Synopsis from Good Reads:
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.
So two years ago a group of aliens called L’eihr introduced themselves to Earth and gave them a cure to cancer, which saved the life of Cara’s mother. The Sweeney family are pretty pro-alien. Cara is picked to be part of an exchange program where she will host a L’eihr for the school year and the following year she will go to L’eihr. She’s initially not thrilled, even though her parents are, but comes around.
Aelyx is also not thrilled about going to Earth. Neither are his other two L’eihr transfer students. They make a plan to tank the exchange, but it will take time. During that time, Aelyx starts to change his mind because (surprise!!!) he and Cara start to fall for each other.
While the Sweeney’s are super psyched to have Aelyx, the rest of Earth is not so happy. A hate group is formed and pretty much everyone in Cara’s town joins. It eventually takes on the form of a terrorist group and things go crazy.
I thought the general plotline was good, but it just wasn’t fleshed out enough and never really reached it’s full potential. I would’ve liked more info about the L’eihrs (even from Aelyx we don’t get much information besides the basics) and more information about the “Patriot” group. The end went a little too far into the unbelievable for me, as well.
Cara and Aelyx were both pretty well developed and mostly likable characters. However, the rest of the characters were pretty bland. Since the story is told in third person POV, I wish we would’ve gotten the view of at least one more person besides of just the two of them. I would’ve liked Cara’s best friend, Tori’s, POV or even her valedictorian rival who headed up the student chapter of the hate group. There’s never really an excuse for so much hatred, but I would’ve liked to have the POV of at least one member to see what exactly they’re so afraid of. I also would’ve liked to see a few more people being pro-L’eihr. There was a small group in the beginning, but they quickly faded after the hate group got more vocal.
Landers writing wasn’t bad and the story was well-paced until it got towards the end. Things with the protest and riot went by really fast and wasn’t very detailed. Some of Cara’s parents’ actions weren’t very believable and some of the dialogue in the beginning was on the childish side. However, it was a quick read and there were several humorous moments that I enjoyed.
Overall, I enjoyed Alienated. It wasn’t as good as I was expecting and didn’t quite live up to it’s potential, but I’m interested to see what happens next and will be picking up the next book when it comes out.
Rating (out of 5)
Overall Average: 3.25 stars