I think everyone knows that the characters are essentially the ones who make up the book. It’s through them that the plot is developed, the conflicts are carried, the climax is revealed, stuff like that. And when you’re writing in a first person POV, you have to make that “first person” interesting and observant. Bella, our first person, is about as interesting as a rock.
Isabella is nothing more than a Mary Sue. It doesn’t even take a genius to figure out that ‘Bella’ is Italian for ‘beautiful’. And her last name is ‘Swan’, which as a device in literature, symbolizes grace and beauty. Bella Swan? Beautiful Swan? Not very clever.
Here’s the contradiction: She’s ordinary. At least that’s what she keeps on insisting throughout the book. Practically everyone in her new school asks her to the dance, or to the prom. And she gets the guy who apparently “doesn’t date” because “none of the girls… are good-looking enough for him.” Her appearance is somewhat similar to the author’s, as well as her story of moving to a new place. If it helps, she’s a klutz – a last ditching effort to not make her a complete Mary Sue.
Most readers who like Twilight relate to Bella. Well I don’t. I can’t possibly relate with a young woman with no plans, no goals, no solid interests, no personality, no deep observations of life, no nothing - but is just “unconditionally and irrevocably in love with” her boyfriend. I really can’t. There’s something so shallow and pathetic about it; the way she’s willing to throw away her friends and family for a guy she has been acquainted with for just… two weeks? Besides, she is extremely boring, the sort which makes you fall asleep while she talks. And if she’s not obsessing over Edward, she does, well, nothing but whines, or tells him and his family that she doesn’t want to be rescued.
I would have liked it if Meyer had given her a little backbone and some brain cells, so she can get out of the stupid situations she puts her stupid self in. I don’t buy her “I grew up in Phoenix” statement. Nobody who grew up in Phoenix would be an idiot enough to wander around empty streets of an unfamiliar city alone. Then again, her idiocy is necessary to give way to her savior, Edward Cullen.
Edward is a vampire – oops! – a perfect vampire. He’s the most beautiful thing which ever existed… Have I mentioned that he’s perfect? And that he has topaz eyes?
He’s also bipolar. He’s serious one time, and then laughs exuberantly another. Insane mood swings, I tell you. He’s supposed to be your perfect male protagonist – hawt!!! (not hot; it should be hawt and must always be followed by three exclamation points), dangerous, smart, mysterious, perfect, and, uhm, sparkly (although the last adjective is not really required; it’s just a bonus if you’re lucky enough). He has this stalker-ish behavior, which is sick: He sneaks into Bella’s room and watches her sleep before they even get to talk. Some think that it’s romantic, but it’s just creepy. I don’t understand what’s so romantic about it.
Edward is 100-something years old and lives with his vampire family. Apparently he and his family don’t drink human blood, because they don’t want to be completely evil. They’re vegetarians: They only drink blood of animals. They are basically good vampires - who play baseball in the woods. (Ha! Who told you it’s boring to be a vampire? You’re allowed to play baseball!) And every myth about vampire is WRONG! Stakes, garlic, sleeping in coffin (although the idea of not sleeping ever was okay) – even sunlight!
But you know, age and race don’t matter in this book, because Edward and Bella actually fall in love! As for the reason… what is the reason again? Oh, because Bella smells good and Edward is hawt!!!. They’re made for each other! It’s destiny!
Seriously: The romance between them is forced and trite. And it’s even more boring than they both are, because they have no personality whatsoever. Geez, what am I saying? There’s no romance at all. There is no development of feelings. Just… BAM! They’re in love! They don’t even do anything but talk about how in love they are. From there, everything becomes sheer selfishness, and for the nth time, stupidity. Bella’s life revolves around her boyfriend, and nothing more. Not only is it absurd; it also gives horrible messages, namely:
1. It’s okay to fall in love in a matter of days and then risk your life for it. 2. You don’t have to have dreams or goals or anything like that; just get a girl/boyfriend. It’s far more important! 3. It’s perfectly fine to lie to your parents especially when it concerns your girl/boyfriend. 4. Ditch your friends. Girl/Boyfriend first, I tell you! Girl/Boyfriend first!
