Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Books: New Moon by Stephenie Meyer

I have heard quite a lot of hype regarding Stephenie Meyer's Twilight Series so I decided to check them out for myself. I often do not rely on word of mouth when it comes to books; I just have to read them for myself to form my own opinion.

I decided to skip on the ebooks and borrow all 4 of Meyer's books. Unfortunately Twilight, the first book in the series wasn't available so I decided to skip it and start reading the second book, New Moon. Perhaps this wasn't a good idea because I formed a different opinion regarding the protagonist, Edward.

If you haven't read the book yet, I advice you to skip reading so as not to spoil your fun.

The Twilight series is basically about star-crossed lovers; Romeo and Juliet, if you will. The twist is that the male protagonist, Edward Cullen, is a vampire while the female protagonist, Bella Swan, is human. That explains why both of them can't be together. All throughout the series, I expect a lot of reference to Shakespeare's play Romeo and Juliet.

New Moon starts with Bella having a dream/nightmare when she turned 18. This is important to note because Edward is 17 and will never turn 18. On her birthday, Bella doesn't want anyone to celebrate her birthday, especially Edward's family (a group of vampires are called a coven but in Meyer's book, she refers to the Cullen's as family). Edward's family consists of six vampires, which is said to be the biggest coven outside that of the Volturi, the ruling vampires coven.

Alice, Edward's sister, decided to throw a party for her but it backfired when Bella cut herself. It is interesting to note that the Cullen's are what Meyer's call good vampires because they refuse to kill a human to slake their thirst. From what I have gathered, all six of them have trained themselves to only hunt when they really need to. The party ended badly, with all five vampires leaving the room and Carlisle, the head of the family, stitching up Bella's injury. This scene marked the end of Edward and Bella's relationship because the Cullen's have decided to move. Edward even told Bella that he didn't love her anymore.

In the months that ensued after the Cullen's left, Bella was like a ghost of her former self, a shell, if you will. However, she made a friend with someone interesting. His name is Jacob and he helped Bella get over Edward but there is a catch, Jacob became a werewolf, the sworn enemy of the vampires.

My View
Now, I will not continue to make my own synopsis of the book because it in this part that I definitely didn't enjoy. Perhaps, it's because I skipped reading Twilight and started on New Moon first. It's just that as the story unfolds, I don't see how Edward could have loved Bella. There is nothing in the book that shows his love to her, only that he says he loves her so much and he is protecting her. In fact, I can't help on rooting for Jacob and Bella to be together and I believe that they are a perfect pair. Not that I have anything against Edward but I just don't see his love showing in the book, even when he told Bella in the end that she was the light of his life, something or other.

There was a part in the book where Bella and Alice went to Volterra to save Edward from the Volturi when he learned that Bella died, when in truth, she didn't. It was interesting to note that Bella is not receptive to the powers of the vampires. I also read in Meyer's website that this was one of the reasons Edward fell in love with her in the first place. That and her scent.

Meyer fans would probably disagree with me but this was what I felt was confusing in the book. I know I need to read Twilight to get a clearer view on how Edward and Bella came to be in love. I also thought the Bella's character was pretty weak. I am definitely more of an independent character than of someone who simply bows down to the wishes of others. What I find quite disturbing is also the fact that Bella seemed fickle. It is pretty obvious in this book that she seems like she is simply using Jacob to forget Edward and when Edward returns, she leaves Jacob so that she can be with Edward. I find that callous and cruel.

The book ends with a confrontation between Jacob and Edward and an understanding that they will not kill each other unless Bella becomes a vampire. A veiled threat, so to speak. Perhaps there will be something brewing in the mist this time because Bella has taken into her mind that she wants to become one of the damned.

I have the next book Eclipse and I am definitely planning to read the one next.