Our world has been invaded by an unseen enemy that takes over the minds of human hosts. Most of humanity has succumbed. When Melanie- one of the last remaining humans- is captured, she is certain it is her end.
Wanderer, the invading “soul” who has been given Melanie’s body, probes her thoughts to discover her whereabouts of the remaining human resistance. Instead, Melanie fills Wanderer’s mind with visions of 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 is tasked with exposing. When outside forces make Wanderer and Melanie unwilling allies, they set off on a dangerous search for the man they both love.
My two cents worth:
Although The Host is classified as a science fiction novel, it touches more on human relationships and behaviour at its best and its worst. Wanderer an alien who has lived in eight different planets came to Earth and was given Melanie’s body to live out her ninth life. As Melanie’s will was so strong, Wanderer was not able to take full control of the body especially her mind and became unwillingly pulled into Melanie’s human desires.
The book had a slow start and the dialogue can be confusing in the beginning. As both Wanderer and Melanie begin to communicate with each other you sometimes miss out who was saying what to whom. But as you move forward in the book, it gets better once you understand the characters a bit more and the storyline becomes interesting. When Wanderer meets the human resistance and lives with them she begins to form a strong bond to the group which gave her the opportunity to experience humanly feelings of love, hate, anger, doubt and every other feeling that can only be experienced by human beings. She also began to appreciate the importance of relationships which she has never experienced in any of her previous lives.
There’s definitely romance in the storyline. One body with two minds, Melanie and Wanderer’s of course with Jared and Ian respectively. So you can imagine the drama of two men fighting for one person’s attention; pretty exciting, funny at times and definitely different.
I didn’t particularly like or dislike any of the characters from the book, although sometimes I felt Wanderer’s character can be a tad similar to Bella and Ian like Edward from the Twilight series. Wanderer had the “I need to be protected cause I’m too soft and fragile” syndrome while Ian had the “I need to protect her cause she can hurt herself” syndrome (I also wondered if Ian had ever dreamt of becoming a weightlifter pre-alien apocalypse period because he seems to have a liking to carry Wanderer from one cave room to another in her weak or abused moments. Seriously, read it and tell me what you think).
The beauty of the book is that it appreciates the complexities of human nature and behaviour. Overall, I liked the book but it was predictable. I predicted that the ending would be a happy one for the characters involved and true enough it ended as I suspected. It was an enjoyable read nonetheless with a good combination of humour, romance and drama in true Myers’s style. Don’t be turned off by the size and the number of pages in the book, it’s relatively easy to read and I managed to finish it within 2 to 3 days tops. Good book overall.