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Chapter Eight

Posted in Eclipse, Recap with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 9, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Oh snap, time for a recap. How was all my American readship’s Labor Day weekend? And a shout-out to my readers in southern British Columbia–how many of y’all crossed the border to shop in Target? Don’t lie to me I know you did.

Edward creep-o-meter: Shrinking back down to a five.

Good Lord.

Bella and Jacob slouch about the res. She asks about the latest pack gossip.

I’ll give you a moment to steel yourselves.

Jacob is reluctant to share, but eventually admits that one of the Quilbry has Impressed–er, imprinted on someone. Emily had two nieces visiting and Quil um, took a liking to Claire.

Why is this so weird?

Claire is two years old.

Even Bella, head-trauma Bella, scream and faint Bella, blatant violator of helmet laws Bella, falls-in-love-with-psychopaths Bella, Bella has the good sense to see that this is, well, illegal.

“But she’s a baby,” I protested.

He looked at me with dark amusement. “Quil’s not getting any older,” he reminded me, a bit of acid in his tone. “He’ll just have to be patient for a few decades.”

Dude you are talking about a two-year-old ugh ugh ugh oh my God there is not enough bleach for my bath water to get the dirt off

Jacob accuses Bella of being judgmental (!) and insists that it won’t be sexual until Claire is legal breeding stock. Until then Quil will just be “the best, kindest big brother” ever.

So, essentially, Quil is just waiting for the toddler to ripen. God damn you, Stephenie.

Bella, stupidly, asks when Jacob will impress, and he’s all “NEVER pout pout pout.” God, this girl is dumb. Coincidentally, that would be an interesting turn of events, in a soul-mate-enabled-world–if your soul mate is madly in love with a terrifying, sociopathic monster, and you know she’s the only one for you but you can never have her. I sort of empathize with Jake here. Um, aside from him blowing off the pedophilia aaauugh God

They ride bikes. They go back to his place. They have a soda and they bond.  Jake asks if Bella was serious about that whole “becoming undead” thing, and she affirms. Oh, no, but is this goodbye, not-boyfriend? Sniffle tear.

“Why? We still have a few years. Can’t we be friends until we’re out of time?”

“Years? No, Jake, not years.” I shook my heard, and laughed once without humor. “Weeks is more accurate.”

Jacob flips out.

There’s a couple of paragraphs of him quivering, blurring, spilling soda, clenching teeth, etc, and I’m hoping for some really awesome, honest-to-God action here, but… he calms himself down. Damn. Okay. Well, on the bright side, this means there’s not a single stupid thing for Edward to worry about and he’s still a smothering jackass.

Jacob insists he’d rather Bella were dead than, you know, one of Satan’s army. This is like SO MEAN and stuff so she leaves, for like, EVER!

Instead of riding her bike back home, safe from her jailers, she rides back to Chez Cullen. What the hell? She is all “DON’T WANNA TALK MMMMOOOOPPPPPE” and stalks off to Edward’s room, to defiantly sleep on his couch.

She wakes up in the bed, with Edward. Eeeyyyikes, it’s like those “Wake Up With the King” commercials. Of course, now that he’s here, and so wonderful and perfect and dazzling, she forgets to be angrier than grizzly bears or whatever stupid thing she threatened earlier.

They make out. Uh. No, wait, yeah! This is actual making out! He wraps one of her legs around him, they roll around on the bed. It’s actually kind of hot, aside from the fact that he’s cold and dead (ew).

I guess the “no tongue-kissing” rule is off.

Bella actually asks this, all “oh did you change your mind about withholding sex from me?” He basically tells her “don’t be silly, I would never have sex with you, I just wanted to be a gigantic tease.” Well, okay, actually he says “I was just trying to illustrate the benefits of the bed you don’t seem to like. Don’t get carried away.”

Don’t get carried away.

That’s the sound of my face hitting my desk repeatedly.

They talk about sex for a full page, without ever actually mentioning it. Yes, just like the first and last time they discussed it in Twilight, this is a page full of eyebrow-wiggling, elbow-nudging, and bush-skirting. In more ways than one.

