Discussion questions

You’re never going to believe this, guys. There are discussion questions in the back of this book. Like someone is going to suggest this for their local Oprah Book Club.

Let’s have a look…

1. Is the fact that Edward can’t read Bella’s thoughts more important than it seems? Do you think it will serve a larger purpose?

It does serve as a startling way to show the lengths he will go to control and manipulate her. He makes a point of reading the minds of her friends while she’s talking with them, so he knows exactly what she’s saying about him. I guess it’s supposed to have something to do with this “glitch” in her brain Bella talks about earlier, and how they’re totes soulmates and stuff.

And it could also have to do with the fact that if he could read her mind, all he would hear is white noise. Wake up, Eddy, there’s nothing to read in there.

2. Bella faints at the smell of blood. If she were to become a vampire [recapper’s note: LOL], how might this serve as a hindrance? How might it be an asset?

Spoiler time. Because Bella is disgusted by blood, it means that when Edward turns her into a vampire in the fourth book, she is immune to bloodcraze. I am not even joking. So she will get all the good things about being a vampire, and will have nothing to do with the one. single. flaw.

Aren’t we just HAPPY for her???

3. Is Edward selfishly putting Bella in danger, or is Bella being too stubborn for her own good? Is it a little bit of both? What are the threatening factors facing Bella and are there ways to avoid them?

I wouldn’t put it past Edward, in my own mind, to purposely lead her into danger so he can save her time and again to force her to create a dependency on him. I wouldn’t put it past Bella, in my own mind, to consciously put herself in danger so that Edward feels the need to constantly be near her to protect her  (Hell, she actually considers this at some point in Twilight).

And I guess we can expect to see a lot more seriously boring vampire twit villains in this series. Hooray for monologging.

4. Temptation is a major theme in Twilight–more accurately, resisting one’s temptations. Discuss the subplot of Carlisle’s job as a doctor in relation to this major theme. How well does he handle temptation? What do you feel would be the most difficult part for him in his role? Why does he remain working as a doctor when the Cullens don’t seem to need his income?

Yeah, you know, I would like to discuss the subplot of Carlisle’s job as a doctor. Namely, how he still is one.

Carlisle was born in London, in the 1600s. Before the United States existed, and before we had things like social security cards. What I want to know is how he has managed to fake being a person to the point where he can hold a job as respected and screened as medical practitioner.  Does he have a fake ID? fake SSN? Rosalie and Emmett get remarried every few years, to keep up appearances, but Smeyer never explains if Dr. Cullen has to re-attend medical school every few decades to keep up on the latest methods of treatment. Or does he still use leeches and believe in humorism?

(Hint: The reason she explains the remarriage but not how Carlisle can hold down a job is because marriage is way more important than having a job.)

I’d also like to know how the Cullens “don’t seem to need his income.” Carlisle is the only family member with a job. Come to think of it, none of the women in this book have jobs. Alice and Rosalie are “in high school;” Esme is a stay-at-home vampmom; Bella is a listless, whiny little tramp; Bella’s mom just follows her super-young baseball-playing husband around like a lost puppy…

Here’s my own discussion question. Why does Stephenie Meyer hate women?

She totally doesn’t, you see. She believes that feminism is about choice, and if every single one of her female characters choose to stay at home and have babies and have no life outside of their husband and kids, then, by golly, that’s their choice, and they’re feminist for it! If her main character chooses to dig herself deeper and deeper into a controlling, manipulative relationship characterized by abuse and “hurting to protect,” well, by golly, that’s her choice, and she’s a strong role model for girls everywhere!

5. The Cullens live, act, and care for one another as a family. How much of their ability to do so is dependant on Carlisle’s rule that they live in a manner that contradicts their nature–hunting animals instead of humans? Do you think that they would be able to maintain their bond if they weren’t all committed to this plan?

Oh please.

The only reason they hunt animals instead of Bad People in this book is so Stephenie can have wonderful, perfect, beautiful, caring superbeings as the protagonists. Her attempt to create a conflict in “but just drinking animals is like only eating tofu” falls completely flat. One, Carlisle actually overcomes his bloodlust. Two, Edward, when faced with the tasty, tasty buffet of Bella’s O+, seems to have little to no problem not partaking (and spoiler, he later becomes “immune” to her.) Three, the only person who ever bitches about this lifestyle is Edward, in an attempt to look edgy and brooding. The hunting animals instead of humans aspect of vampirism is an easy out for Stephenie to have characters who are Good In Every Way, instead of, I don’t know, well-rounded, three-dimensional characters, with real flaws. “Too perfect” or “can’t have babies” are NOT FLAWS.

