Twilight – Good and horribly bad

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer was better than expected. I have now read books 2 and 3 in the series and am currently working on finishing Breaking Dawn. In general, I find I like the series, however, I must admit to some OMFG moments and times where I wanted to scream in frustration. Which, I suppose, could be what the author was going for. And if that is the case, how irritating.

Nothing is worse than deliberate misunderstanding – which Bella does through the entire series. She doesn’t think Edward can love her because she’s too plain. No matter what he does, no matter how many times he’s proved his general overwhelming affection for her, she is completely clueless. It was extremely annoying to see those thoughts going through her head. The girl needs to be slapped and slapped frequently. Although Bella is never described as a raving beauty, it is interesting how every male in her high school seems to fantasize and want her for themselves. How does she go from invisible in Phoenix to highly desirable in Forks? The conversion seems a little . . . much. It could be that the same thing happened in Phoenix and she was oblivious like she still could be in Forks, but that doesn’t seem to be the case – which makes a person wonder why she is so desirable to the male population there in general. At least Edward makes sense since her blood has a highly intoxicating smell, but her desirability with all other males is never lighted upon and it seems unbelievable.

Along with Bella’s obvious obtuseness comes another beef with some very cheesy and trite phrasing. Clichés are all well in good, but in order for something to be cliché it is usually highly overused, such as a lot of Jacob’s thoughts in Breaking Dawn when Meyer’s gave Jacob Black his own little section. One begins to understand the horrible overuse of certain expressions when he seems to use them all. Plus, some better blonde jokes would have been nice. I could definitely join in with Rosalie’s frustrations at these horribly overused jokes. Ah, yes Rosalie.

Meyer actually had a great moment with Rosalie. We don’t see too much of her in the Twilight books. Mostly Edward, Bella, Jacob and Alice. Emmett, Carlisle, Esme, Rosalie, and Japser tend to have less screen time. However, what we do see of Miss Rosalie leaves much to be desired, even when you can understand her animosity towards Bella. Then, in Eclipse (I think) we finally get Rosalie’s story, why she is the way she is – it’s a great moment, ruined by her entire attitude in Breaking Dawn. Sure, one of the things she wanted most was coming to pass, but at what cost. Sure Bella lives, to be expected (generally speaking main characters aren’t killed off too much), but Rosalie is not concerned at all about Bella, just the creature inside her. When I was finally starting to like the blonde, Meyer had to spoil it.

Also rampant in these four books is some of the biggest persecution complexes known to man. Edward beats himself up over everything, followed by Bella doing the exact same thing. Not to mention both of them believe almost everyone is against them at one point or another during the entire four book series. I guess that’s what makes them perfect for each other – all the overwhelming angst. Seriously, it all is a tad over the top. Okay, not a tad, but a lot. As much as I like the storyline, I dislike how much they berate and punish themselves over the stupidest of comments and trifling mistakes. Vampires are seen as brooding creatures, but Edward broods entirely too much and, like I said before, Bella is right there behind him. Here blatant overlooking of the truth with wallowing in misery and angst is downright annoying.

Besides an overabundance of angst is the ever maudlin love between Edward and Bella. They are soul mates, that’s great. The intensity and the lovey-dovey-ness of their relationship gets really hard to stomach the farther the books continue on and is even worse in the last book. Sure it’s due to the changes, right. It seems a bit off that Bella can really only ever concentrate on Edward. Single minded to the point of recklessness and sheer absurdity. Edward is the most beautiful person she’s ever met. Wow, so that must equal obsession and swooning every time. I don’t think so. Ridiculous with a capital ‘R.’

With all these complaints, how can I possibly like the books? I don’t know, but I do. Edward and the Cullens are likeable characters, Bella is too when she is not being overly dense. It says something that I can sit down with one of these books and not want to come up for air until they are finished. I keep pushing through, another page, one more chapter. Meyer’s does well in keeping the pace going enough where you can’t wait to see what happens next. What will Bella do this time? How will these new events play out? They can be quite the page turners.

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2 thoughts on “Twilight – Good and horribly bad

  1. yup. i only made it through the first book, barely came up for air for the first three hundred pages, but after that, decided that i was done. like most other popular novels, i couldn’t tolerate the ending. all easy-to-read books seem to suck at the conclusion. i should learn to stop reading around the last chapter, consistently. or maybe it’s because by the time i am done with hard-to-read books, i’m so tired that i can’t realize how much the ending sucks. hmm… that could actually be the case!

  2. I thouroughly agree, and I must add that what I hate the most about Bella’s Edward swooning is her consistent usage of the honey and velvet metaphors (His honey voice, velvet voice, honey eyes, blah blah blah… Enough with the velvet voice already!) And you’d think after establishing their relationship and being around each other a lot this constant swooning would at least be a little bit tempered over time but nooo. I personally feel that it’s hard to love somebody as a person when all you can do is stare at them and dwell on their looks all the time. Seriously, beauty is more than skin deep people! Okay, that said, I like the books too. They’re good, but not phenomenal. But entertaining, and when it comes down to it, isn’t that just the purpose of books? Entertainment! 🙂

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