The Twilight Series - A Love Story in New Clothes

Stephanie Meyer's Twilight Series
Stephanie Meyer's Twilight Series | Source

Frankly my friends, I don’t give a hoot!

I have read many articles / Hubs on the subject of Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight Series, some positive and many negative. I read one today that prompted me to respond. It started out as a simple comment to the writer of the article, and then it morphed into this hub.

Let me say, up front, I have read the entire series and enjoyed them. If that casts a negative shadow on me, then so be it. I have also read the complete works of Shakespeare; I love Emily Bronte’s work, and many, many others. I am a veracious reader, and perhaps, that alone will exonerate me from the negative and snide remarks. Frankly my friends, I don’t give a hoot!

 

Romeo and Juliet
Romeo and Juliet | Source
Wuthering Heights
Wuthering Heights | Source
The Great Gatsby
The Great Gatsby | Source

Take a quick look at literary history

Take a quick look at literary history when it comes to romance and love stories. I start with Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliette. This is, as is the Twilight Series, a love triangle that seems to have too many issues for the protagonists, Romeo and Juliette, to overcome. They are young, from feuding families, and Juliette is promised to someone her parents approve of, Paris. True no one is a vampire or a werewolf, but this classic love story ends with both young lovers committing suicide. I can only imagine how mortified the parents of that era were.

How about Wuthering Heights? This is also a love triangle, in which the protagonist marries for money and not for true love. What message does that send to the females of any generation?

Then we have The Great Gatsby. With much the same theme as the preceding two literary classics, young lovers, love triangles, societal issues, choices to be made, and finally reminiscing and regret.

It is a tried, tested, and quite successful recipe for a love story. Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight Series are not so different they just have a new twist, vampires and werewolves. I say to Stephanie, “Bravo, well done.”

I have read statements that Stephanie Meyer’s books are “poorly written.” I’m afraid I must disagree; they are “simply” written, but far from poorly written. If they were poorly written, they most certainly would not be on the best sellers list.

As far as the criticisms of becoming ridiculously rich off of her books, well I would think, that is every writer’s dream. I once read this statement in a prestigious literary magazine: “If you want to get rich, find another line of work.” Stephanie has hit the jackpot, and I applaud her.

What if we took the vampire and werewolf element out of the story?

Let us go back to the Twilight Series. What if we took the vampire and werewolf element out of the story?

Bella Swan comes to live with her estranged father in a small, dreary town. She enrolls in the local high school where she endures the stares and questions inflicted on “the new kid.” She sees the attractive son of a local rich doctor; she is smitten but knows he is way out of her league. She runs into an old “friend of the family” who is a Native American and lives on a reservation. He is likeable, pleasant, and fun, but he is younger than she is and considered an outsider in regular society circles.

Edward notices the plain and unpretentious Bella Swan and is interested, for some reason, so they date and he falls in love with her despite her low self esteem and clumsiness. Soon Edward’s father gets a job offer in another town, and the two become separated.

Bella has fallen deeply in love with Edward and is devastated when he and his family move to another town. She becomes sullen, depressed and withdraws from everyone and everything. Jacob, the Native American friend of the family, comes on the scene. He has a way of making her feel better about herself and becomes a distraction from her broken heart.

Jacob, however, has fallen helplessly in love with Bella. Though he does everything he can, to make up for the loss of Edward, she lets him know that she can only love him as a brother; or can she? When it seems that she will never see or hear from Edward again, she attempts to return her, once unrequited, love for Jacob.

At that moment, she gets word that Edward has suffered some catastrophe, and she alone must go to him. Though Jacob pleads for her to stay, she leaves to find and rescue Edward. Bella and Edward are reunited, and his family moves back to the small, simple town of Forks. A feud begins between Jacob and Edward. Both love her, and she loves them, one like a brother, the other she desires to spend the rest of her life with and never leave his side.

A Struggle ensues between them both to try and win her love, but Bella has already made her choice. . . . Add many other possible scenarios and endings.

