Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Twilight

Book: Twilight
Author: Stephanie Meyer
Like/Don't Like: Dear Stephanie Meyer, Please edit. EDIT! EDIT! EDIT! Love, Rachel

Alright. I get it. I see why every single person on the planet has recommended this book to me. The story is interesting. Edward is dreamy. I wish I could fall in love with a vampire. Now will you please leave me alone?

It's not the story I have a problem with, it's the writing (okay, maybe a little bit of the story, but they're minor points and mostly because of the writing so I'm not even going to touch them) Which means that this is purely a technical issue I have with it and if you're not like me and certain writing styles don't ruin a book for you then by all means read it and love it. I'm not judging you at all. I want you to love this book. Really. I have a load of friends who love this book and I don't want to offend any of them so I hope the "it's not you, it's me" excuse flies here.

How about I talk about what I did like? It's quick and easy. The perfect book for summer. And it's romantic. And interesting in that I've never read a vampire book before. But it's not actually a vampire book, it's a romance book. A big fat romance book. You should keep this in mind.

Which leads me to what I didn't like. You remember that friend of yours who started dating a guy and for the first month or so they couldn't stop cuddling and whispering and touching each other and every time you were with them you wanted to gag and you would talk about them with your other friends, like, "For crying in the mud! We're in the middle of church and they can't stop massaging each other!"? That is totally this book. It's like I was stuck on a very long road trip with Bella and Edward and all they could say was, "I love you," "I love you more," "No, I love you more." "Uh-uh. I love YOU more." "Schmoopy." "No, you're a schmoopy." "But you're my schmoopy." "Stop it schmoopy!" "No, you stop it schmoopy!" Cuddle, cuddle, snuggle, snuggle, gaze longingly into each other's eyes. Gag! I'm totally fine with a page or two of that and I know exactly how true to form it is, but 200 pages is ridiculous.

And enough with the descriptions. The book never shuts up. It is never just, "'Blah, blah, blah,' said Bella." Instead it's "'Blah, blah, blah,' whispered Bella as she looked deep into his golden eyes and touched his perfectly sculpted hand." Every, and I really do mean every, conversation went on like this.

You see, I'm a less is more girl when it comes to books. I like to use my imagination a little and this book never lets you. It tells you everything. Every class Bella has, the path that she takes at school, the friends she sees in the hallways, what she cooks for dinner, the clothes that she's wearing, the gas mileage her truck gets. I know that this is a common flaw in a lot of first books but it's not one that I deal very well with. It wouldn't be so bad if it didn't get in the way of the story but when 50% of the book is describing things like how gorgeous Edward is, I get a little annoyed.

And now for some examples of things that nearly made me give it all up.

She would not stop talking about his eyes and so I started jotting down a few of the descriptions: ocher, deep golden honey, darker than butterscotch, deep gold, burning gold, blazing gold, dark golden, and - my personal favorite - liquid topaz. LIQUID TOPAZ!

How about this one: "The light of the setting orb glittering off his skin in ruby-tinged sparkles." Are you kidding me?

Or..."I didn't feel like mentioning that my stomach was already full -- of butterflies."

And do people really gulp when they're taken aback? Because Bella was always gulping, as in, "He touched my arm. I gulped." Really? Like she's some kind of old-timey cartoon.

If I were in a Stephanie Meyer book right now it would go something like this: "Rachel sighed and rolled her grass colored eyes, tossed the weighty licorice black book to the side of the couch and sarcastically whispered, 'Looks like someone found her thesaurus."

20 comments:

Chris said...

OK, so I never read the book and I probably never will, but I'm truly grateful that you took the time to read it, just so I could be entertained by your review!

Nora's world said...

I 100% agree and am refusing to read the other books. I'm rebelling against the masses!

AJ says... said...

THough I actually liked the book (and now feel guilty for it) I really loved your review.

Tell me again why you aren't a writer???

Ms. Liz said...

Oh Rachie -

How do I love thee? With every twirl and glisten of my stormy water blues I do! I couldn't agree more with your review and I remarkably still really liked the book. I, too, approached nausium with the golden eyes references and remember thinking, "with all this description I still don't have a picture". I'm glad you read it and get it now though.

