The Host

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Name: The Host
Creator: Stephenie Meyer
Date(s): May 6, 2008 - book
March 29, 2013 - film
Medium: Book, Film
Country of Origin: United States
External Links: at IMDb
at Wikipedia (novel)
at Wikipedia (film)
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

The Host is a novel by Stephenie Meyer (author of Twilight), about a not-too-distant future where strange aliens invade Earth and inhabit human bodies with the intention of saving Earth from destruction caused by human actions. The book won a film adaptation in 2013.

Was promised to fans the release of two sequels titled "The Seeker" and "The Soul". [1] In November 2009, Meyer said, "I'd like to eventually have The Host be part of a trilogy."[2] In February 2011, she said that she had outlines for the sequels and had done some writing on them,[3] but as of August 2021 nothing was confirmed, published or publicized.

While the fandom is much smaller than Twilight, it still exists and it is renewing itself, which raises the expectation of a resurrection.


Spoiler Warning: This article or section may contain spoilers. If this bothers you, proceed with caution.

An alien species titled "Souls" invades Earth after deciding that humans no longer deserve the planet. Fragile and tiny, the Souls they need a host body to live, so they implant themselves in humans, but there is a consequence, the former mind must be totally erased.

Resistance groups are formed in order to prevent the alien invasion and the implantation of the "parasites", as humans call the souls. But the invaders have their own army, called "Seekers" they act chasing and dismembering the cells in order to use the rebels as new hosts.

It is in this post-apocalyptic scenario that we find a young girl who, determined to exist, would rather die than be the hostess of an alien. But her plan fails and Wanderer, a Soul, is placed into the body of Melanie Stryder. However, Melanie's consciousness is still alive and begins to communicate with Wanderer mentally.

As time goes by, Wanda and Mel form strong bonds of friendship and decide to flee in order to find the only family left for the young human, her younger brother Jamie, her uncle Jeb, and Melanie's boyfriend Jared Howe, who they believe are safe somewhere in the Arizona desert.

But things don't go as planned, Wanda-Mel is seen as a dangerous parasite, Jared hates Wanda and the O'Shea brothers, assigned to watch over her presence becomes a constant problem when Kyle wants at all costs to kill Wanda while Ian falls head over heels in love with her. At the same time, an unbridled search for Wanda takes place, led by one of the seekers who wants at all costs to find this rebel group from Arizona.

A plot starts to follow the conflict between their mentalities that love different men, but that inhabit the same body and the difficult coexistence in the same environment between two very different species, but with the same goals — survival.


The Host is a American romantic science fiction thriller film directed and adapted by Andrew Niccol, where was released on March 29, 2013, to largely negative reviews.[4] The plot follows almost entirely the events of the book about Melanie and Wanderer's journey in search of the humans of the Stryder family and finding themselves as a person in this new society.

Cast & Characters


  • Wanderer played by Saoirse Ronan (shared body)and Emily Browning (new body) – also know Wanda, the Soul who is inserted into Melanie Stryder's body.
  • Melanie Stryder played by Saoirse Ronan – Melanie is a human rebel who was captured and implanted with a Soul after years of evading the Seekers. She is Wanderer's host body.
  • Ian O'Shea played by Jake Abel – Wanderer calls Ian "as kind as a Soul, but strong as only a human could be", is your love interest.
  • Jared Howe played by Max Irons – Melanie's lover and Jamie's protector/friend.
  • Jamie Stryder played by Chandler Canterbury – Jamie is Melanie's younger brother and Wanda's first human friend after Melanie.
  • Uncle Jeb played by William Hurt – Jebediah "Jeb" is Melanie's eccentric uncle. A paranoid survivalist before the invasion, Jeb had constructed an elaborate hide-out in caves beneath the Arizona desert.
  • The Seeker played by Diane Kruger – The Soul who originally caught Melanie. Her calling is to search for and track down humans who have managed to avoid implantation, although she takes her job more seriously than most others.
  • Kyle O'Shea played by Boyd Holbrook – Kyle, Ian's brother, is impulsive, quick-tempered, and often considered a pain by the others. His hate for Souls is extreme, even among the group.
  • Doc played by Scott Lawrence – A tall, slim human who was a surgeon and serves as the group's doctor. Another great friend of Wanda, he is fascinated by how effective Soul medicine.

