Jade's Reviews > The Twilight Saga

The Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer
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's review
Jul 17, 2012

did not like it
bookshelves: waste-of-time, heinous-atrocity-to-the-human-race, ya-fantasy

I read the Twilight series soon after Breaking Dawn came out. I'm going to put my thoughts about it behind the cut, as there are heavy spoilers for the later books in the series.

I recently came to the conclusion of why I didn't like the Twilight series.

For the first three books, the obstacles that Bella would have to face if she were to become a vampire were constantly brought up (to name a few): Insatiable human blood thirst, risking breaking the treaty, losing her family, and losing her friends.

Apparently, if you spend enough time fearing that you will become a monster, then you just magically won't become one according to Stephanie Meyers. I thought that we would get to see Bella's struggle to keep her humanity, but instead the writer waved her magic pen and decided that nope, it wasn't going to be a big deal after all. Check. If one of the pack imprints on a person, no one from the pack was allowed to harm that person, so Jake imprinting on Renesme nicely got rid of the problem of that pesky little treaty violation. Check. I guess Charley was okay with the changes, but didn't want to know what they were. After spending three books terribly concerned about her, he suddenly seemed not to care. What kind of self-respecting, over-protective father wouldn't ask what was going on? Check. Her so-called friends weren't even mentioned after the wedding. Not that she really cared about them anyway, seeing as how she completely forgot about them in New Moon for a few months. Check. If you're building something up for three previous books, you should at least have some sort of struggle in the last book. But no, these were wrapped up all nice and neat with a little bow.

Throughout New Moon and Eclipse, she literally could not decide between Edward and Jacob. She said that she loved both. Ultimately, she went with Edward. So there was this huge build up of Bella being attracted to both for two entire books, and then suddenly when she changed into a vampire, *poof* it was neatly taken care of. As a vampire, she found Jacob's scent repulsive and he was no longer pleasantly warm but too hot. Also, after the birth of Renesme, she no longer loved him or was attracted to him in any way, because apparently the part of her that was like that was now Renesme. Then, Jacob found Bella repulsive because she smelled like a disgusting vampire. He was no longer attracted to her, because he imprinted on Renesme. Well, that love triangle was tied up nicely, don't you think? Completely realistic, no? I didn't think so either. I guess the lesson here that girls were supposed to learn is that if you're having a tough time deciding between a guy you'd have to change to be with and the one you wouldn't, go with the one that you have to change yourself for because those feelings for the one you didn't have to change to be with will just evaporate the second you change. It's like magic, don't you know? I seem to be saying that quite a bit...

Then there were the two main love interests themselves, and their relationships with Bella. First is Edward. He found her fascinating because he couldn't read her mind and he wanted to know what was going on inside there. Understandable, but then he creeped on her by watching her sleep. Personally, if someone admitted to doing that to me, I'd call the police. Then he's controlling. He not only told her she can't do something, he went out of his way to make sure she complied. He took some sort of plug out of her truck so she couldn't drive to the reservation to see Jacob. Then there was the time that he broke up with her because he felt he was putting her in danger. She said she didn't care, and really it should have been her choice. He left her suffering from depression for months while he was away. He forced her to marry him, even though she didn't want to. Edward was an unrealistic ideal that no boy could possibly live up to when dating a girl Twihard. He was beautiful, he won't age, he won't gain weight, was incredibly wealthy, and refused to have sex until after marriage. Second is Jacob, who had much more personality. He let her make the choice of whether or not to use the bikes (until it becomes clear that she's not quite right in the head). He also urged her to not abandon Charley, or her friends. He was there to pick up the pieces Edward left behind when they had broken up. He was more realistic, because he wasn't doting on her every second of every day. He had a bond with his pack, and his friends whom he hung out with when Bella was not around. Jacob also worked on his Rabbit and various vehicles, at the same time as going to school to learn things he didn't all ready know for decades. He was impulsive, passionate, and loyal. He tried to push Bella away for her own safety when he first phased, but soon realised that the decision of whether or not they should hang out was not his to make so he let her choose, and was fine with the decision. He didn't constantly whinge about it. Some Team Edward supporters would say "But Jacob was controlling too, he told Charley about the bikes so that he'd punish Bella." Put yourself in Jake's shoes. He despised Edward. When Edward broke up with Bella, she fell apart and went into a depression for several months. He spent that time trying to put Humpty Dumpty together again. Then, when Charley and the people on the Reservation (who were kind and friendly to Bella during her depression) needed her the most, she left witthout a second thought to save Edward from his own selfishness (aka suicide... did he not think of his family at all?) Wouldn't you be even a tiny bit angry or hurt? Jacob was 15 at this point. He was a teenager, he's allowed to act a little immature like tattling on her to get her in trouble, unlike Edward who after 100 years should know better.

