Going into this right after Twilight, I was begging and hoping I wouldn’t be let down. Twilight surprised me with how much fun I had with it. It was silly and over-the-top and romantic and problematic. All the components for a great book to live-tweet. Which I did. Along with a review. It brought me out of my quarantine funk and gave me something to look forward to, however silly it may be.
I realized when it comes to Twilight you have to kind of leave logic behind, what with all the angst, drama, and you know, vampires vs werewolves. I was prepared for that side. I was not prepared for New Moon. Oh, how I wish I would’ve been prepared for New Moon.
Buckle in for the journey that is the second book in the Twilight series. True to form, it contained all the ups and downs. Read along to discover if there were more ups than downs. It began innocently enough:
Cue transitional music traveling back to the start
- “Well, Gran, you might have noticed that my boyfriend glitters. It’s just something he does in the sun. Don’t worry about it….”
- I sighed. “Do you want me to watch this alone?”
“No, I’ll mostly be watching you, anyway.”
The hilarity of them watching Romeo and Juliet together.
- The info dumps at the start were driving me mad. they’re the equivalent of “previously on…” and I remember all too clearly what happened in the first book. . . I HAD JUST READ IT. Trust me, Carlisle’s backstory can wait to be repeated later on.
- “But what would I do without you?”
“Whatever you were doing before I came along and complicated your existence.”
He sighed. “You make that sound so easy.”
“It should be. I’m not really that interesting.”
Where is the lie? Also: Good old fashioned relationship troubles with Bella and Edward? I relish that now, coming from the other side of this book.
- Speaking of Bella being uninteresting:
“As far as Rosalie was concerned, I was an unwelcome intruder into her family’s secret life.”
And she is right. I low-key love Rosalie. She’s the only one to put Bella in her rightful place. In what universe is Bella adored by all vampires? In the same universe where she makes them runoff from their own home?
- “Well, that’s everyone,” I sighed. “I can clear a room, at least.”
- “If I develop this film,” I said, toying with the camera in my hands, “will you show up in the picture?”
- Back to the melodrama, and no, I’m not talking about Lorde’s album. Unfortunately. We’re back to the same old same old:
“Bella, you gave yourself a paper cut—that hardly deserves the death penalty.”
“It’s still my fault.”
My words opened up the floodgate.
Even Edward is amazed at how she seeks to punish herself. That’s saying a lot.
“I’d rather die than be with Mike Newton,” I protested. “I’d rather die than be with anyone but you.”
“Don’t be melodramatic, please.”
This is where their age difference comes to play.
Also: is she going to repeat this statement throughout the book? We’re tired, Bella.
“The guilt made my head bow and my shoulders slump. I’d run them out of their home, just like Rosalie and Emmett. I was a plague.”
Yes! If you can’t dump Edward because you’re too attached to him, at least think of the people around you suffering because of your decision.
- “When you say we—,” I whispered.
“I mean my family and myself.” Each word separate and distinct.”
Does it have to be spelled out for Bella to understand that she’s not part of the Cullens?
“I won’t put you through anything like this again. You can go on with your life without any more interference from me. It will be as if I’d never existed.”
When this moment arrived I was astonished. And then I realized what it meant: F R E E D O M. If anything, I was glad to get a break from their daily quarrels that weren’t going to clear themselves up anytime soon. I was over the moon giddy, actually.
On the one hand, after spending so much of Twilight with Edward at Bella’s disposal, I was excited to see what she had to offer without him at her side 24/7. I wanted that character development. Save yourself in this one, for once. However, what I soon came to realize was that we either get an obsessed Bella going on and on about her vampire-boyfriend made of marble or we get a lifeless Bella moping on and on about Edward being gone. . . choose your fighter.
And then, it struck me. I had stumbled onto a larger beast than anticipated. Bella without Edward is… mind-numbingly boring. I was seriously contemplating skipping pages to when Edward shows up. The realization hit that Bella’s infuriating without him and she’s infuriating with him, but at least Edward keeps it interesting.
