I must have read this book in my teens but can't find any reference on the web.

If I remember correctly, it was about mankind being at war with some alien race. Waging bloody war etc.

At some point the main character discovers that these are not aliens but humans. Humanity fights itself to keep the economy running.

At least that is what I remember.

  • 1
    Hi, welcome to SF&F! What year would you have read this, approximately? (We don't know when you were in your teens.) Was there fighting in space, or was it conflict on the ground? Do you remember the cover art or anything else about the book?
    – DavidW
    Commented Nov 24, 2022 at 19:38
  • 1
    Hi, must have been in the 1990s. Fighting was on a distant planet I think
    – Martin
    Commented Nov 24, 2022 at 19:50
  • 2
    Empire of the Sun? Commented Nov 24, 2022 at 20:25
  • If you remember any extra details please be sure to edit them in. This checklist could help if you need some inspiration
    – fez
    Commented Nov 24, 2022 at 21:24
  • 2
    Are you sure this is science fiction...? Commented Nov 25, 2022 at 0:45

1 Answer 1


Are you sure this isn't The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey? It's from 2013, but it otherwise matches your description exactly.

The novel describes an invasion of Earth by aliens known as "the Others", who attack Earth with, in order: a planet-wide EMP; kinetic bombardment; an engineered avian flu pandemic; and a group of Others disguised as humans who infiltrate and kill the survivors.

The novel follows a teenage girl named Cassiopeia (aka "Cassie") as she survives the first four waves, and is then taken to a military camp with a group of other survivors to train as resistance fighters and combat the impending "Fifth Wave" assault of possessed humans, using implants that will show them which humans are actually Others.

The twist is that they're not fighting the Fifth Wave - they are the Fifth Wave. The military camp is actually being run by the disguised Others from the Fourth Wave, with the aim of tricking the survivors into wiping each other out, and the implants flag up anyone not wearing an implant as an Other.

(Disclaimer: I haven't read the book, but I did watch the 2016 film adaptation.)

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.