felt that the book would have been a lot more daring and different if instead of going all Dark Angel it went with the aliens not recognizing the teens because they were on the autism spectrum (different brain waves/chemistry/whathaveyou) instead of being part of a failed government experiment that went wrong because let's face it folks: the US government does not like to part with its toys. Particularly toys that are part of a failed alien hybrid experiment that they now can't keep track of or contact because of lack of funding? Lol no. Lack of funding is the excuse you give when you don't reach out and notify millions when you've exposed them to contaminated cancer-and-birth-defect-causing drinking water, not when you create a finite number of a new species of possibly murderous alien-human hybrids. Those you keep under lock and key, or you kill them. (hide spoiler)] Anywho. To wrap up another too long review (why? why am I like this??), I feel like this will be enjoyable to a lot of teens, particularly those who are excited to read a book about alien invasions that doesn't have a romantic subplot taking over the storyline. For jaded adult me, however, it was a meh. Then again, I'm not the target audience. I received this ARC from NetGalley and Edelweiss for an honest review.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Bruna

    Okay. This book surprised me in so many levels. I've read other things from Laura, so I knew I would like it, but this was very different. This book has everything I love in sci-fi stories: aliens, a realistic narrative, well-developed characters who have to deal with extreme situations... I love every character and I love their arcs and relationships. I'm looking forward to see them again in the next book! But I think what makes me love this book so much is that even though it's about literally Okay. This book surprised me in so many levels. I've read other things from Laura, so I knew I would like it, but this was very different. This book has everything I love in sci-fi stories: aliens, a realistic narrative, well-developed characters who have to deal with extreme situations... I love every character and I love their arcs and relationships. I'm looking forward to see them again in the next book! But I think what makes me love this book so much is that even though it's about literally the end of the world, it's much more about life and what's worth in it than about death and destruction. It's beautiful and it gives hopes in the most unexpected scenario.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Lilyn G. | Sci-Fi & Scary

    I have mixed feelings about this book. There is potential, but it is never fulfilled. It is an entertaining read, but a forgettable one. 'The Last 8' features an aromantic lead, and subsequently a complete lack of love triangles. I am not aromantic but was able to sympathize. Honestly, though,  I think anyone who had anything that marked them as 'different' while a teen can appreciate Clover's feelings. Clover is Latina, which is a rare thing to find in a mass market book, so that's another point I have mixed feelings about this book. There is potential, but it is never fulfilled. It is an entertaining read, but a forgettable one. 'The Last 8' features an aromantic lead, and subsequently a complete lack of love triangles. I am not aromantic but was able to sympathize. Honestly, though,  I think anyone who had anything that marked them as 'different' while a teen can appreciate Clover's feelings. Clover is Latina, which is a rare thing to find in a mass market book, so that's another point in it's favor. Laura Pohl also doesn't shy away from addressing issues such as depression and suicidal ideation. She handles things in a frank manner which is completely believable. I'm of the mind that we try to shy away from talking of serious things to teens too much, so I'm always happy to see realistic portrayals in fiction. I also liked how the author handled the situation that the kids find themselves in in the 'The Last 8', after they've met up. It starts very expected, but as she peels back some of the layers, you start to see it as the sad, desperate thing that it is. Her action is on point as well. So, as you can see, 'The Last 8' has a lot of positives going for it. Why then, would I give it a middling rating? Because, unfortunately, the plot of the story felt like a mishmash of basically every invasion movie, ever. This includes a key portion of a plan that was taken from Independence Day. (The original, not the sequel that should be forgotten.) Now, some of this can be seen as an ode to those movies. Also, I think the author played it right in acknowledging the movies existence. The fact that we would draw our ideas from stuff that we've seen or read is kind of inevitable. So I don't think she did anything wrong in how she played it. However, at this point, pretty much all plots have been done and done again. It can be extremely difficult to take these elements and make them feel fresh and exciting. I think this being Pohl's first novel really works against her here. The positive elements outweigh the negatives in 'The Last 8', though. Even though I'm only rating it a 3 of 5, I'm still interested in reading the next book in the series. Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book from Netgalley for review consideration.

