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Having survived one encounter with an alien, Ripley is persuaded to return to the planet where her crew found the alien ship. A colony has been established there, but suddenly all contact with the settlers has been lost. Accompanied by marines, Ripley is going to find out why.

247 pages, Paperback

First published January 1, 1986

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About the author

Alan Dean Foster

443 books1,807 followers
Bestselling science fiction writer Alan Dean Foster was born in New York City in 1946, but raised mainly in California. He received a B.A. in Political Science from UCLA in 1968, and a M.F.A. in 1969. Foster lives in Arizona with his wife, but he enjoys traveling because it gives him opportunities to meet new people and explore new places and cultures. This interest is carried over to his writing, but with a twist: the new places encountered in his books are likely to be on another planet, and the people may belong to an alien race.

Foster began his career as an author when a letter he sent to Arkham Collection was purchased by the editor and published in the magazine in 1968. His first novel, The Tar-Aiym Krang, introduced the Humanx Commonwealth, a galactic alliance between humans and an insectlike race called Thranx. Several other novels, including the Icerigger trilogy, are also set in the world of the Commonwealth. The Tar-Aiym Krang also marked the first appearance of Flinx, a young man with paranormal abilities, who reappears in other books, including Orphan Star, For Love of Mother-Not, and Flinx in Flux.

Foster has also written The Damned series and the Spellsinger series, which includes The Hour of the Gate, The Moment of the Magician, The Paths of the Perambulator, and Son of Spellsinger, among others. Other books include novelizations of science fiction movies and television shows such as Star Trek, The Black Hole, Starman, Star Wars, and the Alien movies. Splinter of the Mind's Eye, a bestselling novel based on the Star Wars movies, received the Galaxy Award in 1979. The book Cyber Way won the Southwest Book Award for Fiction in 1990. His novel Our Lady of the Machine won him the UPC Award (Spain) in 1993. He also won the Ignotus Award (Spain) in 1994 and the Stannik Award (Russia) in 2000.

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5 stars
2,511 (41%)
4 stars
2,154 (35%)
3 stars
1,119 (18%)
2 stars
218 (3%)
1 star
53 (<1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 257 reviews
Profile Image for Erin *Proud Book Hoarder*.
2,473 reviews1,082 followers
March 27, 2017
If this has been an original novel, and the movie came from it, then it would have been a five star easy. Since it's a novelization of an existing movie that's superior, it gets a three star rating for different reasons.

First, the story most of us know and love is great written down. Reading it, I envisioned the actors in their roles, the score powerfully pushing through the action and run scenes, the beautiful, uncomfortable design of the ship and aliens. Written down it lost a little impact, especially in some of the well-constructed action scenes. Some of the tense nail-grinding was removed from the scene where they first discovered the aliens, a few deaths lost their epic showdown appeal, and the ending fights with the queen seemed shortened and with less oomph. On the other hand, having it written down, the author was free to extend some musing dialogue, pausing for thought about the alien and the strategies they needed to come up with for proper combat.

I took one star away from some of my favorite parts of movie being glossed over in the book. Obviously the author didn't agree on dragging out the same scenes I would. I had to remove another star because it was censored. I can get taking out some of the language and the reader wouldn't notice, but to remove all of it? Even the epic one-liner showdowner from Ripley from the queen was removed. That's the most quotable line from the movie! It has been replaced with:

"Get away from her, you!"

Wow, really? Playing it safe in the novelization from of Aliens is not cool, no matter what universe you're in.

Overall it's enjoyable, especially for fans of the series, and I loved Foster's writing style overall. He's readable and sucks you into the story, but some of it fell apart after the first few chapters.
Profile Image for Alex ☣ Deranged KittyCat ☣.
651 reviews407 followers
February 10, 2018
1.5 stars

The second movie is my least favorite out of the Alien franchise. And the novelization goes along with it.


Ripley is rescued after the events in the previous book, and nobody believes her story (or if they do, they do their best to discredit her). Moreover, LV-426, the planet on which Ripley's crew found the aliens on, is being colonized. When Earth loses contact with LV-426, they send her together with the Marines to find out what happened, only for her to face her nightmarish creatures once more.


No matter how hard I think about it, I cannot say why I'm not fond of this installment. It's basically the same book as the first with some changes (Newt, people being told about the creatures etc.). It's still a bunch of people trying to make it out alive from a difficult situation (trying not to get eaten/made into incubators by the aliens). I would prefer any other movie/novelization to this one any day.


