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Review and GIVEAWAY – The Host by Stephenie Meyer

Contest is closed! The winner of The HostΒ  by Stephenie Meyer is Melissa from January Wish! Congratulations, Melissa! I’ve emailed you to get your mailing address.

the host

The Host
by Stephenie Meyer
619 pages
Published May 6, 2008
Fiction, science fiction

I have to start off by saying that even though The Host is science fiction, it’s extremely light on the science. In fact, even if you’re not into science fiction, you’ll probably like this book. Anyway, on to the review!

The Host by Stephenie Meyer starts out with the insertion of an alien life into Melanie’s body. The alien that inserts the other alien into Melanie’s body is a Healer, basically a doctor but way better since their medicine far surpasses that which humans have developed. The alien in Melanie’s body, Wanda, is frustrated to find that Melanie won’t slip under the surface. Instead, she lets Wanda know that she’s going to fight this invasion, even if the only way she has to fight is by throwing her memories at Wanda and talking to her.

Aliens have invaded most human bodies at this point, and any humans that haven’t been invaded are in hiding.

After about six months, Melanie convinces Wanda to help her find her younger brother, Jamie, and her boyfriend, Jared, both of whom she is sick with worry over. They have to interpret the memory of a map that Melanie has that takes them to the desert. They wander around for days, making progress and getting so close to their destination. Unfortunately, they realize that they’re practically back where they started, all their supplies are gone, and they still haven’t found Jamie or Jared. Wanda falls over from thirst and exhaustion, but she’s found by some renegade humans and taken captive. This was exactly the place Wanda and Melanie were looking for because Jamie and Jared are here, but everyone is suspicious of the alien creature. The humans are living in a large cave, and it’s in this cave that Wanda learns what it means to be human.

The Host has a great love triangle: Melanie loves Jared, Wanda’s body loves Jared, and one of the humans in the cave, Ian, starts falling in love with Wanda. While I’m wondering if Meyer is going to pigeon-hole herself with these love triangles, I have to admit that I loved it. It’s a satisfying love triangle with plenty of heat (boy, does Meyer have the chaste sexy scenes down to a science!), plenty of conflict, and plenty of uncertainty.

I guessed what the ending would be, but Meyer had me doubting myself all the way to the last chapter. That’s what makes the book so good: you may be able to anticipate where the story’s going to go, but you’ll never guess at all the conflicts and problems that shoot up.

I’ve heard some say that the book was too long, but I thought it was just right. All of the plot points really lead you down the path and make the ending, particularly Wanda’s decision, that much more real. I’ve also heard people say it took them a while to get into the book, but I loved the book from page 1, which is totally rare for me.

I’ve been very critical of the Twilight series, one of my complaints being that I just don’t think the writing was that good. I think Meyer’s writing improves considerably for The Host, and while I don’t think her writing is Pulitzer Prize good, she is a freaking awesome storyteller. There’s no nuances in her writing, nothing beautiful about her writing, she’s just a damn good storyteller.

All that to say: You must read this book. You will not be disappointed.

Rating: 95 out of 100

Buy The Host at Powell’s | Buy The Host at Amazon

Stephenie Meyer’s website | The Host website

Make sure you check out tomorrow’s review of The Host at Books, Movies, and Chinese Food!



Thanks to Miriam at Hachette, I have one copy of The Host to give away!

To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment telling me whether you think aliens really exist. Not answering this question will disqualify you from this contest. For an extra entry, you may tweet or stumble this giveaway. Please leave a comment for each extra entry. Contest is only open to the US and Canada. Contest will close on June 30th. Winner will be notified via email.



Other reviews:

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My Friend Amy

she treads softly

A High and Hidden Place

Life and Times of a “New” New Yorker

Reading, Writing, and Ranting

Reading Derby

As usual, I need more bookshelves

Both Eyes Book Blog

Savvy Verse & Wit

Confuzzled Books

So Many Books, So Little Time

Stuff As Dreams Are Made On

ReadingAdventures

| Tags: , , , , , 96 comments »

96 Responses to “Review and GIVEAWAY – The Host by Stephenie Meyer”

  1. Nadia

    Of course aliens exist – we can’t be the only beings existing today. As far as if they co-exist with us, well, I am not so sure about that. I just always figured there were other life forms out there in the vast galaxy. Then again, I have had some friends refer to Martha Stewart as an alien – she can’t be that perfect (making cookies and sewing pillows all at once). Anyhow – Loved your review of the book! Please enter me in the giveaway!! Cheers!!!

