By Lili Feinberg
YA science fiction has done the world a blessed service in introducing us to some of the hottest aliens around. Gone are the days of giant, green aliens with bulbous heads and large, unflinching black eyes that gaze deep into your soul and in their place are blindingly attractive human-like creatures with hidden superhuman capabilities. While we all secretly pine for our attractive alien to take home, we have to take a step back every time we encounter otherworldly beauty. Because some of these alien hunks are also pretty dangerous.
The Darkest Star by Jennifer L. Armentrout
opens in a new window I have been a reader of JLA’s novels since 2011, and I was so very excited to re-enter my favorite world of hers with a new series. The hard truth is this: JLA brings us the sexiest of aliens. Luxen are creatures of light who hide on Earth and assimilate into humanity, first introduced to us in Obsidian. They are beautiful to look at, their irises are iridescent, unnatural colors, and when they unleash their full powers they turn into blinding lights that are only easily hidden by mountains. Luxen also have the glorious gift of snark, which makes them even hotter. Armentrout weaves interesting alien lore about how their powers change through generations, which is the basis for her newest exploration of the Luxen world in this novel and our introduction to Luc–a particularly powerful (and handsome) alien that insists he is not a Luxen. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but Luc and rival Daemon in ways I never thought possible. Keep the alien boys coming, Alien Queen!
Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout
opens in a new window The world of the Luxen launched in 2011 with the introduction of Daemon Black: master of witty banter, holder of pretty eyes, singlemost stab-worthy and infuriatingly beautiful non-human being to ever walk the planet. When Katy moves to West Virginia, the last thing she thought she’d encounter would be aliens, but when she’s attacked and Daemon rescues her by literally freezing time with the flick of his hand, things get real. The hot alien living next door and his sister, Dee, are on the run from an entire universe of enemies intent on stealing their unique abilities, and Daemon’s touch has Katy lit up like the Vegas Strip–a beacon calling to the enemies, showing their hidden location. She is forced to stick close to undateable, untouchable Daemon Black until her alien mojo fades. That is, if she doesn’t kill him first.
Alienated by Melissa Landers
opens in a new window I am a sucker for boarding school novels, and while this isn’t one of those, it takes my favorite trope and gives it a unique spin with alien exchange students. I KNOW! IT SOUNDS AWESOME BECAUSE IT IS! Two years ago, the aliens first made contact. Now, Cara is preparing to share a bathroom with the first ever handpicked L’eihr exchange student, which guarantees her a free ride to her dream college for journalism. She just had no idea it would be Aelyx, an infuriatingly attractive alien. He may look human, but Cara knows no human boy is this good-looking. L’eihrs and humans have nearly identical DNA except for the whole growing up in space thing, so they look and act as if they are human, but they are believed to be harmful to Earth as anti-L’eihr paranoia spreads with their arrival and the real purpose of the alien exchange gets called into question.
I Am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
opens in a new window An oldie but a goodie, Four can give any hot alien hero a run for their money. Four is one of nine alien protectors who assimilate into humankind to train. They look like us, they walk like us, they talk like us, they live among us… they’re just stronger and faster and maybe better looking and possess crazy awesome abilities that elevate them to superhero-like levels of wonder. When the baddies that they moved to Earth to hide from find them and begin hunting them down, panic ensues. In this book, One, Two, and Three have all been hunted and killed. Four is next. Four is determined to not go down without a fight.
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
opens in a new windowSPOILERS. In an effort to avoid spoilers, I don’t want to tell you too much about this crazy book! Cassie is one of the last remaining humans on Earth. The Others, an alien race coming to invade with the purpose of eradicating the entire human race, comes in waves. After the first wave, only darkness remains. After the second, only the lucky escape. After the third, only the unlucky survive, and after the fourth wave, only one rule applies: trust nobody. The fifth wave is underway and nobody knows what to expect. Cassie just knows it is her versus Them, and she must run and protect herself from anybody who comes her way. But, as she begins to learn more and more about her planet’s invaders, she realizes the Others may not appear to be what she thought they were.
Photo courtesy of Dreamworks Pictures.