P.S. I despise Burke. >.<
Profile Image for ⚧️ Nadienne Williams ⚧️.
348 reviews43 followers
February 11, 2022
This is my absolute favorite movie of all time - however, it's not my favorite book of all time (although still good). Reading about the Aliens is just not the same as the visceral reality of seeing them.

Much like "Alien," the novel and the movie are essentially identical; however, there are a few scenes in the book which are not in the movie (although I know at least one of them was filmed but cut). And there are a few minor differences. Ripley doesn't say "Get away from her, you bitch!" in the novel, she simply says "Get away from her, you!"...and the airlock the Alien Queen falls out of opens because her own blood dissolves it, not because Ripley opened it...also, it seems that the Alien Queen "fell" back towards the planet and reentered the atmosphere, presumably burning upon reentry, rather than being hurled into the depths of space.

But, otherwise, if you like "Aliens" and the Alien-verse (?) in general, this is essential reading. :)
Profile Image for Craig.
5,140 reviews123 followers
September 23, 2021
This is a good novelization of an early draft of the screenplay. Foster once again is at his best creating tension by skillfully blending tropes of the horror and science fiction genres. His novelization is heavily edited so as to remove any potentially offensive phrases, and I wonder if that was his choice or the edict of someone in the production end. I suspect the latter. But maybe that's how the early draft of the script was written. "Get away from her, you!" loses something in this version. Still, there are some added lines and a deeper background into the characters and situations that are enjoyable. It's not just another bug hunt!
Profile Image for Tosh.
163 reviews39 followers
February 7, 2017
Is this going to be a stand-up fight, sir, or another bug-hunt?

Not as good as the movie, though it stayed very close to the script. Some of the dialogues were more lengthy, a few scenes were added, and the foul language was cut out. Also, missing Bishop's knife trick, and didn't quite capture Hudson's charming personality.
Profile Image for Mahayana Dugast.
Author 5 books243 followers
July 15, 2022
Wow, this is SO addictive!
You probably know the story already but if you don't, the last 4 lines may give you a little too much info (although not quite a spoiler).
In brief, this is 57 years later, when Ripley has returned to Earth having vanquished the monstrous Alien. No one believes her, least of all Carter Burke, the new junior executive at the Weylan-Yutani , Corporation, as he points out that their financial investment went up in flame along with her dubious decision to burn down everything but the capsule in which she returned. And all this because of big toothy monsters, which sounds ridiculous... or does it?!
When all goes quiet on LV-426, a human mining settlement, the same Carter Burke [who revoked her license to fly and ordered her to be under psychiatric supervision] comes crawling back asking her to escort him and a marine platoon to go and investigate.
Needless to say, and like in Covenant, someone has dubious motivation to find out whether the alleged toothy monsters can be studied or even weaponized... AND... Must a woman keep on taking her life into her own hands? Especially once she finds a little girl, apparently the only survivor on LV-426???
I let you find out.
I'm off to read book IV now, dinner will have to wait! lol Enjoy!

Profile Image for Wendy.
606 reviews136 followers
June 2, 2016
Aliens is one of my favourite movies so this book had a lot to live up to, with the potential to utterly fail me. As you can see from those five stars, it did just fiiiine. I'm trying to read more novelizations, which means Alan Dean Foster is going to appear often on my list. I should never have doubted him. He is skilled at capturing every element that makes me love the movies, with the added bonus of the inner monologues and varied perspectives that this format grants. My only complaint stems from the latter. The book opens with an unusual perspective: that of Jones, Ripley's cat. The peek into the predatory animal's mind serves as a chilling reflection of what might be going through the heads of the story's deadly protagonists, the xenomorphs, who are the only living beings whose point of view we don't get to see. After starting the book with Jones' perspective and having interjections of the amusing things that only cats are capable of, I found myself wishing that Jones had played a bigger role in the film, rather than being left behind in the safety of Earth (though I'm sure Jones would disagree).

Aliens is the James Cameron sequel to Ridley Scott's Alien. Both are stellar films that work tension and survival in different ways. In Aliens, the stakes are higher with more aliens versus highly skilled marines. Surely humanity shall prevail, right? Foster's words lend weight to the already formidable force we see in the film. Vasquez, Frost, Spunkmeier, my beloved Hicks, and even Hudson become even more real for me in this book thanks to the little details about their individual roles, their almost hive mind-like communication when the shit hits the fan, their camaraderie, even Bishop, the synthetic, gets to shine with a brilliant sense of humour from a machine that perhaps understands humans better than it should. The slimy Burke becomes even more detestable with additional dialogue and inner thoughts that ensure that no one will ever not look forward to his comeuppance.