6. Edward saves Bella on more than one occasion. Discuss the different instances and how Bella reacts before she knows what he is and after. Also discuss how Edward reacts after each instance both before and after she learns he is a vampire.

Lord, there was a difference? Let me try to remember.

Bella, before she finds out Edward is a vampire, is less committed to loving him forever and forever. Once she finds out he’s one of the beautiful dead, and can make her one, too, she is immediately caught up in the glamor of faux-suicide and the romance of “dying” for someone you love.

The good news is that before she learns he’s a vampire, she doesn’t expect him to save her. This all dissipates when she realizes that he’s like totally strong and stuff.

I really don’t think Edward gives a damn either way.

7.Alice explains to Bella the theory of how vampires come to exist. She mentions that most have some memories of the transition and their life prior to it. How does what we learn from James about Alice’s past explain her lack of memory?

Uh. Are you serious?

She was a frigging vegetable.

8. Once Edward has tasted Bella’s blood, do you think it will make it harder to resist Bella–specifically her blood? Will the fact that he is able to control himself make Bella want to be changed into a vampire? Do you think that it is fair of her to ask that of him? Do you think it is fair of him to refuse?

Ugh. Again, let’s recap the pros and cons of being a vampire.

Pros:

1. Super power carried over from your natural skills in life (reading minds, seeing the future, loving people will all your heart, etc.)
2. Super strength, speed, and senses.
3. Aphrodisiac breath.
4. Heart-stopping beauty.
5. Don’t need to breathe.
6. Totally immortal, to the point where only chopping you to pieces and lighting the pieces on fire will kill you.
7. Sparkles.
8. An easily-overcome addiction to human blood.

Cons:

1. NONE WHATSOEVER.

OF COURSE BELLA WANTS TO BE A VAMPIRE. I still think the only reason Edward is refusing is because if she were just as strong as him he couldn’t order her around. What he fails to realize is that Bella’s supervampire skill will be “obeying everything Edward says,” because she did it so well in life.

And, to address the first part of the question, you would think that tasting the forbidden fruit of Bella’s blood would make him want it more, but no. Sadly, this is not the case. He grows immune to her smell, and while he still appreciates it, eventually gets over his fear of accidentally eating her if she dares to open-mouth-kiss him.

Sigh.

9. Jacob Black tells Bella a story about his tribe and the “cold ones.” He doesn’t believe any of it but says his father clearly dislikes the Cullens. If Jacob’s father believes the Cullens are dangerous, why doesn’t he warn Bella or Jacob? Is he protecting a secret of his own?

Oh God. One, HE DOES WARN BELLA. ALL THE FREAKING TIME. HE PAID HIS KID TO GO TO PROM AND TELL HER TO BREAK UP WITH EDWARD. HOLY FREAKING CRAP.

The secret is that Billy Black has a Myspace and picked up all his social talent on the world-wide web.

10. Stephenie Meyer has noted that each of the novels in the Twilight Saga pays homage to other literary classics.

Sorry, I have to stop here. Are you freaking kidding me?

Okay, continue.

For Twilight, she has said Pride and Prejudice was the key inspiration.

….Are you serious?

Pride and Prejudice is often described as a “romantic comedy.” What parts of Twilight are romantic? What parts are comic? Describe the similarities between Elizabeth Bennet and Bella Swan. Fitzwilliam Darcy and Edward Cullen. What role would Bella’s friends play in a “remake” of Jane Austen’s classic story?

Oh.

My.

God.

I think the world has finally snapped.

I refuse to answer this question on the grounds that it is utterly ridiculous, insulting to a classic work of actual literature, and only serves to further feed Stephenie’s bloated ego.

Twilight — It’s Pride and Prejudice. With vampires.

I’d much rather read Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, personally.

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44 Responses to “Discussion questions”

  1. Dot. Dot. Freaking, Dot.

    I just… I have no words for that. Nothing you haven’t already said far better, anyway.

    Feministing link is win, by the way.

  2. “For Twilight, she has said Pride and Prejudice was the key inspiration.”

    ……….

    FFFFFFF

    FFFFFFFFF
    FFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFFF

    *explodes*

  3. Edward is just like Mr. Darcy! Remember when Mr. Darcy ripped out Elizabeth’s throat with his teeth due to the overwhelming allure of her succulent blood and then she returned as a creature of the night?

