The Host: Should You Read the Book or Watch the Movie?

Review By: Jessica Ramirez

Making the transition from book to movie seems to be wildly popular nowadays, especially in the Young Adult (YA) genre. Stephenie Meyer, known for her outrageously successful Twilight series, has managed this feat again with her book, The Host.

In The Host, we are introduced to Earth after it has been invaded and overtaken by alien life forms known as Souls. They are parasitic-like creatures that inhabit other life-forms by overtaking their bodies and minds – think Invasion of the Body Snatchers, but made for teens. This one particular human “host,” Melanie, seems to be decidedly resistant to the inhabiting alien, Wanderer, and hence the main storyline of Melanie and Wanderer struggling for control.

The novel is rather slow-paced but does manage to draw you in with the deep emotional connections that are forged between Wanderer, who later becomes known as Wanda, and Melanie, and quite surprisingly between Wanda and the other humans.

The visuals created in the movie were beautiful and they did manage to add some excitement in places where there really was none in the book but I personally feel like the movie missed the mark a little bit on creating those emotional ties that really drove the book and went for more superficial connections in order to make the movie more broadly appealing – in other words they “Hollywood-ized” it a little too much for my liking.

As of now there is no sequel to the book but Stephenie Meyer has said that she is working on one and that it might even become a trilogy, although nothing has been confirmed as of yet. As an optimist, I will give the sequel a chance if or when it comes out. As a realist, I won’t set my expectations too high.

Jessica’s Recommendations:

If you like YA novels, give the book a shot but you will have to push yourself through the slow beginning. If you haven’t read the book, I would wait until the movie becomes available on Redbox or Netflix – don’t spend the $9-$10 on a movie ticket.

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