No, wait! I have one more complaint. Foster's digs right into the emotions of Ripley and also Newt, the little girl who survived the horror only to be cruelly stolen from me, along with Hicks, at the beginning of Alien3. Reading about the three of them here hurt my heart in a way that can only be resolved by writing fanfic where Newt and Hicks survive the landing on the prison planet and continue on with Ripley, ripping apart those damn aliens like the happy family they were meant to be.

Profile Image for D.L. Denham.
Author 2 books25 followers
December 30, 2014
Novelizations of movies are often jutted to the back of the bookshelf after one reading. Reviewers are critical, normally arguing that it is just an attempt to make money off a popular film franchise, and at times they do so justly. Yet, some novelizations often tell the story in a way film simply cannot commute: taking the reader into the minds of the characters. And for this, Alan Dean Foster is a force to be reckoned with. Written originally in 1986, Foster respectfully adds to the Alien universe in a way that even Ridley Scott (Alien), James Cameron (Aliens), and David Fincher (Alien 3) could not with a camera. It is not the movies are better than the books or vice versa (except with Alien 3, which you can read about in my review here on SFBOOK). The books offer a new fresh perspective to tell the events and, if done properly, take the reader a few levels deeper to discover something that went unseen in the films.

First off, Aliens: The Official Movie Novelization is well written and fleshed out, transitioning smoothly from scene to scene. This is not the novel shoved to the back of the bookshelf. Instead, for me, it rests upright next to my Ender’s Universe novels. Readers should not be hesitant about the quality of the story, and yes, it does offer more than the movie in dialogue and retells certain scenes. Foster offers an alternative response for our character’s actions and motivations in several key scenes. Whether or not you like this, well… you have to read it first. For me, at times Foster’s direction is often a better alternative. Most importantly, Foster dives deep into the minds of Ripley, Newt, Burke, Hicks, Hudson, and others! What made Burke such an ass, and where was he planning to run off to in the third act of Aliens when the Xenomorphs overcame the survivors?

As far as story, anyone familiar with the movie will know the basic plot and what to expect. These Alien novelizations are for the fans and those who want to know more about Ripley’s galactic struggle to rid the universe of its most dangerous monster.

Originally written for SFBook.com
Profile Image for Hollowman.
56 reviews2 followers
March 24, 2012
Read this one few weeks before seeing the film ... in '86. Foster says it's his fave write of the three he did for the trilogy. Probably agree ... he had gotten good experience and momentum from his 70s/early 80s projects ... so was in the sweet-spot/golden-age of his career.

Clear, no-bullshit, super-fluid writing style--not dragged out or over-long ... can be read in a few hours. But not dumbed down for the movie-only crowd.

It has some of Cameron's Director Cut version scenes. Shares Cameron's pace and "interactivity". Believable technology. Does not sex-up women and men. In some ways, it has elements of military sci-fi (Heinlein, Scott-Card, Halderman).

A quick, enjoyable, escapist read.
Profile Image for Andrew.
2,232 reviews
September 12, 2015
Back in the 80s and 90s it seemed that so many films were being turned in to novelisations - sometimes to my amusement even when they started out as books themselves - (for example Piers Anthony's Total Recall retelling the Philip K Dick short story). And it seems that Mr Alan Dean Foster was at the forefront of that moment. Now at the time I used to think that he was just mercilessly cashing in on the fame of the film to sell the book - and not very good books at that.

Okay as in so many times I put up my hand and apologise and in so doing destroy yet another of my foolish preconceptions. this book very faithfully follows the film and yet contains all the excitement and tension as the film and yet still feels fresh and new even though I have watched (yes its one of my favourites) many many times. The book rips along at a breakneck peace - so much so that even while they made their way back to the ship I knew more scenes still had to play out and yet with less than a dozen pages I was wondering how they would be able to play it out (and they did).

