I'm of the strong opinion that a person can only say they hate a book/movie/show if they've read/watched it. You may think you'll hate it, but you can...moreI'm of the strong opinion that a person can only say they hate a book/movie/show if they've read/watched it. You may think you'll hate it, but you can't know unless you see for yourself. That's why I was excited to borrow this book from a friend last year so I could begin my hatred with reason.
Well, I didn't end up hating this book (as for New Moon, that's a different story entirely...). It was okay, as far as teen books go. I guess I did enjoy it, but I see no reason for the hype it's received.
But there are problems, oh are there problems.
1.) We're made to think Bella is a completely unremarkable girl. I can agree, but the males in this book can't seem to. In fact, the only guy who doesn't seem to be crushing on Bella is her own father. Suspicious, much? I have to come to the conclusion that she MUST have good looks and the author is lying to us, because why else would this be? It can't be her personality...Bella doesn't have one. It's hinted that she's "different" but she seems just as boring as every other average girl, so it can't be that. Hmm!
2.) Speaking of boring, that word sums up BOTH main characters very well. Bella is a snore, and Edward is so perfect (instead of listing why he's so great as Meyer did every other paragraph, I'm just going to leave it at that). Girls wish they had an Edward because of his perfection, but perfection is B-O-R-I-N-G. I'm sure if they ever met an Edward in real life, they'd find themselves falling asleep. The only thing that saves this book in my eyes is that the supporting characters (Edward's family) are very interesting.
3.) The whole relationship is a problem. Granted, not every relationship is perfect, but the problem here is that Meyer seems to think there's nothing wrong with it and finds it ideal, as are tens of thousands of girls around the world.
-Apparently, you can be "irrevocably" in love with someone after knowing them for what, a week? NOT TRUE.
-Bella only "loves" Edward because he's perfect, and he "loves" her because...well, I guess because she's the Mary Sue, so she has to be loved. This isn't love, people. This is INFATUATION. Girls are confused about love as it is, and this book isn't helping them. Now they're going to be walking around after a week saying they love someone, and it can be love because Bella and Edward fell in love after a week, no?
-Edward's about a bajillion years older than her, so now we have traces of pedophilia (well, not quite, but I can't remember what the word for sexual interest in a teenager is :P) in the relationship.
-Edward stalks her even before she really knows him, finding out what she thinks from her friends, watching her sleep...and I guess this is normal boyfriend behavior, not possessive at all, because Bella's fine with it!
-Edward can snap and kill her at any moment. But no, it's okay, she's still safe, really. So if a guy is a threat to your life, girls, go ahead and keep dating him! Don't try to overcome an abusive relationship!
What do other people's opinions matter compared to your own? We're all different, thus, I feel fine with saying this book was beautiful.
This book is i...moreWhat do other people's opinions matter compared to your own? We're all different, thus, I feel fine with saying this book was beautiful.
This book is infamous for its incest. In fact, the reason I picked it up was because I heard, and I quote, that it was "about a brother and sister who get locked in the attic and start having sex". Yet, if you actually peruse the book, you'll find there's several moments of sexual tension but only one actual sex scene. People are overdramatic.
Some people are just disgusted after reading the book. They can't get over the incestuous taboo because it's so ingrained in them. For an open mind like mine, however, it was easy to overcome that and really get myself thinking. What Cathy and Chris had together wasn't disgusting, it was tragic. If an adolescent girl or boy are locked up in an attic together, growing up with no outlet for their sexuality unlike other kids their age, something is going to happen. But it wasn't just lust that drove Cathy and Chris to do what they did. They spent years actually BEING the mother and father to their younger siblings, Cory and Carrie. In their roles, they came to actually love each other, because they weren't living as a brother and sister...they were living as husband and wife. I could feel that. Thus, Flowers in the Attic got me past the social stigma with the way it was written, just as Lolita's beauteous prose had me feeling far from disgust for the pedophilic relationship described.
Also, can I speak about Chris for a moment? I love Christopher. He's the only character from a book I've ever fallen for. Imaginative, yet intelligent and pratical...caring, fatherly, husbandly...After reading the Andrews books, I told myself I would name one of my sons Christopher when that time came.
You know you're reading something amazing when an author can get you to think differently, to change your mind over something so great. V.C. Andrews did that in this book. She also managed to get me emotionally invested. I felt horror at what the children had to go through, the tarring, the whipping, what happened to poor, poor Cory...
I wish the incestuous aspect to this book hadn't leaked out so people wouldn't read it just for shock value or make criticisms on it without even reading it (I have a friend who insists it's a disgusting book, yet she's never even read it to make that judgment rightfully!) But then, if it hadn't, the books still wouldn't be around today.
