I'm doing this review a little different than the first two. I'll still point out good and bad, but I'm leaving out the ugly. Partly because there's less of it as you go along, and partly because I read them during the move and wasn't paying attention to that stuff.
(Whatever else you may say about this series, it is decent escapist fiction.)
Lets get started!
| ||Eclipse (Twilight, #3) ||Meyer, Stephenie|
THE GOOD: Finally, Finally, FINALLY, Bella starts standing up to Edward and not letting him dictate her every little move. This was my main beef with this series: Bella's lack of self-esteem/spine.
Also, conflict. Lots of it. Life or death situations, conflict between Edward and Bella, Edward and Jacob, Bella and Jacob, evil vampires, etc. The story moves very well, and all the characters develop and change over the course of the book.
THE BAD: Bella may get a spine (sort of) but she goes about it all weird. Edward forbids her to do something, even to the extent of telling his family to keep her from going anywhere and Bella's reaction is to SNEAK OFF, without telling anyone, to do what she wants to do in the first place. She does this repeatedly until Edward gives up.
I'm not a relationship expert, but passive-aggressive behavior doesn't usually work out that well. And to be honest with you, I still find Edward a bit creepy.
All in all though, Eclipse was my favorite of the series. 3 stars
|Breaking Dawn (Twilight, #4) ||Meyer, Stephenie|
THE GOOD: Worldbuilding! Vampire backgrounds, more info on the werewolves, some history thrown in. It was actually quite awesome. I kept coming across this really neat stuff and thinking: "Why didn't she put some of this in the earlier books?"
This was the first one of the series that actually FELT like a fantasy to me, with depth and mythos. Not just two people sighing at each other because their love is deathless and forbidden.
THE BAD: The plot was clunky. I felt like I was reading three separate books.
Book 1: Bella and Edward get married and figure out that stuff. Everybody's happy.
Book 2: Bella gets pregnant, which makes her sick and touches off a potential war with the werewolves. Conflict resolves itself very conveniently with the baby's birth and Bella's (messy) transformation into a vampire. Everybody's happy.
Book 3: The vampire high muckety-mucks learn about the baby and decide to use it as an excuse to wipe out the Cullen family. Lots of gathering of allies, lots of battle plans, a tense confrontation, surprise resolution, and everybody's happy.
It was frustrating because I wanted so badly to get into the book, but the tension kept fading away on me. Oh well... 3 stars
CONCLUSION: After reading all four books and evaluating the good and bad, I've decided I'm not excited about the series as a whole. And believe it or not, it wasn't the writing or the Bella-Edward relationship that tipped the scales. Meyer tells a good story and tells it (for the most part) very well.
I walked away from the last book, and here's the thing that really bugged me:
Bella pays absolutely no serious price for her decisions.
This was the totally unbelievable thing to me. Ordinary girl falls in love with dark brooding hero, gets transformed into a beautiful being with godlike powers, and doesn't have to give up anything to do it.
Everybody in Edward's family loves her. Jacob isn't mad at her anymore, her father gets to come over and her bloodlust turns out to be controllable so she gets to stay in Forks.
I call "No way".
Ask anyone who's made a cross-cultural or interracial marriage, and they will tell you: It's not easy. Ask anyone who's converted to a different religion, and they will tell you the same thing.
It is almost impossible to make those kinds of major decisions without offending (or at least causing conflict with) someone. And it doesn't all go away after the decision is made either. There are adjustments, compromises, work.
But Bella can marry the living dead, become a vampire with a lust for human blood,and not only fit in seamlessly, but end up making everyone she loves happy? Really?
I couldn't swallow it.
That's just my opinion though. What's yours?