I think for me this is one of those rare occasions where my preconceptions of the film coloured my opinion of the book - one, ironcially the reverse of what I was expecting. All I can say is that I have had to dramatically review my opinion of Alan Dean Foster, his work and most importantly his style - I know his work has slipped from favour of recent years but I do remember he has quite an impressive catalogue of titles - of which I will now be keeping an eye out for. I really did enjoy this book and I think for those who love the franchise it is most certainly worth reading although so not expect anything dramatically different from the film.
Profile Image for Betawolf.
372 reviews1,471 followers
November 6, 2022

No better or worse than the novelisation of the first film, but I'm averaging my impression across the series. The tensions within the marine corps are a solid replacement for the shipboard drama of the first entry, but some of the best scenes in the story just work much better on film (you cannot write Ripley fighting the queen in a powerloader to be as cool as seeing it), and I think even the attachment to Newt is created much better on the screen than it is in writing.

Aliens gives more explicit focus to the alienation produced by bureaucracy, with Ripley meeting the monster face-to-face for the first time, and its tendril in the main action being a more hateable character. It also revists the assessment from the first entry in the series, with technology this time not being a tool of the overlords, but an augmentation of the power of the individual, enabling their survival.
Profile Image for Jim Lay.
126 reviews14 followers
March 21, 2017
A serviceable novelization of the screenplay but with little else to offer. And for whatever reason, all profanity was removed from the dialogue, which made it feel kind of sanitized and weak. This was most evident in the climax with Ripley's famous line "Get away from her, you bitch!" Somehow changing that to "Get away from her, you!" comes across as weak sauce.
Profile Image for Anjalí.
4 reviews
January 14, 2023
I've been a fan of the Alien series of films for a long time, though this is the first time I've read a book based on the series.

I enjoyed reading this book because it does something that I find most tie-in books do - it added something extra to the story with little snippets of information that wasn't in the film.

However, I knocked a star off my rating for two reasons:

1. I found the sanitisation of the language - the removal of the swearing - particularly grating; especially the removal of 'b***h' from the film's most famous quote.

2. The end of the book felt somewhat rushed to me - like a large chunk of the film was crammed in to a couple of chapters. Normally, I'd take a full star off for that alone, but this really wasn't as grating as I've found it to be in other books.

I'd definitely recommend this to anyone who is a fan of the films. And I'm definitely going to try some other books based on the series out.
Profile Image for Chris Greensmith.
701 reviews5 followers
October 21, 2022
"Alright Sweethearts, You Heard The Man And You Know The Drill! Assholes And Elbows!"
Not sure why I am enjoying this so, movie novels are pretty poor, but maybe the suject and style of the film lends its self to pulpy, sci-fi horror...
Profile Image for Jules G.
20 reviews
April 15, 2008
I don't remember the first time I read this book or when I purchased it, but it's one of those novels that you hold onto from childhood and the teenage years. The cover is lost along with the summary page, but it still retains the title page. Like a worn stuffed animal, the tattered and well-read remains will never come off my shelf. If you have a similar book on your shelf, perhaps you'll understand my review is a bit sentimental.

I saw the movie when I was a kid. Of course, it was edited and on tv, but it was scary, cool, and fun to watch again on the weekends. I stumbled onto the novelization in a used bookstore and didn't think much of it before I read it. From my previous experience, books created from movies had tended to be either dumbed-down for children, badly written from one version of the screenplay, or entirely brand new material that used barely recognizable characters from the movie. I was skeptical when I purchased it, having never read anything before by Alan Dean Foster.

I loved it. Foster had kept it close to the movie, scenes that had been cut from the movie were also included, and the atmosphere well-developed to retain the creepiness of the scenes. The background information and the character motivations were kept to a decent minimum, and the story flowed seamlessly. The best element of this book is not having to see the movie to understand the struggle between the stranded humans and aliens. The story focuses on survival and human interaction under stress mostly. In subtle ways, it touches on the ethics of science, politics, and economics. Foster brings a little bit of himself into the writing, but he adapted it very well.
Profile Image for DziwakLiteracki.
284 reviews59 followers
March 25, 2021
Wiecie jaki mam problem? Nie umiem się wgryźć w ‘saj faj’. Choćbym nie wiem jak chciała, nie potrafię. Nie jarają mnie ,,Gwiezdne wojny’’, wszelkiego rodzaju ‘Avatary’ czy ‘Star Treki’; do Kronik Diuny podchodzę jak do jeża, a ,,Solaris’’ Lema już chyba ostatecznie skazałam na wieczne zapomnienie. Nie interesuję się, nie czytam, nie oglądam. Może trochę ignorancja, a może po prostu strach, że mój umysł nie będzie w stanie ogarnąć tej całej fantastyczno – naukowej otoczki.
W przypadku serii książek o ‘Obcym’ miało być podobnie; trzymam się od nich z daleka, obchodzę szerokim łukiem. Tylko jest jedno małe ALE - cykl ma mocno horrorwy wydźwięk, a ja będąc fanem owego… No sami wiecie, musiałam sprawdzić co w kosmosie piszczy.😉

