by Melissa Landers
Narrator: Madeleine Lambert
Published by Tantor Audio on May 21, 2014
Genres: Young Adult Science Fiction
Length: 8 hours and 27 minutes
Buy on Amazon, Barnes & Noble
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.
4.5 Stars for Alienated
Alienated was a nice surprise. At first I wasn’t sure if I would enjoy this story and I am so happy I took a chance on this book. I loved this!
What did I like?
I loved the main characters Cara and Aelyx. Cara Sweeney is an over-achiever. Her goal is to be valedictorian when she graduates high school. Not only is she smart but she is passionate about what she believes in. Cara has a blog where she expresses her feelings toward important topics, mainly the existence of the aliens L’eihr. Her blog posts are humorous and thought provoking. I thought the author did an amazing job with Cara’s POV. Cara struggles with the normal teen drama but realizes there is more at stake than just her future. Aelyx is the L’eihr exchange student assigned to Cara. He is brilliant and good looking but lacking in personality, as most L’eihrs are. The L’eihrs don’t believe in expressing their emotions which is why Aelyx is uncomfortable around humans. As Aelyx spends time with Cara he realizes that humans aren’t as inferior as his people think they are. Cara and Aelyx are important characters that young readers should meet. Cara sees the injustice around her and she fights for what is right. Aelyx grows as a character by abandoning what his people have taught him about humans. Instead of being closeminded he opens himself to his experience on Earth and his friendship with Cara.
The plot is interesting and creative. This is a science fiction story but the details weren’t overwhelming. Take away the alien aspect and you have a story about two people overcoming discrimination. Earth is frightened of the L’eihrs. Fear turns to hatred which leads to violent actions. Alienated touches on sensitive topics such as bullying and violence toward people that are different and misunderstood. I was very emotional reading Cara and Aelyx having to deal with the violence. It puts into light how the verbal and physical violence can be frightening and damaging. I thought the author dealt with this subject realistically. She showed how wrong it is and the danger it can lead to by ignoring this behavior.
The romance between Cara and Aelyx is sweet and passionate. I enjoyed the slow pace of their romance. It is understandable that when they first meet they don’t trust or like each other. Over time Aelyx and Cara grow to understand each others culture and beliefs. They accept their differences and find somethings in common. The more time they spend with each other the stronger their connection is. This was a great part of the story.
What didn’t I like?
I thought that the pace of the story was slow in some parts. I also wished there was a prologue of the L’eihrs first contact to Earth. I love Science Fiction (especially Star Wars and Star Trek) so I think it would be exciting to read what happened when the L’eihrs first arrived.
Overall I loved Alienated. Author Melissa Landers is a new author that I added to my must read list. I thought her writing was flawless, her creativity is exciting and her storytelling is entertaining. This is a must read for YA fans.
Audiobook Review – 3.5 Stars
Madeleine Lambert’s performance overall was good but I was tempted to stop listening to the audiobook. I didn’t like her performance for the male characters. For the human male teenagers she used a surfer boy voice which was at times irritating. For the human adult males she created a nasal voice that was high pitched and nerve wracking to listen to. Her performance of Cara is what had me continue on with the story. She brought to life Cara’s passion and sarcasm that had me quickly fall in love with the character. Madeleine is narrating the second book so at least I’ll know what to expect from her performance.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2016 Audiobook Challenge
- COYER Summer 2016