I may be the only person above a fifth-grade reading level who can’t manage to burn through Twilight in a day. I am pretty busy, I guess, but mainly I’m pretty bored with the book so far. Call me an exposition junkie, but what is the deal with Bella moving to Forks in the first place? By page 45 or so, it’s just faintly implied that she doesn’t get along with her stepfather, but you’d think after talking so much about how she belongs in Phoenix and how afraid she is of her dad being awkward you’d think she’d mention what could allow her to overcome such strong disgust.
So far, I’m not really into Bella either. I get being bored by your surroundings. I get hanging out with people just to fit in. But Bella Swan reads like a Mary Sue who is bored to be in her own fanfiction. She’s so beautiful and pale (and didn’t think she’d fit in, despite having been to Forks before and presumably seeing how pasty people are in the Northwest). She already knows everything she’s being taught in school. She knows where the school is just by guessing. She’s a good cook and picks up her father’s slack. All the boys just flock around her but she doesn’t really like them. I automatically distrust characters who describe their own physical appearance at least a little, and my distrust grows exponentially with every favorable self-description. Maybe that’s a personal issue.
To be fair, Bella is clumsy—or at least she says she’s clumsy. There’s not a lot of proof for all that Bella says she is, to be honest. It’s a classic tell-not-show situation. She’s clumsy enough that one volleyball game has everyone in gym class avoiding passing to her. She’s clumsy enough that she needs to drive a tank just to stay alive. But all I have as a reader is her word. Does she ever swerve? Does she ever run a stop sign? She just understands everything in school, but displays very little actual intelligence, which makes her very hard to read. When she casually remarks that her mother is part albino and then references it later, I couldn’t tell if she was joking. She says she’s sarcastic all the time, but she’s really…um…not.
I have to say, as someone who dislikes to be disliked, I am surprisingly un-skeptical of Bella’s avoidance of that broody, handsome boy with the death glare. Sometimes her dwelling on it seems a little weird—like expecting someone besides her father to be in the house—but I can actually relate to being put off by eye-daggers.
And can I just say, I think it’s kind of funny that Bella is so proud of her old Chevy. I kind of expected her to think something like, “America! FUCK YEAH!” Notice how those rich kids and those vampires drive those foreign cars…
Well we’ll see how things go. I’m just getting to the Edward bits, where perhaps I will be bowled over by the AWESOME POWER OF HIS SPARKLY BEAUTY.
“The next day was better…and worse” (29). DUN DUN DUUUUUUN!
“Or maybe Forks was making me crazy in the literal sense of the word” (46). As opposed to…what? The metaphorical sense of the word? Is the distinction necessary?