Clare's Reviews > Twilight

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
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Dec 04, 13

bookshelves: read-in-2008
Read in April, 2008

I hate this book. I will probably end up reading the rest of them, because if I don't, people that love this thing will think they can convert me if I just keep reading. (ETA (Jan. 2013): Never even remotely bothered to finish the series.)

In short: the writing mechanics are atrocious. The dialogue is stilted and absolutely wretched. The characterization is bad-- loose, jumpy, and the progression is occasionally senseless. The main characters themselves are not compelling: selfish, shallow, lacking the deep thought that comes with true passion and love and instead leaping recklessly into stupid and deadly situations when anyone with a brain could see sixty other possibilities that should have been tried first.

I can't express my disgust for the relationship between Edward and Bella. It's not romance, it's not passion, it's not love. It's selfish idiocy at best. Bella as a character is insufferable: her self-sacrificing streak is not compassion, it's sheer stupidity. It's hormones. It's a bad, bad example for the teenage girls who read it. Bella's whole life is tied up in her boyfriend. She has no goals, passions, ambitions, or dreams besides wanting to be with Edward, who could kill her.

Edward's element of danger is occasionally compelling, but it's totally overshadowed by the fact that Bella is completely oblivious to it. She doesn't fear him at all, and that doesn't come off like love: once again, it comes off as total stupidity.

Edward. What can I say about Edward. There is nothing lovable about him except that he is apparently the most beautiful thing in existence. He's selfish: he stays near Bella when he knows he could lose control and kill her at any second. He's a creepy stalker: he watches her while she sleeps, before she even really knows him. He's volatile: his mood swings are insane and ridiculous. He's immature: for someone who's been alive for a hundred years, he doesn't seem to have gained much experience. He's controlling: he doesn't want to let her out of his sight for two seconds. (Granted, she's dumb enough to get herself killed if he does.) He's insulting: he treats Bella like an incapable, silly little girl. (Which he's right to, but I digress. It's still insulting.)

I understand that Bella's smell and that Bella herself are irresistible to him. But if he wanted the best for her, he'd stay away from her, period, the end. The story is stupid, the love story is bad, and if that's what Stephenie Meyer is preaching to teenage girls, I think it's pretty questionable. It's not just "a fun read". There are girls out there who want to be Bella and who want to find an Edward.


I think I might enjoy the story a lot more if Bella's idiot head was not the one I had to spend time in while reading it. If I had to read one more description of how beautiful Edward is, I was going to choke a kitten. If it had focused more on the vampire family I would have been a lot more willing to forgive its faults. I thought Carlisle's and Alice's stories were really compelling, and Edward was finally accessible to me when he talked about Carlisle turning him into a vampire and how his family came to be formed, his life before Bella, etc. Some aspects of the vampirism were truly awesome: I found the idea that vampires can never sleep completely terrifying. That they never, ever get a break and never, ever get to rest... that is a wonderful and ghastly idea.

Entirely overshadowed by their flowery breath and the fact that they sparkle. Mothereffing ridiculous.

This is hardly the tip of the iceberg, but I'm trying to spare you at least a little.
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Comments (showing 1-50 of 329) (329 new)

message 1: by C.A. (new)

C.A. I am incredibly selfish and want you to keep reading so I don't have to. The excerpts I've read have sent me cringing for the corner. You are a braver woman than I.

Jennifer I give you credit; there's no way in hell I'd keep reading that crap.

I'm vaguely curious about if Edward will ever make Bella a vampire, but not enough to suffer through hundreds of pages of ridiculousness to find out.

Sally Thank you, thank you, thank you! It seems like everyone in my social circle has loved this book, and I've been wondering if I'm the only one that felt like this! The example of "love" that this sets for teenage girls especially bothers me.

(G)Emma Love it!

message 5: by Ken (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ken I think all of you took the books and yourselves too seriously. You should really lighten up life is to short to be so critical!

Jennifer How on earth are we taking ourselves too seriously by saying that we didn't enjoy a book?

Differences of opinion are a part of life; it doesn't mean we "take ourselves too seriously".

Have you enjoyed every single book you've ever read?

message 7: by Ken (new) - rated it 4 stars

Ken I apologize. I did not mean to offend anyone.

message 8: by Amy (new) - rated it 1 star

Amy Word. I hate female characters like Bella. But I'll probably read the others in the series, and I'll probably see the movie. Usually, the book is ALWAYS better than the movie. I think the movie will be WAY better. LOL.

