by Melissa landers
ARC, 352 pages
Expected publication: February 4th 2014 by Disney Hyperion
Purchase Links: Amazon | B&N | Book Depository
Interplanetary relations have never been more exciting! The first in a funny, romantic YA sci-fi series.
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.
This is such a fun book to read. I was never into books with a protagonist for an alien. I always seem to end up not liking them/not finishing them but, Alienated sure is a game changer! Though I did not fell head over heels in love with this, I enjoyed reading the vast majority of it despite the frustrations I felt for some scenes - it's still the good kind of frustration, if you know what I mean.
Despite being a romance freak, this is one of the rare moments where I enjoyed the story but felt detached toward the romance, which at first didn't seem so good because I couldn't bring myself to appreciate the absence of insta-romance. However, that doesn't mean to say that I don't want Cara and Aelyx to be together because after that ending? Ohwords, I am SO definitely rooting for them. I just think that they both stand out more as individual characters and it is just as delightful as the prospect of them being a couple.
I also think that one of the most stunning aspects in the book is Aelyx's development as a character. Cara is an enjoyable character too and I love that she has a very strong mentality, but the A-licker gets the trophy! Cara has always been hospitable to Aelyx and genuinely wants to become a friend to him even though doing so is going against not only her bestfriend but as well as the whole community. Aelyx started off as cold toward Cara's family but over the time, he gradually softens up to them. I think this stemmed because even though majority of mankind wants nothing to do with the L'eihrs and doesn't deem them as trustworthy, Cara remains ever so loyal to him even though she doesn't know a single thing about him. Her faith in him is absolute and it is what made Aelyx's cold demeanor to crumble. I know putting your faith in someone you know nothing about is all kinds of stupid but for Aelyx whose life on earth is made impossible by mankind, this simple gesture given to him by Cara is considered huge. My favorite part of all though, is when Aelyx started off showing more human emotions. It's one of the most heartbreaking and satisfying moments in the book! I truly enjoyed Alienated in spite its shortcomings and I cannot wait to read more of Aelyx and Cara.
Rating: 3.5/5 stars
Disclosure: This e-galley was received from the publisher (Disney-Hyperion via NetGalley) in exchange for an honest review.