The Host by Stephanie Meyer

July 10, 2013 Reviews 2

The Host by Stephanie MeyerThe Host by Stephanie Meyer
Narrator: Kate Reading
Series: Host Trilogy #1
Published by Hachette Audio on June 9, 2008
Genres: Romance, Science Fiction
Pages: 619
Length: 23 hours 5 minutes
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased

Melanie Stryder refuses to fade away.

Our world has been invaded by an unseen enemy. Humans become hosts for these invaders, their minds taken over while their bodies remain intact and continue their lives apparently unchanged. Most of humanity has succumbed.

When Melanie, one of the few remaining "wild" humans is captured, she is certain it is her end. Wanderer, the invading "soul" who has been given Melanie's body, was warned about the challenges of living inside a human: the overwhelming emotions, the glut of senses, the too vivid memories. But there was one difficulty Wanderer didn't expect: the former tenant of her body refusing to relinquish possession of her mind.

Wanderer probes Melanie's thoughts, hoping to discover the whereabouts of the remaining human resistance. Instead, Melanie fills Wanderer's mind with visions of the man Melanie loves—Jared, a human who still lives in hiding. Unable to separate herself from her body's desires, Wanderer begins to yearn for a man she has been tasked with exposing. When outside forces make Wanderer and Melanie unwilling allies, they set off on a dangerous and uncertain search for the man they both love.

My Review (1/27/13):

After reading the Twilight Series multiple times, I came to this book with certain preconceptions. I was surprisingly, and enjoyably, mostly wrong. First of all, I think Meyer has come a long way in her writing style; the dialogue is better, the character development is better, the story is much more complex. Secondly, I expected a science fiction novel. This was not one, in the same way that Twilight really wasn’t a vampire novel. Meyer has given a new, interesting twist to the basic (and often overdone) plot of alien takeovers in this book.

I wasn’t entirely wrong though, either. I expected Meyer’s trademark love triangle, and I got it. This time though, it was much more complex and the outcome isn’t as obvious. Love is the defining characteristic, but I think that’s also something you can expect from any Meyer novel. Again, this felt much more satisfying than in the Twilight Series (which I did enjoy BTW). This isn’t a teenager falling madly in love. This is love when you’re facing the end of one species and the needs of another. The emotions are very complex. Weirdly enough, there’s also a repeated fixation on the eyes.

Kate Reading is a pretty good narrator – she is able to bring to life the variety of voices convincingly and she doesn’t do any annoying accents. I really enjoyed her differences for Wanda and Melanie, you could feel both their personalities coming through in her voices. I do wish her pace were faster, since the book was a long one.

As a final thought, I should mention that this book was a slow-starter; it took me longer than I would like to get invested in characters. That being said, once you get invested, you stay invested. Some features end up feeling a bit childish, uninventive, and fall flat. But overall it’s a fun read that pulls at your heart strings and makes you think about human nature. If Meyer actually ever continues the series I’ll pick it up the next book, but thankfully the ending is satisfying enough as is.

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About Stephanie Meyer

I was born in Connecticut in 1973, during a brief blip in my family’s otherwise western U.S. existence. We were settled in Phoenix by the time I was four, and I think of myself as a native. The unusual spelling of my name was a gift from my father, Stephen (+ ie = me). Though I have had my name spelled wrong on pretty much everything my entire life long, I must admit that it makes it easier to google myself now.
I filled the “Jan Brady” spot in my family-the second of three girls. Unlike the Brady’s, none of my three brothers are steps, and all of them are younger than all the girls. I went to high school in Scottsdale, Arizona, the kind of place where every fall a few girls would come back to school with new noses and there were Porsches in the student lot (for the record, I have my original nose, and never had a car until after I was in my twenties). I was awarded a National Merit Scholarship, and I used it to pay my way to Brigham Young University, in Provo, Utah. I majored in English, but concentrated on literature rather than creative writing, mostly because I didn’t consider reading books “work” (as long as I was going to be doing something anyway, I might as well get course credit for it, right?).
I met my husband, Pancho (his real name is Christiaan), when I was four, but we were never anywhere close to being childhood sweethearts. In fact, though we saw each other at least weekly through church activities, I can’t recall a single instance when we so much as greeted each other with a friendly wave, let alone exchanged actual words. This may have been for the best, because when we did eventually get around to exchanging words, sixteen years after our first meeting, it only took nine months from the first “hello” to the wedding. Of course, we were able to skip over a lot of the getting to know you parts (many of our conversations would go something like this: “This one time, when I was ten, I broke my hand at a party when-” “Yeah, I know what happened. I was there, remember?”) We’ve been married for ten and a half years now, and have three beautiful, brilliant, wonderful boys who often remind me chimpanzees on crack. I can’t write without music, and my biggest muse is, ironically enough, the band Muse. My other favorite sources of inspiration are Linkin Park, My Chemical Romance, Coldplay, The All American Rejects, Travis, The Strokes, Brand New, U2, Kasabian, Jimmy Eat World, and Weezer, to mention a few.


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About Berls
Berls has been a book lover her whole life. She reads pretty much every genre and is currently working hard at making her childhood dream of becoming an author come true. She loves sharing her thoughts about books, blogging, and just random fun stuff. She's a challenge and read-a-thon junkie, so it's no wonder that she loves co-hosting the COYER reading challenge. Leave a comment, Berls is always happy to chat!

2 Responses to “The Host by Stephanie Meyer”

    • Berls

      Sorry somehow I didn’t see your comment earlier or I would have responded! Have you seen the movie? I really enjoyed it – I think it was a great book adaptation, even if it was missing one of my favorite characters (Walter).

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