In Defense of Awesomeness

I just read this review of Breaking Dawn on Jezebel and have to note that even though I am half asleep, this paragraph rocked my world:

Breaking Dawn does seem to be promoting a fundamentally conservative ideology. But then so does The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, and they will pry that book from my cold, dead, godless fingers. I think ultimately we shouldn’t worry too much about what ideas young adult books promulgate. We should worry about whether the books themselves are awesome. Because awesomeness promotes thinking, and thinking promotes becoming the kind of adult we all want more of in the world: the kind who can understand the message of a book — or a movie, or a blog post, or a presidential candidate — and decide for herself whether she agrees.

If I had a penis, I’d have a boner right now, is all I’m sayin’.

 

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  1. 1
    ev says:

    I had a poor girl in today going over her summer reading list for school and not finding anything. i finally asked her what she would want to read and she had no problem telling me, nor picking out a bunch of books. Her grandmother said she agreed- rather she read what she wants and READS or has to read something she doesn’t like and doesn’t read at all.

  2. 2
    SusanL says:

    I agree.  Great post.

  3. 3
    JJ says:

    I love Jezebel’s Fine Lines column (because I love YA) and was tickled to see them review BREAKING DAWN.  I actually couldn’t stand these books.  The protagonist makes me physically ill (as in, oh god, I can’t believe she’s so spineless, she’s letting herself BE ABUSED by her vampire husband and she thinks it’s love!).  The sort of love that is idealised in these books is alpha + doormat gone to the extreme and that has never been a trope I liked.

    I haven’t read BREAKING DAWN (hell, I couldn’t get past TWILIGHT), but many of my friends have (I fully acknowledge its cracktastic powers) and they were all universally disappointed and/or appalled by BREAKING DAWN.  Bella loses and/or sacrifices nothing to get what she wants; what is wish-fulfillment if there there is no work to be done to get it?  It makes for a bad novel, that’s what.

  4. 4
    Catherine says:

    Bella loses and/or sacrifices nothing to get what she wants; what is wish-fulfillment if there there is no work to be done to get it?  It makes for a bad novel, that’s what.

    Especially when the theme of the first three novels is all about sacrifice, and the sacrifices Bella is willing to make. She made her choice, chose to make those sacrifices… and then gets everything she would have had with the other choice, but only in a more awesome and perfect way?

    Sigh.

  5. 5
    Melissandre says:

    May I direct your attention to Shinga’s condensed version of Twilight?  I myself didn’t hate the book (I was merely underwhelmed), but I busted a gut reading her summaries.

    http://shinga.deviantart.com/

    Enjoy

  6. 6
    Wryhag says:

    Problem with this “awesomeness” argument:  the book apparently isn’t.  Awesome, that is.  From everything I’ve read about the series—and there seems to be a lot of fairly intelligent blab about it recently—the novels suck on many levels and become all the suckier as the series progresses.  I know Meyer sure as shit didn’t impress me in the interview I saw.

    Have I read the stories?  No.  I’m not into YA books, primarily because I’m an OA with precious little time to read OA fiction.  But when there’s a lot of smart squeal about a book’s crappiness, I tend to give those assessments some credence.  Ideology aside, young minds should be stimulated by good books, not crappy ones.

    So I’m gonna save my imaginary boner for something more worthy.

  7. 7
    Tina says:

    Someone was responding to a posting on Dear Author and included this link:

    http://community.livejournal.com/lion_lamb/1651773.html

    A funny and quick retelling of Breaking Dawn as told by Edward Cullen.  Makes the whole entire look atrocious.

  8. 8
    Lyra says:

    I read Twilight but haven’t read the others, but I think there is a serious problem when the books’ “conservative ideology” portray domestic abuse in a harmless light. Edward Cullen is, beneath all the gorgeous fragrant breath and sparkly skin, an abuser. The excuse for it is that ‘he can’t help it’ because it’s his vampiric strength and nature. And Bella tolerates it because ‘she loves him more than anyone ever in the whole history of the whole wide world’.