Edward extricates himself from the naughty dirty “sex” situation (he might be forced to admit that he has no interest in vaginas), by apologizing for… wait.

No, this… really? I can’t believe it. He apologizes for being a smothering jackass. He is now 100% okay with her having friends. This confuses and somehow infuriates me.  We get this chapter where all in one, a. Jacob is a “jerk”, b. Edward is suddenly caring and supportive. What gives?

Bella confesses that Jacob said he’d rather see her dead than as an abhorrent creature of evil. Edward apologizes, and offers to kill him. I’m not even joking. He’s all “oh well I can slip up in my self-control a little bit and kill him for you, if you really want.” Her response is to go “Oh, you!” and try to have sex with him again.

This is just twisted.

Let’s see, she propositions Edward  for sex for the third time of the night, he declines once again (because he is a homoseI mean gentleman), and she asks him about the pretty vampires he had absolutely no interest in while he was visiting Alaska (because he is homoseI mean very particular about women). He reassures her that nothing happened, he never nailed any of them, and Tanya was merely stupefyingly beautiful. Not at all like his perfect, pale, clumsy, whiny, empty-headed, teary-eyed little Bella. Tanya probably had too much of a free will and identity for him.

He sings her to sleep. Because he is the perfect man and not at all boring and we should all aspire to fall in love with a creep just like him.

I love the satisfying sound this book makes when I slam it shut in total contempt.

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Chapter Three

Posted in Eclipse, Recap with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Oh, God did I have a day at work. They’ve dropped me right in the middle of a Charlie Foxtrot and it’s driving me to drink Mike’s Hard Pink Lemonade, for crap’s sake.

But oh, look, a new chapter of Eclipse. Surely this will bolster my mood.

Edward creep-o-meter: 6

Edward and Bella are flying back from Florida.

Wait, huh? Hang on. Did I skip a chapter?

…No, yeah, there’s my end-of-chapter notes from the last chapter, screeching in all-caps about The Truck Incident. So I didn’t miss anything. Well, other than the obvious. Someone taught Stephenie to skip things.

Edward and Bella are flying back from Florida. It’s  convenient that Smeyer skipped all that unnecessary vampire-in-sunlight fodder, because then she’d have to explain how Edward was able to stay out of natural light all day while on vacation visiting his girlfriend’s mother.

My mom would have dragged that boy out with us. Well, and then, sparkling would happen, and my mom would probably say “Is this related to one of those Japanese cartoon things you keep watching?”

Anyway.

Bella’s mother catches on to the fact that Edward and Bella are “serious.” More serious than she thought. Serious is a good word for it. I also like “calamitous.” Or maybe “unpalatable.” Renée makes comments to how protective Edward is and how intense they are and how Bella moves around him like a satellite. No, really.

“The way you move–you orient yourself around him without even thinking about it. When he moves, even a little bit, you adjust your position at the same time. Like magnets… or gravity. You’re like a… satellite, or something. I’ve never seen anything like it.”

Bella and Edward are special, okay? And apparently we only came to Florida so that Renée could remind us. Again. Just how special they are.

Again, if my mother saw that behavior in me? She’d start looking for other signs of control and abuse, too. But then, my mother and I don’t know what truest of true loves is like, on account of us thinking Twilight is a crock of cowplop. Frowny face.

Charlie is waiting up for Bella (and Edward, I guess) to return. Edward is stiff and standoffish before they even get in the door. Charlie soon reveals why–Jacob has been calling all night, looking for Bella. Oh, right, her other boyfriend. Before she can reminisce too long on her fond memories of using him as an emotional crutch, the phone rings.

Jacob demands to know if Bella is… going to school tomorrow.

K, bye. Click.

Okay then.

Bella obsesses and worries over why Jacob cares about her attendance for two and a half pages. She eventually comes to the conclusion that she was gone for three days, and becoming a vampire takes three days, so clearly Jacob thought she’d been bitten. Bella’s never ever been wrong so I’m sure that’s what it is.

Actually, I’m having a problem thinking of the last time Bella came to a conclusion that wasn’t wrong. The misogyny runs so deep in these novels it kills me.