  15. 4 out of 5

    Shorouk Abd Elhamed

    Okay just WOW, I didn't see all that coming . The story is brilliant. I will divide the review into two pieces : one for the first 40℅ and other for the rest of the book. First part of review: While reading this novel,  I was just thinking that this was the most realistic imagination of what would really happen with aliens. The author had good writing style although sometimes I skipped the details.It was absolutely a fast read .I decided to read the first chapter only and I found myself near 100 Okay just WOW, I didn't see all that coming . The story is brilliant. I will divide the review into two pieces : one for the first 40℅ and other for the rest of the book. First part of review: While reading this novel,  I was just thinking that this was the most realistic imagination of what would really happen with aliens. The author had good writing style although sometimes I skipped the details.It was absolutely a fast read .I decided to read the first chapter only and I found myself near 100 pages. The novel made me a little depressed but I think that isn't a bad thing about the novel . Our main character was okay . Up to the mid point, I didn't hate her or love her but I loved her grand father. When Clover became one of the eight , she annoyed me . She didn't seem to be grateful enough for them. Second part of review: Here comes the creativity and uniqueness of the story . The story turned wild here and I didn't skip the details here at all. I loved the teamwork here. There was some plot twists that I predicted but there were many twists that really shocked me.I loved Adam , he was the best. I think I liked all the characters but Clover was the least for me . I think my opinion of Clover will be unpopular but I just couldn't identify with her.I cried actually while reading this and I wasn't expecting that at all. The ending was good but didn't blow me away.Will I read the next part though?? Definitely. Overall, I think this a must read for any one who likes sci-fi One of my strongest reads this year. 4.5 stars.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Aimee ♥ | Aimee, Always

    "[A] young Latina pilot who finds herself grounded and alone after a devastating alien attack" UM HOW ABOUT HECK YES?

  17. 4 out of 5

    Shannon (It Starts At Midnight)

    You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight 3.5* This was fun, and full of excitement! I think the comparisons to The Fifth Wave are perfect, but also, it's still completely different- in a good, yet dark way. Things I Liked: •This book could (and should!) be a movie. The author wrote it in such a way that I could genuinely picture Clover and the situations she was in. I could see how flawlessly scenes would change, etc. And some You can find the full review and all the fancy and/or randomness that accompanies it at It Starts at Midnight 3.5* This was fun, and full of excitement! I think the comparisons to The Fifth Wave are perfect, but also, it's still completely different- in a good, yet dark way. Things I Liked: •This book could (and should!) be a movie. The author wrote it in such a way that I could genuinely picture Clover and the situations she was in. I could see how flawlessly scenes would change, etc. And sometimes it is just plain fun to read a book that moves so great. •I love the apocalypse. You can judge me, but I do. I love it because it brings forth all these thought-provoking questions, and makes me really ponder every situation the character is in. This particular apocalypse felt especially terrifying- as you can see by the title, we're working with the assumption that these are the last eight people on Earth. •The atmosphere was incredible. Continuing on my last pro, the author really made the world feel desperate and awful. You could truly sense the desolation that Clover was experiencing and just... wow. •Full of twists! There is so much happening, and a lot of it I did not see coming. I read this super quickly, because it was hard to put down! Things I Didn't Love: •I had some trouble keeping all the survivors straight. Clover, obviously I knew. But the rest I kept getting confused, and that was hard. So when the focus was on the internal workings of the group, I got a wee bit bored. •The pacing was a bit off in the middle. This leads back to my last point, because when there was a lot of discussion about the group in general, or infighting, I was kind of lost and my eyes were glazing over. It started out so action-packed, and ended up that way too, that the middle just felt a little underwhelming in comparison. Bottom Line: A dark and enjoyable end-of-the-world book featuring a ton of diverse characters and some very good twists!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Adriana Martinez Figueroa