    I mean, for the love of vampires, she gets bruised, beaten, and abused, and the excuse the Cullens give her parents is that she “fell down a flight of stairs and through a window”?

    And NOBODY I’ve seen is willing to debate this point. It’s been all “OMG Twilight is the best thing since sliced bread.” If something had changed in the course of the books, if Bella (or anybody) for a second went “hey, this isn’t a great way to have a relationship, let’s talk about it,” and then decided (after intelligent thought) to continue, then MAYBE it would sit better with me.

    It’s the utter lack of acknowledgment that bothers me the most. Bella is spineless; she never questions the situations she finds herself in, and things work out for her anyway.

    But I suppose this is why parents should at least be aware of what their kids are reading, and in this case intervene, or at least point out that Bella and Edward’s relationship really isn’t healthy.

    Oh, and you want snark? I bring two:
    Cleolinda’s chapter by chapter synopsis of Breaking Dawn is howlingly funny.
    http://cleolinda.livejournal.com/630150.html
    Taking the Universal Mary Sue Litmus Test with Bella and/or Edward also yields gut-busting (and possibly tears inducing?) results:
    http://www.springhole.net/quizzes/marysue.htm

  9. 9
    Lyra says:

    [quote=Wryhag ]Problem with this “awesomeness” argument:  the book apparently isn’t.  Awesome, that is.  From everything I’ve read about the series—and there seems to be a lot of fairly intelligent blab about it recently—the novels suck on many levels and become all the suckier as the series progresses.  I know Meyer sure as shit didn’t impress me in the interview I saw.

    Very true. Stephenie Meyer’s prose is clunky, simplistic, and more purple than a royal warerobe. In Twilight, she had one adjective per body part per character, and used that one and ONLY that one. Actual plot doesn’t even rear its head until 75% of the way into the book. Not to mention there are heinous typos (of the ‘slipped finger’ variety mostly) that should have been caught if someone had hired an editor.

    This, along with the aforementioned subtext, irritates me to the point where I have to reign in the urge to yell at people at the bookstore when I see them buying Twilight.

    (Sorry for the double post, but I had to address this and couldn’t find an edit function)

  10. 10
    Chrissy says:

    I have hesitated to say much about this series because I didn’t want to be killed by rabid teens… but I had issues with it.

    First… Edward is nearly 100 years old and Bella, as we begin, is 17 (I think).  Erm.  Since when is immortality a get-out-of-pedophilia-free card?

    And I soo agree with JJ… this is NOT a healthy relationship. 

    I vastly prefer PC and Kristin Cast’s books.  *shrug*

    I was in love with melodramatic, painful love at that age, too.  I’m just not certain it was something that would have been wise to encourage.

  11. 11
    Molly says:

    Pish posh.

    I am a 16 year old.
    (I can all ready hear your middle aged eyebrows rising)

    I read Twilight. I liked it.

    Yes its contrived, obvious, and illogical, and most readers know this deep down…… but….but…..but……

    I still almost killed a girl trying to get my sweaty teenage hands on the third book.

    *sobs quietly in corner* Its an addiction.

    I tell you… no I ORDER you to slap your kid silly if they start gushing about Twilight.

    Its good but: Its just a trashy romance novel. It was never pretending to be anything more.

    Oh, and Edward a pedophile? Thats a tad too fanatical for the Sensible Grown-Ups Against Teenage Literature campain.
    He is 17 physicaly and mentally…… at least, thats what Stephenie Meyer intended……I…..think…….

  12. 12
    Lyra says:

    [quote=Molly]Oh, and Edward a pedophile? Thats a tad too fanatical for the Sensible Grown-Ups Against Teenage Literature campain.
    He is 17 physicaly and mentally…… at least, thats what Stephenie Meyer intended……I…..think…….

    How about “abusive”? Would you agree to that one, at least?

  13. 13
    Molly says:

    Well I agree that the relationship is abusive….. and Edward can be annoying with his whole “I’m agonised that your agonised” whatsit…..but the example wasn’t a very good one.