So, anyway, the next day they go to school. Whoa, they jump right to the action here. Kudo’s to Smeyer’s editors, whoever they are. Jacob is waiting at school. Edward is pleased to point out to Bella how very wrong she was yet again. Jake and Ed glower at each other for a while. By the way, Jacob, at sixteen, is six foot seven inches tall, and tightly muscled–like, body-builder muscled. Right.

Edward confronts Jacob, after a short bit of pleading with Bella to stay in the car, which she for some reason doesn’t do. I was prepared to have her just follow his orders like always, but I guess it’s just really important to the plot that she hear this.

Edward is like “I can read your mind, and I know what you came here to say, so thanks for showing up to warn us, see you later.” Not suspicious in the least. Bella’s all “Teehee what?” which makes Jacob realize that Edward hasn’t told her anything at all about what’s going on.

It turns out that Emmett crossed the treaty line on Saturday. Paul and him came to words. Yeah, not blows, just words. Despite the fact that werewolves are here specifically to kill vampires, nobody fought, and nobody got hurt.

Bella tries to ask about what’s going on, only to have Edward shush her constantly. Jacob finds it in him to get righteously indignant on Bella’s behalf, which only makes Edward suddenly look all scary and stuff (he’s totes terrifying).

All at once, Bella puts together what we’ve all realized since Alice had that stupid vision.

  1. Edward didn’t want her to know something.
  2. Jacob wouldn’t have kept it from her.
  3. Edward wanted her out of the city to keep her from knowing this something.
  4. Alice had a vision about it and then
  5. EDWARD FREAKING LIED TO HER
  6. Also, vampires are dreamy.

This all adds up to, OH MY GOSH, YOU GUYS, VICTORIA IS BACK! Are you scared? Man, me too. There is nothing more terrifying than the vague threat of a redheaded hobopire who is not even important enough to have a single line in the novel she is the supposed villain of. A villain who does not actually accomplish anything except make a lot of grown men run around in the woods like silly pagans, and cause the female character to vomit and cry in turns.

And so, predictably, Bella starts crying.

Edward is all “Now look what you’ve done! She’ll never calm down in time for nappy-bye!” I mean, actually, he defends himself for lying to her and trying to keep something important to her from her.

He was… wait for it…

Protecting her.

Jacob, for his part, plays a total badass, and he’s not taking any of Edward’s crap.

“Do you really think hurting her is better than protecting her?” he murmured.

“She’s tougher than you think,” Jacob said. “And she’s been through worse.”

With that, Jacob begins to remember, as clearly as he can, how depressed and downright pitiful Bella was when Edward left. Specifically so Edward will pick through his mind and find it.

Poor poor Eddie is all pained and stuff as he is forced to invade Jacob’s privacy, read his mind, and find clear memories of Bella suffering. We all feel really bad for him. Jacob just laughs and grins.

Guys, I seriously love this new “asshole” Jacob. It’s about time somebody slapped Edward around.

“Overprotective, isn’t he?” Jacob said, talking just to me. “A little trouble makes life fun. Let me guess, you’re not allowed to have fun, are you?”

Edward glowered, and his lips pulled back from his teeth ever so slightly.

“Shut up, Jake,” I said.

Jacob laughed. “That sounds like a no. […]”

SERIOUSLY guys I like Jacob more now.

A grown-up finally shows up to shoo everyone off to class. Edward and Bella pass notes in English, where Edward describes the whole “yeah your flavorless archenemy is back to kill you and also we argued with some werewolves” debacle. I wonder if it’s more that he’s too embarrassed to have Bella around to see that stuff. “We almost had her! Then we got in a fight with some dogs over who was better at Counter-Strike.”

Bella says that Florida was a bad idea–they wouldn’t have been near Victoria to hear if she was going to come after Charlie. Edward counters, not at all creepily, that he’s not sending her anywhere alone, because who knows what could happen.

You know, the way he keeps harping on her bad luck, it’s almost like he’s purposefully laying the foundation for later, when he actually does hurt her, and can just say “Oh, you know Bella’s luck. She made friends with another werewolf, and he beat the tar out of her.”

For some reason, they pass notes back and forth about the many ways in which Edward would save her from a crashing plane. Yeah, he’s just that perfect and strong. God, this is boring.