Vivian I completely agree with you!

message 10: by Sarah (new)

Sarah THANK YOU for this review. I agree with every word. You've perfectly articulated my exact reasons for hating the book. I'm utterly baffled by the popularity of the series! Thanks for presenting your arguments in such an entertaining manner, as well. I was laughing and nodding while I read your review.

message 11: by Clare (new) - rated it 1 star

Clare Hurray! Thank you for leaving a comment! xD

Jazzypom You are a braver woman than I. ONTD is all a dazzle over twilight, and I begged someone to email me the book (so I wouldn't have to buy it), and I sat down and forced myself to finish it.

All that you said and more. Don't read the rest, life is too short.

message 13: by Amy (new) - rated it 1 star

Amy Yes, everything you said - exactly.

message 14: by Sage (new) - rated it 2 stars

Sage I didn't like it either and I know most of my friends and my bookgroup and my niece all thought it was great.

Yuck! Poor role model for sure. That relationship was idiotic and I never saw any progression in character. Bella was not very interesting, just like she kept saying. So it must be a fulfilling fantasy for ordinary girls to think that some "perfect" man/monster will sweep them off their feet.


Marie I LOVED your post, it summed up exactly how I feel about these books. I'm actually almost through with the 4th book, and by now it's become a chore. I actually didn't realize until the 4th that I really disliked the series and Meyer's inability to prove any literary training. Something just kept annoying me as I read the others, and it was like the 4th hit me full force.

... and if I ever hear "dazzling" to describe anyone ever again, I might implode...

Appreciated your critique, made me laugh.

Jennifer Completely agreed. The vampires' family relations were the only compelling part of the book. If only Bella had really died at the hands of James...

message 17: by Mertal (new)

Mertal HA HA your description of the book is so dead on! I keep reading because I want to know how it ends BUT seriously Bella is driving me crazy...she is absolutely week and embarrassing as a character and Edward is too controlling, LORD I don't know why they need to spend every freaking minute together and how is it possible they're not bored with each other??? Whatever! I will continue this JUST to see how the story ends.

message 18: by Loni (new) - rated it 2 stars

Loni Oh man, you took the words right out of my mouth. I didn't even know where to start a review of this book, but you just hit the nail right on the head.

Monika Chelsey, I like your review but I don't agree with everything that you said. I like this book, because it's about love, love that is beautiful, pure and good. I would agree that Bella and Edward shows love that it's too selfish etc. But then it's like 'first love' - not really prefect to the end. Plus it's interesting, something going on all the time.

Yes, Edward wanted to kill her but he was a vimpere. Fantasy part of this world that Meyer created. So I wouldn't take so seriously. I like also the way that Meyer wrote this book - her style of writing. I didn't really want to put down this book and this is the most importing thing that you would like to achieve when you're a writer.

I agree that it could be wrong 'love model' for really young girls but then what about Harry Potter? His also a perfect boy and has supernatural power...

So in my opinion if you have distance to every fiction world it's good. But when you start to want to have everything like characters have in any book then it's just bad.

message 20: by Clare (new) - rated it 1 star

Clare Harry Potter doesn't watch girls while they sleep. Thanks for commenting!

Vonny Thank you for this review! Not only did I laugh my butt off but I completely agree. I'm tired of people talking about how perfect Edward and Bella are, and how their love is perfect, when it barely comes across as love to me. Hooray!

message 22: by Amy (new) - rated it 1 star

Amy One of the MAJOR problems that I have with this story (among SO many others) is the overt romantasizing of the violence that Edward is constantly projecting towards Bella. Even worse is her response to it. It's not, "He might turn me into a vampire - that makes me feel all hot and sexy because, like, vampires are totally hot and stuff," it's, "He literally wants to kill me - like in a really particularly vulgar and intimate way - yet I am turned on." That is f-ed up.

Monika said, "Yes, Edward wanted to kill her but he was a [vampire:]." Let's try that again. "Yes, Edward wanted to kill her but he was a murderer." "Yes Edward wanted to rape her but he was a rapist." Kind of weird right. Actually kind of totally f-ed up I think.

Kirstin I don't get why people are not allowed to dislike this book. It's fluff, pure and simple. Not everyone likes literary Twinkies and that's okay.