    EVERYBODY knows that it was the evil guys fault that Bella “fell down a flight of stairs”. Edward wouldn’t DIRECTLY hurt her.

    Just shut her off from friends and family and cause her to want a life of eternal darkness.

  14. 14
    Lyra says:

    EVERYBODY knows that it was the evil guys fault that Bella “fell down a flight of stairs”. Edward wouldn’t DIRECTLY hurt her.

    Except when he throws her into a crystal punchbowl. But that was for her own good too! He was protecting his woman!

  15. 15
    Molly says:

    Damn straight!
    The guy deserves a medal!

    ….. I really cant be bothered arguing about Twillight. As stated before:

    It’s just a trashy romance novel. It’s not meant to be clever.

    And if it WAS meant to be clever I find that very very sad.

  16. 16
    Ocy says:

    People have been making a big deal out of any possible religious agenda Meyer may have hidden in the Twilight books.  There’s nothing in there.  Because Meyer herself is religious doesn’t mean she’s trying to sneak brainwashing messages into her novels.  If the media hadn’t picked up on Meyer’s choice of religion and made a big deal of it, nobody would be searching for hidden messages of that sort.  Lots of YA books are written as fundamentally conservative, and it’s not usually a problem.

    The books should be taken as they are, to stand on their own merits.  Or, y’know, lack thereof.

  17. 17
    Chrissy says:

    Edward really, really, really does NOT come off as emotionally 17 and it’s completely illogical to think he could be.

    I had a problem with that.  From the first meeting he is hostile, condescending, and acts far older than he appears.  In fact, my god-daughter refused to read beyond Twighlight because she said there were no realistic teens in the books. 

    She’s a smart kid.

    I would also agree that using “it’s just a trashy romance for teens” as an excuse… *shudder* … is lame, and insulting to romance.

  18. 18
    God says:

    So I am neither a teenager nor a middle aged woman. However I am still a fan of the books.

    The poor writing accusation I give to you. Heck, Stephenie Meyer gives that to you. She’s said a million times herself that she is still working on the writing part of her storytelling.

    Edward and Bella’s relationship is not physically abusive. In fact he never intentionally hurts her. As much as we want to dismiss it, his superhuman strength is part of the character she created. It must be taken into account. In your typical modern romance involving the “alpha male” character, you’re going to see the male lead protecting (or at least trying to) at some point by attempting to physically remove her from the situation. In normal instances this would simply be him pushing her behind him. This reflex is the same for Edward. Except he’s really fucking strong. The whole punchbowl incident is him pushing her aside. Would we rather he let her be devoured by his brother? The only other time she is physically hurt by him is in the last book, and it is frankly rough sex. Literally. That is all.

    The claim of pedophilia is somewhat valid. Technically speaking he is WAY older than her in the sense that he has been alive longer. He is still essentially a teenager. It is basically the only life he has ever lived or known. Even though he has lived so long this is the role he perpetually lives. Several times in the series one character or another comments on Bella as being an “old soul” and other similar things. Her mother even says that she never really was a teenager. Here again, we have an intentional character trait that Stephenie Meyer has developed so that the relationship between the two could make a little more sense to the close minded. I’m actually really surprised that this is such a huge stretch of the imagination for people considering this century’s prevalence for huge gaps in ages in the dating world.

    Despite what I have said above, amazingly I really didn’t like Bella’s character for the first couple of books. I enjoyed the stories and her quirky view of her world, but there was always a certain weakness about her that bugged me. That being said, I thought that her character was amazing in this last book. Its like watching someone come into their own and thinking “FINALLY!”. If you were dedicated enough to read the first three, it was so worth it to read the fourth. She basically kicks ass. She stands up for herself and what she loves most and still maintains that quirkiness that appeals to the awkward teenager in all of us.

    You really can’t judge this series as separate books. After reading all four it needs to be looked at as one story. Without the sometimes emotional retardation of the characters that leads to the stupid decisions, you wouldn’t get the satisfaction you do when it all works out. Because there really was no guarantee that Bella would get everything she wanted, especially when it seemed like she already had.