In Calculus, which is the only class Bella doesn’t share with Edward–

Wait, hold up. Edward can manipulate the faculty however he wants, and there manages to be one class he doesn’t share with Bella? I call BS.

Well, anyway, in Calculus, the guys are taking bets on either Jacob or Edward in a fight. Mike bets on Jacob.

Uh, the end.

Well, at least her truck still ended intact in this one.

Chapter Two

Posted in Eclipse, Recap with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 6, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Edward creep-o-meter: 9

I went to the Significant Other’s folk’s place for our American Independence Day Food and Explosions Extravaganza, wearing my “And Then Buffy Staked Edward, The End” shirt. It turns out that Mikael’s aunt and cousin both feel exactly the same way we here at House Vampirely do. Getting into a very passionate discussion with two accomplished readers/writers from the family was exhilarating. We also got to bore the living daylights out of Mikael and his father.

The perils of living with a woman who has made a career of hating Twilight.

Chapter two is ratcheting up the creepy. And by the end of this recap, you’ll know why.

Bella goes to school. We, of course, want to hear all about this, and how she spends her time with the most perfect person on the planet (her exact words, not mine in the least). Everybody is panicking about this being their last year at high school, except for Alice and Edward. Good Lord, who knows how many times they’ve faked being high school kids. Given that Edward has “done the Dartmouth route” already, I’m not even really sure why he’s bothering with high school at this point. Wait, did I cover this already? I think this book is actively making me stupider.

Angela, her boyfriend B… uh, Bill… no… Ben! Right, another mortal we don’t care about. Angela, her boyfriend Ben, Alice, Edward, and Bella have lunch. They talk about senioritis. Bella mentions she’s free of grounding now. Angela and her should totally hang. Alice wants to party in another country. It’s wacky, completely enthralling hijinx all around.

Alice starts to have a vision in the middle of a conversation. The fact that Alice just completely checks out for minutes at a time doesn’t seem to bother the mortals in the least. Alice just says she was “daydreaming,” and she and Edward discuss things telepathically, without filling Bella in.

Bella enters Supreme Paranoia Mode.

Edward seems to avoid alone time with her for the rest of the day, clearly to avoid her questions. Wait. I’m not sure if I’m even being sarcastic anymore. On the one hand, Bella has to make it all about her, and on the other, Edward is a controlling asshole and I wouldn’t put it past him. He even goes so far as to strike up a conversation with Mike “Nothing Wrong With Him” Newton to avoid conversation with Bella. A conversation about cars. Hmm. That’s not suspicious at all.

I love when relationships are based on subterfuge and evasion.

Alice starts talking a mile a minute about how Edward shouldn’t have offered his services to Mike as a mechanic. Apparently, Ed is just not that good of a mechanic. I nearly dropped the book at this point. Something Edward is not absolutely perfect at? This can’t be possible.

“[…] Though I suppose, for Mike’s car, you’ll do. It’s only within the finer tunings of a good Italian sports car that you’re out of your depth.”

Oh, so… okay, it’s not actually a flaw at all. Edward is still better than the average person at auto mechanics.

Sigh.

Alice and Edward continue to have Silent Mind-Bullet Conversations, leaving Bella completely out of the loop. She spends two paragraphs waiting, hoping, and internally whining over Edward not telling her what’s going on–completely missing the fact that she could solve this very readily by just saying “What was Alice’s vision, why are you guys hiding it from me?”

Bella continues to stress and fret and not just ask what’s wrong. Edward continues trying to distract her by making out a little, and talking about random boring things that don’t matter. P.S. kissing Edward is still like making out with a marble statue. That’s hotttt with like a million Ts.

Bella gets an e-mail from her mother. We are treated to a page of Bella narrating how she’s had to take care of her own mother all her life. This is to prove how intelligent and mature she is. In a well-written character, it would also explain why she is so desperate to find someone (like Edward) to control her own life. But we’re not reading about well-written characters, are we?

This is a segue into the inevitable discussion of marriage again. I still do not get how I can be treated to two, 500-page books about how true their love is and how mated their souls are and how other-halvey Edward is, and be forced to swallow the horse crap that is Bella’s new fear of commitment. It’s completely out-of-character–and for someone with no character, that’s saying a lot.