It seems that this might be the story, but would it make it any better? I do not think so. Stephanie Meyer’s put a twist in this story that has grabbed an audience of tween-agers, their mothers and grandmothers.

We all dream of our Prince Charming
We all dream of our Prince Charming

A little fantasy never hurt anyone

True, Edward is the perfect and illusive man that every woman wants, desires and dreams of. He is beautiful, he is strong, and he is caring to the point of death for Bella. That is what every little girl wants, from as far back as time began. She wants a man who loves her unreservedly and unconditionally, who is as beautiful as a Greek god, who is strong and will protect her at all costs.

Bella is every girl. We all think we are plain and awkward, that no one as wonderful as Edward could possibly love us. We’ve all fallen in love with the unattainable “gorgeous hero” either in the movies or the halls of the local high school or shopping mall. Because we are of the female persuasion, we always will. Why? Because we are romantics at heart, it may not be an Edward, a Heathcliff, or even a Romeo, but there will be some other character with whom young girls will fall in love. They will dream of being his one and only true love.

Hey, girls will have to face the real and bitter world soon enough. Why not let them enjoy the fantasy man for as long as they can? As far as the Twi-moms and Twi-grannies are concerned, a little fantasy never hurt anyone. It’s nice to feel your heart beat wildly in your chest, and your breath catch again as it did when you were first in love.

 I believe we may experience a new baby boom and perhaps history will call these children the Twi-boomers.

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Comments 17 comments

Kelly 6 years ago

I loved the article, Kim. Great job! I've read the entire series 4-5 times. I've even read the unreleased protion of "Midnight Sun" atleast 3 times. I love the statement, "...I don't give a hoot", because that's exactly how I feel. I enjoyed the story. Yes, I would have even enjoyed it without a mention of a vampire or werewolf. The romance, love, and sexual tension were enough to keep this MOM interested. What woman doesn't want a man to yearn for her in a way Edward (and Jacob) yearned for Bella? Find me one, and I'll burn my books. ;)

As far as the "Twi-boomers", I'm sure Sophia will LOVE to be label as such...lol.


anonymous 6 years ago

You don't believe that Twilight doesn't encourage unhealthy relationships in the least? I enjoyed the series as well, and your article, but I don't think that Bella and Edward's relationship is healthy at all. She's obsessed with her age and will change anything about herself that offends Edward. She cuts herself off from family and friends alike to be with Edward. Edward on the other hand gets quite creepy as he stalks Bella, even watching her in her sleep before the acknowledgment of their feelings. Even after they get engaged, he still tries to control her, whether it's going to visit La Push or what car she drives. I'm seeing this in a real life situation in my own house with one of my roommates and it's not healthy in the least. They are doing the exact same behaviors as the characters in the book. Outside of the book, Edward and Bella's relationship would be looked down upon too. I do appreciate your article and the book series in itself, but I do feel that we should educate the readers of said book that the relationship they idolize is unhealthy. I also think that Stephanie Meyers needs to stress that her book is fiction.


miss_jkim profile image

miss_jkim 6 years ago Author

Kelly,

Thanks for your rousing support! I am quite sure Sophie will inherit the Twi-boomer nick name regardless of the national trend.

Anonymous,

Do I think that twilight encourages unhealthy relationships? No more so than Romeo and Juliet encourage teenage suicide, or Scarlet O'Hara's behavior in Gone with the Wind encourages young girls to act like spoiled brats and marry for revenge.

These are books, fiction books and Stephanie Meyer doesn't need to "stress" that her books are fiction. It is quite obvious.

I am a parent and a grandparent, I can discern which books are appropriate for my children and so can my two daughters. My oldest daughter, very wisely decided, that these books were not something my granddaughter should be reading at her age. When she gets to the age that she feels she can read them, understand that they are fiction and discuss relationship issues with her, then she will allow her to read them.

