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Wednesday, March 28, 2012


by Stephanie Meyer
(1/5 stars)

Having just finished YA sensation "The Hunger Games" I thought I might as well check out that other recent YA sensation "Twilight" as well.  The two books are very different.  Where "The Hunger Games" has enough action to entertain male readers like me, "Twilight" is brimming with as much estrogen as any bodice-ripper on the Romance bookshelf.  It honestly has nothing to appeal to anyone with a Y chromosome.

In case you haven't heard yet, the plot involves Bella Swan moving to Forks, Washington to live with her dad.  She soon meets a boy named Edward Cullen who saves her from a car wreck and later being attacked by some thugs in a neighboring town.  There's just one problem:  Edward is a vampire.

Except in Meyer's universe vampires aren't like in "Dracula" living in coffins and whatnot.  Vampires are basically impervious superheroes.  They have super strength, super speed, and are pretty much invincible.  Even the sun doesn't hurt them.  That just makes them "sparkle" which is why they can't go out among humans where it's sunny.  Edward and his "family" in Forks are good vampires, living on animal not human blood.  Quickly Edward and Bella fall in love, blah blah blah.

Anyway, the weakest link in this book is Bella herself.  She's so [expletive] whiny!  And she has no self-esteem.  I marked a couple points on my Kindle where she's going on about what a "god" Edward is and how he's too good for her, so on and so forth.  Give me a break!  And despite a female author there seems something sexist that Bella's only skills are cooking and reading--and whining.  For some reason (because the plot calls for it) everyone at school likes her, despite that she is a bad friend, routinely bad-mouthing all of her new "friends" in her narration and ditching two of her "girlfriends" when they go to look for dresses to a dance.  Honestly, if Edward or any of the vampires had used her for a snack it would have been an improvement.

By contrast it's annoying how Edward and his family are more like the X-Men than traditional vampires.  Edward can read minds, his "sister" can see the future, a "brother" is the muscle, their "father" is the wise leader.  All they need are tights and capes.

But since this is a girl book, the vampire X-Men don't do any fighting on the pages.  The epic vampire fight at the end is completely glossed over.  Which reiterated this isn't a book for boys.

So I guess what I'm saying is you girls can keep your superhero vampires and sighing, whining "heroines."

That is all.

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