The Bride Program by Dane Griggs:
Maya Arnold was leading a normal life, working and helping care for her sister, until the Cerasteans arrived. Offering a cure for cancer if enough women volunteer as brides, Maya jumped at the chance. Saving her sister was her only goal. She never expected to actually fall in love with an alien, or find best friends in the other bride volunteers.
Since the mysterious destruction of Ceraste, Commander D’Avii and the surviving males have been searching the galaxy for a new home. Finding Earth and its women was a miracle. Like most Cerasteans, he finds humans to be fascinating creatures — none more so than bride volunteer Maya. His attraction to her is instant and intense. Still he knows Maya can never choose him, a warrior, with so many higher-caste scientists seeking their own mates. To do so would shame the scientists and tear the last of his people apart. Yet he aches at the loss of something he never even had.
This was a fun quick read. Maya was an every day girl that you could really relate to, as well as the friends she makes of the other brides and the girls night out sort of fun they enjoy. Though I think D’Avii’s chapters were better in a way because of his view of the world and learning about the culture he comes from. I loved the plot of this, with the aliens making themselves known to the world and trying to find a way to save their own race while bettering ours. But I also liked that they didn’t necessarily see themselves as better than humans, and even often commented on the ingenuity of people. The whole interaction between the brides and the aliens was really sweet, and good to see them interacting and learning about each others cultures. Developing real bonds and friendships with each other. However, I do feel like a lot of it was rushed a bit. There was a bit of the meshing and changing to fit the new world that went a little too smoothly that felt unrealistic. I wish it would’ve been developed more, and considering how short the story was it definitely could’ve been. But considering how this is clearly set up to be a series, I can’t wait to read more and hope to learn more about what’s going on on earth and the changes that have been made and the people who are still adjusting to this new discovery.