I didn't so much see the ending coming as I was really hoping it would end that way. (You'll have to forgive this die hard romantic and eternal optimist.) When Wanda was telling the story of how she earned the name Rides the Beast, I guess I saw the possibility of the book ending in a similar way for Wanda, so it wasn't a huge surprise for me when they put Wanda in a new host body. Her human friends assuaged her worries about a new host body by making sure it was young, assuring that the host was even younger when she was taken, making it less likely there would be any resistance, any human mind left. Like a fresh start, with only the previous alien's memories there. And Ian so loved Wanda for her mind that he didn't care what she looked like, aside from his and Wanda's conversation that she be "she" and not old. I thought it was incredibly touching when he told her he had held her in his hands and she was beautiful. Because of this, I didn't care what Wanda looked like either. She is a strong soul, but also very mild, meek almost. This new host body seems the very embodiment of meek and mild. As the body ages, it will grow and adapt to the world Wanda lives in. It will become stronger and Wanda's personality will begin to shape it.
All in all, I loved the ending. It makes a wonderful stand alone novel, but also an awesome start to a sequel or trilogy. Either way, The Host is an enchanting book. I look forward to more from Stephanie, be it as a continuation of this novel or an introduction to another world altogether.