    (Touch-a touch-a touch-a touch me)

    • Forestwater Says:

      Oh, yeah! And remember when Elizabeth Bennett refused to care about ANY OF HER FAMILY WHATSOEVER, had no real hobbies or intelligence, and centered her entire life around Mr. Darcy? GOD THEY’RE JUST THE SAME!

      (I wanna be dirty)

    • Katie Cole Says:

      Rocky Horror!

      epic!

  4. Millenous Laughter Says:

    Edward definitely does his best to ignore Bella after she confronts him about what a boor she thinks he is, and how she much prefers a strapping young JROTC boy in her school.

    Oh, wait, that’s right, the setup for every single event that occurs in Pride and Prejudice, as well as every event thereafter is startlingly absent from this book.

  5. Millenous Laughter Says:

    I would also like to point out that the “possibly related posts” section sends me to a “which character are you?” quiz at “Twilightbookaddicts.com”.

    Just as an aside.

    • Yeah, I can’t help that, lol.

      I’m sure they’re just as embarrassed when my posts are randomly linked to on their site.

      • Millenous Laughter Says:

        I assumed as much. Although the possibility of it working both ways means you’ll doubtless find yourself flamed by a bunch of 40-something Twi-moms – if you haven’t already.

      • Do you get hate mail? If so you should post some. I LOVE reading that stuff.

  6. 1. I think this serves as a blatant copout. “Wait, I made my vampires psychic, and that woud be awkward if he could read her min-WAIT I NO HE CAN”T”

    2. On the plus side, if she ever WERE made a vampire, she might pass out every time she tried to eat. Then she might die. /fingerscrossed

    3. You already pointed out that she puts herself in danger. Seems more like Edward has a serious case of “you scare me again and I will BEAT YOU” to me, rather than some sort of hero complex.

    4. I disagree, on the grounds that every time Bella is tempted to do something, or even just ponders it on the side, she does it. And maybe it’s your callous summary, but it doesn’t sound to me like Edward is really struggling in that undead soulless brain of his. Sounds to me more like Obsession is the major theme of Twilight.

    Also, she thinks she has a subplot. How cute.

    5. They live together out of fear. Fear of being beaten senseless by other vampires for being pussies. Frankly I hate using the word ‘pussy’, but they’re vampires, you’re SUPPOSED to be a sexy, mindless murder machine. Not a Washingon liberal. I am no longer surprised at what can hide on the Olympic Peninsula. I’m willing to bet that the major vampire clans don’t know they exist. Even if they did…

    “Well, where on the map COULD they be?” “Not the Olympic Peninsula, there’s no vampire deaths there.” “But the weather is so perfect, and the people there don’t care. They could hide forever!” “True, but what would they do, suck deer blood?” /Vampire laughter “Yeah, we’d never find them there anyway. Let’s check Texas.” “Mmm…chili blood”

    6. Before she knew: She snubbed him like she snubbed everyone else because Bella is a shallow bitch.
    After: She wanted him will all her heart because HE’S PRETTY-because she LOVED HIM- because it would be forbidden and possibly scare her father. This is really my main problem with the book, the ‘Romeo and Juliet’ style instant-romance. “I have known you for five minutes. I love you so much I’ll die for you!” “Wanna?” “ok”

    7. Skipping on grounds of stupid.

    8. I dunno…does her blood taste as much like barbecued hamburger as it smells? Maybe her blood is awful and he’s too polite to actually tell her. “I’d turn you into a vampire, but you taste terrible.”

    9. Skipping on grounds of stupid

    10. …My sister owns a copy of this book. I may have to read it, simply to hate-mail the author with a point by point rebuttal of just how much of an homage this isn’t. At the very least, I’ll know what not to do when I write a book.

    • Funny you should mention Romeo & Juliet, as it will be the ‘key inspiration’ for book 2.

      The thing about Romeo & Juliet (that flies over dear Smeyer’s head) is that the play is not a depiction of epic love surmounting all obstacles.

      It’s a PSA to parents to keep an eye on their teenagers, because teenagers are stupid.

      • YES. Dear god, I HATE when people misinterpret Romeo & Juliet as a story about true love. Is a story about how teenagers don’t know what the hell love is, make stupid decisions, and DIE. Kind of like Twillight u__u.