Alan Dean Foster uraczył nas książkową wersją jednego z najsłynniejszych hitów kinowych. Chyba na całym świecie nie ma człowieka, który choć raz nie widziałby dzieła Ridleya Scotta. Trudno się temu dziwić, bo produkcja 20th Century Fox przyciągnęła przed ekrany miliony; nie tylko ze względu na fabułę budzącą prawdziwą grozę, ale przede wszystkim dla akcji osadzonej w kosmicznych przestworzach. W 1979 roku na fali popularności ,,Gwiezdnych Wojen’’ ten projekt filmowy po prostu MUSIAŁ wypalić. No i tak się stało. Cykl o ‘Obcym’ przeniknął do popkultury na stałe. Do dzisiaj nie trzeba przybliżać jego treści, ale mimo to na scenie pojawił się ktoś, kto miał przekształcić scenariusz w literackie dziełko. Alan Dean Foster zabrał się do pracy.

Niestety jego wizji ,,Obcego’’ można zarzucić sporo: płaskie postacie, sztuczne dialogi, zbyt oszczędne opisy, styl niewiele odbiegający od pierworysu O’Bannnona; brak klimatu, napięcia, o jakichkolwiek innych emocjach nie wspominając. Nic więc dziwnego, że po kolejną część uniwersum sięgałam z dużą obawą, która nie wiązała się z brakiem zrozumienia dla kreacji przedstawionego świata czy naukowego bełkotu. Akurat tego autorowi udało się uniknąć. I dobrze, bo właśnie ów aspekt przemówił na korzyść, a ,,Obcy: decydujące starcie’’ ostatecznie wylądował w moich rękach.

W tym miejscu powinien nastąpić ciąg pochwalnych peanów, ale wiecie co? Nie będę tego robić. Napiszę po prostu, że Foster musiał wziąć sobie do serca zarzuty czytelników, ponieważ nic, co napisałam powyżej nie pojawiło się w tym tomie. Wręcz przeciwnie; odnosi się wrażenie, jakby autorami obu części byli dwaj różni pisarze.
W ‘Decydującym starciu’ papierowe postacie zniknęły, a Ellen Ripley wreszcie została potraktowana jak na główną bohaterkę przystało. Z biernego fantoma wypełniającego pustą przestrzeń przeistoczyła się w kobietę z krwi kości; nabrała prawdziwie ludzkich cech, charakteru, a nawet odrobiny oryginalności. Wymazano również w pół urwane kwestie wstawiając na ich miejsce naturalnie brzmiące wypowiedzi. Pojawiły się opisy, które zdecydowanie wzbogaciły warsztat pisarski Fostera; scenariuszowy żargon odszedł w zapomnienie i styl, choć nadal pozostawał lekki, nabrał indywidualności.
Podobnie zresztą jak klimat. Było duszno, mrocznie, klaustrofobicznie, a przede wszystkim ekscytująco; to ostatnie w dużej mierze związane jest z mocno sensacyjną akcją. Trzeba jednak zauważyć, że autor dodatkowo podkręcił nastrój powieści, kreśląc w niej niezwykle sugestywny obraz na wpół opuszczonej kolonii LV-426. Zaraz za klimatem przyszły długo wyczekiwane emocje – napięcie, szybsze bicie serca, lekko spocone dłonie – to zaledwie kilka objawów towarzyszących mi podczas lektury.

Czy jestem zadowolona?
Oczywiście! Wreszcie otrzymałam godną uwagi rozrywkę i świetne dopełnienie filmowej kreacji ,,Obcego’’.

A jeśli już mowa o dopełnianiu, to nie sposób pominąć wydania, w które została opakowana ta historia. Największym jego atutem są oczywiście ilustracje autorstwa Macieja Kamudy – tak klimatycznych obrazów, idealnie oddających grozę oraz potworność tajemniczej istoty, nie dane było mi dotąd oglądać. Mistrzostwo świata! Do tego dorzućmy przyciągającą wzrok okładkę, twarda oprawę, wyklejkę, pasującą zakładkę i przepis na MUST HAVE fana filmu mamy gotowy!
Profile Image for Kyle J. Durrant.
Author 13 books38 followers
March 21, 2021
How does one begin to explain how good this novelisation is?

