This book is awesome! I started it at the end of last week, and finished it on Thursday. I gave it to Brooklin to read on Thursday night (right before bed time) and she had it finished by 7:30 Saturday night. It's no short book either...619 pages! I really enjoyed this read, more than the last few books I've read. It is really hard to find a great book, that is also rated "PG" and is still entertaining to adults...ie little to no bad language, no sex, nothing gruesome or overly violent... just a really good story. I usually don't read any of the bestsellers, because I don't like reading anything with those type of things in them. Mostly I read Young Adult level books, and even some of them are a little questionable. The last two series I read were not that great. I read the Uglies series by Chris Westerfeld (Uglies, Pretties, Extras, and Specials) and they were ok, but I really wouldn't recommend them. The first two were pretty good, but then the other two got really into the characters cutting themselves to feel high. The whole story line of the series was thought provoking, and it was a "survivors after earth was destroyed" kind of setting, so that was interesting...but they were just ok overall. The other series I just finished was The Gemma Doyle Trilogy by Libba Bray (A Great and Terrible Beauty, Rebel Angels, and The Sweet Far Thing). I enjoyed the overall story and the first book was good, but it was very "girl power" and the author again had one of the characters cutting herself, and two others she made gay, and one of the character's father was molesting her. I don't understand why a book set in 1895 and about a magic world, would need have to have lesbians, molesters, and cutting as side themes. It really made me angry, because most of the side stories came up in the final book...they didn't really contribute to the overall theme of the book...to me...and you had to read through them to find out what happened in the main story.
Anyway, The Host is a really, really great book, and I would recommend it to everyone. Stephanie Meyer (the author) also wrote the Twilight series (Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn...which come out Aug. 2nd). I read the first three this summer and they were amazing as well....vampires (who are "vegetarian"...they only eat animals, not humans) werewolves, a vampire/werewolf/human love triangle. Funny enough, the author wrote the Twilight books for young adults, and The Host was marketed as a book for adults. I won't let Brooklin read the Twilight books yet, and I let her read The Host...mostly because of a few steamy (albeit very moderate for today's standards) scenes between the vampire and the girl. We decided they would be more appropriate for her when she is a little older (maybe 15 or 16) when she can relate a little better with the feelings involved between the characters. We are really excited for the Twilight movie...it opens Dec. 12th. I just watched a preview for it, and it looks exciting! You can watch it by clicking on the hyperlink.