Empress of Venus said...

I think you may be throwing out the baby with the bathwater here babes. Granted the girl is annoying and I always found her so, but she's 17. I really marvel at how well a 33-year old mom got into a 17 year old's head. Unless she's still there... all in all, I'm glad you read it and will still hug you when I see you, because no one likes Bella lol.

samandholly said...

My rule is that if there are more than three adjectives in the first sentence, the book gets closed. As for this book, I love a good vampire story as much as the next guy, but a teeny-bopper vampire love story? Pass.

jessi said...

I had almost convinced myself to give this one a try, but you have confirmed everything I thought I would dislike in the book and now i don't know again. I probably need to read it just so people will stop buggin me about it! Thanks for the entertaining review!

Rachel said...

Holly - Solidarity Sister!

AJ - Oh, I really didn't want to make people feel guilty for liking it. I was just pointing out why I didn't like it, knowing full well that I care way too much about stuff like that and that most people don't and I kind of wish I were one of them.

Ems - It's not that I didn't like Bella, it's that even with all the description the only thing I knew about her was that she was clumsy and could cook.

Jessica Gold Brown - (or, as SM would call you, Jessica Flaming Topaz Chocolate Pudding) I was like you, flip-flopping between not wanting to and feeling like I needed to. I finally broke when a friend gave it to me for my birthday and told me I had to. And another friend reminded me how much I love to have an opinion on things and I couldn't have one unless I read it.

Rach said...

I'm glad you read the book, and loved your review. We are definitely on the same page. I love that you listed the million different descriptions SM used for Edward's eyes. Gag me. And the whole making out thing, where you can handle a little but then it's too much. (As a roommate that was, I'm sure, guilty of that whole sitch, I am very sorry.) Thanks for your review. My question is, are you going to read the rest of the books? Can you endure 1800 more pages of this?

Liz W. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Liz W. said...

Rachel, this is one of THE FUNNIEST POSTS YOU HAVE EVER WRITTEN!!!!

I was laughing my head off!

And this is exactly why I haven't bothered to read to the books. Too schmultzy for me...

Stephanie said...

There are a group of "Mommys" in my ward who are obsessed with the book. We're (umm, I mean They're) planning on going to the movie dressed in all black with fake tattoos on buxom chests that say "Edward" or "Vampire love" or something.

I think that's healthy, don't you?

Silvestre Family said...

Thank you for validating everything I thought the book would be. I have not read it, and I dont think my gag reflexes would let me even if I wanted to. Sorry to all the women who have been pressuring me to read the "greatest book of all time".

Mr. Hall said...

Ha ha ha!!! This is the best book review ever!!! I can't wait to find out what you have to say about "The Solitaire Mystery." I am totally cool with you lambasting it if you don't like it. I think it is a great book (TSM that is, I've never read "Twilight" and doubt that I ever will), but I appreciate your honest wit when it comes to such things, so fire away when you get the chance! :)

Jenny said...

I tolerated most of the gag-worthy parts in Twilight, but the other books made it overwhelmingly impossible to ignore. If I weren't so compulsive about finishing what I start I would never have bothered with Eclipse or Breaking Dawn after I read New Moon. Darn my upbringing!

By the way, I'm glad we have a mutual friend in Rachel 'cause now I get to read your blogs. Love 'em!

Heather said...

HAHA! This is one of the funniest things I have ever read--especially the ending paragraph! Thanks for giving in and reading it (even though I probably never will) and giving us all something entertaining to read!
I'm still not what exactly it is that turns me off about this book...Probably just the fact that EVERYONE is in love with it...

Anonymous said...

I am an adult (26) and I read the entire book series. I agree that Stephenie Meyer needs to EDIT. She drones on and on and it is extremely boring at times. I also found that Bella was annoying and not very bright.

Fate's Child said...

I totally love your review of this book. I don't like the novels at all.

The Katzbox said...

Having read all of the books, despite NOT liking the lead character (Bella), I laughed out loud at your review...LOVED IT....thoroughly entertaining....and yea, why AREN'T your writing?

April and Wes said...

bwhahahahahahahahahahahahaa..... thank you.