      • Millenous Laughter Says:

        But… But they don’t die… That’s the bad thing…

  7. Magistrate of Mediocrety Says:

    “5. The Cullens live, act, and care for one another as a family. How much of their ability to do so is dependant on Carlisle’s rule that they live in a manner that contradicts their nature–hunting animals instead of humans? Do you think that they would be able to maintain their bond if they weren’t all committed to this plan?”

    Two words: Stockholm. Syndrome.

  8. Kyliiee Says:

    I just started reading Pride and Prejudice and could not think how it “inspired” Twilight. Then I thought about what I’d read so far and I think I figured it out. Meyer didnt get inspiration for Bella from Elizabeth Bennet! She got it from Mr. Darcy. Seriously! Mr Darcy ignores everyone he doesnt know or thinks isnt good enough just like Bella does at her new school. Mr Darcy is the onew who is constantly watcing Elizabeth. His family doesn’t like her at all. Also ELizabeth probably has more brains/talent in her big toe than Bella does in her entire body so there’s no way they could be compared.

    Love this site btw. =D Can’t wait to read your veiws on New Moon and all the others.

    • Katie Cole Says:

      twiny do you remember what the name of the bunny in the last Gemma Doyle series was by Libba Bray? It was Mr Darcy. They sacrificed that bunny. yup. So Bella is Mr Darcy HA!

      • Kyliiee Says:

        She must be sacrificed then! You are devious little sis ;]. That might actually make a good scene in this book.

    • Katie Cole Says:

      ftw don’t call me little sis EW

  9. soranomukou Says:

    LOL is she tripping.

  10. Wait wait wait wait wait wait.

    Pride and Prejudice, with vampires?

    Why, Meyer? Why?

  11. Pride & Prejudice?! Really, Smeyer, really? I don’t think I even have to go into the differences between lively, intelligent, caring, witty, rebellious-for-her-time Elizabeth and La Bella Dull, and between charming, considerate, conflicted, gentlemanly, understanding, loving Darcy and Edward the Sparkling Bitch? (Sorry, I had a Smeyer moment there with the adverbs). At least when Darcy was an ass he recognized that he was one and apologized for it. Darcy and Lizzie might’ve started out hating each other and ended up in love, but there was PLOT in the middle that explained WHY their feelings changed (AND it took longer than like two days). Neither Darcy nor Lizzie were attracted to the other based on physical attraction alone, and Lizzie treats her family with respect and love, despite how often they makes fools of themselves in public.

    Had our little Stephie written P&P, the heroine would’ve been Kitty and she would’ve ended up with George Wickham.

  12. #4 – I used to watch a vampire detective show called Forever Knight, where they had it set up that there was this mortal who would fake all the IDs for all the vampires in the world (obviously the position would be passed down), and they had to ‘move on’ every 5-10 years. Other vampire stories have it to where they know a guy who knows a guy who used to be a CIA op or some crap like that. Maybe Carl ate a guy who knew a guy?

    Every year doctors have to have a certain amount of hours to continue their education (it’s mandatory) so it’s not hard to see how a doctor from a long time ago would still be competent now. Of course I don’t expect SMeyer to actually RESEARCH and know this so it’s basically dumb luck that it’s not that far fetched.

  13. BTW forgot to add: P&P?! Umm no, Smeyer, no. You are not allowed to put a real novel’s name next to what you write. It’s morally wrong.

    And I read in the comments that Romeo and Juliet were the inspiration for the next book?

    Dear FSM give me strength.

  14. Pride and Prejudice? Really? REALLY?

    Going to explode now, hopefully in some vicinity that has lots of Twilight books so my demise does SOME good.

  15. Question 2 makes me wonder how Bella survived menarche. o_o

    • There’s a point- what does Edward do when she’s on her period? O.o We know he can’t offer oral sex, so what the hell does he do??????

  16. Amusingly, leeches aren’t as old-fashioned of medicine as they used to be. Turns out they actually have some applications in medicine that the old docs never dreamed of. Like with limb reattachments after you’ve had a finger severed or something–if for some reason blood flow isn’t restored fast enough, a leech can help get it going.

    It sounds really gross and I guess they have to raise laboratory leeches or something so disease isn’t passed to the patient–but really, leeches are annelid worms just like earthworms… just so happens they drink blood. Interesting when the world of medicine can come up with an effective treatment by going back to basics.

    Totally irrelevant to the blog… just thought I’d share since this whole mess is about bloodsuckers anyway. :P

  17. Pride. And. Prejudice.
    JANE AUSTEN?! howcouldthatwhore? ugh.

  18. Scarlet_Magpie Says:

    ‘Here’s my own discussion question. Why does Stephenie Meyer hate women?’

