Book Reviews

Review — Alienated by Melissa Landers

Melissa Landers
(Alienated, #1)
Hyperion (Disney Book Group)
February, 2014
Hardcover, 344 pages
Source: Library
View on Goodreads


Two years ago, the aliens made contact. Now Cara Sweeney is going to be sharing a bathroom with one of them.

Handpicked to host the first-ever L’eihr exchange student, Cara thinks her future is set. Not only does she get a free ride to her dream college, she’ll have inside information about the mysterious L’eihrs that every journalist would kill for. Cara’s blog following is about to skyrocket.

Still, Cara isn’t sure what to think when she meets Aelyx. Humans and L’eihrs have nearly identical DNA, but cold, infuriatingly brilliant Aelyx couldn’t seem more alien. She’s certain about one thing, though: no human boy is this good-looking.

But when Cara’s classmates get swept up by anti-L’eihr paranoia, Midtown High School suddenly isn’t safe anymore. Threatening notes appear in Cara’s locker, and a police officer has to escort her and Aelyx to class.

Cara finds support in the last person she expected. She realizes that Aelyx isn’t just her only friend; she’s fallen hard for him. But Aelyx has been hiding the truth about the purpose of his exchange, and its potentially deadly consequences. Soon Cara will be in for the fight of her life—not just for herself and the boy she loves, but for the future of her planet.

The review:

This was the perfect fun, light read that I needed to get me out of a small reading slump. Right off the bat I knew it was going to be a fast read with humor and romance — and I ended up reading it in two sittings. Now, Alienated is not just fun and fluffy; it does deal with some serious issues and contains violence, but it’s not “oh, it’s the end of the world and everything is dark and tragic and terrible”. It is, however, a great book about aliens — L’eihrs, they’re called — and a forbidden/taboo alien-human relationship. The alien and human in question are Aelyx and Cara, respectively.

What did I like about this book? The main characters, specifically. Meaning, Aelyx, Cara, and Cara’s parents, but I mostly loved the friendship that blossoms into something more between Cara and Aelyx. I adored Aelyx’s culture/world shock. It was hilarious how he wasn’t used to human customs or figures of speech, or how he knew he wanted to do something but had no idea how to actually do it. It was also hilarious when he Googled “how to kiss” and then went on to research how to do much more than kiss… Okay, I’ll stop now. Basically, Aelyx was my favorite. He was a very conflicted character and showed a lot of layers. I liked how he wasn’t just a generic hot guy.

Cara I liked, but less so than Aelyx. She is class valedictorian and seems to be on track for a perfect life. However, her world suddenly topples when her entire school and seemingly town shuts her out because of her association with Aelyx, a L’eihr — an alien. Most humans don’t want the L’eihrs on earth (there are three exchange students total, Aelyx being the one sent to America), and when Cara refuses to turn her back on Aelyx, who she’s become friends with, it sparks hatred and betrayal — and things start getting ugly.

A lot of the book deals with Cara’s lost and shattered friendship with Tori. Tori doesn’t want to anything to do with Cara when it’s clear she, Cara, won’t back out of the L’eihr exchange program. Even before Tori cut off their relationship I didn’t like her. She came off rude, pushy, and bitchy, and I honestly don’t know why she and Cara were besties. She obviously wasn’t a true friend to Cara because she so easily turned her back, not wanting to be completely shut out by everyone else just because of her association with the “L’eihr lover”. It was really irritating to read about Cara’s feelings and her constant need for Tori back in her life. I get that you were friends for years, hun, but Tori was never that close of a friend if she so easily ditched you. You need to realize that and move on, girl!

The plot took a while to go anywhere, but that was okay because, as I said before, I loved watching Cara and Aelyx’s relationship build. The whole L’eihr world-building aspect was interesting, and I can’t wait to actually see what Aelyx’s home planet is like in the sequel, Invaded. (Side note: this isn’t a trilogy, it’s a duology!) But I do think that aliens doing an exchange program was pretty freaking unbelievable. And there was, like, no security until Cara and Aelyx started getting threats! Like, jeez.

I’m going to end this review here. I’m having reviewer’s block and this is about all my brain can handle writing right now. Overall, Alienated was a great book that held my attention and left me eagerly wanting to read the sequel. I wouldn’t say this book pushes any boundaries or is particularly unique and original, but it does what it set out to do excellently, and I do recommend it if romances concerning hot alien boys is something you like. ♦

So tell me…

Have you read Alienated? If not, would you want to read it now? What was the last book about aliens that you read? Comment below letting me know! And, as always, happy reading!

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