I've read the whole Dollanganger series, three of the Casteel series, and several other V.C. Andrews books. Only Flowers in the Attic, Petals on the Wind, and My Sweet Audrina have captured me. The stories are so different from anything I've ever read that it's refreshing. I thank Andrews for this, too.(less)
My Sweet Audrina is a jewel of a book. It felt magical to me reading it. In this one, readers are treated to a deep mystery...Andrews really knocked t...moreMy Sweet Audrina is a jewel of a book. It felt magical to me reading it. In this one, readers are treated to a deep mystery...Andrews really knocked this one out of the park, because there's no way I could've seen what was coming. And when everything was explained, the first time I read it I actually got confused because it was kind of complex. Once again I am struck by Andrews's ability to create a believeable family with problems; many families have dark secrets but it seems there are no books written about them, or at least none of Andrews's vein, because I have heard of no others. She can show us terror, terror that people go through every day with no monsters needed, just traumatic experiences.
Audrina is the only female protagonist in an Andrews book that I've ever liked. EVER. In fact, I relate to her.
I feel like this book came before the Casteel series so I'm going to say it's the first Andrews book to feature the evil sister cliche. I did feel like Vera didn't get enough attention as a child, though, so I didn't hate her as much as I hated the things she did. There's one character I ended up hating that I didn't expect to hate: Arden. At first he seems so great but then we see that he didn't help Audrina...simply running off to get a grown-up would've helped! And then afterwards, we see that just because Audrina's not ready to have sex, he uses Vera instead. Even when Audrina's in a coma, he's screwing with Vera, knowing her for the evil thing she is, disgracing Audrina! And he won't listen to Audrina when she tries to explain that her father is manipulative.
Love this one! This book is disturbing and will haunt you, just as the description of the house itself is haunting (and inescapable...) Too bad it's only one of three of the Andrews books that managed to really capture me. Still reading them all, though!(less)
You know an author has amazing ability when you ABHOR the main character, yet come out of it completely in love with the book.
I HATED CATHY IN THIS BO...moreYou know an author has amazing ability when you ABHOR the main character, yet come out of it completely in love with the book.
I HATED CATHY IN THIS BOOK. I felt no remorse for her. She made such STUPID decisions. Seducing a MUCH older man--the man who's supposed to be her father figure, by the way, who ADOPTED her--to forget about Chris...Cathy, surely there's someone better you could have used! Marrying Julian just because she assumes something about Paul that wasn't true, which she could have found out if she just talked to Paul instead of turning to the arms of an abusive man. Then she decides to enact revenge upon her mother, but all she ends up doing is having sex with her mom's boyfriend, Bart. Cathy has hatred for her mother because her mom always used her looks to get what she wanted, used her sexuality, but GUESS WHAT, CATHY? You're a whore, just like your mom. I think Andrews intended this, though. It's just more ironic that the girl hates all that her mother is, but ends up becoming a younger version of her in every way.
She's so stupid. Every time she's with a new man, she ends up realizing before the end of the relationship that she "truly loved him all along"; the man she used to forget about her incestuous acts, the man who abused her, the man she used to exact revenge on her mother...yes, Cathy, you truly loved them all. And then in the end she has another realization! The one she loved all along was Chris, despite everything else she said. *facepalm*
Despite my hatred for Cathy, though, as I said before I love this book. Again, Andrews wrapped me up in the world so that I was emotionally invested in the characters. Poor, poor Carrie, yet another result of a stupid decision by Cathy. If Cathy and Paul hadn't been so wrapped up in each other, they might have been interested in finding out what made Carrie so withdrawn. If Cathy hadn't left Carrie alone with Julian, he wouldn't have sexually abused her (though she thought she was willing, as most girls do, and as in most cases, she ended up being traumatized by it).(less)
I'm so confused. I started reading this book and found the writing style to be different. Even though it was written by Andrews, I felt like I was rea...moreI'm so confused. I started reading this book and found the writing style to be different. Even though it was written by Andrews, I felt like I was reading something by her ghostwriter. I hated this one.
This is the only V.C. Andrews book written from a boy's point of view. As in Petals on the Wind, I was not fond of Cathy. She seems completely ignorant of Bart's life...she doesn't try hard enough to reach out to him. Also mad because she impregnated herself with two different men's children without trying to be more protective. A good mother should always think ahead, and if Cathy had thought ahead she'd see that it'd create a lot of drama when the boys found out they had two different fathers, etc.
Still, though, the book made me feel strongly. I was angered and nervous the whole time as Bart was being set up for all the horrible things that occurred. Andrews's books are always horrifying and tragic, but this one goes a step farther by shoving a pitchfork through a poor puppy's belly. I can't stand animal cruelty and this made me sick. Also, I was a little grossed out by this book, especially when Bart reaches for a handful of the dog's poop and smushes it in his hands because it makes him feel close to his dog. Ew.