    In an interview with Smeyer, she states ‘That she is NOT anti-feminist! She is Anti-HUMAN!!’ (Or so I’ve heard)

    Which makes we think…’WTF is with this woman…?’

  19. Its your opinion. Its a very shitty opinion but its still an opinion. I personally think you are fucking retarded and need to learn what a good book is.

    • I’m not really sure for whom your reply is intended, but it’s quite rude, and not very well reasoned. Why don’t you try explaining yourself fully, and without resorting to personal insults? It’ll make the discussion much better.

      • My comment was intended for whoever wrote the whole discussion at the top about reasons why they are stupid and hate twilight. And i cant make personal insults if i want to. The person obviosly is retarded if they dont understand simple things that happen in the books. Like by saying that Bella tried to comit suicide because it explanes exactly what she was doing in the book. My guess is the person read reviews and watched the movies

        • 1. Calling someone retarded *is* a personal insult. So is calling them stupid. Please try to refrain from doing so.

          2. As it happens, that aforementioned person has a whole lot of writing on this blog proving that she is quite intelligent and has a good knowledge of literature and of writing in general. She judges Twilight on that background, and finds it lacking. That may be disagreeable to you, but it does not make her stupid (and definitely not retarded, which is a neurocognitive definition and should not be used lightly). In general, it is good to remember that the fact that someone hates a book (or for that matter anything else) that you liked does not automatically make them stupid. It will make conversations much easier, politer and more interesting.

          3. If you had paid attention to what was written, you would have noticed that the expression used above was actually ‘faux-suicide’. The word ‘faux’, borrowed into English from French, means ‘false, artificial’ (as in ‘faux fur’, for example). In this context, it is used in reference to Bella’s wish to be turned into a vampire (as expressed in the books over and over and over and over and over and over and did I mention over and over?) – since vampires are not actually alive, the fact that she wants to become one is tantamount to wanting to stop living, i.e. there is some suicidal quality to it.
          So she is not saying that Bella wants to commit suicide, she is saying wanting to be turned into a vampire as badly as Bella does is somewhat suicidal. Can you see the difference?

          4. As you can tell from the title of the blog, even if you have not read any other post on it, the author actually did read the books (because she has been told again and again that she can’t call them stupid if she haven’t read them), and has come to her own conclusions about them from reading. Obviously, you disagree with her conclusions, but you don’t have to assume she didn’t read the books (just like you should not assume she is stupid). Give people the chance to form their own separate conclusions based on their own experiences.

          5. For *whomever (note the preposition); *Twilight (since it is in that case a proper noun, i.e. a name); *I (numerous times); *can’t (actually, should be couldn’t, and at the end of the sentence: if I wanted to); *obviously; *don’t; *commit; *explains (the sentence structure is clumsy there, too – consider something like ‘because it is explained’). When you are trying to make a case against a person’s intelligence, it might be a good idea to run your comment through a spellchecker of some sort, or at least to pay minimal attention to the way you write. That would look better.

          And now that we have established some basic facts and – hopefully – agreed to have a civilized conversation, how about you try to explain what you like about the books, and why you disagree with this blog, while keeping the conversation polite and coherent?
          I look forward to reading your reply.

  20. ColorfulNeko Says:

    Sweet Jesus, Stephanie Meyer, Pride and Prejudice? PRIDE AND PREJUDICE? What the– You can’t — You just can’t DO that— Did Smeyer even READ that— *explodes, along with several others*

  21. SB1681996 Says:

    I have this personal theory that the reason why Edward doesn’t want Bella to become a vamp is because he’d lose the tasty opportunity to chomp on her neck if she becomes a part of his bloodsucking species. After all, vamps don’t eat other vamps…and losing his so-carefully-preserved-for-a-rainy-day gourmet meal (A.K.A Cuisine Isabella), would be a devastating blow indeed for our Edddie…would it not?

    BTW: Seriously HILARIOUS blog :D Great work!

  22. See, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies IS a better book than Twilight. Hell, even “How to Go Potty” is a better piece of literature that this Twilight crap.

  23. It is actually a very useful item of information and facts. I am glad which you discussed this helpful info with us. Please stop us educated such as this. Many thanks for sharing.

  24. Excellent blog you’ve got here.. It’s difficult to find high quality writing like yours these days.
    I really appreciate people like you! Take care!!

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