Tuesday, 27 October 2009

Twilight - Stephenie Meyer

It’s the usual scenario. Boy meets girl. Boy falls for girl. Boy can’t possibly have girl. Bella Swan moves to Forks, Washington to live with a father who in the last few years has only seen for two or so weeks in the year. Edward Cullen is the quiet brooding, intimidating, pale skinned, beautiful boy who seemingly takes an instant dislike to Bella. And lets not forget the small fact that he’s a vampire. A vampire who doesn’t snack on humans.

Bella, seventeen, never expected to like Forks, in fact she was determined to hate it. It was the opposite of Pheonix, a place she loved. It rained frequently and the town was under a constant sky of cloud. Eventually, vampire and human strike up an unlikely friendship, with Bella forming both a bond and an attraction to the young vampire posing as a human. Edward and his surrogate family of vampires manage to hide their true identity from Bella and the town they’ve called home for the past two years…that is until Bella, while on a beach trip with friends comes across a boy who explains to her the local legend of ‘the cold ones’, a group of vampires or ‘blood drinkers’ who have sworn off human blood and hunt only animals. Armed with the legend and a little book research, Bella comes to the conclusion that Edward is in fact one of those vampires. This fact would scare some people but for Bella, it means nothing. It changes nothing. She’s already in love with Edward, it’s too late to go back now.

For Edward, Bella’s lack of fear is frustrating but at the same time it delights him as well. Bella is the first person he’s loved since he was turned into a vampire at the end of the first world war. Though he loves her, being so close to her is his own type of torture. He can never get too close, he has to be so careful, treat he like the delicate human she is because one wrong move could harm her. Her scent and her blood is also almost too tempting for Edward to resist.
The love story between Edward and Bella has themes of Romeo and Juliet weaving through it. It’s a doomed love story, two people who should be natural enemies yet still want each other but may never be able to have each other. It’s also a push pull type romance with Edward desperately trying to do the right thing and keep Bella away from him but being so drawn to her that he just can’t stay away from her.

Twilight is written in the first person, narrated by Bellas, so every piece of information the reader receives is from Bella’s point of view. Bella’s view of Edward is very romanticized, we see him as she sees him, this beautiful, dangerous hero. The character of Bella is beautifully and realistically written from her shy, clumsiness to her sarcastic inner thoughts. The vampire mythology is uniquely written, destroying the old predictable cliches we are usually given.
Beautifully written, touching and compelling and at times heartbreakingly sad, Twilight is a sweet story of star-crossed love which can be read time and time again and never gets old.

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