Unclench, y'all.

message 24: by Rachel (new)

Rachel I met a girl on the train today who was not only stunned that I hadn't read Twilight, but said "I don't read books much, but I think Twilight may have tainted all books for me because I'll never like another book as much."

*quietly dying inside*

message 25: by Clare (new) - rated it 1 star

Clare AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAGH. Oh, girl. That pained me long-distance. I can hear your writerly heart crying out. :D

message 26: by Hater#1 (new)

Hater#1 I agree with your argument 100%
I am ashamed to share the same age group as some of the girls who gush over how hot and how sweet Edward is. He is a jerk who can't seem to grow up now matter how old he freaking gets.
And every time Bella describes his beauty using overly-fluffed words, or heck, anytime she SPEAKS makes me want to peel my skin off!
Agh, I really want to kick something.....

Aurora I actually love this book for all the reasons you hate it. To each her own I suppose. Don't read the rest of them if you don't want to, that seems like an awful waste of time - the writing doesn't get any better.

message 28: by Jenn (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jenn ok, im just putting this up cuz i forgot it on my first comment.

DONT BE A HATER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
there we go, thats about it, but seriously chelsey. ur review is just 9 paragraphs of hate! the part about 'reading just to back up how much u hate it', thats just retarded! i get u want an opinion, but still! if u hate it stop reading!!!!! i mean come on! duh!!!!!!! seriously!
watever, i dont get why im letting ur review bug me, i love twilight so i shouldnt be bothered by other peoples thoughts on it. its just infuriating!grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr...............

message 29: by Jory (new)

Jory Dayne Like, listen I get u want 2 like be like a professional writur, but im like, the creator of a stephanie meyer fan club, and she is like... a pro at weird. A PRO chelsey. A PRO. Now, IF u will excuse me I have other h8rs 2 go harass.

Sunflower Great review. Better than the book!

message 31: by Sami (new) - rated it 5 stars

Sami I loved the book Twilight and the 3 books following Twilight. I don't mean to be rude but I do agree a bit with Jenn because some people read this to see if they should read a book and if you write badly about it, they might not read a book they may have really loved. Though I do think it is ncie that you explained it so that someone reading it can see what you hated about it. Like I said, please do not take this the wrong way. I just wanted to get my opinion out there. I do agree with you about one thing, it is really cool that they can't sleep at all. anyway, I like to read these to see why peopel hate this book so much and I guess I see why now. Thanks!

message 32: by Chanel (last edited Feb 25, 2009 02:56AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Chanel When someone is really in love, the flaws of the person they love does not matter to them. He could be rude and selfish etc but the girl knows who he really is ouside of that momentary persona.
Love should never be placed in a restricting box and labled to be a certain way. People love differently. Thats the beauty of it. In the first chapter of New Moon, Bella states that she cannot believe how fortunate she is to have Edward of all people in her life. When Love is restricted it often goes to the extreme when it is finally released. I don't know the character Bella well enough but if she was intended to be the girl that never got a date or never had someone else to love in that way before, then that begins to justify her actions.

I agree however with the comment made about the descriptions of his 'beauty'. I read one chapter of New Moon online and I noticed how many descriptions there where.

When Stephenie Meyer chose the name for Edward she was thinking about Mr Rochester in Jane Eyre by Charelotte Bronte, which I am coincedently reading at the moment. Mr Rocheste tells Jane at one point in Chapter 27 that he wold love her even if she was as mad as Bertha:

"Jane, my little darling (so I will call you, for so you are), you
don't know what you are talking about; you misjudge me again: it is
not because she is mad I hate her. If you were mad, do you think I
should hate you?"

"I do indeed, sir."

"Then you are mistaken, and you know nothing about me, and nothing
about the sort of love of which I am capable. Every atom of your
flesh is as dear to me as my own: in pain and sickness it would
still be dear. Your mind is my treasure, and if it were broken, it
would be my treasure still: if you raved, my arms should confine
you, and not a strait waistcoat--your grasp, even in fury, would
have a charm for me: if you flew at me as wildly as that woman did
this morning, I should receive you in an embrace, at least as fond
as it would be restrictive. I should not shrink from you with
disgust as I did from her: in your quiet moments you should have no
watcher and no nurse but me; and I could hang over you with untiring
tenderness, though you gave me no smile in return; and never weary
of gazing into your eyes, though they had no longer a ray of
recognition for me.