    Imagine War of the Worlds meets a psychological examination on the survivors of the alien invasion. Imagine the survivors are all teens. This is the premise Laura Pohl brings us with The Last 8. A young Mexican-American teen named Clover Martínez is coming back from her school’s science fair when an alien invasion commences. No one knows what they are or why they’re on Earth, until the aliens start attacking the population. Slowly, but surely, Clover’s friends and family all die, leaving her to Imagine War of the Worlds meets a psychological examination on the survivors of the alien invasion. Imagine the survivors are all teens. This is the premise Laura Pohl brings us with The Last 8. A young Mexican-American teen named Clover Martínez is coming back from her school’s science fair when an alien invasion commences. No one knows what they are or why they’re on Earth, until the aliens start attacking the population. Slowly, but surely, Clover’s friends and family all die, leaving her to her own devices. Dealing with survivor’s guilt, trauma, and suicidal ideation, Clover travels around the US in an attempt to find any more human survivors. With only a dog by her side, she accidentally comes across a radio transmission from some survivors who are hiding in what was Area 51. She hastily makes her way there, literally crashing her car into the base. As Clover starts recuperating, she realizes all the survivors in the base, including her, are teens: 8 in total. She also begins to realize that none of the kids know how devastating the invasion was, with their fearless leader, Violet, doing everything in her power to prevent Clover from exposing this. The teens are surviving, but not fighting back, which makes Clover incredibly frustrated and leads her to becoming more reckless in order to find out how to defeat the aliens. There are secrets, deaths, and plot twists that perhaps you won’t see coming, all while still finding pockets of light in a text that could be heavy for some. Mental health is a major theme of the book, especially in terms of trauma and suicidal tendencies. Pohl doesn’t shy away from the realities of the topic, especially how depression tends to be depicted as an individual thing that people suffer from but it affects everyone around you as well. That’s also another major theme in the book: how the decision of one person can affect a collective. And the collective is stronger together than they are individually, it’s made clear time and time again. Though all of them have individual strengths (for example, Clover is a great pilot/engineer while Avani is great at biology), whenever they try to go their separate ways they seem to be drawn to each other, to seeking each other’s help. However, because they go they act like such a collective most times, it was kind of hard to discern each character’s personalities. At times they could be so one-dimensional, but it wasn’t until they got one-on-one face time with Clover that we can actually see their differences (I will never forgive Laura for making me read about r*ylo in a published book). Even still, those one-on-ones were my favorite moments of the book: like when Rayen and Clover do the interrogation, or any time Clover and Violet confront each other. The character death in the book is, while unnecessary, necessary in that… the character was just boring. For me, at least. At some point the book turns from dystopian sci-fi to space opera, which is where the author’s Star Wars influence may have come into play. I have no idea what the second book in the duology will be about, seeing as the ending of the book tied up the narrative quite neatly, even while leaving a lot in the air in terms of the logistics of their escape (I’m being purposefully vague here, I don’t wanna give too much away). Still, The Last 8 is an enjoyable ride full of twists that leave you with whiplash, while reiterating that though teens are susceptible to live with trauma, they are able to have fun. They go on joyrides and have parties and listen to Hamilton and play videogames. It’s a book that’s chockful of the recklessness and defiance that comes with being a teenager, all brought to the forefront in a world that’s been overrun by aliens. All of this is brought with a diverse cast (I’ll list them at the end), a well-paced storyline that kept me guessing, and harsh realness that has me interested in the next installment of the series. TWs(view spoiler)[: PTSD, panic attacks, suicidal ideation, death, violence, self-harm (MC is reckless and crashes cars and planes without second thoughts), suicide (two are attempted on the page), depression, guns (lots of them), torture, gore Rep: Clover: Mexican-American, STEM, bisexual, aromantic, PTSD & depression; Avani: South Asian descent, STEM, sapphic; Brooklyn: Asian (? not specified), sapphic, linguist; Flint: Black, STEM, Gay (? implied but not made clear on the page); Rayen: White Mountain Apache, Gay (not specified); Andy: STEM; Violet: depression, gay (? implied but not made clear on the page). (hide spoiler)] An eARC was provided by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

