Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Touched by an Alien - Parajunkee Review

Touched by an AlienTouched by an Alien by Gini Koch
Review copy purchased for blogwithbite.com participation.

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PJVs QUICKIE POV: The X-Files meet Senfield doesn't sound like a flattering description of this novel, but what can I say the book inspired two things in me... hilarity and intrigue. A comedy of sorts, Touched by an Alien, is ripe with witty one liners, bizarre behavior and the hottest aliens I've ever had described to me (well Showalter has some hot aliens also) and a lot of romance. I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and look forward to reading Alien Tango.

REVIEW: Katherine "Kitty" Katt is having one hell of a day. Jury duty ends early for her and so it is back to work, but she is delayed by a man going postal on his wife and turning into a winged monster, killing his wife and then turning on the crowd. Kitty does what she thinks is the best idea ever, and slams her Mont Blanc pen into the grotesque gelatinous mass on the killers back, which luckily kills the monster.  She is about to retrieve her expensive pen (present from her father) and sneak away, but is intercepted by what appear to be male models in expensive Armani suits.  The male models are intent on having her join them in the sleek gray limo that is waiting for her...Kitty is pretty sure she doesn't have much of a choice.

In the next couple of hours Kitty learns that the human race isn't exactly alone in the universe and she might be the key to putting an end to an alien invasion, intent on making Earth a Hell like environment. There is no way Kitty can turn her back on the operation, or her very sexy other agents, one of which seems to have the extreme hots for her almost immediately.  Is Kitty up for the challenge? With another pen and her iPod, she might just be the human for the job.

A very wild ride, Touched by an Alien highly entertained and kept me laughing and on the edge of my seat. The wit was great, the action was intense and the romance was well, romantic - even though I wanted to kick some shins on a few of the characters.  All the typical nuances of UF romance was in play, even with the hint (ok not so much a hint but a glaringly obvious 3rd party) of a love triangle in the works.

There were only a few minor problems with the novel that I feel I should mention.  There is a lot of discovery in the novel, the mystery of the "bad guys". I feel that conclusions were made that weren't really explained, where other things were lingered on far too much.  I'm not going to mention specifics because it might be a spoiler, but around the middle point of the book a few chapters are nothing but explanations of back-story and this dragged a bit for me. I think this could have been compacted a bit more... but two sides to every coin and if things were cut, I might be stating that some of the story was left too much for interpretation and there needed more explanations.

Overall a great read and I look forward to reading more by Koch.

RECOMMENDATIONS: There is romantic entaglements that lead to sexual interactions...recommended for mature audiences of the non-teen variety. Science Fiction, Romance, Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance fans should all be able to delight. I wouldn't exactly call this chick-lit and put it in the category of authors like MacAlister, but it is not hard-hitting UF. I really can't think of an author this compares to, mix Kelley Armstrong with Mary Janice Davidson and you get Gini Koch.

BWB Rating: 3/4

Discussion Questions:
1. When dealing with aliens, what do you think is more likely: the scary, super-smart, totally different species entirely aliens? Or the pretty-much just like humans, easy to relate to, here to save Earth aliens?

I think the scary, super-smart aliens would be more likely. I guess it really is if you believe in evolution or not. If you believe in our evolution a lot of our evolving seems random...and based on climate conditions and diet etc. If another planet was to start with the same exact simple celled organism, a meteor or forest fire could drive that evolutionary pattern down a completely different path...leaving them still on four legs, instead of upright just because of the predators at the time, thus making very different aliens. And that is if it was the same simple organism, which it wouldn't be since we are different planets. It might be more likely that we encounter nitrogen based water beings than oxygen breathing carbon-based lifeforms.

2. Did you think it was convenient that Kitty's parents were so accepting of the aliens and that they both had "secret" jobs?

Yes, I thought it cleaned the plot up nicely. Kitty's dad just so happened to be a cryptographer from NASA, mom a high ranking government agent...but isn't that why Kitty was targeted from the onset?

3. Did it seem that Kitty's sex life actually helped focus her and make better decisions and conclusions?

Well sex tends to relax a person, and better decisions and thinking are made when not under stress...so this seems like a reasonable conclusion.

4. Which one? Jeff or Christopher? Why?

Christopher. Jeff was a bit too pushy, that would have totally turned me off. I mean really...can we say crazy stalker? I like those boys you have to work for, Christopher seems like he might not go all psycho on her.

5. The parasites had a very strange and grossly exaggerated form when they manifested. Do you think this was a little over the top, or just totally kick butt and you would love to take on a giant slug?

I thought it was a little crazy and didn't make much sense, you know why would they manifest as these crazy big animals, that had all the weaknesses of the smaller creatures they emulated. Especially since they weren't from Earth...so why become big Earth creatures??


Missie said...

I don't think Aliens are my thing... but I like funny so I may have to give this one a try.

Thanks for the review!

Anonymous said...

This sounds pretty interesting. Thank you for sharing will have to check it out!

Pam S