Maybe this is exactly how Bella feels.

Hilary Well said! I want to be friends with you. I honestly can't believe I have so many friends who like this book - it's disgusting.

Sheila Vazquez words.....

message 35: by C (new) - rated it 2 stars

C Wow...thank you for the honest review. Most people who have actually read Twilight, never read at all normally, so they have no idea that the writing itself was so awful.

message 36: by Edith (new) - rated it 1 star

Edith I think you got it wrong. It isn't a romance, it's a horror. Just imagine the world where vampires are falling in love with 17-year-old Americans (some sorry, because I didn't read the book I don't have the slightest clue if they do it in a body or this was just a exception). Such a sweet little sweethearts... Uhm. Children of the night should be ashamed of yourselfs. Just the idea... one is nearly dreading leaving his own house.

But enough of this, your review was excellent. Well-written and interesting (especially for sworn enemies of S. Meyer). Thanks for it! And sorry about my english... improvement in progress.

Cassie What is it that u hate about the book. I am not saying there is anything wrong with that i mean everyone has their own opion. i personaly loved it but doesn't mean every one has to. so i just want to know what it is that u hate about the book???

Nesrin L. Thnx, I am so glad I did read the reviews here, this way I can save the Money. Cheers! :)

Michaela Kenzie My friends and I use the books as our bibles they are the mean of life.

The only reason the character is empty was because Stephenie did that on purpose so you put your own personal traits into Bella. That way when you read it you feel like you are the character and you get more into the books.

Fist off, I would defiantly 100% recommend these books to young girls. It’s a great book, very well written about a strong 17 year old girl who falls in love. (Wow I didn’t know that a simple book could upset someone so much)

Secondly, I don’t know why it bothered you so much that she wanted to have sex, really, she was 19 years old that’s on adult, I think she should be allowed to do adult activities. Plus she was engaged to her boyfriend of 2 years and a virgin. Bella and Edward didn’t end up even sleeping together until they where married that’s more then most 16 year olds can say for them self’s. I think that’s a very good example of responsibility and self control (on Edward part especially). That teaches girls that it’s good to wait for the one you love.

As for, the relationship, between Edward and Bella. It was on of the most romantic love stories i have ever read, heard or seen. It was pure love and adoration; they both are will to risk everything including their own lives for each other. I think that is the most compassionate, selfless, loving things anyone could do for another human being. I have only met one couple like that I n my entire life and that’s my mother and father, they to meet when they were seventeen have me when they were nineteen , and look, they are still together. That’s a lot more then a lot of teens can say about their parents who have waited until they where In their twenties and thirties to get married and have a family.

Bella Swan, I don’t even know how to describe how well written she was. She is well, well just an ordinary girl who happens to find an amazing guy. What is so wrong about that? Just because you think everyone should be miserable dose not mean that because a make-believe character is happy you have to diss an entire series. Don’t you think it’s reasonable to too have your whole life tied up in your husband? She does have goals, did you read the books? Like one whole book her and Edward are look for collages. Goal? I think so. Passions, well how about her husband, daughter, best friend, and family, not those don’t seem like reasonable passions for a married woman! Not at all! Ambitions? Do you even know what ambitions are? Ambitions are an eager or strong desire to achieve something, is it just me or is Bella eager to marry Edward and have a strong desire to go be a vampire?, and dreams well I guess she doesn’t have any dreams even though the book talks about all her dreams! You put other than Edward but I don’t think she needs anything other then her family. Have you ever heard the saying “All you need is love”?

Edward, well yes he does have mood swings, but don’t you think you would too if you had to go through all that pain. (Read midnight sun and you will know what I mean) It is like shoving a red flaming hot metal bar down your throat every time she’s around. He loves her so much the goes through unbearable pain just to be with her. I think its romantic that he watches her sleep. Imagine if someone loved you so much that they thought watching you sleep was fascinating. I want to find my Edward.

I liked the story a lot and would never want to change one little bit of it. I do agree with you thought Carlisle’s and Alice’s stories are very compelling and they would make good main characters.