  19. 4 out of 5

    Aila

    You can find this review on Happy Indulgence! My abeulo says that there are people who belong to the earth, and others, like us Martinezes, belong to the sky. The Last 8 is a dazzling, sky-soaring debut from Laura Pohl. Featuring a Latina main character who is bisexual and aromatic (like me!!), it promises a fast-paced, stand-alone sci-fi adventure where eight teens are left standing in the middle of an alien invasion. I believe this book is also #ownvoices, but I’m not sure to which aspects of You can find this review on Happy Indulgence! My abeulo says that there are people who belong to the earth, and others, like us Martinezes, belong to the sky. The Last 8 is a dazzling, sky-soaring debut from Laura Pohl. Featuring a Latina main character who is bisexual and aromatic (like me!!), it promises a fast-paced, stand-alone sci-fi adventure where eight teens are left standing in the middle of an alien invasion. I believe this book is also #ownvoices, but I’m not sure to which aspects of Clover’s character. While the suspension of belief is needed for this apocalyptic storyline, Pohl delivers with a tight explanation for the events and a satisfying answer to the mysteries surrounding the aliens. With character development from fierce characters and a wonderful exploration of friendship and survival, The Last 8 was fun from start to finish. Clover was left at her grandparents’ door when she was an infant and grew up in kind of a rural area in Montana. She gained a love of piloting from her grandfather, and sees herself exploring a lack of romantic feelings for her ex-boyfriend, who likes her. In the midst of the introduction, however, we see an amalgam of alien spaceships land on Earth. The race is on. While her town is left in ashes by these mysterious, impenetrable aliens, Clover somehow is not noticed and escapes. (There’s a good reason for her not being noticed later.) Cue a time skip that’s more than a bit jarring, and we get road-trip Clover, who picked up a dog and hears a radio call to Area 51, where survivors have gathered. Survival story? Check. Now to meet the rest of the gang…… a team of seven teens who somehow found their way together, and are content to live in the safety of the Area 51 bunker. Clover - an active resistor - is not happy with that and starts picking apart the story the team gives. Soon enough, our path to resistance begins. On our own, we are nothing. Together, we’re the Last Teenagers on Earth. Together, we are Earth itself. Quick tip: I love how most (if not all?) the survivors were LGBTQ+. I also appreciate the POC representation. It’s subtle, but there. In regards to Clover being bisexual and aromantic, I personally thought the representation was pretty solid, although it was quite light and not a big part of the story (I believe there were two or three distinct scenes with Clover talking about it). Her experiences and feelings were super valid though, I felt. It’s definitely possible to have sexual feelings about people without having romantic attraction, although I do think Clover’s lack of romantic attraction stems to other parts of her personality. (Example: sometimes she comes off as emotionally detached, which only adds to her character being full of purpose.) While The Last 8 deals with some intense action scenes and revelations, it ultimately reads like a sci-fi movie. The Vine references, as well as the homage to various alien invasion movies, make The Last 8 relatable and laugh-out-loud. I really enjoyed Clover’s personality and her willingness to step up and take action against the mysterious aliens. It’s fast-paced and on the shorter side, making The Last 9 and pretty light story despite the (almost) non-stop action. Sci-fi readers will like this one! Fun, quick, and satisfying, this stand-alone debut will grip your attention from start to finish. Rating: 4 out of 5 Content/Trigger Warnings: suicide ideation, suicide, murder/violence/gore, alcohol usage Thank you SourceBooks Fire and Netgalley for the review copy!

