Despite the overwhelming majority of 4-2 in my poll about whether I should read Twilight, I have decided to overrule the naysayers, mostly because I don’t believe in judging a book based on other people’s judgments or the media or whatever preconceptions I might have. Sometimes the preconceptions turn out to be prescient, as with The Lost Symbol. But I’ve never appreciated how people condemned books like the Harry Potter series as anti-Christian or whatever, all without cracking the cover.
So I’m about fifty pages into the first Twilight book, helpfully donated by an anonymous friend. This way I won’t pour more money into the coffers of the Mormon Church, as my mother so adroitly pointed out. Thus far, I’m not inspired. The writing suffers from a lack of something — verve, maybe. It’s written in the first-person narrator voice, and I am going to make an absurd complaint: there’s too much narration! It’s relentless, just narration and observation of feelings, and I fully realize that these naturally belong in a first-person narrated book. And yet…
We don’t know that the vampire dude (Edward) is a vampire yet, just that he is beautiful and has a musical voice. We know that the protagonist, Bella (you dare not call her Isabella — too princessy?), is insufferably aloof and has the obnoxious habit of calling her dad by his first name and, in one confusing instance, by his title (Chief Swan). As my TV idol, Liz Lemon, would say, “What the what?”
I’ll keep you apprised if it gets better. So far, I’m not sold. Maybe I need to hold out for the vampire bits, although in general I have eschewed vampires and werewolves and all that stuff. For the record, I hated Frankenstein in high school, not so much because of the monster as for the contrivance of the triple-boxed narrative. God, I am snooty.