Skip to main content

who are we? "the host" reviewed.


i just finished reading the 600+ page book "the host" by stephenie meyer, author of the twilight series, and thought i would share my thoughts on the book briefly.  "the host" is the story of a not-too-distant future in which aliens have taken over the earth.  these aliens are called souls, and they don't so much destroy the human population as "possess" them, in a way.  i won't give away too much about the process here, but you might be able to deduce on your own that the humans become hosts for the alien species.

in the case of our main character, the question becomes one of identity (among other things).  who is the person?  is she the human body and memories, or the animating spirit from another planet?  when elements of both show through, the question becomes the guiding conflict in the book, manifesting itself in all sorts of ways.

while i am fairly certain that this isn't the direction meyers was going with her work, as a Christ-follower, i couldn't help but think about my own dual nature:  in Christ i am a new creation, and yet the sinful nature continues to bang around in my life, causing me not to do the good i want to do, and sometimes making me do things i want no part of (loosely quoting the apostle paul there).  so who am i?  am i the guy who continues to succomb to temptation?  or am i the one who is saved by grace?  is my name procrastinator?  judge of others?  he who hurts with words?  or is my name forgiven?  he who lives in second chances?

of course i know what i think about this.  i am covered in grace, though i don't deserve it.  and yet, the struggle goes on at times, as the imposter convincingly whispers lies into my heart, and i believe them, to varying degrees.  and i live a dual identity, alternately believing i am forgiven and that i am no good.

but i digress.

the book isn't so much about this, but the dual-identity piece is the most compelling facet of the story, even as it manifests itself in inner turmoil, romantic love, and physical force.  it is, in typical stephenie meyer fashion, a quick and, at times, intense read, full of torn allegiances and conflicted emotions, but once the main part of the plot is reached, it is hard to put down.  and in the end, it is the survival of the human race that is at stake.  one question the book asks is: can kindness and love win the day?  or will violence only be replaced by a different kind of violence?  and what defines us in the process?

there was a movie made based on this book, which i haven't seen, and which has been widely panned by critics, so i may steer clear.  but the book gets a good grade from me:  a very good book which i had a bit of a trouble getting into at first, and that had a few wrinkles that were awfully predictable, but with an otherwise strong story which asks interesting questions.  4/5 stars.  

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

#thoughtsandprayers

i made these comments and prayed the following prayer at one of our worship services at SPWF yesterday, and had a few folks asked if i would post them, so there they are: 
It has been a season of terrible tragedy.  And I have noticed in the news a trending phrase: thoughts and prayers.  It even has its own hashtag on twitter and other social media, but net necessarily in a good way.  People are understandably tired of hearing about others’ thoughts and prayers, when that is only a thinly-veiled way of saying that our only obligation to those who suffer is a brief moment of silence, or nothing more than a tweet or public statement.  The truth is that, for those of us who follow Jesus, much is required when our neighbors suffer.  We are called to do justice where we can, to love kindness and mercy, and to walk with God through it all.  But let us be careful not to throw out the proverbial baby with the bathwater.  We are, as people of faith, those who know that prayer is not simply an em…

a divided tree

there is a tree in my back yard.  i'm pretty sure it's an oak tree.  at least that's what i think Shannon told me.  i don't know my oaks from my maples, my elms from my locusts.  to me, it's a tree: a corinthian column bursting up into life and glory.  full of sap and pulp and rings and bugs and cells pulsing with water and always reaching for something.  it is full of rhythm, reach and flourish then fall and die, and repeat. 

this particular tree, though, isn't of one mind. 

half of it's rusted orange leaves have given up their grip and surrendered -gracefully or not - to the pull of gravity and the threat of winter.  the north side of this inauspicious oak is just about bare naked, all sticks and straight lines, a skeleton of itself.  but the side that looks south is stubbornly resisting change.  no longer green, the leaves have compromised their summer vibrancy, but they are clearly not ready to concede death just yet. 

i feel like i can relate to this …

vote. and pray. but do not be afraid (the King is alive).

i'm not sure how many americans right now are feeling optimistic about the government.  i know i'm not.  in fact, while i didn't live through the civil war or anything, i have to think that faith in our elected leaders - indeed the whole system of electing them in the first place - is at one of its lowest points.  i just don't have a great deal of confidence in those individuals who have been elected, or in those who want to be.  i find myself slipping at times into what feels like a swamp of apathy: sinking, to be sure, but not sure that i care enough anymore to do much about it.  i see this attitude all around me: in conversations, on social media, and in popular culture.  perhaps there is no more clear indication of our nation's view of the government than this current election season, when we would teeter on electing liars and thieves, crooks and clowns. 

which is why i was so startled as i sat down to read psalm 72 this morning. as i read the ancient song, i…