    Is Edward overprotective? Yes. Does he sometimes cause Bella pain? Yes. Is it intentional? No. Is it mostly emotional? HELL YES.

    But, really, what relationship doesn’t have a little emotional angst? Especially in a book?

    Simply:
    Edward=wounded soul
    Bella=the one person who can make him happy (vice versa)
    Plot: How can he keep this person in his life without bringing her down with him? Hence his repeated fuck ups (mostly involving his attempts to remove himself from her life for her own good) that result in her emotional pain. Once he realizes he makes her happy all the pain is from outside sources.

    Sorry about the super long comment. I need my two cents to be out there (or fifty, as it were).

    By the way, I have not found any religious nonsense in these books thus far.

  19. 19
    Molly says:

    What she said.

    *smirks in a selfsatisfied way and stands behind “God”*

    Yes…. I’m that really annoying kid you wanted to punch in highschool.

    =^.^=

    …..except I still believe the relationship was just a TAD unhealthy, mainly in books 1-3 (so: for most of the series)….. but it wasn’t ever the characters fault…… exactly…….. BLAME LOVE!!!!!

    Ok… that sounded cheesy.

  20. 20
    ev says:

    Mellisandra- Thank you!! That was so much better than the dreck that was in the book. My daughter will love it. She damn near threw the book at a wall when he fucking sparkled. “Vampires don’t SPARKLE!!” I have to agree.

    There is so much really good YA out there, I don’t understand why this crap is so loved by the readers. I just don’t.

    I have to agree with who ever said they wanted to stop people at the store from buying Twighlight, however, since I work at one, I feel they can throw their money away if they want. And I am so glad I didn’t have to work the release party.

  21. 21
    Sasha says:

    I cannot believe that I am going to leave a comment here regarding these books when I have been so good about not commenting on them anywhere else.  But I lurve my SBTB women so much that I feel like I need to be honest about my reaction to these books and hope a discussion of these books can be had here without devolving into a screaming match of Edward 4-Eva! or Die Bitches!  This will actually also be my first comment on this site even though I have been lurking…well, for quite some time.

    I have to admit I really love this series.  I think the series brings up some interesting ideas that it has been fun to personally wrestle with and to discuss with my friends who have also read it.

    Do I like the character of Bella?  Not often during the series.  Do I think she is very relatable?  Nope, not often.  Do I find her character problematic in what she chooses to do versus what I might personally choose?  Yes.

    But, as one of my friends and I discussed while reading the series – there are a ton of classic female characters that we neither like nor relate to in books that we have loved.  Many of the arguments I have read regarding Bella could be put to Jane Erye as well as other famous and beloved female leads. 

    Do I find parts of her relationship to Edward problematic?  Somewhat.  However, I think that what constitutes stalker behavior and what constitutes abusive behavior needs to be determined both by the world created by the author and by the reaction of the recipient of the behavior.  What do I mean by this?

    Bella’s accident during Jasper’s abortive attempt to attack her is not abuse by Edward.  To compare that to abuse is analogous in my mind as comparing the driver of a car as an abuser if the car he is driving with their girlfriend was hit by another car due to the other driver’s fault.  Yes, Bella gets hurt.  Because of Jasper’s loss of control over his bloodlust and Edward’s miscalculation of how much force would occur as he pushed Bella away from Jasper’s attack and collision with him. 

    Spam word – Works95.  The twilight series does work (95% of the time), at least in my opinion. :)

    Also, the “stalker” stuff?  Well, I really believe that stalking has less to do with the actions of the “stalker” and more to do with the reactions of the intended recipient.  There are lots of things that could be called innocuous which could (realistically) be considered stalking if the recipient feels stalked.  ON the other hand, if the recipient welcomes the attention of the “stalker” – it ain’t stalking.  As a good friend once said – in the movie Say Anything –  the only reason Lloyd Dobbler isn’t a stalker when he hangs outside of Diane’s house holding a boombox over his head and blasting Peter Gabriel into her entire house is because Diane finds it romantic and she loves him.  If she really had wanted to break up with him and never see him again, the next scene should have/would have been the police serving Lloyd with a restraining order. 