Other characters

Differences between the movie and the book

  • Whitewashing, in the books Melanie Stryder was described as having hazel eyes, dark hair and tan skin because she is half Latina on her mother's side.[5] So many fans expected a range of actresses of Latin American, Mexican or Spanish descent, but were surprised by the choice of American of Irish descent Saoirse Ronan.[6][7]
  • The changing role of Wanderer, in the books Wanda is a historian and teacher, a living legend among her peers for her performances as a pseudo-warrior, fierce defender of her people possessing an almost infinite knowledge of her species and other planets. In the movie she seems to misunderstand why humans don't accept being "erased", she is reluctant to live with his own species and appears to be totally unaware of various subjects.
  • Melanie is strong but not so strong: in the book she is rarely able to assume without Wanda's approval or subjugation the body they share, in the movie Melanie is so strong that Wanda doesn't control herself in almost every scene.
With the Seekers playing a bigger role in the movie, the movie tries to show more action rather than telling a story. For example, there is a random car chase towards the beginning of the movie between the Seekers and the humans that was not in the story that made the Seekers seem more hostile than they really were. And besides seeing the Seekers and Wanderer and the other humans in the movie, where were the other souls? Stephenie Meyer referenced many different souls within human bodies Wanderer interacted with, but in the movie, these other souls are pretty much nonexistent with maybe one or two souls making a brief appearance in random scenes.

Alicia Smock[8]


Due to the fact that it is Meyer's work, many Twilight fans have migrated or embraced The Host as their newest fandom. However there is a large portion of fans who either fell in love first with The Host and then with Twilight, or those who only like this fandom but aren't twifans. Small and relatively faithful, the fandom still doesn't seem to have a proper name, and in part has focused almost exclusively on the Tumblr and sites like Dreamwidth or LiveJournal.

As with occurred with Twilight, fandom was quite popular in Brazil at the time of the book's release and had a massive renaissance with the film. But the stark differences between the two works led many to see the film version only as a facilitator in putting together their dreamcast, edits and fanarts, with many fans even disowning the film in parts or fully in favor of the literary canon.

Creating transformative works encompasses both gen, het, and slash with little or no femslash. There was also the creation of several inspired fanworks, where the authors used the universe of The Host as an AU for their works, thus leading to a range of crossovers and fusions. The official soundtrack of the film also opened room for edits with scenes from the music video for the song Radioactive by the band Imagine Dragons, which featured the performance of the actress from Percy Jackson, Alexandra Daddario.


Two popular pairings for this fandom are Ian O'Shea/Wanderer (aka Ian/Wanda) and Jared Howe/Melanie Stryder, both canon.


Example Fanworks

Examples Wanted: Editors are encouraged to add more examples or a wider variety of examples.





Archives and Communities

LiveJournal Communities

DeviantArt groups

Tumblr Fandom



  1. ^ 'Twilight' Writer Stephenie Meyer Wants Matt Damon For 'Host' Movie, MTV Movie News
  2. ^ Extra chapter FAQ
  3. ^ "The Host Tour - Kansas City". The Host Lexicon. February 12, 2011. Archived from the original on March 30, 2012.
  4. ^ Lee, Stephan (April 1, 2013). "Box office report: 'G.I. Joe' wins Easter Weekend with a muscular $41.2M". CNN. Archived from the original on 2021-05-14. Retrieved April 1, 2013.
  5. ^ LeAura, Luciano (March 28, 2013). ""5 Things you should know about The Host"". Latina. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04. Retrieved March 28, 2013.
  6. ^ McNary, Dave (May 12, 2011). "Meyer's 'Host' finds a helmer". Variety (magazine). Archived from the original on 2012-11-08. Retrieved May 12, 2011.
  7. ^ Staskiewicz, Keith (May 3, 2011). "Saoirse Ronan cast in film of Stephenie Meyer's 'The Host'". Entertainment Weekly.
  8. ^ Book or movie? — The Host
  9. ^ "s t r a n g e w o r l d". 2019-05-08. Archived from the original on 2021-09-26.
  10. ^ "still crying over bellarke in twenty one". 2019-05-23. Archived from the original on 2021-09-25.