Monday, November 24, 2008

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

OMG. Finally. 

Yes, that's right. After three months, I have finally finished THE book that has everyone frothing at the mouth. Not to mention THE movie that managed to gross nearly $80 million its opening weekend. 

But where do I stand with the book? Well, if you liked the book, :heart: Edward Cullen, or have seen the movie twenty times, read no further. Don't leave me nasty comments, don't call me a hater, I'm just telling it as I read it. 

Bella Swan has moved to the small town of Forks, Washington to live with her no-longer-estranged father Charlie. While there, she falls in love with the mysterious Edward Cullen. Only he's a vampire, complete with all the baggage vampires have. Only he's enrolled in high school. And he comes out during the day. Why don't vampires go out at day? Because their skin sparkles, as if a glitter factory exploded all over them. Combine that with the pale skin, cold hands, and nonexistent appetite for human food, and all of a sudden I understand why more vampires don't go to high school. Teenagers pick on everything in high school, including themselves.  

Hence the built-in audience. Bella, the main character, is full of angst and woe-is-me, feelings that most teenage girls have.  In fact, Bella is in so much angst that the entire first 3/4s of the book is filled with her going on about how unpopular she is, how no one likes her, and on and on, when in reality she is quite popular at her new school. She has to beat the boys off with sticks, they all want to take her to dances, and she spends time trying to foist them off on her friends. 

The story had potential. It really really did. The problem was with the execution and pacing. The first three quarters of the book as I previously mentioned is spent on Bella's adjusting to high school in Forks and trying to get Edward Cullen to notice her. The true villain of the book doesn't come onto the scene until the last quarter of the book. That was the quickest part of the book for me, waiting for the end to come. There is no antagonist for three quarters of the book! Sure, there's conflict between Bella and Edward, but it's so mundane and gets the plot nowhere. It took me three months to get through the first 3/4s of the book. 

Meyer also spends much of the narrative telling instead of showing. Much of the information is dumped through dialogue. Perhaps this is due to the first person narrative, because the reader is only introduced through the eyes of Bella. Had the third person narrative been used, a better woven narrative than what already exists. The villain James is very lackluster, and I was disappointed that Bella was unconscious when he fell to the Cullen clan. 

I'm going to let the teenage girls have this book and the sequels. I'm going to give them a miss. 

D+. 

1 comment:

judy said...

i reckon i'll let that one pass me by...i'm not much into vampires.