Okay so finally got around to reading Twilight by Stephenie Meyer after my wife borrowed a copy (which I should note she read in less than a day, ignoring everyone and everything until it was finished).
I did not enjoy it quite as much as she did. There are minor spoilers ahead.
I never identified with the main character, Bella (which is probably ok since I’ve never been, nor intend to be, a teenage girl). To be blunt, at times I was actively hoping something really awful would happen to her. She kind of got on my nerves (sorry world!)
I can understand how many did identify with the character though. In her need to be wanted and desired, many can relate. She was put in a new situation (moving to a new town) and hence was the literal outsider, again something many can relate to. All of our faults, especially our faults as teenagers, were magnified, in an attempt to build sympathy Bella.
But I thought her too extreme — too unsociable, too clumsy, too self involved. And the way every boy in the school lusted after her. Really? From being unpopular in her original high school to being the most sought after in her new one? Seemed a little weird.
More disappointingly I did not like the vampires. They really seemed bland with a couple of them having additional superpowers. If these powers were explained later or hinted that they were part of an elaborate vampire mythos, that would have been more interesting but I did not get that impression. They just seemed tacked on to make the plot work the way it did.
That said I did read the entire book and not just because I felt I had to. It was entertaining if generally boring (I admit to skipping a few pages here and then which I seldom do). The last few chapters were exciting and I’d say they made the read worthwhile and I can understand better some people’s fascination with the novel. Twilight is really three quarters of build up that culminates in a series of suspenseful, page-turning events. If there had been a bit more of this suspense I might have liked it more.
So I didn’t have the same experience with the book as my wife (and a gazillion others did). But I also wouldn’t say it was terrible, as some have. It just wasn’t my type of book, in the same way I don’t seek out romance fiction or westerns.
I won’t read the other books in the series but I’ll sit through the movies if asked (though my wife will owe me).
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