EclipseLast night, I finished reading Stephenie Meyer’s Eclipse, the third book in her Twilight Saga.  It has been as entertaining as the other books in the series.  Meyer has a gift for writing page-turners, and this story should leave readers anxious for Breaking Dawn.  I will not make the wild claim that these books are more than fun diversions, but I know I enjoyed reading them.  Of the three, I would have to say that Twilight is my favorite.

As I said in my review of New Moon, Bella’s self-deprecation can be annoying.  She doesn’t put herself down as much when she compares herself with Jacob, but she seems to feel so strongly that she isn’t good enough for Edward, and as much as he tries to protest, I don’t see that changing.  I wonder how she can be happy with someone when she feels she is inferior to him?  I hope Meyer can resolve this particular problem in the next book.

If you have read the other two Twilight books, you don’t need a recommendation from me to pick up the third; however, I think this book is less able to stand on its own than the other two.  I do think one could read either Twilight or New Moon without reading the rest of the saga, but this book ties in elements from both previous books that only make sense in context.  I think that’s fine — by the third book in a series, an author can expect some loyalty; J.K. Rowling waited until Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix before she gave up the pretext of thinking readers might not have read the other books first, and she certainly could have dropped that pretext earlier.

If you are looking for Literature (yes, with a capital “L”), you probably don’t want to read Meyer’s books, but if you’re looking for fun, page-turning reads about vampires and werewolves, I think you’ll enjoy her books.  It is certainly easy to see why she has become so popular with young adult readers.

New Moon

This evening, I finished reading New Moon, the second novel in Stephenie Meyer’s Twilight Saga.  I enjoyed it.

The novel picks up following Bella’s recovery from certain events at the end of the previous book.  Bella has just turned 18, and she is unhappy because her beloved Edward, a vampire, will never be older than 17.  The prospect of growing old while he remains perpetually youthful is distasteful to Bella.  The Cullens, Edward’s family throw Bella a birthday party, and an accident makes Edward decide Bella is not safe with the Cullens.  When Edward leaves Bella, she makes friends with the enigmatic Jacob Black, only to discover that he, too, harbors a dark secret.  Will he help her forget Edward and heal the hole left by Edward’s absence?  Or will Edward return to challenge his rival?

Meyer has the gift for creating a plot that will engage the reader — a real page-turner.  To me, a good test is whether I can keep from turning ahead to see what the future holds — something I consider cheating.  And I have to cheat with Meyer’s books.  Her characters are believable and likable.  If her vampires are a bit too perfect, well, it’s because they’re supposed to be.

I do wish Bella, Meyer’s main character, had a bit more self-confidence.  I think the Cullens treat her like a pet, and it’s somewhat demeaning.  She feels unworthy of their attention, so it’s a vicious cycle.  I like Jacob Black, who Meyer introduced in the first book, but fleshed out in this second book.  Meyer’s allusions to Romeo and Juliet, woven throughout the text, worked well.

I can definitely see why these books are so popular with teens.  I really enjoyed going to Stephenie Meyer’s book signing in September, and if she comes back to sign copies of Breaking Dawn, I will be there!

Stephenie Meyer Redux

I am once again reading Stephenie Meyer.  I have been meaning to get to New Moon and Eclipse for some time, but I just hadn’t for various reasons.  Meyer has a real gift for action and moving a story along.  If I have a criticism, I have to say I find Bella’s self-deprecation and idol-worship of Edward annoying sometimes, but I know I’m in for another good read.  The book starts with something of a bang, and I was really excited to learn my birthday is only four days after Bella’s.

I wonder if Barnes and Noble will do a midnight event for the release of Breaking Dawn.  I have speculated before that Meyer just might be the next J.K. Rowling, and I know that at least in my area, her books are popular enough to warrant a midnight release party.

Incidentally, if you want to keep up with what I’m reading, check the sidebar.  I always update when I finish a book and start a new one.