Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
My Rating: 3/5 Stars
So what can I say about TWILIGHT that hasn’t already been said? Honestly, probably not a whole hell of a lot. But has that ever stopped me? No way. But I realize I’m coming to the party after the house has already burned down, the cops have shown up, and they’re proceeding to take witness statements from a bunch of half-stunned, half-drunk teenagers. On the other hand, that’s not so bad either. Reviews are all about honest opinions, and I certainly have one of those.
Let’s get this out of the way upfront: Like many folks by now, I have friends that love the series, friends that tolerate it, friends that hate it, and friends that will never read it. But with any book worth its mashed potatoes and gravy, it will have devoted fans, passionate enemies, and folks that politically resemble Switzerland and Canada. When it comes to books that have reached a broad audience, it’s the circle of life. And for the amount of money Stephenie Meyer now has shoved down the front of her jeans, she’s probably not going to complain too hard.
So what’s my take on the series? I did my best to reserve judgment until after I’d read TWILIGHT, which by the way wasn’t easy, since it has only managed to spawn four novels and five movies, the first four of which have grossed a little over a billion dollars domestic. And I’ll give you the bottom line, in case you want to stop reading sooner rather than later: I wouldn’t call it a well-written series, but I was absorbed in Bella’s world from the very beginning, and I found myself flipping pages like a flapjack connoisseur at the local Denny’s. I really wanted to know where Stephenie Meyer would take me, and I was more than willing to hop on board and go along for the ride.
So why does the series work? We can spend all day analyzing it from a multitude of different angles, but here’s the one undisputable point: She connected with a large group of readers who had either experienced a teenage crush firsthand or knew someone who had. Depending on how you look at it, I was fortunate (or unfortunate) enough to have an all-consuming, all-encompassing relationship a number of years ago. Am I a better person for it? It’s really hard to say, but I ended up learning a hell of a lot from that relationship, and I wouldn’t be where I am now had that relationship continued on its sea bound voyage. So in the end, I could relate to Bella and Edward, and the devoted Twihard fanbase.
As for the rating, I feel like I should provide a slight explanation. I debated hard about giving it more than three stars, but in the end I just couldn’t bring myself to do it. It’s a good novel, and a rather light read, but there was nothing great about it. Nothing that really made it stand out for me. Now I know there are probably quite a few people who will disagree with me wholeheartedly about my previous statement, and like Ms. Meyer, I’m okay with that.