I never would’ve guessed I’d see this day. Honestly I thought I was done with Twilight. I haven’t read the books since I was 14 and it’s just a series I never thought I’d be interested in reading again.
But then 2020 came around and this does seem to be the year of rereads for me. I think the nostalgia of being a teenager with no cares or worries has really got me through these past few months and Twilight was such a pivital moment in my reading journey, I couldn’t just leave it out.
There’s also the fact that Midnight Sun, the book we thought was lost to us forever, is being released in August and while I had/still have zero interest in her gender swap book ‘Life After Death’, I am intrigued by Midnight Sun so I want to finish rereading this series before then..
Anyway, here are my thoughts on my reread of Twilight. Beware, there will be spoilers and lots of sarcasm!
What Is It About?
Bella Swan, who believes she’ll never ‘fit in’ anywhere because of the pale ‘translucency’ of her skin moves to a town called Forks, where literally everyone is pale because it never stops raining there. On the first day at her new school she sits next to a boy who literally wants to murder her and they fall in love. Step aside Shakespeare, THIS is how you write a great love story.
When Did I First Read It?
As I said, I was 14 and just getting into reading. By this point I’d only read Jacqueline Wilson, Harry Potter and Percy Jackson so this was first proper YA novel and I definitely credit it for making me up my reading game. It wasn’t long after reading this that I made my first blog post.
For a little while this was my life. I had a crush on ever male character in here (and so did you don’t deny it), I read a shit ton of fanfiction (some of it better written than the book I’m not realising), and the movies, omg I was obsessed with those movies!
What Do I Think Now?
As you might be able to guess from my tone I think my reading taste/standard has changed quite a lot since I was 14. I knew before going into the reread my opinions would probably be different. I know the relationship is problematic and the rep of Native Americans is not great. If I didn’t have that nostalgic connection to this, I never would’ve made it past the prologue.
The writing is so bad guys. She uses the same adjectives over and over, the structures kind of messy and there are some seriously cringy moments I’d completely forgotten about. It was dry & dull which made the book drag so much.
Bella. Is. The. Worst. And I know it only goes downhill from here. She’s so dramatic and whiny and thinks she’s better than other teenagers because shes read Wuthering Heights and Jane Austen. She’s disrepectful to her Dad and so judgemental to all the people who are just trying to make her feel welcome. Kristen Stewart made her so much more likeable.
It’s weird because I remember a big part of me liking Bella and Edwards relationship was the fact that Bella acted ‘beyond her years’ so she suited Edward perfectly. But now that I’m actually older than Bella is in book one I know that’s not the case at all. She’s such a typical teenager and honestly that makes the whole relationship seem a bit manipulative? She’s just so much more vulnerable and naive than I remember.
While I know the romance is definitely problematic I do feel the connection between him and Bella in that she sees the good in him and knows he’s not a monster despite how much he hates himself and what he is. But I still can’t believe this is the sort of relationship I wanted as a teenager. We literally give so much credit to Edward to have the restraint not to murder her and that’s what I called romance?!
You already see in this first book that Bella is self-sacrificing to a dangerous level and that plays a role throughout all the books and honestly it just makes me want to reach into this, give her a shake and go ‘girl, get a grip.’ She’s just constantly so willing to put herself in danger of being killed for literally no reason. She’s so stupid!
I think the movies made both characters a lot more serious. Edward is sarcastic and Bellas sense of humour is so dark and twisted! The things she said made me raise my eyebrows a couple of times. For example Edward mentions getting lunch and Bella PUTS HER HANDS AROUND HER KNECK AND LOOKS AT HIM WITH FEAR. WTF?
Rereading the book has given me a whole new appreciation for the movies. They really improved on pretty much everything so now I’m dying to rewatch them! There was so many things that fell flat. The whole Vampire reveal is just a chat in the car on the way back from Seattle and Bella basically blacks out during the fight with James so we don’t see even any action there.
This reading experience was kind of what I expected. I enjoyed myself because again nostalgia and it made me feel like a teenager again. But this series really didn’t stand the test of time for me. Nevertheless, I’m excited to start book two!
What do you think of Twilight? Have you read it recently?