  2. Stephanie

    I LOVED this book when I read it last year. Agreed it’s not the greatest literature, but it is so readable, and a book I had a very hard time putting down. I liked it WAY more than Twilight too!! I find it really funny that the Twilight fans seemed to hate this book, and I have no idea why!

    Great review Trish!

  3. Bookfool, aka Nancy

    Yes, aliens exist. Some might argue that I’m married to one and I frequently say my eldest son is an alien, obviously switched at birth. He’s been acting somewhat normal, lately, which rather spoils the fun.

  4. Bookfool, aka Nancy

    I tweeted — or, rather, retweeted your comment (hope that works). Trish, do you know how to find those little tweet addresses some people post when they’re asked for the location of a tweet? I have no idea how to do that.

    trish Reply:

    To link to your tweet, go to your Status Updates, and you’ll see all the tweets you’ve sent. If you look on the bottom of all your tweets, it tells you how long ago the tweet was sent (“about 1 hour ago”, “about 13 hours ago”, etc), and those are the permalink. Make sense?

  5. jess

    I would love to find that aliens exist. With the universe as big as it is, there has to be something else out there. Your review was great. I really enjoyed this book, much more than the Twilight series. I did feel that it was a little long, but the fantastic ending made up for some of the repetition.

  6. vicky

    I do think that aliens exist. I tend to believe there are alot of “things” out there that we do not realize/believe exist.

  7. Kathy

    Don’t enter me. I just wanted to say I was surprised at just how much I enjoyed this book. Great review!

  8. Melissa @ Melissa's Bookshelf

    Don’t enter me. I just wanted to stop by and say “great review!” Well, I also wanted to see if you’d mind including a link to my review, as well: http://www.melissas-bookshelf.com/2009/04/review-host.html

    Thanks! Good luck to everyone entering the contest!

  9. avisannschild

    Great review! I’m glad this one is better than Twilight (I didn’t much like Twilight). I’m feeling skeptical about aliens today. (Does that count as an answer to your question?)

  10. Trisha

    No need to enter me; I already own the book.

    I couldn’t agree more with your review on this book. And you are right – Meyer really knows how to make the romantic scenes steamy even though they are also puritanical in nature. I did a half-review here if you are interested.

  11. Raelena

    i think alien lifeforms exist but not in the way people imagine (little grey men in spaceships), I think its more basic than that

  12. Tara

    I am really interested in this and would love to be entered. I like to think that there are other galexys out there so I am going to say yet! Aliens do exist.

  13. Nicole @ Books and Bards

    Great review! I agree about <Twilight. The writing is not good, and yet somehow, I couldn’t put the book down and stayed up until four in the morning to finish it in two days. Same with the others.

    Of course aliens exist, in some form or other, and I think it’s pure hubris to think that we are the only intelligent life in the universe, or to disbelieve purely because our scientists have not managed to detect it.

    I would love to read this book–please enter me! Thank you!

  14. Kristina

    I don’t really believe that aliens exist but I think that’s partly because that would really be scary. But then again, why can’t they exist. Wouldn’t we be aliens to those who live on Mars? Whew! That’s too much thinking today! Thanks for the contest =)
    luckistarr4 AT gmail DOT com

  15. Kristina

    I tweeted =)

  16. Nicole @ Books and Bards

    I also tweeted, @NicLovesBooks πŸ™‚

  17. Trisha

    Have already read, so don’t enter me in the sweepsβ€”but I had to ask if the violence against Melanie/Wanda bothered you at all. I felt uncomfortable reading about her getting smacked around so much, especially since it seemed to be her way of proving her love.

    trish Reply:

    Yes, it did bother me. I felt Wanda was a little too passive. I know it was explained that her species aren’t violent and don’t fight back, but it still felt a little…contrived. It was the few things I didn’t like about the story. I’d forgotten to mention that, so thanks for bringing it up!