Based on the shoot script for one of the greatest sci-fi-action-horrors of all time, we find ourselves reintroduced to Ellen Ripley, last human survivor of the USCSS Nostromo as she is forced to confront the nightmarish Alien that is Xenomorph XX-121.

Returning to LV-426, now nicknamed Acheron, she finds not just one Alien, but an entire colony of them, and a colony that's little more than an empty grave. That is, except for one miracle survivor: a little girl called Newt.

This is one of my favourite movies of all time, holding a joint position with the original Alien, and this novelisation really does it justice. It also remains much truer to the end result we got (especially the Director's Cut) than the novelisation of the first film, which goes to show just how right they got it.

Every page of this book is well-written and engaging. The characters are fleshed out very well, even the ones we only meet briefly, or whose roles are more limited. Action is described with appropriate intensity, the tension reaching out of the page, and even having seen the film it felt like you never quite knew what was going to happen next.

There were also enough differences between this novelisation and the final film to set it apart without contradicting anything. It all felt very consistent with the wider narrative of the ever-expanding Alien Universe, without trying too hard to set itself apart from the film.

I greatly enjoyed every moment, and my only complaint would be that the final chapter felt somewhat rushed, and was perhaps slightly less tense than the rest of the novel. It definitely did not detract from my enjoyment, though, and this is yet another Alien book I would recommend to any fans of the franchise.
Profile Image for Dane Cobain.
Author 28 books309 followers
November 28, 2019
This book is the novelisation of the second Alien movie, and it’s actually a pretty good read. Foster is a well-known and well-loved novelist in his own right, and before picking up this and Alien, I’d already read Midworld, which is my friend Todd the Librarian’s favourite book. That was great, Alien was great and so was this one.

The only real flaw for me was that it’s a little top heavy and so the last twenty pages contain the most climactic scenes. But at the same time, I can see how this could happen when you’re writing a novelisation based upon a movie. Movies and books work differently, and it’s kind of noticeable here.

Still, Foster’s writing style combined with the original script make for a compelling read, and I was impressed again by the way that he was able to bring the story to life. His writing style is super evocative, so at times you feel as though you can smell the stench of alien blood burning its way through steel decking.

Of course, the downside is that by this point, most people have seen the movie and so they already know what happens. That kind of gives it the weird sensation of being a re-read even if it’s the first time you’ve picked it up. That’s not a bad thing though, and I thought it was decent.
Profile Image for Graham.
1,253 reviews62 followers
May 29, 2018
Foster's novelisation of the second film in the ALIEN saga is a step up from the first; I feel that the author is more at home writing suspense/action scenes than he ever was trying to recreate the horror of the first film. This is a snappy, well-written and brief effort which flies along quite merrily, recreating all of the famous moments from the movie. Foster is no Cameron, so it's not as masterful as the film, but it does the job and is about as good as a written version could be.

Spotting the differences is where this gets interesting. There's a lot more dialogue here so the characters are fleshed out more, particularly Bishop who supplies all the exposition and gets quite philosophical at times. Still, less is more, so I think the characters worked better in the film. The censorship of certain language is problematic (the most famous line in the movie is altered for the worse), and there's a massive typo where 'Hudson' is used instead of 'Gorman', thus rendering a crucial paragraph completely confusing as a result. However, I enjoyed the change in Burke's fate, as well as some mini-aliens that weren't seen in the film as well as the use of stingers to paralyse victims.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Opowiemci Beata Skrzypczak.
60 reviews86 followers
March 24, 2021
„Obcy. Decydujące starcie” to kontynuacja pierwszej, bestsellerowej części, w której Ripley, po sześćdziesięciu latach hibernacji wróci na LV-426. Mamy tutaj bohaterów o wiele bardziej realnych niż w filmie, głównie z uwagi na szerszą perspektywę, którą otrzymujemy.

Obie części nie straszą, nie szokują, ale też nie zawodzą. Foster w bardzo sugestywny sposób ożywia znany już scenariusz, jednak widząc wcześniej film, nie będzie niespodzianek :)
Profile Image for Ben Rogers.
2,387 reviews156 followers
October 4, 2022
Straight Outta the Walls

Very good book.

