For author Octavia Butler, I chose to read her Lilith's Brood trilogy. It is composed of three books: Dawn, Adulthood Rites, and Imago. This trilogy is also known as the Xenogenesis series.
The Earth has been destroyed by nuclear war. Lilith Iyapo is awoken 250 years after this destruction. The earth is able to support life again, and the Oankali have preserved and learned about humans in preparation for this day. Some humans have been awake on the Oankali's ship, but Lilith is supposed to help prepare other humans to return to Earth.
Of course, there is a catch. The Oankali are all about trade. They didn't just preserve human life out of the goodness of their (two!) hearts. Humans will no longer be able to reproduce without being part of an Oankali family. The Oankali's technology is all organic, which makes for a large learning curve for the humans. They also believe that humans have a fatal flaw that would never allow them to live without destroying each other.
Dawn, the first book, mostly covers humans learning to accept the Oankali's existence and their expectations for humans.
Adulthood Rites covers more of the political-type implications of this new partnership between Oankali and humans. It focuses a lot on humans who, once returned to Earth refuse to live in Oankali societies, even if it means not having children.
Imago is further in the future and deals with the maturing Oankali/human society and the hybrids it produces.
I really loved these books, and I look forward to reading more of Octavia Butler's work.
Even if books with aliens are normally your thing, I would recommend these, because they're ultimately about being human.
I'm going to give Lilith's Brood by Octavia Butler, 5 Stars.
Next up: Some Like it Hawk by Donna Andrews, the latest in the Meg Langslow series
Next Sci-fi/Fantasy author: Marion Zimmer Bradley: The Mists of Avalon.