  18. TexasRed

    I already own this one, too, and agree with you about loving it and how readable it was. I’d rather see a sequel to this one than the Twilight series πŸ™‚

  19. Book 'n' a Mug

    I absolutely loved this book and I’ve had it on my list of books to read again for a while. I do believe that aliens exist, at least, that there are other living things in the universe. I’m not sure that they would be all that much different from us… there have to be other places out there where life exists.

    I enjoyed your review as well and will be retweeting the link (rzstorylove on Twitter).

    Happy reading!

  20. Maria Delgado

    Nah, I have never believed aliens exsist, but stories around supernatural beings and such have always been immensly entertaining for me!

    This would be really fun to win!

  21. Beth D.

    Of course. No two ways about it. Undoubtably there is something out there which considers us alien and we know that we exist.
    Love your reviews, by the way. They are so accessible.

  22. Nosaby

    Do aliens exist? Hmmm…… I think they could. But I’m a “see it to believe it” kind of person. I do think it is egotistical of us to think we are the only intelligent life force though, so I’d lean more towards, “yes.”

    I really didn’t care for the Twilight series. I’d be willing to give the author another change though.

  23. TanyaK

    Yes, I think aliens exist, but maybe they’re in some energy form we can’t recognize. I’m not sure about the UFO sightings and the little men with big heads.

  24. Raych

    I am too embarassed about wanting to read this to go pick it up at the library, but I’m NOT TOO EMBARASSED TO WIN IT!!

    I think it’s incredibly egotistical to think that we’re the only ones out here, so I’m open to the option of aliens.

  25. debbie

    It may sound fairly closed minded but I really don’t think they do. And I am thrilled that her writing improved with this novel. Like you, I was very disappointed by the Twilight books.

  26. ALLY in WA

    Absolutely aliens exist. We are not the only ones. We are aliens– at least to any other planet that has life we would be considered as such. Thanks for entering me in your giveaway.

  27. Nan

    I find it hard to believe that we are the only things in the universe. I think there must be aliens out there is some form or another. Thanks for entering me in the giveaway!

    Nan

  28. Ms Mazzola

    Oh yes, I am pretty sure that I work with a few aliens. So, yes, they exist!

  29. Ms Mazzola

    Please enter me in your contest (I replied a moment ago, but forgot to mention that I wanted to be entered in the giveaway)

  30. Pam

    That’s a tough question. To my knowledge, I’ve never met an alien. That being said, there are very strange phenomena in the world at times that do make me wonder if there are aliens among us. If there are, they’re likely smarter than us!

  31. Michelle

    No, I really don’t think that aliens exist (as in human-like life forms) but I do think and hope that there is life of some form or another “out there”. Please enter me in the giveaway (maybe if I win a copy of The Host and read it, I will change my mind) πŸ™‚

    Michelle

  32. Michelle

    and tweeted as well at http://www.twitter.com/michellereads

  33. Karen

    I think aliens exist along with vampires and shape shifters. Or I want to believe in them because they add so much interest to life. I was amazed how much I enjoyed the Twilight series being a grown woman and all but I really did. The movie was a bit of a let down, though. I’d imagined Edward as a younger Johnny Depp. I would love to win a copy of The Host.
    I enjoy your blog. Please keep it up!

  34. Lethea Benson

    No, I don’t think Aliens exist(but I’ve been wrong before, LOL!)
    I really enjoyed the Twilight series=)
    Thanks for hosting this giveaway!
    Luvdaylilies at bellsouth dot net

  35. 3m

    I don’t think aliens exist but I wouldn’t be surprised if they do.

    I’d love to be entered, thanks!

  36. amy btw m

    I don’t need to enter me. I just wanted to say great review. I liked The Host a lot, but then I doubted myself wondering if I was just trying to be loyal to Meyer. I loved the Twilight series. I agree they are not the most well written, but Meyer is just a good storyteller. I don’t know how she does it, but I hope she comes out with another novel in the next few years. I especially want a sequel to The Host.

