Author: Melissa Landers
Publication Date: February 4th, 2014
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Summary: 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.
Oh, the shame. Yes, I actually did read this book. But before you guys start judging, let’s get one thing straight… I came home from a long day at work and wanted a sappy, fluffy, guilty pleasure read. Which is exactly what I got.
Alienated is about a girl named Cara who apparently really likes winning and she gets chosen to have an alien exchange student live with her. But he isn’t really an alien. I mean, he comes from a different planet and doesn’t have a belly button because he is a clone and wasn’t actually born, but in reality, those are the only things that makes him technically an alien. His race, his planet, their foods and customs, nothing was really that creative or different from earth. His “strange behavior” is basically acting like every other guy in the YA genre. That’s right, you guessed it… He is cold and distant and untrustworthy, but with a soft gooey center he only reveals at certain times to the girl he secretly loves and of course, he is completely swoony. So really, there was nothing special or different about him, besides the fact that the author makes him an alien. Which was pretty disappointing. But I suppose no one would want to read a book about a human girl falling in love with a big alien blob with tentacles. The make out scenes would be awkward.
The plot line of this book was pretty blah. While everyone freaking out and forming alien hate groups was interesting enough, the main focus was the romance. Big surprise there. I’m such a loser for saying this, but I am always honest in my reviews, so here it goes… I actually kind of enjoyed this romance. I know, trust me, I know. But the author actually did a better job than I had expected, at least as far as the build up went. They spent a lot of time actually learning about each other and spending time together, and it wasn’t a love at first sight sort of thing. I enjoyed their friendship and seeing it evolve into more. However, once the suddenly realized their undying love for each other, it because cheesy and almost unbearable. She makes some really irrational decisions in the name of love, and it was just really overdone in the last chunk of the book.
As far as secondary characters go, they were all stupid and jerks. Not to mention, they all perfectly fit into the expected stereotypes; the douchebag jock, the slutty cheerleader, stupid best friend, grabby lusty boyfriend, etc. Her best friend and boyfriend both treat her and Aelyx like shit, without bothering to give him a chance, and it’s awful. All of the people in her school, everyone in her community, they all treat her like a leper and riot and it’s just crazy and overdone. Maybe I’m a weirdo, but it really bothered me that no one in this book even gave Aelyx a chance or tried to get to know him. I find that unrealistic. Cara did, and she is honestly nothing really special, so why can’t other people?
But still, while reading this book, I tried to think about how the world would really react if aliens made contact with us. In the book, they brought a cure for cancer and save lots of people, but everyone still hated them. As I read the book and all of Cara’s friends and neighbors turned their backs on her and her family for supporting Aelyx, I thought it was very extreme. But, thinking about it now, we as people are violent and irrational and afraid of the unknown. Maybe the world really would react in this way. I couldn’t help but think about how everyday people reacted when African American’s started fighting for their rights and going to schools with whites. It seems silly now when we look back at how we treated them, but discrimination still goes on today, in many forms, and if we do that and treat our own kind the way that we do, why on earth wouldn’t we do the same, or worse, to an alien species?
The ending was anti-climatic and very rushed. The last fifty pages or so were like a huge messy rush after three hundred pages of slow romantic build up, and it didn’t really work that well. The whole thing about Cara having to save the earth, was honestly just kind of silly and definitely pushed into the background. However, the thing that surprised me most about this book was that I actually found myself laughing out loud at some of the parts. But, that being said, I started this book wanting a stupid, relaxing, gooey read, and it was basically everything I had asked for.