Last of all there is no reason in hell why, you, a little nobody with a sheer lack of creativity should be criticising a woman who is making billions of dollars on the books you are say are so horrible. Obviously they are not. So next time you want to criticise that much think, Stephenie Meyer-you-Stephenie Meyer-you.


message 40: by Elvishmaiden (last edited Apr 03, 2009 06:02PM) (new) - added it

Elvishmaiden I really like this book and I think you took out all of your feelings of hatrid in your review. Twilight is a great book. It has a wonderful plot, great characters, beautiful writing, good attention to detail and the 'idiocy' between Bella and Edward could actually be called love. They are teenagers! Their love is not going to be perfect as you are so obvisly expecting.

I am a writer myself and when I read Twilight I did not read it because I like fantasy and vampires but because I like to read books. I gave the book te judgment it deserved.

Yes, teir are things I do not like about the book but I have decided not to take sides and be a 'Twilight lover" or 'Twilight hater'

Instead I let others know what I thought of the book without sounding like a complete snob!

Lauren I liked twilight, but i dont understand people telling you too read the rest, they get progressively worse in my opinion. I think that for those who are able to get totally swept up in... well mostly just in Edward to be honest, the writing can be pretty much ignored. once Edward gets a little old some of the series' major floors become more apparent. I really do sympathize with everyone who disliked Bella, I grew less sympathetic towards her as the book went on, but i was just so relieved to escape from a world of intolerably "feisty" heroines.

message 42: by Ella (new) - rated it 5 stars

Ella M SHUT UP!!! i love twilight

message 43: by Beth (new)

Beth Durant Thanks for this review. At least there are some people out there who know a bad book when they see one.

Some of the comments above from the fans are ridiculous, "very well written" You're kidding, right?

Sherese I could not agree more with what you wrote, except for the fact you're willing to continue to torture yourself by reading more of this crap. Good Luck to you!

message 45: by Lee (new) - rated it 1 star

Lee You, madame, deserve 1 internets.

I wish I could have put all that into words that you did. Thank you for taking the time to do so.

Sophie Unfortunately, that argument won't work. If you don't finish the books, they tell you "Well, if you READ the books, you'd like them." But if you do read them to back you up they'll say "If you didn't like them, why did you read them then?" gggrrrrrrrrrr...

Sophie P.s. I agree that Twilight is a disgusting excuse for a piece of literature.

message 48: by Whitney (new)

Whitney I agree with about how people are making such a big deal about it. Some of my friends are like "when I grow up I want to be Bella". It is SO annoying. Bella is to obsessed with Edward. When I grow up, I do not want to be Bella.

The movie is even more of a joke

message 49: by Em (new) - rated it 5 stars

Em That's dumb. Nobody reads Twilight because of Stephanie Meyer's mechanics. They read it because it's the ideal New-Age fairytale. It's got what stories like Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty don't have. That the impossibility of this gorgeous I-can-have-anyone-if-I-wanted-to man loves this normal teenage girl, who wants nothing more than to just get through high school as painlessly as possible. That's lots of women's dream, isn't? That the man who loves you loves you for you, not your outsides. Not your body, not your money, or anything else. That's the magic of this book. They-lots of women and girls out there-find so much of Bella similar to themselves. Insecurities, dreams, and resignation for a completely mundane future, things that women relate to in Bella, keep us(them) rooting for her. That and loving Edward-because, frankly-if she gets Edward, in a way, we all get Edward.You see? Oh, and you reading the rest of the series just to dislike it even more and have more evidence to back up your rude arguments even more is the stupidest piece of bull crap I've ever heard. If you don't like a book, don't read the series! How hard is that? Really? While I agree with some of what you said, like, for instance, the part about controlling, yeah, Edward really needs to just chill out and give Bella her space and you know, other small things, I still think that you're being rude. So you didn't like it, big deal. There are lots of books that I've read that I didn't like, but did I write rude reviews about them? Uh, no!!!! So yeah, maybe, you have a point. But you know what? So do I!!! And just as a little head's up for everybody out there, while a majority of girls may not read normally, I do. And so does my lovely little crew of nerd friends. So get over yourself and all your hatin' and go read something that doesn't cause you to write rude reviews for God's sake.

message 50: by Lee (new) - rated it 1 star

Lee What you're saying is contradictory.

You claim the appeal of Edward is that he's a gorgeous dream-come-true, and then say that it's awesome how he doesn't care about Bella's looks...

do looks matter or don't they?

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