Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Twilight - Vampires for Teenagers

My sister has me listening to the audiobooks of the Twilight series. She adores them. I’ve never seen her like this about anything before. I’ve just finished the first one, and I have to say the writing is a little amateurish. It’s nothing I haven’t told Cori, so I won’t be putting my thoughts about her favorite book on front street without her knowing about it. It’s not the best vampire book I’ve ever come across, but it’ll do. I liked Dracula by Bram Stoker best. It’s so eerie and moody.

Twilight is the teenaged girl’s vampire novel. Bella, the heroine, is a teenager, and her boyfriend Edward was made a vampire when he was only 17. He, of course, is achingly handsome and much deeper than anyone else she’s ever met. She thinks she’s a plain Jane, but she’s obviously attractive enough to catch the eye of at least four guys within the first couple of weeks at her new school, and they’re all tripping over each other to ask her to the dance (even though it’s actually a Sadie Hawkins-type dance). So, I’m thinking she’s not so much of a Plain Jane. Some of the plot points are very Sweet Valley High. I remember hearing an interview with Francine Pascal (the creator of the Sweet Valley High series) on NPR on All Things Considered or Fresh Air, one or the other. She said that she learned a long time ago that all books written about teenagers had to end at the Prom, or at least at The Big Dance. So, where does the last scene in Twilight take place? Of course it’s AT THE PROM!!

There’s been something bothering me about the book, though. It finally occurred to me last night. Edward, the 17 year-old achingly handsome and deep vampire, was born in 1901. He was dying from the Spanish Flu in 1918 when he was made a vampire - BY HIS DOCTOR (first do no harm, my patootie). What hit me is that he’s 90 years older than his new non-vampire girlfriend! How is that acceptable? I don’t care if he does just look like a very pale 17 year-old boy, he’s still 107 years old. What if he actually looked his age? That would be scary wrong! Like, worse than Anna Nicole Smith and her freaky old-man husband wrong. (Now try getting THAT picture out of your head.)

So, now I’m all preoccupied with the creepy May-December-(5 years later)–ishness rather than the young true love romance that I think was the aim of the author, and it’s permeating all their interactions for me. Sucks!

Seriously, though, if Edward really looked like a 107 year-old man instead of an achingly handsome 17 year-old guy, Bella would so not be in love with him!

By-the-way, Edward is achingly handsome. Did you know that?


Diane said...

You know he's Cedric Diggory, right? And, my friend, Cedric Diggory is WAY better looking than Anna Nicole's old fart. Anyway, this cracked me up (and I needed a laugh today). I've read several posts about these books and it seems that even if the love doesn't start out big, it grows with each book. I've been thinking about getting them... after I read the other 212 books waiting on my nightstand.

Mel said...

I didn't realize he was Cedric Diggory until last Thursday even though I've seen countless pictures of him, and Cori even has him as her desktop background. (Obviously it runs in the family.) The funny thing is that I had wondered about the choice of actor and I wrote this e-mail to Cori about ethnicity at the turn of the 19th to the 20th century in America and how there hadn't been a huge mix of ethnicities at the point Edward was born, and how I'd come to think of this guy as a good choice because I think he looks distinctly UK-ish. Meanwhile, in my mind, I'm actually picturing the guy that played Cedric Diggory as my model for what I was saying to her in the e-mail, but I didn't mention him because I knew she hadn't seen any HP movies.

Imagine my duh-ness when I went on IMDB and found out that that was the very guy that would be playing Edward, I just hadn't recognized him! So, so dumb sometimes. Or maybe just really slow.

Diane, you know you know me!!!!!!

Okay, maybe a Glen reference wasn't the best to make right now.

Protege said...

I seemed to have completely missed these Twilight romance novels and movie.;) I am otherwise quiet interested in the mysterious, vampires included.:)
But I have to say, that even though he is Cedric Diggory, I find the mature vampires more attractive, than any that looks 17 years old.;)

Mel said...

Z - I'd missed them too until about 2 months ago and then it seemed like they were just everywhere. I liked the Anne Rice vampire books, the first 3 the most, and the ones she wrote about the Mayfair witches. I read The Hunger, gosh, 20 years ago, and liked that too. These are fairly tame for Vampire stories (and written by a Mormon), so they're perfectly aimed at young women just on the brink of, hmmm, blossoming, I guess. A werewolf figures into the subsequent books pretty significantly, so it seems she's got the mysterious at least partly covered.

Heather said...

I used to be HOOKED on Sweet Valley High. I started reading them when I was seven and Mama took them away from me because they were "too mature." Haha! :)
(Yes, I was a book worm even at an early age.)
I've been thinking about reading these, but have wondered if the anguished teenage love scenes would bother me.

Heather said...

Award for you at my place!!! Come get it!! :)