I have been sucked into the thrill and excitement of the Twilight saga. Maybe 'sucked' isn't the most appropriate word, but it's true. Although I found many faults in the first two books, I was inclined to continue reading to see what exactly happens.
This book is written very similarly to the other books and thus each twist and turn in the plot just moves the story to the intended ending. We know that eventually Bella will become a vampire and in some twisted method, the author, who is a Mormon, has decided that she needs to imbed some religious morality into her story. Bella would like to have sex with Edward. She is devastated when Edward continues to push her away. The characters seem to be behaving opposite to the social norm. Shouldn't it be the male in the relationship who is begging for sex while the female is adamant about staying pure? Either way it creates a weird situation that cannot be forgotten as the story continues.
In this book, the struggle involves the third of the traveling vampires, Victoria. The two books ended with the demise of their leader, James, and then Laurent. This time the fight includes the werewolves of La Push and as all romance stories go, the good guys win. The problem, of course, is that the fight scene seems to just be filler for what is coming next.
There is a very interesting scene which needs to be discussed an explained. The scene consists of Bella and Edward in a tent in the forest. It is wintertime and Bella is near hypothermic. Edward, like all vampires, is cold so is trying to stay away from her. Finally, Jacob, the large man beast of a werewolf enters and Bella happily cuddles with him. This is definitely a confusing moment because although we know that Bella in the end chooses Edward, we are given what would be a great sexual tension situation. Instead, it is awkward and funny. Edward is helpless as the love of his endless life cuddles with a werewolf, and Bella is comforted by the fact that Jacob is still the same person she met when she first moved to the tiny town of Forks, Washington.
Stephenie Meyer wrote Twilight and then wrote a short version of what eventually became Breaking Dawn, which is the fourth book in the series. She was asked to add more detail to Bella's life before she becomes a vampire so this novel becomes filler. We are only given one important piece of information over the course of a very long novel.
Bella and Edward are engaged. For a romance story it is the most pathetic scene you could possibly imagine. She practically begs him to have sex with her and his response is to remind her that once they are married they will have sex. He does eventually give her a ring, but the original proposal scene is so awkward and strange that the reader is disappointed. The reader must realize something. We are talking about teenagers whose hormones and emotions are out of control.
The other thing to mention is the character development of Bella. Edward remains the same throughout each book, which is good in one way. He is not seventeen and thus should not age or mature as a regular human. Bella, on the other hand, is getting older, but for some reason is not maturing. She continues to be whiny and demanding and for some reason her need for sex, with Edward, is her number one concern.
I will be honest that I kept reading the novel to figure out if at one point it was going to get better. It didn't, but I still read it. With the first novel, I was intrigued and moved by the story. I was disappointed and frustrated at how this novel was drawn out and was happy when I got to the end.
As I mentioned before, I read the four novels because a number of my students are truly obsessed with the books. I am mortified at how the main character is portrayed. Not one of the boys in my class has read this book and if they did, they would assume that all new shy girls would fall in love with them and be their slave and servant until they get sex. Seriously, they should read it and then see how many slaps in the face they get.
It is such a disappointment, but at least we are given a hint that Bella and Edward will get married and this might remove the desperate horniness that plagues Bella. We hope, as readers, that there will be no more vampire brawls, and we hope that eventually we will see Bella as a strong willed woman who is not defined by her relationships with the men in her life.
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