Impressive read.

Got some interesting bits out of it that was not (really) in the movie.

Dropped a bit in the 3rd act, but a generally fun read.

Would recommend for fans of the amazing film series.

Profile Image for Andrea.
Author 25 books784 followers
December 19, 2014
Aliens is my favourite movie. The series itself is what I think of as 'accidentally feminist' (the role of Ripley was written for a man) and when Alien proved a success, the script for a main female character immediately took us to a motherhood plot.

But still, I really like this movie, and when someone mentioned this novelisation, written from an early draft of the script, I couldn't resist.

Hard to imagine I'd be spoiling anyone here, but if you somehow haven't yet seen Aliens, stop reading, go watch it.

There are few differences from the movie release – mostly scenes tightened, dialogue just a little snappier, excess explanation cut. There are a couple of bigger differences, though, and the major one is the scene where Gorman is knocked out following the disaster at the atmosphere conversion facility. In this book, instead of this simple act, he is stabbed by an attacking alien's tail, which contains a paralysing stinger. This provides a practical explanation for how the aliens manage to transport the colonists around alive.

Other divergences are found in the final fight with the queen, where instead of Ripley deliberately overriding the outer airlock, it's eaten through by acid. And when Ripley heads into the atmosphere processor after Newt, she briefly encounters Burke, alive, already feeling alien movement within. She gives him a grenade.

The one thing that really stood out for me, however, was the introduction of the female marines. There's three women (and eight men) and Foster doesn't actually introduce them all (Crowe is only mentioned when he dies, I think). But quite a few of the characters (even the ones who have very small roles) get thorough snapshots. This is the intro for Spunkmeyer (the male dropship pilot):

"PFC Spunkmeyer was the dropship crew chief the man responsible along with Pilot-Corporal Ferro for safely conveying his colleagues to the surface of whichever world they happened to be visiting, and then taking them off again in one piece. In a hurry if necessary. He rubbed at his eyes and groaned as he blinked at the hypersleep chamber.
'I'm getting too old for this.' No one paid any attention to this comment, since it was well known (or at least widely rumoured) that Spunkmeyer had enlisted when underage. However, nobody joked about his maturity or lack of it when they were plummeting towards the surface of a new world in the PFC-directed dropship."

That's also the whole of Ferro's introduction, even though she has far more screentime. We later get a mention of her being diminutive and having a flat muscular stomach, but other than flying the ship, that's all we get to know of Ferro.

Dietrich is the medic (and first to be taken by the aliens). The whole of her introduction is "This from Corporal Dietrich, who was arguably the prettiest of the group except when she opened her mouth."

And then there's Vazquez, one of the most memorable characters, and owner of her own TV Trope (Vazquez always dies). Her introduction:

"PFC Vasquez just stared as she walked past. Ripley had received warmer inspections from robots. The other smartgun operator didn't blink, didn't smile. Black hair, blacker eyes, thin lips. Attractive if she'd make half an effort.

It required a special talent; a unique combination of strength, mental ability, and reflexes, to operate a smartgun. Ripley waited for the woman to say something. She didn't open her mouth as she passed by. Every one of the troopers looked tough. Drake and Vasquez looked tough and mean."

In other words, the men introduced have histories and competencies, while even Vasquez is described primarily in terms of appearance and attractiveness.

Aliens (and this novelisation), to fall back on the old cliché, is a product of its time. Heck, in the far-flung future Vasquez is still a reason to make an illegal alien joke. [And her nickname is apparently the Gamin Assassin. (Gamin?!) ] I think the saddest thing is that, even with the issues noted here, it still manages to treat women with more respect than half the science fiction released today.
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197 reviews6 followers
November 14, 2011
I can't highly recommend this book enough for those of you who can't get enough of the 1986 movie. The novelization contains all sorts of goodies like extra dialogue, alternate scenes (ie. Burke cocooned) and extended scenes, as well as an overall better insight into some of the characters and better explanations for various little things which was skimmed over in the film, especially why Newt is able to navigate the air ducts so expertly or why she calls Riply, "mommy" at the end. This is basically a very close adaptation of Cameron's first draft script in the form of a novel, so if you've read that you may not want to bother with the book. It's almost identical or at least very similiar, but it's not the same. Btw, profanity is censored in the book and I have absolutely no idea why.

"My mommy always says there are no monsters, but there are" - Newt
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