    As for the bruises after the first night of sex?  Umm, not abuse.  A combination of Bella seeming to be a woman who like her sex a bit rougher that some may, and Edward once again needing to re-examine his understanding of how strong his is when “caught up in the moment”.  But the author makes it clear that Bella didn’t have any pain during the actual act, bruises so easily that she often forgets what she might have even bumped into when she finds a bruise on herself, and isn’t hurt/sore even as badly as she has been after a day of exercising hard. 

    Look, after reading all the “live and let live” feelings expressed her about threesomes (during the Decadent review conversation), anal sex and other types of sex that is put into books we have all loved and read (which I have agreed with entirely) – it becomes hard for me to understand why this weak example is being held up as why Bella is an unaware abuse victim.  She likes what Edward does with her in the bedroom.  She is 19 and married when they do it.  Not unaware.  Not a victim.  Even if I don’t want to be anywhere near that bedroom. 

    Why do I love these books?  Because I believe that Stephenie Meyer has created a world I find fascinating and characters that I want to follow along with as they grow and change.  She is a great storyteller.  Even if I don’t always like what the characters do or choose.  Even if I don’t relate to each character. 

    I don’t read books in order to find characters that I relate to.  I read books to discover and explore worlds I have never thought about, to read events I will never experience and to see what someone else thought was something worth writing down.  There are lots of books that I love that I cannot stand the main characters.  That I hate the choices made by characters I love.  And yet, the books are still compelling.  Fascinating.  And they make me think about the world more deeply.

    One review I read about the Twilight Saga highlighted one of the series strengths to me.  That review said that Twilight was about Finding Love, New Moon was about Losing Love, Eclipse was about Choosing Love, and Breaking Dawn was about Protecting Love.  All kinds of love are explored in these books.  Romantic love, parental/child love, platonic love.  And Ms. Meyer has created a world of vampires, werewolves and other magic that allows the exploration of those themes to have a wide range.  Edward is fascinating because of the tension of his vampire-ness alongside the remnants of his humanity.  Bella and Edwards relationship is fascinating because it is damaged and disturbing.  And hot and true at the same time.

    If Edward wasn’t a vampire, if Ms. Meyer was not so skilled at creating a whole new vampire canon and world that this story took place in – then I think some of the criticism about the action of the characters would be more accurate.  However, I think that Ms. Meyers created characters who both stay true to who they are throughout the storyline while also growing and maturing by the end of the series in authentic, yet interesting and surprising ways.

    I have had discussions regarding these books as to what constitutes a powerful woman, is Bella a feminist (and does she need to be one or want to be one, since there are literally millions of women who consciously reject that label), what constitutes free will, why vampires are such a fascinating character in our literature, why the classics of Romeo and Juliet, Jane Erye, Wuthering Heights, Pride and Prejudice, Midsummer Nights Dream, Merchant of Venice and other classics are worth reading and re-reading and what influence those books obviously had when Ms. Meyers was writing the series. 

    And, to top all of that fabulousness off – I do find Bella and Edward to have one amazing hot relationship.  Ms. Meyer has written some of the best steamy passages of two people wanting to have sex, make love, be together in ways that really astounded me.  She (in my opinion) captured exactly what is sexy about not being able to consummate a relationship and all the foreplay and longing that goes before the sex ever happens.  And I loved that they waited until they got married to have sex and that the sex was mind blowingly awesome.  I loved that all the married couples in the book were having mind blowing sex and that no one found sex to be dirty, or shameful or anything else.  I loved all the dry humping and kissing they did because it reminded me a lot of what was so exciting about all the before sex things we all did when we were teenagers. With our first loves.  I loved the fact that Rosalie/Emmett, Jasper/Alice and Carlisle/Esme had been together for decades and still were madly sexing it up.  This was one of the few books I have read lately where both the male and female character were both sexual, and equally excited about their sexual relationship and open and trusting one another.  Where they didn’t have some hang up about wanting to have sex.  Yes, at the beginning Edward is afraid of hurting Bella with his super human strength during actual intercourse, but once they realize that he will be able to control that part (which ever stopped them from wanting one another) then they sex it up all the time.