Mom, apparently, got married right out of high school and immediately had a kid. So now she pressures Bella to go to college and wait until she’s “older” to even THINK about marriage. Don’t do what I did! Is this hypocrisy, or trying to live vicariously through your daughter? Neither, because Renée is Bella’s sweet and scatterbrained mother, and we are not allowed to find fault with people that Bella likes.

She has to write something about Jacob in her email. And then she realizes that Edward is standing over her shoulder. Oh but he’s totally not reading her write this email. That would be controlling. He’s actually staring at something in her closet. Sure.

Edward produces the two plane tickets to Florida Bella got for her birthday in the last book. Apparently they’re about to expire, and Edward is, inconceivably, all about going to Florida. Trying to get Bella out of town, are we? Of course, Bella can’t see through this at all. She’s just worried that Charlie is going to throw a fit. And you know he will.

I sighed. “Not this weekend.”

“Why not?”

“I don’t want to fight with Charlie. Not so soon after he’s forgiven me.”

His eyebrows pulled together. “I think this weekend is perfect.”

I’m just positive he’s not going to try to undermine her decision to not go. He’s very respectful of her wants and wishes–so long as they’re in line with his. Otherwise, it’s Seduce Bella Until She Changes Her Mind time again!

I shook my head. “Another time.”

“You aren’t the only one who’s been trapped in this house, you know.” He frowned at me.

Suspicion returned. This kind of behavior was unlike him. He was always so impossibly selfless; I knew it was making me spoiled.

I laughed out-loud at this part. Edward, selfless? Right, stealing your crap in the last book and leaving you heartbroken was for your own good. Bullying or tricking you into doing things his way is because he’s protecting you.

Also, why the hell is he giving her lip for him being trapped in the house? Did Carlisle ground him to Bella’s bedroom, too?

Bella finally, finally gets around to asking what Alice had seen. It was something to do with Jasper going down south to see the family. Oh. Well. That’s… not at all what Bella or I was expecting. Bella is now chiding herself for being paranoid and assuming the worst. It’s all her fault! It’s not like Edward tried to avoid the subject and still seems to be keeping things from her. No no, she’s the one who needs therapy.

Bella makes Charlie a special dinner to keep him in a good mood with Edward there. Oh my God this is so “beaten housewife” I can hardly stand it. Charlie makes a comment about the Blacks inviting everyone down for some sports party. Bella wonders if Edward will get upset that Charlie is going to be hanging out with werewolves. We all know this is not the case, because Edward has no interest in controlling Charlie.

Edward and Bella get to washing dishes.

“Charlie,” Edward said in a conversational tone.

Charlie stopped in the middle of his little kitchen. “Yeah?”

“Did Bella ever tell you that my parents gave her airplane tickets on her last birthday, so that she could visit Renée?”

Annnnd Edward completely undermines Bella. Are you surprised? Cause I’m freaking surprised.

Charlie seems okay with Bella going to visit her mother, until Edward mentions that he’d be going, too. Charlie shouts, stomps, and does everything but flip a table. (Also, I see my first use of the word “chagrin.” I’ve heard that the misuse of this word gets a little ridiculous, so I’m going to keep track!) Charlie attempts to ground Bella again for… uh, well, nothing at all, actually, and she calls him on it. By threatening to move out.

It’s battle of the nut-jobs!

Bella seems to like this new tactic of “say something shocking and terrible, then immediately follow up with something manipulative and seemingly reasonable.” She drops the “well, when do you want me to move out” card, then, when Charlie’s face turns purple, she sighs and does the whole “Look I’m trying to be reasonable but you can’t just order me around because I’m an adult and I can manipulate you like a pro now.”

Charlie eventually relents. Because he’s a pushover. A big, yelling, gun-toting pushover. She escapes to go to the Cullen Manor.

In the car, Edward insists that Bella has been talking about her mother in her sleep. Worrying about her and such. Bella is surprised at this. I’m just positive Edward isn’t lying in further attempt to get her out of town. But it’s okay if he does it, because he loves her. When she asks him why he had to go and make Charlie mad after she (very reasonably) said she’d have to wait until later, he says this:

“But, clearly, you were too much of a coward to deal with Charlie, so I interceded on your behalf.”