I know it seems as though I'm on Team Jacob, but I'm truthfully not any more. It would have been much better for the books (and Bella would have therefore been a good role model) if she said, "You know what? My entire sense of self-worth is based upon whether or not these two boys like me. It's unhealthy. I need to base it on something else, so I'm not emotionally crippled if one of them leaves/falls for someone else. Being alone is a scary thought right now, but it's what I need to do for me." That's why I like Tamora Pierce's heroines, not all of them who have romantic interests in the books end up with someone by the end of the novels. If they do end up with someone, they don't just settle for the first one that comes along, either.

Bella was the worst role model ever. She spent all her time worrying about whether first Edward, then Jacob liked her. She ditched her own friends the minute she and Edward started to date. When they broke up, she was reduced to a suicidal schizophrenic (jumping off cliffs just to see/hear Edward). Teenagers don't take that long to get over a relationship, especially one that was for only a few months. I could see depression and whatnot taking over for that long if it was a married couple because they had more invested in the relationship... Bella also worried too much about what other people thought about her, which was her reason for not wanting to marry the vampire she supposedly loved. She also fell to pieces again when she went for a while without Jacob speaking to her. Then, magically once she turned into a vampire (read: changed everything about herself to be with Edward), all her problems just disappeared. Tell me if I'm wrong about this, but that's a horrible message to send to young girls (change yourself to be with your man, and you'll live happily ever after).

There was also the problem of the Volturi. From the end of New Moon on, there was this build up to a big battle with them, which was over in just a few minutes, with only one casualty which we had no emotional investment in. It was nothing like the heart-wrenching battle for Hogwarts at the end of Deathly Hallows, where we lost Colin Creevey, Tonks, Remus, and Harry for a time... I was expecting both Edward and Bella to die, and Jacob to raise Renesme (which is wrong on a few levels) based on the lead up (and repeated allusions to Romeo and Juliet) but no, it was a perfectly happy ending and everyone except the Volturi were perfectly happy at the end of the perfect little story. Bella didn't become the queen instead of a pawn, like Meyers wanted the cover of Breaking Dawn to suggest. She just became even more of a Mary-Sue than she all ready was (I took the Original Fiction Litmus Test for Bella, she's an Uber-Sue).

Just because you have an idea of the end of a story (in this case, Bella, Edward, and Renesme) when you first go to write, doesn't mean you have to keep it that way even after the first draft is done. I thought that was Writing/Revision 101. The only reason I kept reading the books was because I hoped Bella would smarten up and decide not to be with Edward.When that didn't happen, I kept reading in the hope that at least it would end like Romeo and Juliet because of all the allusions... but no such luck there. I did like learning about the other vampires and their pasts, as well as all the Quileute legends. Too bad the secondary characters were so under-used, as they were the most interesting.

This book is filled with plot lines with tons of build up which were wrapped up much too quickly and easily, a Mary-Sue for a main character, a love interest that is too high of an expectation to live up to for any guy, under-used secondary characters, and just shoddy writing overall. I doubt I'll be picking up "The Host" or any other book written by her any time soon.

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