And no, the plot convenience of Edward appearing in her head was not working for me. It’s an obvious ruse to appease the fans. We want the real deal, not an illusion.
It has to be said. The truth can’t escape me at this point: I’m here solely for Edward and Jacob. Or at the very least, I’m not here to be tortured by Bella Swan. So I guess, good luck with New Moon. This is my cry for help. I came unprepared.
“The next few hours were agony.”
Is that Bella or me reading New Moon? I am desperately looking for the light at the end of a very dark tunnel.
- Of course, we all know why the author swept away the Cullens so quickly. Make way for our new brooding hero: *Cue the song Kiss Me in She’s All That* “The new – not improved, but different – Jacob Black.
- Does this mean that I have to care about a whole new cast of characters now? I do not have it in me, Bella. We’re tired.
I guess, anything to get out of Bella’s mind. But I had an inkling before diving into this book – I even wrote myself a reminder before opening the first chapter – that the author would ruin Edward and Bella so as to make way for our new – not improved, but different – hero (I’m having way too much fun with the She’s All That references). I literally wrote a note titled, “Things to remember in case Edward’s character gets ruined in the follow-up books.” The list wasn’t long, but still.
To backtrack, what I noticed pretty early on is that in order to enjoy Twilight I had to go into it with an open mind and zero preconceived notions. I just didn’t realize I would have to do so with each book in the series. So once I let go of my exceptions for the follow-up book, I could just let things run wild. Let the Cullens be gone for most of the book, who cares? Not this open-minded gal. Let a new cast of characters take over. I’m fine.
You know, as long as I’m reading and being distracted from quarantine life, I’ll take it.
- What is reading the Twilight series like? Reading this with a straight face: “Is that all? Really?” he interrupted me, a smile breaking across his face. “You’re just scared because I’m a murderer? That’s the only reason?”
- “Can you stay out of trouble for one hour?” she asked skeptically. Then, before I could answer, she held up one finger and closed her eyes. Her face went smooth and blank for a few seconds.”
How hopeless is Bella? Alice has to actually foresee the future to answer that question.
- I really thought Romeo and Juliet was just an innocent mention at the start of the book. Oh, boy, if only I knew.
- “I watched the figures moving across the little screen, but I couldn’t even tell if the movie was supposed to be a romance or a horror film.”
This reads like a review of Twilight.
- The race to get to the Volturi was more fast-paced than the entirety of New Moon. Oh, but how convenient for the author to suddenly have Bella turning into a vampire be considered for the greater good so we can’t criticize her in the future.
- Speaking of, I feel like the author made the book without Edward so unbearable so that when she finally gives him back to us, we’re supposed to be thankful and realize Edward carries the entire series on his back. I can’t figure out if that’s a genius move on her part or not.
I feel like I went into New Moon so naive, and by the end of it, I left utterly destroyed. I was, for one, not expecting Edward to be gone for the majority of it. I am still struck by that fact. It definitely added to my trust issues. I have no idea what to expect now with the following books in the series. I even wrote at one point in my notes that I want to make fun of him, but I’m so Edward deprived that I don’t care what he says right now. What a trick! After reading Twilight, New Moon seems like its evil twin.
On that note, another complaint with New Moon that I hope to get resolved in the next book is that there are barely any intimate or tender scenes lingering between Bella and Edward. I went into this series thinking it was more romance based instead of being so heavily focused on the plot. I mean does Stephenie Meyer think I chose this series to freshen up my memory on vampires? Who cares about the Volturi? Give me scenes with Edward and Bella. Scenes where they’re not fighting for once. I just wanted that moment of sweet reunion to last longer than one page… I’m here for the romance is what I’m saying.
But you know as long as I’m invested enough to continue, I will. I just hope that as the series grows it will focus less on the history of vampires – because I don’t remember signing up for Vampires 101 – and give us more of what we’re all here for. . .
My in-detail commentary as I read along can be found down here: