Mixed Feelings

I read Twilight at some point in my life, some low-ish point. The concept of the series sits just on the border of fantasy and realistic fiction, and that seems to me to be Stephanie Harris’ biggest accomplishment. You have Bella, the character in reality, and Edward, the character in fantasy. The two merge and get tangled so that you eventually can’t easily distinguish between the two. In retrospect, I think that is what pulled me into the novel, and the love story kept me going through the series. My young self wanted to know if happily-ever-after would come to be, and the romance was really tumultuous and hard to gauge.

I also hate[d] Twilight. (*Note: Bella keeps her mouth slightly open in all of the movies and I wanted to smack her on the head when I saw them). The prose itself is pretty bad, kind of careless. And the book puts on a feminist mask, but deep down it perpetuates heteropatriarchal norms: the strong man as the protector of the weak woman, the woman pursuing a violent man (illusion to domestic violence), etc. If you dig deep into post-colonialism and feminism, vampires can be ascribed specific meanings (i.e. conquerers, etc.). But that’s for another time.

The point is, I liked Twilight when I was reading it, and I’d probably still like some aspects of it if I read it now. But I also don’t like it (at least in retrospect) for many reasons as well, and the list of those reasons continues to grow and war with my Twilight-reading past.

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