    Am I trying to say that only married sex is good?  Heck no.  But it was nice to see the main characters in a book have a sexual life that was fabulous and natural and exciting without the shame or “oh no – he has to stop and tell her to enjoy getting oral sex because she is worried about her smell or losing control”.  Bella is actually the one who takes control of their sexual life and I thought that was awesome. 

    Time magazine had a wonderful review of the twilight series that I would highly recommend reading.  http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,1734838,00.html

    Now so saying all of this (and I apologize for writing a book on the subject)  – I have also found some of the snark about the Twilight Saga to be some of teh best written and enjoyable snarkiness I have read in quite some time.  And I love the fact that while many hated the last book – they are so passionate about it.  Because I am passionate about the books I love and hate and I know that if I book makes me think enough about it to write and share what I thought with others – well, it was pretty damn good – even if I hated it. 

    If you haven’t read the series – I hope you might give it a shot.  It is most likely at your local library – so don’t feel you need to buy it.  But try it.  I never thought I would like it and it is now on my re-read over and over again shelf.  Even with all of its issues.  It is a not so guilty pleasure that I feel lucky to have.

  22. 22
    Sasha says:

    Oh, one more thing.  I think it is an interesting comparison to look at Bella/Edward and Elizabeth Bennett/Mr. Darcy.

    In Pride and Prejudice, Mr. Darcy thinks that Elizabeth Bennett is “tolerably” attractive but nothing special.  And becomes more and more drawn to her despite her lack of fortune, her family’ embarrassing behavior, the fact she has never travelled anywhere before she visits Charlotte. 

    He visits his aunt only in order to be close to Elizabeth Bennett.  He cannot keep away from her no matter how much he tries to argue with himself.  He is kind of an asshole. 

    He is hot.  He is rich.  His is witty when not being an asshole.  His behavior causes some serious painful repercussions for Elizabeth and her family. 

    And he is one of teh greatest romantic leads.

    And a lot of the description I just gave describes Edward and Bella as well.

  23. 23
    Ziggy says:

    Huh. Agnes and Vlad’s relationship in Terry Pratchett’s Carpe Jugulum sounds much better than this. For one thing, it’s funny. For another, Vlad is yummy, peacock-embroidered waistcoats and all. (“He gave her a toothy grin, and on a vampire this was not pleasant.”) It’s also pretty fraught because they’re both intrigued by each other, but Agnes has to make her choice based around the fact that Vlad is a vampire. And she does. And she rocks for it.

    Also, it’s Pratchett, and Pratchett is without exception awesome.

  24. 24
    Molly says:

    Yes.

    *solemn nod of head*

    Pratchett is awesomness.

    …teehee…. I love Mort the best… probably because of all the extra Death scenes (the character not the “Grarg! Die!”)……

    Sorry I got a bit distracted there.

    I think that- while insanely hilarious- that Carpe Jugulum is not the best example. That was a send up of Vampire romance….. oh wait…

    …. it was a joke wasn’t it?

    Damn my lack of sarcasm detector.

  25. 25
    Ziggy says:

    That was a send up of Vampire romance.

    Yup I think it starts out as one – but ends up as something more than that. It is a real relationship between characters – both of whom are uncomfortably aware that this isn’t how it’s supposed to go.

  26. 26
    KimberlyD says:

    I’m a 23 year old who loved Twilight, liked the next 2, and hated Breaking Dawn (I agree with the whole “Bella got everything she ever wanted and more without having to sacrifice anything.” If I were older and had a teenage daughter, I would let her read the books. I would also point out the unhealthy relationship and all the bad points. However, I still liked the books, even if I didn’t approve of the characters. Someone here has to have read a book at some point where they didn’t approve of the characters’ actions or behaviors but still liked the book. I think both extreme ends of the spectrum (“OMG Edward is the bestest ever!” vs. “OMG Stephenie Meyer must die!”) are taking this book waaaay too seriously. Like it or don’t, let your kid read it or not, but this book is in no way life-altering and shouldn’t be viewed as such.

