This is going to do nothing for my street cred but I have to be honest: I took a deep breath yesterday afternoon and plunged into Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight.
Go on, launch those brickbats at me. I had sworn not to read the book but somehow, when Beks left it lying carelessly on her desk, I decided to just borrow it to see what the big deal about the book was. With the pocket of time that I had between appointments, I parked myself on a comfortable armchair at Bakerzin and started reading, a pot of tea lying within reach.
It was horrible. The writing was simplistic and incredibly banal. Do I really need to know the details of what Bella was eating or cooking or wearing? The conversations were mindlessly protracted. The romance of Bella and Edward was abrupt, the explanations carelessly given. There was not much suspense or climax built into it – the structure of the plot was not laid out properly. Meyer makes J K Rowling look like Jane Austen and I worship Jane Austen.
A quarter into the book, I texted Beks: “Reading Twilight makes me feel like I am reading someone’s badly written blog.” But she was right, as irritatingly trivial as it was, I couldn’t put it down.
Maybe it’s that romantic in me. If I were 10 years younger, I would probably have swooned and longed for a vampire lover like Edward Cullen. And why not? He’s depicted as a perfect angel, and gentlemanly and chivalrous to boot. He saves her life (not once, not twice but thrice), plays the piano like a pro, writes romantic music and even opens the car door for her. Even his vegetarian vampirism works in his favour since he finds his lady love so oddly and enticingly attractive but has the willpower to stop himself. And though he has been single for almost a century, he still knows how to say and do the right things to make her heartbeat jump to manical levels.
In short, he is the perfect man that every idealistic girl dreams of.
The premise of the series is interesting and I think it’s great that Meyer dared to step out of stereotypical lines to create a new generation of vampires, mocking traditional beliefs at the same time. But her execution needs a hell lot of work and under the care of a more talented writer, the story may just be more engaging.
Poor Mr Thick went to catch the movie with me last month and though he survived to tell his tale, he has sworn to never watch its sequel. Pity, because I think director Catherine Hardwick actually did a fantastic job bringing the two cardboard characters to semi-life. The blue/grey-drenched visuals brought the dreary rainy Forks town to life and Kristen Stewart was great at portraying the gawky, ill-at-ease Bella (no comments about Robert Pattison’s acting).
I may just buy the rest of the books but that would seriously damage my street cred. I mean, I was almost embarrassed to be reading it in the train. To salvage that, I leave you now with my favouritest scene from the movie: the baseball scene, accommpanied by a great song. Dark, edgy and adrenaline-pumping, just the way I like my vampires.