    I believe there are other planets in the universe with human life. I am not sure I believe in other types of intelligent lifeforms.

  37. Renee G

    Yes I think aliens exist. However I don’t think it’s likely that we will ever be able to contact aliens.

    rsgrandinetti@yahoo.com

  38. Elizabeth

    Not entering – just commenting to say that I hope aliens exist. I’ve invested way too many years in sci-fi novels for them to be a figment of the world’s collective imagination.

    Also, I totally agree – The Host is miles and miles better than the Twilight series. Although, the ending pissed me off. But that’s another story…

  39. Ron Freedman

    yes, they exist but they are too smart to let us know they laugh at us as we destroy the world and then they can just take it over with out a fight .
    so beware and behave

  40. Shelley @ ChainReading

    I guess I don’t believe in aliens in the sense that they are “little green men”, but I also don’t discount the idea that there are other beings somewhere out there.
    Thanks for the chance to win!

  41. gaby317 at Starting Fresh

    I don’t believe in aliens. There might be other intelligent life on other plants, but it’s hard enough to understand life on this one.

    gaby317nyc AT gmail DOT com

  42. michaelsean

    Aliens must exist. Although I sort of loathe the word alien. I think I will stick with extra-terrestrial life form. It is a big universe out there. Someone will come knocking eventually.

  43. Melissa

    Hello, I’m new to your blog! Great review, I’d really love to read this one.
    I do think aliens exist, no sure in what form but there has to be life out there somewhere πŸ™‚

  44. Melissa

    I stumbled it!

  45. Celia

    I don’t think aliens exist.
    Great contest, thanks!

  46. Michele C

    I’m not sure if aliens exist in the way others have made them out to be but, I do think there is some sort of other life form out there that we haven’t discovered yet. Sometimes, I wonder if there are others just like us out there.

  47. Heather S

    I think there is other life out there so yes I think they exist

  48. Abby

    Nope not a believer of aliens but maybe this book will change my mind?

  49. scottsgal

    Yes I think aliens exist is some life for or other somewhere. Can’t wait to read this
    msboatgal at aol.com

  50. Lisa

    Yes, aliens exist.

  51. Number One Novels

    It’s hard for me to fathom the infinity of space and not believe there are other species out there. We’re always discovering new things on our own (relatively) small planet. It only makes sense that we’ve missed a few things in space. Long answer made short: Yes!

  52. Belinda

    No . . . not in the space martian sense. Other life we don’t know about? Yes.
    Thanks!

  53. Deedles

    No, I don’t believe aliens exist.

  54. jwx4

    yes, I believe aliens exist. With all the different galaxies out there, we can’t be alone.

  55. Christina Brunetti

    I would love to read this.

    I do think they exist.

    thanks,

    darkfyre1(at)gmail(dot)com

  56. AmandaK

    At first, I didn’t believe if aliens existed because simply I’m the “See to believe” type person. After one night I was outside, I am now a believer!

  57. Alicia

    I have no reason to not believe they exist. I don’t think about them much or try to picture what they look like, but I’m pretty sure they’re there.

    Thanks for the giveaway >^..^<

    bloggyig at gmail dot com

  58. melissa @1lbr

    If by “aliens” you mean other life forms not on this earth, then yes, I wholeheartedly believe in them. As she says in the movie Contact (paraphrasing) if aliens don’t exist, it is an awful waste of space!

    P.S. love this book – love to own it!

  59. Bookish links for Saturday, June 20, 2009 | BOOKS AND MOVIES

    […] You can also win a copy of The Host from Trish at Hey Lady! Whatcha […]

  60. CherylS22

    Yes, I do believe aliens exist.

  61. chris swan

    Yeah they do exist.

  62. Anne Taylor

    I do think aliens exist. I’m not sure why I believe in aliens but I do lol

    Thanks

    nancyrobster@gmail.com

  63. Anne Taylor

    Tweeted

    http://twitter.com/greeeneyedwhwom/status/2259783975

    Thanks

    nancyrobster@gmail.com

  64. Heather

    I do think aliens exist. I just find it impossible to believe that in all the galaxies in all the universe we are the only living beings. There’s no way. Thanks for the giveaway!

