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Post  [chrosenangel]zevampire on Wed Jun 18, 2008 9:59 am

Stephenie Meyer of the Twilight series for teens is back with her first novel for adults. But rather than a vampire love story, The Host is a futuristic romance reminiscent of Invasion of the Body Snatchers. The novel is set in a future where the fate of humanity is uncertain due to an alien takeover. A new parasitic species uses humans as their host, and one, Wanderer, tries to take over protagonist Melanie Stryder's body.

Melanie refuses to hand over her mind, but her visions infiltrate the thoughts of Wanderer, and the two end up searching for a man they both love, a human in hiding from the hosts.

In this regard, the Host is similar to the Twilight series. All deal with the theme of unrequited love and the idea of humanity versus an 'other.' However, The Host is a more mature read, content to focus on relationships and emotions rather than the action inherent to most sci fi novels.

While The Host features short, quick-reading chapters, Meyer's writing style sometimes gets in the way. Conversations between characters oftentimes sound stilted and unnatural. She also has a tendency to ruminate and her thoughts meander - resulting in a book well over 600 pages! The size of the book alone is a bit intimidating, and The Host would be just as good, if not better, had Meyer's tightened up her writing.

Despite it's length, The Host is a quick, enjoyable read. Although it is technically an adult book, it is perfectly suitable for teens as the sexuality is implied, rather than described in detail. It is engaging, unabashedly romantic and brings up some intriguing ideas. There are a few loose ends and some readers may find the end disappointing, but Meyer certainly leaves room for a sequel or two.


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