  20. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    If you like aliens, you’ll like this one. I’m not a big fan, but it seemed good, so I wanted to read it... It was somewhat an enjoyable read, with the right amount of action or emotional scenes, but at the same time... many things are unbelievable and left me sceptical. In the end, the sceptical feeling was the strongest, so I’m giving it 2 stars. But like I said, if you like aliens, you’ll like this one. I received an e-copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

  21. 4 out of 5

    USOM

    (Disclaimer: I received this free book from Edelweiss. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) Clover was like looking at a little piece of myself in the mirror. Clover is an aromantic Latina pilot, but she's a survivor. Forced to survive on her own for six months traveling around the US in the devastated wasteland, Clover arrives in Area 51 used to surviving on her own. Her hope is what has allowed her to survive every day, the loneliness, the hopelessness, the bleak survi (Disclaimer: I received this free book from Edelweiss. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.) Clover was like looking at a little piece of myself in the mirror. Clover is an aromantic Latina pilot, but she's a survivor. Forced to survive on her own for six months traveling around the US in the devastated wasteland, Clover arrives in Area 51 used to surviving on her own. Her hope is what has allowed her to survive every day, the loneliness, the hopelessness, the bleak survival. And now that Clover has arrived, she isn't sure that The Last Teenagers on Earth is where she wants to be. But as the book progresses, we see how Clover stirs the pot. How their lives aren't really living, hiding out under the ground can only last for so long. And Clover is far from happy giving up hope on their planet. But nothing is at it seems. The long awaited company is hiding secrets more dangerous and treacherous than she can even imagine. full review: https://utopia-state-of-mind.com/revi...

  22. 5 out of 5

    J.D. DeHart

    Perfect for young adult readers (and those of us who just enjoy YA lit), this book has action and science fiction adventure in well-written form. A text I would gladly share with my students or sit back and delve into myself.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Claudie Arseneault

    tw suicide and suicide ideation, family deaths, mass extinction I wanted to love this book. It sounded like good tropy alien fun with a bi aro latina MC and a large crew. I watched each character art & portrait being revealed on twitter with growing excitement, and I started the day it released (I very rarely do that). So I really wish the set-up wasn't my favourite part of it. It's not awful, it just… didn't get me on board, I guess? None of the twists surprised me, I found myself disliking tw suicide and suicide ideation, family deaths, mass extinction I wanted to love this book. It sounded like good tropy alien fun with a bi aro latina MC and a large crew. I watched each character art & portrait being revealed on twitter with growing excitement, and I started the day it released (I very rarely do that). So I really wish the set-up wasn't my favourite part of it. It's not awful, it just… didn't get me on board, I guess? None of the twists surprised me, I found myself disliking important narrative choices, and it went all in on one of my biggest DNA pet peeve, so that didn't help. I'm certain half the things I didn't like would excite others, though. This book and I just weren't meant for each other. That said, overall, I rather like the aro rep (and if you know me, you know that's why I picked it up first and foremost). I think it's a great example of how you can thread the line with the "harmful tropes" and give us full, deep characters. Clover is prickly, self-describes as cold, often struggles to make friends with others and puts pragmatism over emotions -- and yes, I do think that for aro readers who have been pigeonholed into 'cold assholes' because of their orientation and despite who they really are, this might be a struggle. We all bring our baggage to a story, and that's okay. But it's not on Clover and Laura Pohl, or on any aromantic character, to represent all of us, and Clover has enough layers and internal contradictions not to feel like a cardboard stereotype of what people think aromantic means. And I love that her story arc is in many ways the reverse of the exile one--from being alone to finding her community. THE LAST 8 has a lot of those good found family feels, especially in the last third. There IS, however, one important aro scene slightly after midpoint that concludes with a … really unfortunate line. I'm absolutely convinced it's accidental, but it pays to be prepared, because it can easily be read as (view spoiler)["my lack of desire for romantic relationships and survivor's guilt at my ex boyfriend's death makes me a horrible human being" There is basically no way to be sure what that 'horrible human being' line was supposed to refer to, and those are the two main elements of the conversation she's referring. (hide spoiler)] So that hurt, but it's one line in an entire book, and Clover is imo a good aro protagonist. One final, happier note: I LOVE SPUTNIK WITH ALL MY HEART. We all need more good doggos in our lives <3

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mandy

    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 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!

