Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

A review of the horror romance novel Twilight by Stephenie Meyer.

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Twilight is about a young girl, Bella, who moves to a new town to live with her father. Forks, the place she moves to, is a backward town in the middle of the country. It is always raining/misty/cloudy (a fact that comes in quite handy later). Bella has trouble making friends but is intrigued by a quiet, solitary boy called Edward. The story centres around these two and their relationship, with other challenges thrown in.

Twilight is probably one of the most depressing books I have ever read. If you want several hundred pages of teenage angst, arguing, crying, sulking, moodiness and tantrums this is a book for you. As I’ve said, it centres on Edward and Bella, a ‘will they won’t they’ relationship. Edward is the mysterious boy who, although incredibly good looking, is an outsider. Bella is the miserable girl forced into living with her father, the Chief of Police, who she had only seen once a year. Even in the first chapter, all Bella does is complain: it’s always raining, she has a pale complexion, she doesn’t get on with anyone, she can’t tan or look like a sportsman. She first sees Edward Cullen and his family in the cafeteria where he is lunching with his family (all tall, blonde and gorgeous). Bella is instantly enchanted and attracted to Edward.

Eventually, after much mooning about Edward, ‘stalking’ Bella discovers his secret. Yes, he’s a vampire; a good sparkling vampire. How can he go out in the day? I hear you ask. Well, Forks never gets sunlight. In the bright light that Forks does get, Edward sparkles. Yes, he sparkles. How very scary… Although I have no problem with an author changing the mythology of a well-known monster, sparkling is just ridiculous. The Cullen family don’t eat people; they’ve grown a conscience and want to be good. Obviously, they have to have blood so it’s animals for them. This has been done before (Angel springs to mind). Why not invent a serum or blood substitute? Oh yes, Blade’s already done that. Meyer claims that vampirism is a poison, very similar to the mythology in Blade. My main issue I have is that Meyer’s new mythology make little sense. The vampires have no weaknesses, can run really fast, are very strong and can read minds or some other psychic power, why haven’t they taken over the world? I would. It seems the only thing stopping them is the sparkles.

Now, onto the writing: it’s in a class of its own (maybe she can form a club with James Patterson and the poor saps who write his books for him). It’s unbelievable, there’s no character depth and it’s just awful.

To top it all off, someone made the books into films. I watched the first two. I sat there hoping a) that Bella would cheer up, b) that Edward would be eaten by werewolves, c) and Jacob, the werewolf, would learn how to wear a t-shirt. This is not a film review but I’m warning you, don’t watch them. All vampire films or TV shows since Twilight have been likened to Twilight. When, for example, The Vampire Diaries was aired many people claimed it was a Twilight rip off/cash in. The educated amongst us realised the Vampire Diaries was written first. The Saga of Darren Shan – The Vampire’s Assistant – suffered the same fate despite it being written and in production long before Twilight.

To sum up, I’m not saying that Twilight is a monstrosity that has ripped off other writers, but… I think maybe I’m just too old and I wasn’t the target market. So, if you know an angsty teenage girl, buy her the series; I’m sure she’ll love it.

Cassidy grew up in Thanet and lives here with her family.

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