There’s that sweet caring boyfriend we know and love, belittling her so she remembers that she is only so much human chaff, and is, quite frankly, lucky to have such a wonderful perfect guy to hold her hand everywhere she goes.

She asks if this has anything to do with the party at the Black’s place, and he says “Not at all. It wouldn’t matter if you were here or on the other side of the world, you still wouldn’t be going.” Yikes. Bella, miraculously, compares this to how Charlie was talking to her earlier. But she just doesn’t want to fight with Edward :(((

When Bella comes back, sans Edward, Charlie attempts to have The Sex Talk with her. Dad, seriously, the only time sex was even mentioned (and even then, through innuendo and eyebrow-waggling) was in chapter fourteen of Twilight. You have nothing to worry about.

That epic little lols-fest done with, Bella realizes she’s got an hour before Edward will come back to her room. This is just enough time to sneak down to La Push and actually see Jacob.

She is sneaking to La Push to see her friend. She has to sneak to avoid her boyfriend’s wrath. Why do Twilight fans not see the problem with this?

Bella tells Charlie where she’s going, and goes out to her truck, looking over her shoulder the whole way. She puts the key in the ignition, turns it… and nothing happens.

It is at this point that she realizes Edward is sitting next to her in the cab, turning a piece of her engine over and over in his hands.

While he turns this big piece of metal over in his hands in a gesture that isn’t a stretch to describe as threatening, he explains that Alice had a vision wherein Bella’s future disappeared. Naturally, this is because she’s going to go hang out with werewolves.

“Because she can’t see the wolves, you know,” he explained in the same low murmur. “Had you forgotten that? When you decide to mingle your fate with theirs, you disappear, too. You couldn’t know that part, I realize that. But can you understand why that might make me a little… anxious?”

This is not the dialogue of a loving, caring man, who is “anxious” for his lover.

This is the dialogue of a sociopathic creep.

I would expect this in a psychological thriller, in a suspense or mystery novel, something. I would expect this from a sinister person.

But I am expected to believe that this is from the person she wants to spend the rest of her life with.

I am more than a little frightened right now.

He continues to twirl a piece of her truck in his hands, murmuring idly about the nature of werewolves. If I were Bella, I would have started screaming for help at this point, because in not too many novels that engine piece would have ended up embedded in her skull at some point.

“I’ll put your car back together in time for school, in case you’d like to drive yourself,” he assured me after a minute.

Oh well that’s kind of him.

With my lips mashed together, I retrieved my keys and stiffly climbed out of the truck.

“Shut your window if you want me to stay away tonight. I’ll understand,” he whispered, just before I slammed the door.

Whispering it like that means that he won’t understand, and will hold it against her for later. When he can disable her truck and break a leg or two. To protect her, of course.

Bella slams the door to the house and stomps upstairs. She shouts down to Charlie that her truck won’t start. He offers the use of his police cruiser, which is not in accordance with the law, so she declines.

When she gets to her room, she slams the window shut so hard the glass shakes.

Then, five minutes later, she sighs, gets back up and opens it again.

I have no. Freaking. Words. For this.

Chapter One

Posted in Eclipse, Recap with tags , , , , , , , , , , on July 1, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Today was quite an adventure. I slept poorly, so I was unhappy and tense all night. I had to wait for my new prescription to fill at Target for thirty minutes–and for the full thirty minutes, a little girl screamed and wailed and kicked and shrieked about something stupid, while her mother gave her half-hearted stop-thats. And then we realized we’d forgotten something, so I, in my tired cranky state, had to walk to the store to pick it up. I picked up a snapple iced tea–my only treat so far in an otherwise bleary day. I then, promptly, dropped it when I got home, scattering fake glass shards everywhere.

Tl;dr — I’m in a foul mood.

The perfect time to start recapping Eclipse, wouldn’t you say?

New Moon left us with several things to ponder.

Would Bella convince herself to settle for Jacob, in an effort to make him “happy”–by which we all assume means she would continue to use and manipulate him, only they’ll totes be getting married and having 2.5 children to go with it?

