The vampire book, and movie, that’s causing a sensation throughout the country. I decided to read the entire series before writing a review. I wanted to make sure that I had all the info I needed to form a solid opinion of the books. Now there is only one question to ask.
Is Twilight sensational or does it just bite?
Read on to find out what I think.
When Bella Swan moves to Forks Washington to live with her dad, her life gets a lot more exciting than she expects. A car of her own, new friends and the most mysterious boy in school takes notice of her. Of course, she’s not sure if he wants to kill her or kiss her, and she’s beginning to suspect that it might be both.
Twilight is written like fan fiction, and sometimes it’s bad fan fiction. From the first person perspective to the too perfect vampire lover, it just screams wish fulfillment. That’s not to say it’s without good points. The two lead characters may be uninteresting and sometimes downright unlikable, but the supporting characters are great. If only Edward and Bella were as well written as the characters that surround them, Twilight might live up to the hype. They’re not, and it doesn’t.
First Person, Shoot Her
First person perspective is a valid choice, but it has drawbacks. We see everything from the point of view of one character and we also get to know what they’re thinking. Third person omniscient can do the same thing, but it isn’t as restrictive. The Harry Potter series was written in third person even though we see everything from Harry’s point of view almost exclusively.
In Twilight, first person perspective became irritating very quickly. Seeing everything the way Bella sees it is fine. Having to read exposition in her martyred tone wasn’t. Using Bella’s thoughts to convey action instead of seeing the action for myself really had a negative impact on the story for me. I got the feeling the author was using first person perspective as a crutch.
Hello Mary-Sue, Goodbye Heart
(For those that don’t know about Mary-Sue or the destruction she brings, here’s the Wikipedia entry.)
There were moments where I really wanted to read the story that Twilight was a fanfic of more than I wanted to read Twilight itself. I could almost see the kind of character Edward would be without a Mary-Sue like Bella around to warp his personality. After spotting some of the basic out of character traits that you see so much of in fan fiction, and removing them, I was able to reconstruct a mental picture of Edward. It’s too bad that character never makes an appearance in the stories. We’re just given hints of what he was like before Bella’s love destroyed him forever.
Twilight is good, though it could be a lot better. The lead characters are a bit disappointing, though the secondary characters go a long way to make up for them.
I’d recommend Twilight to anyone who loves vampire stories. I’d highly recommend it if that fan of vampire stories is also a teenaged girl. There are parts of the story that can only be truly appreciated if the drama center of your brain is pickled in estrogen.
If you’re a guy over the age of 17 or so, I’d recommend skipping this series and going straight to the Anita Blake novels. More sex and violence, less whiny exposition.