  25. 5 out of 5

    Katrina

    A great sci-fi read with great representation, solid romantic and friendly relationships full of honesty and openness (for the most part), and a suspenseful plot. 4.5 rounded down because the ending was a little slapdash and confusing.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Teri

    I'm always up for a good alien invasion story.  When you toss in Area 51, a handful of surviving teens, and an adorable canine named Sputnik, it becomes a must read for me.   This book gives the reader just enough time to care about Clover before throwing her in front of the aliens, so the pacing gets off to a good start.  It slows a bit once she reaches Area 51 due to drama between her and the other teens before picking up again.  I felt like there was some character inconsistency on Clover's pa I'm always up for a good alien invasion story.  When you toss in Area 51, a handful of surviving teens, and an adorable canine named Sputnik, it becomes a must read for me.   This book gives the reader just enough time to care about Clover before throwing her in front of the aliens, so the pacing gets off to a good start.  It slows a bit once she reaches Area 51 due to drama between her and the other teens before picking up again.  I felt like there was some character inconsistency on Clover's part, with comments and actions coming out of the blue based on her prior behavior.  The group of survivors are wonderfully diverse, but some of their voices are similar and I had trouble distinguishing between them. As a sci-fi geek, the pop culture references to Back to the Future and Independence Day had me doing happy dances.  For me, it's difficult to read or watch any alien story without thinking about Independence Day, and this novel contains some similar elements. The Last 8 is strong out of the gate, drops intriguing clues throughout the book, and has interesting twists toward the end, but some plot holes and character inconsistencies slowed the momentum for me.     Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for the ARC.  

  27. 4 out of 5

    ellie

    I received this arc through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. For some reason I can't explain, a book about friendship and aliens was exactly what I needed right now. Lately, I've felt like I've been reading the same book over and over again (with slight variations) and a young adult science-fiction novel was exactly what I needed. It was incredibly refreshing on every aspect—the characters, the relationships between them, the plot, the representation, the twists and turns, etc. The Las I received this arc through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. For some reason I can't explain, a book about friendship and aliens was exactly what I needed right now. Lately, I've felt like I've been reading the same book over and over again (with slight variations) and a young adult science-fiction novel was exactly what I needed. It was incredibly refreshing on every aspect—the characters, the relationships between them, the plot, the representation, the twists and turns, etc. The Last 8 got me out of a reading slump and kept me on my toes the entire time it did it. It was such a quick, fun read and it left me wanting more! From what I'm gathering, there's going to be a sequel and I know I'll be picking it up when it's published (might be getting a little ahead of myself here, but THAT'S HOW MUCH I LOVED THIS). I've already recommended it to a bunch of my friends and I couldn't be more glad I decided to move this at the top of my TBR list.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Lisa Mandina

    4.5 stars. This was a really good science fiction story that I'm happy to see is going to have a sequel. It left off in a way that we need it! Although it definitely led up to the very end as if it cold be a standalone, the ending left us hanging, not knowing what would happen! You get a lot of how it starts from the synopsis above. But the way the aliens destroy humans is really pretty terrifying, and then how that in turn affects any humans that they don't kill is scary on its own! We're left w 4.5 stars. This was a really good science fiction story that I'm happy to see is going to have a sequel. It left off in a way that we need it! Although it definitely led up to the very end as if it cold be a standalone, the ending left us hanging, not knowing what would happen! You get a lot of how it starts from the synopsis above. But the way the aliens destroy humans is really pretty terrifying, and then how that in turn affects any humans that they don't kill is scary on its own! We're left wondering why in the world the aliens don't seem to see Clover, why she is left alive. And while Clover wonders that herself, she feels like being alone, not having been able to save her friend or family, maybe she doesn't want to go on. Until she catches by accident a message on the radio calling any survivors to meet up at Area 51. Only once she gets there, it seems as if the other teens there don't trust her or want to give her a chance. At first. They have a leader, who doesn't like that Clover comes in telling the others living there what is going on out in the world. They've basically been hiding there, living on the things that are still stockpiled because of where it is. But finding other people makes Clover realize there might even be more of them out there. And either way, life is worth going on, and fighting. It takes the death of one of their own for them to finally decide to try to do something, fight back, take back Earth. As you might expect though, there are all kinds of secrets and hidden things at Area 51. Spaceships? Got them. Alien life form? Got it. You just won't believe where they are, and who knows about them, and what all they know. Definitely pick this up for a page-turning science fiction adventure. This review first appeared on Lisa Loves Literature.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Johnatan

    This book blew me away. "The Last 8" helped me realize that I love GAY SCIENCE FICTION!!! Thanks Laura!