Considering the fact that Edward is so much older than Bella, shouldn’t he be more rational? Shouldn’t he be the mature one? Knowing he can kill Bella, he should have just left her alone. And how come Edward just blabbers everything to Bella? You know, the vampire stuff? For someone who has been in this world for more than a hundred years, he sure displays the maturity of a fetus.
And he’s supposed to be dangerous. That could have worked, if only Bella had the wits to be actually scared. It’s funny; that girl’s so brainless you can’t possibly scare her! As for Edward, it would have been better if he had shown how dangerous he could be. Then again, he is a good vampire, and he doesn’t want to become a monster. So he can only talk about it when it would be cooler for him to show it.
Oh, how could I forget! Edward SPARKLES UNDER THE SUN! Did you know that? Isn’t that cool? The coolest thing ever?! It’s like the very magnificent thing next to Edward! Sparkly sparkles! He sparkles, man, he sparkles “like thousands of tiny diamonds were embedded in the surface” of his skin! Sparkling! Glittering! Glistening! Scintillating! Oh! my! gosh! Meyer is so original! Who else could have thought that?!
The plot is absolutely zero (the romance between Bella and Edward is not a plot). It’s basically just “He’s a vampire, she’s not. They fall in love. End of story.” And there were a lot of loopholes:
1. Why would the Cullens want to study in high school?! This is my number one question. Hello? Are they nuts? Can someone answer this for me? 2. Why would they want to blend in with the rest of humanity? 3. Why would they put themselves near humans when they know it’s hard to resist biting them? 4. Why would one bad vampire like to bite Bella specifically?
I’d like to answer and expand on loophole 4, because it’s absolutely preposterous. I didn’t even care about that James-vampire when he appeared, because his arrival was so cliched and so late. It’s like Meyer suddenly remembered that there should be something climax-y in Twilight, just to give it a semblance of a plot. This James ought to do the trick. He should be the one to threaten Bella’s life and then she makes an insanely silly mistake and she almost gets killed BUT Edward rescues her!
Meyer’s writing style isn’t something to commend on either; she writes like a twelve-year old. She makes Dan Brown look like a Pulitzer Prize winner. Her words are stilted. The narration is unexciting, dragging, and redundant. Bella keeps telling the readers how much she hates the rain in the first 100 pages of the book, and how she can’t dance If not that, she repetitively says how perfect and beautiful Edward is. What’s ironic is that despite all the perfect descriptions of him, I never quite pictured him in my mind. I’m still wondering how the rest of humanity can drool and squeal at the thought of him.
Bella glares all the time, too. Bella also grimaces a lot, and hisses, and stumbles. Glares, grimaces, hisses, stumbles. Four redundant freakin’ verbs in a 500-page book. That’s not so much, unless you can count only to three.
Meanwhile, Edward always smiles his crooked smile, and he dazzles people (especially Bella).
Nobody ‘said’ anything. Characters only ‘gasped’, ‘chuckled’, ‘questioned’, and ‘answered’.
Meyer also occasionally uses ridiculously long AND obscure words, which don’t quite fit since the rest of her words are plain and simple. I remember one: Ostentatious. She could have simply used ‘showy’ or ‘flamboyant’, but it just had to be ostentatious. Why she used that, I’ve no idea. (In the next books, Meyer uses bigger words. I wonder how big they are…)
And you know, Meyer ends Twilight with Bella attending the PROM. That’s how a vampire story should end: The heroine should attend the prom with her vampire boyfriend. In that ruffled gown and stiletto heels… It just makes sense (although it did take Bella about ten years to figure out Edward is taking her to the prom. What an idiot). Meyer skipped the almost action-y part (Emmett and Jasper’s dealing with James) but she elaborates on the prom.
Now that I’ve finished reading and dissecting Twilight, I still don’t understand all the hype it’s getting. It reads like a bad fan fic. I won't stop you from reading it, though. That's a choice for you to make.(less)