by Stephenie Meyer
Genre: Science Fiction / Romance
Ages: 14 and up
I Won't Give Up by Jason Mraz
Melanie Stryder refuses to fade away. The earth has been invaded by a
species that take over the minds of human hosts while leaving their
bodies intact. Wanderer, the invading "soul" who has been given
Melanie's body, didn't expect to find its former tenant refusing to
relinquish possession of her mind.
As Melanie fills Wanderer's
thoughts with visions of Jared, a human who still lives in hiding,
Wanderer begins to yearn for a man she's never met. Reluctant allies,
Wanderer and Melanie set off to search for the man they both love.
Featuring one of the most unusual love triangles in literature, THE HOST is a riveting and unforgettable novel about the persistence of love and the essence of what it means to be human.
This book surprised me in many ways, all of them good. I wasn't expecting a lot; having finally broken down and read the Twilight series my opinion of Stephenie Meyer's writing style was only so-so (I didn't hate Twilight but I didn't love it, either). I was frankly astounded by the imagination The Host displayed, as well as a certain amount of charm. Then there was the depth of the characters and the world which was far beyond anything Stephenie Meyer accomplished before. In short, I loved this book. I was a little reluctant at first, but then I forgot that it was written by anyone in particular and just went with the story. Does that make sense?
All I knew about this book ahead of time was what I saw in the movie trailer, which was honestly misleading. I was under the impression that Melanie was the main character, and that there was only one guy. Hah. This book is actually from the alien's point of view, which I thought was pretty cool. It also has one of the most complicated and fascinating love triangles (or maybe it's a square?) ever written. There is Melanie, a human with an alien called Wanderer living in her body, controlling her actions. Melanie loves Jared, and so Wanderer, or Wanda, comes to care for him as well. And then there is Ian, who has never met Melanie and befriends Wanderer. To make it more interesting, Melanie and Wanderer also become friends; two minds in the same body who love each other. It is terribly difficult and painful for the characters, but so delightfully complicated for the reader. Such tangled hearts and souls.
Jared was wonderfully conflicted about everything, making it interesting to wonder what he will do next. I would have liked to see a little more development for Ian, the nice guy to Jared's bad boy, but most of the character development in the story came from Wanderer. Most of this 400-something page novel describes what's going on in her head, with just a few scenes of action, yet I was never bored. Wanda is almost painfully self-effacing (something Ms. Meyer can't seem to help when it comes to her female main characters), but she is always willing to stand up for those she loves and what she thinks is right. Melanie, on the other hand, is a survivor. She's tough and at times a little ruthless, a perfect foil to Wanda's personality. They have a unique relationship.
All in all, I really loved this book. I wasn't expecting to even like it very much, but I couldn't put it down. Even if you don't care for the author or alien invasion stories, you should give this book a shot.
Rating System: Profanity, Sexuality and Violence
1 (mild) through 10 (extreme).
I rate it a 2.10 for exactly 3 mild swearwords.
I give it a 2.10 for some mild hints and innuendos.
I rate is a 6.10 for murder and some violence.