If your roommate is emulating the Bella and Edward characters, then he/she is either very immature or has some very deep under lying issues and needs to seek counseling. Perhaps as his/her roommate, you should tell him/her it's time to grow up.


sharonmbs 6 years ago

Good article.... I am looking forward to buy one book from diesel ebooks.......


miss_jkim profile image

miss_jkim 6 years ago Author

sharonmbs,

Thanks for the read. I'm not familiar with disel ebooks, but you can purchase books through Amazon. Either way, they are good books.


MPG Narratives profile image

MPG Narratives 6 years ago from Sydney, Australia

I've only read the first book and enjoyed it. It is an easy read and I can see why teens liked it. You are so right in saying it is another love story with a twist, no different to some of the classics.

Honestly, there is no harm in escaping into a good story to get away from life's stresses, chill out everyone, its just a fantasy.


miss_jkim profile image

miss_jkim 6 years ago Author

Thank you MPG,

I couldn't agree more. Who doesn't need to escape from the troubles, stresses and ugliness of the world today? I know people escape into their television shows and movies, I just prefer to escape inside a book, and this series was a fun one to escape into.

Because it is such an easy and pleasant read, it's easy to return to Forks and visit with Bella, Edward and Jacob time and time again.


katiem2 profile image

katiem2 6 years ago from I'm outta here

I'm not a big fiction reader. But I do enjoy Twilight. It is different, edgy and gives a youthful spin on romance. I like it and it deserves the credit it gets for being good. It gets young people reading and that is okay by me! Great objective look at Twilight the Series just a love story in new clothes and that is GREAT!


miss_jkim profile image

miss_jkim 6 years ago Author

Thanks katiem2,

I'm with you, if it gets kids reading it can't be all bad. I have always loved reading and have instilled that in my two daughters. Unfortunately my son, until recently, was not into reading.

Such a gift to pass on to your children, the love of a good book


SaMcNutt profile image

SaMcNutt 5 years ago from Englewood, CO

I think Stephenie Meyer's series fell off a little in textual quality after the first one. It was a subtle change that I think has to do with continuity. It might be the pressure she was under trying to finish them all for publication. Who knows? It is a subtle thing. I would like to read the Edward version of things.


miss_jkim profile image

miss_jkim 5 years ago Author

SaMcNutt,

I agree with you about some of the continuity in the second, third, and fourth books of her series. Just as you said, the pressure of trying to finish the books may very well have been the reason. It happens frequently when an author signs a multi book deal in a series. It also seems to happen in the movies, the second, third, and so on, never seem to be quite as good as the original.

Thankfully, the Twilight movies have gone in the opposite direction. The first one was marginally good, but they seem to get better as they go.

Midnight Sun is Stephanie's unfinished version of Twilight from Edward's perspective. It is a good read but I was disappointed when Stephanie decided not to finish it. However, the first 12 chapters are available on her website at:

http://www.stepheniemeyer.com/midnightsun.html.


mcleodgi profile image

mcleodgi 5 years ago

Best review of the series I've seen yet.:) Though you wobbled a bit on one thing, Carlisle's "job offer" was only a minor reason why they left. The major reason was the incident at Bella's b-day party in the beginning of the book and as a result, Edward came to be convinced that pulling himself completely away from Bella was the answer. Of course, they also didn't consider that Victoria was still on the loose...


miss_jkim profile image

miss_jkim 5 years ago Author

mcleodgi,

Thank you for your encouraging words. I agree with you on the "job offer" statement, although, I purposely made that a "vague" reason to give credibility to a less supernatural story.


htodd profile image

htodd 5 years ago from United States

Twilight is great series


miss_jkim profile image

miss_jkim 5 years ago Author

htodd, I couldn't agree more!


Lybrah 4 years ago

I read the entire series, and wrote a hub on Breaking Dawn (the book). Personally, I'd have been more attracted to Taylor Laughtner than Rob Pattinson. Jacob always had a good point--"Bella, you wouldn't have to change for me."


miss_jkim profile image

miss_jkim 4 years ago Author

Good message in that statement Lybrah. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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