I’ve been really busy these last few days so it felt like it took me forever to finally finish this novel, although this is of no fault of the book itself. This novel was definitely worth the wait of having to order it because my local bookstore didn’t have it in stock. I felt myself at times unable to put it down, so much so that I would literally take this book everywhere with me, even if I knew I only had time to read one or two pages, it was still worth it, (As you can see in the picture, I took this novel with me to read while watching the sunset, proving to be a very relaxing experience). The plot of the novel essentially centres around a student exchange program that ensues after aliens, (the L’eihrs), make contact with Earth. Aelyx, a L’ehir, is sent to valedictorian and debate team champion Cara Sweeney’s house to carry out the student exchange program and ultimately endeavour to make an alliance between the two planets. However, like every wonderful alien YA fiction novel, there has to be romance. The main characters Cara Sweeney and Aelyx fall in love which basically foils the whole political plans of L’eihr and Earth and their alliance.
Okay, so now that I’ve discussed the plot, I want to discuss the characters themselves as well as the idea of the planet L’eihr. I really liked Cara as a character mostly because she is relatable. She only agreed to this student exchange program with the idea that this would advance her career opportunities for becoming a journalist through blogging insider information about these foreign beings. She also took on this responsibility with the promise of a scholarship at the end. However, after awhile, the two characters’ friendship seemed to become the focal point as rioters and protesters spoke against Cara’s housing of a perceived dangerous creature. Cara was willing to lose friends, and even her boyfriend for the protection of Aelyx, which I found to be incredibly selfless. Cara also went out of her way to ensure her house guest felt comfortable despite the drastic cultural differences between the L’ehir’s who preferred a plain and simplistic lifestyle, to that of Earth’s tendency towards extravagance illustrated through flavoured foods, and vibrant colours of nature.
I thought that the world building in this novel was done incredibly well in terms of creating the L’ehir culture. It was a perfect mix of similarities to make these aliens believable, and differences to keep the reader intrigued. I found myself wanting to know more about this planet because it seemed somewhat similar to Earth, but just more scientifically advanced. I thought the use of the L’ehir made up language, was a nice touch to really developing the culture of the aliens and making them unique.
I loved how the author set up the story so that under all the animosity between Earth and L’ehir, it was obvious that both planets could tremendously benefit from each other’s peaceable living. The L’ehirs, due to selective breeding, and lack of emotion have become dull emotionless beings…however, they have the cure for cancer, the ability to control the climate, and other very beneficial technologies that Earth could use. Therefore, if the two planets colonized together and co-existed the L’ehir/human race would seemingly be perfect.
The romance in the novel was cute and interesting especially because it was believed that Aelyx being an alien from L’ehir, would have an inability to love. However, at the end of the book, he loves Cara.
Though, this book isn’t all romance, there’s an even more prescient issue throughout the novel regarding the politics of the alliance that is absolutely entertaining and mysterious.
I will most certainly be purchasing the next novel in this series, “Invaded”, very soon as I was very captivated by the writing, plot, and characters. The novel cover comes with a statement by Jennifer L. Armentrout, author of the Lux series, that I couldn’t agree more with, stating, “‘A perfect blend of sizzling romance, action, and suspense.”‘ That sentence really does accurately sum up the novel.
For some reason, I also found this book to be hilarious at parts, I would literally start laughing out loud, mainly when the author used some spin off of the word “L’eihr” to create an insult towards Aelyx from the perspective of the high school students. I’m not sure if this was the intention of Melissa Landers when she wrote it, but it did make me laugh at times. I also found it funny how he perceived humans from such an obscure perspective as being bland and unintelligent.
I give this book 5/5 stars and strongly encourage you to go and read it! If you’re into aliens and sci-fi mixed with romance, this is definitely a must-read! 🙂
Some of my Favourite Quotes from the Novel:
“He prepared the richest, most indulgent and disgusting dish imaginable – a bowl of fudge ripple ice-cream topped with chocolate syrup, semi-sweet chocolate morsels, chocolate sprinkles, and, for good measure, a chocolate brownie from the pantry. He even garnished it with a handful of M&M’s.
(…) “Look what I made for you. A bowl of diabetes.”
“It’s common knowledge that shiny rocks are preferred among human females.”
“To be honest, I don’t know what qualities you ever saw in him. I can tell why he chose you, but-”
“Oh yeah?” Cara’s spirits lifted as she sensed a compliment coming on. “Why do you think he chose me?”
“It’s obvious.” He swept a hand to indicate her loose curls. “Your long, shiny hair, healthy skin, and bright eyes show that you’re well-nourished.”
“Uh, thank you?”
“I’m not finished.”
“Go on then.”
“You’re clearly intelligent.” Then he felt the need to add, “For a human.”
“Gee. That’s so sweet.”