  65. Sarah Z

    I do believe other things are out there! Hard to believe we are the only living planet!
    Thanks

  66. Donna S

    I really think they do in some form. With all the places we cant get to yet or cant explore its impossible to believe that there couldnt be another form of life out there somewhere.

  67. Mishia

    I’m kinda skeptical about aliens. Hmm..I want to say no but it’s possible because we don’t know for sure.

  68. [TSS] The Big List of Book Giveaways – June 21 - Ms. Bookish

    […] Host, by Stephenie Meyer, at Hey Lady! (ends June 30, US and […]

  69. Kim S.

    No, I don’t think aliens exist but I would love a UFO…Please enter me for this contest I haven’t had a chance to read it yet. Thanks

  70. elaina

    hm, do I think aliens exist? I think there is a distinct possibility that they do. I think perhaps they are far beyond our comprehension. How do we even know they would be carbon-based life forms? What if they are energy? or not of the dimensions of which we are aware?

    smalltownbeatnik at g mail

  71. elaina

    I stumbled your post.
    stumbleupon name: missanomaly
    smalltownbeatnik at g mail

  72. elaina

    I tweeted your post.
    http://twitter.com/missanomaly/status/2272917136

  73. beth shepherd

    I would love to win. I am not really sure but I had to choose I would say no they do not exist.
    Thank you for the chance.
    tatertot374@sbcglobal.net

  74. MJ

    I like reading about them but they DO NOT exist!

    mj.coward[at]gmail.com

  75. Jason

    I do believe they exist, but I don’t believe that they are stopping by Earth in their flying saucers to abduct rednecks. I believe there is soemone or something out there though. Looks like a great book. Thanks for the chance

    jason(at)allworldautomotive(dot)com

  76. zibilee

    You don’t have to enter me in the giveaway. I just wanted to tell you your review rocked!

  77. Nicole D.

    Yes, I think aliens exist.

  78. brenda helgeson

    yes i think they exist. there are many ways to get by the space-time continuum

  79. Ellie W

    Great review. I really want to read this. To answer the question, no I don’t believe that aliens exist. But I do love to read about them and see them in movies.

  80. Marie

    I do think aliens exist since it seems unlikely to me that we are the only ones here in the whole universe — at least that’s what I like to think πŸ™‚

  81. Angie

    I think anything is possible and honestly it would be weird to me if there were no aliens out there somewhere. So, yes, I think they do exist. Loved this book, btw. Thank you for hosting the giveaway!

    angiegirl(at)gmail(dot)com

  82. Sharon C.

    With the universe as big as it is it’s hard to imagine that aliens DON’T exist. I mean, that’s a whole lot of space for just puny human’s to take up. So my answer is yes, I believe thet exist.

    Thanks for the giveaway.

  83. Heather M

    Aliens do exist! There’s so much proof to not believe!

  84. Cindy V

    Nah…aliens don’t exist. Or do they? Yikes.

  85. Heather

    I’m totally like Mulder on The X-Files on this one–Aliens do exist!

  86. Mary D

    Well, I think I do believe Aliens truly exist! In fact, that is what MY blog site is all about (65 posts to date , trying to hit the magical 100 LOL)

    And if they don’t exist, they SHOULD πŸ˜‰

  87. wendy wallach

    I think they exist. And I think that some people out there know much more then us about them.

    madamerkf at aol dot com

  88. ChristineB

    I do think that aliens exist. My cousin has seen a UFO. I feel that they could be living among us.

  89. Brooke

    Why shouldn’t they exist… There are still plants and animals on EARTH that we haven’t discovered… So, yeah I think they do.

  90. Heather

    Stumbled! (twifanheather)

  91. Heather

    I tweeted!
    http://twitter.com/_HeatherAnne_/status/2410940114

  92. Esther

    I think so. There is so much out there that we don’t know about, so there is a big possiblity that other life exists somewhere out there.

  93. amy

    I like to think Aliens exist. It would be boring not too! And if there are plants and animals that we haven’t found on Earth yet, than there has to be aliens! Thanks!

  94. amy

    Stumbled: hillfam2005

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