  30. 5 out of 5

    Solly

    Listen, I probably wouldn't have picked up this book at all if it didn't have aro rep. Alien scifi isn't usually my thing. But this is probably a new fave. That's how much I loved this book. To be completely honest with y'all, it was a good-but-not-mind-blowing 4-stars read until I got to part 3, which is the last third. Before that, it was a classic enough alien apocalypse book. I liked the main character a lot (she's kind of an unlikable asshole at times, but ahem, I have a thing for assholes Listen, I probably wouldn't have picked up this book at all if it didn't have aro rep. Alien scifi isn't usually my thing. But this is probably a new fave. That's how much I loved this book. To be completely honest with y'all, it was a good-but-not-mind-blowing 4-stars read until I got to part 3, which is the last third. Before that, it was a classic enough alien apocalypse book. I liked the main character a lot (she's kind of an unlikable asshole at times, but ahem, I have a thing for assholes in books, so I loved her). The 8 main characters were good, and I liked the Last Teenagers on Earth and the fact that they were geniuses but also losers, to be honest. It was good, solid, interesting, fast-paced without dismissing the importance of its characters. The aliens were different, their reasons were mysterious, I was curious about a lot of things. But I wasn't *in love*, you see? Then there was part 3. It's basically the last third of the book. Book which I read in a day, btw, I hadn't done that in a very very long time. It went in a direction I never expected, and after every couple of chapters there was this new information that changed things completely and had me go like ????!!!!! I tend to guess some plot points, and it usually doesn't bother me much. Like, I guessed The Thing That Happens At The End of Part 2. It didn't matter. But then there were all these things I would never have guessed, and it was really cool. I liked how surprised I got. I liked how unexpected things were for me. The end of this book is very far from what I imagined and I loved it for it. Also I think pretty much everyone is queer??? Which is awesome. The rep was great and casual, but I guess the only little thing that disturbed me was about the rep so let's talk about it here. I have nothing bad to say about Clover (well, she's an ass, but I love her and she's right, that's how she survived anyway) and the aro rep in itself. The beginning with Noah? I related so hard to a lot of the aro feels there. I guess the only thing that bothered me was that Clover never says the word "aro". In itself, it's not bad. A lot of SFF doesn't use the contemp words and it's fine, I don't mind, I do that in my writing too. But at the beginning, she's seventeen (i think) and lives on the same Earth as you and I. She's three years younger than me. I knew about the word aromantic when I was sixteen, maybe even before. I looked things up in internet when I dated and wasn't sure if how I felt made me weird or not. I *think* she could have had access to that knowledge, and that she's smart enough to search for this stuff. It's like, a very light problem that isn't even one, but this little thing didn't resonate with my personal experience, and I guess yeah, it's personal, but it had me going "did she never try to look it up? I did when I had the exact same feelings". So yeah. Small little question there. The depression/suicidal thoughts rep felt very very real to me. I struggle with it too, and the way it didn't... disappear throughout the novel was great. Clover would sometimes think things like "what if I died this way right now" from time to time and... yep. It happens. I related to Clover in a lot of ways and she's definitely a character that's close to my hreat now <3 I literally cannot wait for The First 7. I never thought I'd like The Last 8 as much as I did, and that it would surprise me that much, but damn. I loved this. I really really loved this. ALSO THERE WAS A DOG NAMED SPUTNIK AND I LOVED HER (my LGBTQ+ student group is named Sputnik hahaha) TW: depression/suicidal thoughts/suicide attempts, death of side & major characters, alcohol, violence/blood/guns, ableist language (crazy is used a lot).

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