In this book, people might feel compelled to have sympathy for Corrinne. She has a change of heart and tries to be a motherly figure finally, but a little too late. I do feel sorry for her, but that doesn't excuse how weak and awful she was in the first book. Nothing can excuse trying to kill your own children, NOTHING. This always made me frustrated with Chris because he always forgave her, but guys are always predisposed to be that way with their mothers.
Anyway, I won't be reading this book again.
There is one thing that will always haunt me from it, though. At the beginning of the book, Cathy puts beds in the attic...what do you need beds for, Cathy? And when she realizes she was doing it "just in case", it sends a shiver down the reader's spine. It makes you wonder if Cathy will be like her mother in yet another way...(less)
This book was much better than the third one, yet it still read like the ghostwriter's style to me. It would be that way foreverafter.
I found it prett...moreThis book was much better than the third one, yet it still read like the ghostwriter's style to me. It would be that way foreverafter.
I found it pretty predictable on the whole. And the vengeful old man character having been in the background of every book is just plain annoying. The uncle seemed exactly like the old servant from the third book, who was just like Malcolm. A circle of cookie cutter men.
I was pleasantly surprised with Cathy's character in this book. Rather than the stupid decision-maker from second book and the bad mother figure in the third book, Cathy transformed into a wise woman. Applause! I especially like her description of what love is in the book. Cathy, you grew up...shame it took you this long!
Some parts to it also seemed forced. Let's make Jory happy by having his caretaker fall in love with him! No, really! Eh, I just couldn't get a real feel from that. Bart's sorrow at the end did feel real. I really did feel like he finally realized how much Chris meant to him, but when he started preaching it felt forced.
You know who really ticked me off in this book? The daughter. I can't remember her name, oops, but she made all the same dumb mistakes Cathy made at her age. Yet another thing of the sins of the mother falling upon the children...the most frustrating thing about it was that she proclaimed her innocence and everyone believed her, only to find out she was truly a liar and a slut.
The ending hit me like a ton of bricks. I was shocked to the core; this was the only shock I experienced in the book and since everything else was so predictable I did NOT see that coming. What a wonderful ending it was, though. (less)
I ended up being okay with the first book, so feeling optimistic one day, I decided to go ahead and buy the second one. "I can always read it speedy-q...moreI ended up being okay with the first book, so feeling optimistic one day, I decided to go ahead and buy the second one. "I can always read it speedy-quick and return it if I don't end up liking it," I told myself.
Three months went by.
No, I wasn't relishing every moment and trying to make it last. I was trying my best to slog through the crap to get it over with, but I couldn't bear more than a page a day, it seemed.
What was the problem? There were a few. The main one being BOREDOM. I realize depression as Bella dealt with leaves one in a lethargic state, but depression can be made to be interesting to read (The Bell Jar, anyone?). Not in this case.
Other problems being:
1.) It's perpetuated so often that Bella's intelligent. How intelligent is she to believe Edward when he says "I don't like you anymore" a day after he's all "I love you, shmubby wuppy poo!"?
2.) If Edward truly cared for Bella, he'd admit her as an inpatient. The girl is CRAZAZAZY! Anyone would be down after a break up, but for that to spur on suicidal tendencies such as the ones that prompt Bella to do dangerous, potentially life-threatening things is indicative of too large a Dependent disorder and mental instability.
3.) I can't like a book with such a selfish, stupid main character. She wants to become a vampire just because Edward is one (here's another lesson, girls: change yourself to suit your boyfriend!) and she doesn't want to age past him. She hasn't thought it through, though. Bella, you faint at the sight of a finger-pricking. How can you expect to be a VAMPIRE?!?! She doesn't give a thought to her parents in deciding this, either. Same with her suicide attempts. You moved to Forks to make your mom happy, but uh, if you kill yourself I think that'll kinda make it not worth it in her eyes.
4.) You'd think a 100-year-old vampire (did I get that right? Feel free to correct me, Twihards) would be more mature and patient than Edward acts in this book. Without checking to make sure whether Bella truly was dead, he sets off on a suicide mission. People are always comparing this book to Romeo and Juliet--which I couldn't see because no one's against the union of Bella and Edward, plus the writing is so much better--and now I can sort of understand why. Just like Romeo, Edward acts rashly. And just like the two star-crossed lovers in Shakespeare's play, Bella and Edward fell in love at first sight and proceed to risk their lives for relationship's sake. Just a case of two immature kids thinking they're in love and making dumb decisions as a result.
And after I finished, it was too late to return the book and get my precious money back. CURSE YOU, TWILIGHT! CURSE YOU!(less)