This was my first foray into the world of Twilight novels. I got to 30%. That just around where Bella’s heading home from La Push, with her friends.
Now, before anything else, let me say that I’m not a Twilight hater. I really enjoyed the movies, and I waited until the series was done (as I did with Harry Potter) before reading the novels. I expected them to differ at least a little.
The reason I didn’t get any further than 30% was simple: I didn’t care!
I don’t care about Bella or the other characters, I don’t care about Edward and I don’t care about what happens to any of them. I’m not saying the writing was terrible and I’m not saying that Stephanie Meyer doesn’t know how to write. I am simply saying that I had no connection to the characters and no interest in what they were doing or where they were going.
I recently read a review on Goodreads that slammed Meyers for advertising that Edward was a vampire, on the back of the book. I completely agree. Although I’ve seen the film, I always try to ignore what I already know when it comes to reading the books. The simple fact that we know in advance that Edward and his family are vampires, ruins any suspense and mystery that might have kept the story interesting. Heck, Jacob even told here - point blank! - that they were vampires. And she still isn’t sure.
Another reason I didn’t like the book was that I don’t want to be stuck inside Bella’s head. I lived as a teenage girl, I really don’t want to go back and relive it inside another girl’s head. At least not Bella’s.
For a lead female character that everyone talks about incessantly, I hate Bella. She stands for all the wrong things. She’s selfish, self-absorbed, superficial and rude. She only makes friends because she doesn’t want to sit on her own. She grudgingly goes to Forks for her mothers sake. She treats her dad like a stranger and a criminal even though (I know this from the film) her mother left him. Yet she worships her mother for being ‘free’ and ‘independent’. That’s not free and independent, that’s abandoning your family. And why is Bella worshiping her ‘free and independent’ mother, when she can’t make a decision for herself? She’s not free and she’s certainly not independent.
Bella is, by far, the thing that most frustrated me about this story. She’s obsessed with herself and Edward from the very start. She mistreats other people who aren’t as ‘pretty’ as Edward. She favours Mike over Eric, because he’s better looking. She only talks to Jacob because he’s attractive. And she uses people. She uses Mike to get friends. She uses Jessica to get Mike off her back. She uses Jacob to find out about the Cullens. She doesn’t care about other people and everything that she is, is not something I want to see in the teens of this world.
I can honestly say that I have no idea why everyone is obsessed with this series. It’s like the Vampire Diaries. I read the books and they were GOD AWFUL! But I LOVE the TV series. Twilight is the same. I like the films - not quite love but it’ll do - and I don’t like the books. I don't care much about the 'sparkling' though it's not something I'm fond of. Every author does vampires different and this Meyer's version. Not mine though.
So if you haven’t read Twilight yet, don’t bother. The entire point of the book is that Bella is in love with Edward, who is a vampire. You can find that out by reading the back of the book. Don’t waste your time reading between the covers. It’s just not worth wasting the time over.
(The 3 stars is simply because it's not awful writing, it's not an awful idea - I just didn't connect)