  27. 27
    Molly says:

    Hmmmm I’m starting to think that the only reason that people hate the Twilight series is because of the fanatical fangirl/boys.

    They send up such a flare of obsession that people start violently disagreeing with them, simply as an allergic reaction.

    Hate is a word filled to the brim with passion. And that reminds me of passionfruit, which reminds me of passionfruit flowers, which reminds me of allergies, which brings to mind allergic reactions.

    The facts are undeniable.

  28. 28
    Heather says:

    While I love the sentiment expressed in the paragraph, I think it would have been better applied to a book that actually was awesome. Those books are awful.  I read the first three at the prodding of a friend and wasn’t too thrilled… Bella kept whining because everyone kept staring at her (because she was “pretty”, yet she wasn’t at her old school, which I guess means Meyer is trying to say the people of Forks are ugly compared to the people of Phoenix?) When she wasn’t, she was constantly ditching her friends from school in order to hang out with her boyfriend (which let me tell you, I HATED girls like that in high school) and thinking only about how pretty he is. I wasn’t going to read the fourth book, but then I started hearing rumors of how horrible it was. Naturally I had to see for myself.

    Oh, it’s bad. REALLY bad. It’s not just the conservative ideology throughout this (and honestly, the conservative ideology just kind of flew out the window when Edward wanted Jacob to knock up his wife.) The main plot point just doesn’t even make sense. The vampires can’t even produce tears, but apparently Edward can produce not just sperm, but supersperm. He gets her knocked up instantly. There’s never any explanation as to how it happened or how someone who has been dead for approximately 100 years can produce live sperm still. The reader is expected to just accept it and move on.

    Add onto that the fact that perfect skin = white skin (“I never got over the shock of how perfect his body was – white, cool and polished as marble.” pg 25), crappy writing (“His golden eyes looked as if they would have tears, too, if such a thing were not impossible.”), Edward being a condescending jerk who looks down on his wife because she wants a lot of sex (“You are so human, Bella. Ruled by your hormones.”)… the only redeeming moment of the book was when the baby was going to eat it’s way out of Bella, but nooooo, we didn’t even get the pleasure of seeing that.  Grrrr.

  29. 29
    shaina says:

    i’m with molly, and a lot of other people too (like “God” up there). i know it’s poorly written. so is harry potter! i know there’s issues with the character’s personalities, pedophilia, abuse, whatever.

    doesnt change the fact that it’s CRACK. i’m 20 years old, very rarely read YA anymore, but i picked up Twilight to see what the fuss was and was honestly unable to pull myself away for more than a few hours at a time. i couldnt resist it. same thing happened with Stephanie Meyers’ other book, The Host.

    That being said, i haven’t read Breaking Dawn yet. i’m on the waiting list at the library. but as long as her writing style or whatever hasn’t changed, i’ll probably be sucked in just as much, to the point where i KNOW IT’S BAD but zomg it’s SO GOOD CAN’T STOP READINGGGGG.

  30. 30
    Shannon C. says:

    Heather said:

    When she wasn’t, she was constantly ditching her friends from school in order to hang out with her boyfriend (which let me tell you, I HATED girls like that in high school) and thinking only about how pretty he is.

    And there we have what killed the first book for me. I was hoping for a nice coming of age story involving vampires, because that was the setup. But then Edward walked in and there went that. It seems like I know way too many people in real life who don’t feel they’re worth anything without a man in their lives. I don’t want to read about people like that in my fiction, either. Plus, I’d been trying to read some of Christine Feehan’s Carpathian books, which also had the same basic girl-can’t-be-anything-without-her-vampire-lifemate theme and I just couldn’t deal with it anymore. But my sister loves the books, and I do see the attraction for them. They just make my inner feminist shriek and howl in pain.

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