Would Edward be able to side-step the (hastily cobbled-together) treaty Jacob’s family defends, give Bella her (flamboyantly selfish) wish of becoming one of the beautiful dead? Would Edward even give it an honest try, or hide behind Jacob’s lukewarm threats as an excuse to not give Bella phenomenal supernatural power, so he can continue controlling her life?

Could Stephenie Meyer have possibly been more obvious in her desperate, pathetic wish to be Isabella Marie Swan?

Will Rachel ever forgive herself for remembering what Bella’s middle name is?

I’m fairly certain Eclipse will neatly avoid answering all of these questions. Except for maybe the last two. Ugh, seriously, of all the things to stick in my brain.

So there’s a prologue. The last two books had prologues as well–there’s a very good reason I didn’t recap them, and that is that these prologues accomplish nothing. The preface of New Moon consisted of Bella running dramatically, and the sun being bright, and a clock tolling. I’m not sure why it even exists, other than to express a falsehood–the prologue tries desperately to be exciting, whereas the rest of the book is content to flop languidly somewhere between “dull” and “is there something on the Golf Channel I could watch instead?”

Anyway, this preface vaguely suggests that there’s a fight going on somewhere, and there’s “black eyes” watching Bella, and a wolf howls.

YEAH THAT’S IT. Is she just trying to bump up word count or something? Is this really the only way she knows how to foreshadow?

Forget this, on to the first chapter.

We are greeted by a new font (every time someone hand-writes something, we absolutely must have a new font, so we can know what their handwriting looks like!!), and several paragraphs scratched out.  After a few crossed-out paragraphs of passive-aggression, Jacob finally decides on “Yeah, I miss you too. A lot. Doesn’t change anything. Sorry.”

Why the hell didn’t he just grab a new piece of paper?

Bella cradles the thing like it’s a love letter from her husband in Iraq. Apparently she and Jacob are passing notes via their fathers. Are the injuns too poor for email or something? Bella whines for a while about how Jacob’s pain is her pain, and I find it difficult to feel sorry for her.

Charlie is trying to cook. Apparently he has never, um, read a book, or something, because he put something metal in the microwave. Cue wacky sitcom music and canned laughter! Oh Dad you should know by now to leave the cooking to the women. His attempt at spaghetti is a lumpy mush. How the hell did he even feed himself before Bella arrived if he can’t make freaking spaghetti?

Also, Edward. Bella is still prissy as all get out over using the word “fiancée,” which makes just as much sense as it did in the previous book. Edward is only allowed to see her from seven to nine-thirty, because she is totes grounded. But he also sees her at school. And then sneaks into her room at night. So um, way to go on that grounding, Dad. Somewhere in this explanation is the longest sentence I think I have ever seen–

Ever since my former best friend (and werewolf), Jacob Black, had informed on me about the motorcycle I’d been riding on the sly–a betrayal he had devised in order to get me grounded so that I couldn’t spend time with my boyfriend (and vampire), Edward Cullen–Edward had been allowed to see me only from seven till nine-thirty p.m. [sic], always inside the confines of my home and under the supervision of my dad’s unfailingly crabby glare.

Check it out, kids–seventy-seven words long, two parenthetical asides, one set of hyphens, and two adverbs. This must have been after Stephenie realized she was too good for an editor, and all she needed was a publicist.

Actually, I’m fairly certain the first half of this  chapter could be easily summed up in one big mama run-on sentence.

Back to the dynamic dialogue! Charlie reads the news, and is angry. Seattle had five unsolved homicides in the last two weeks! HORRORS. This is actually because of vampires but we don’t know it yet.

Bella takes a moment to Make This All About Her and thinks about how many different people want to kill her. This makes her tremble in fear, because she is strong and independent.

Charlie finally gets around to the point and talks to her about her friends. Apparently she doesn’t see them. Shocker! Charlie is willing to ease up on her grounded-ness if she promises to actually, you know, go see people, instead of spending every waking moment with her creepy boyfriend. Yeah yeah, whatever, sure, I promise. He says something about how “for a teenager, you’re amazingly non-whiny,” which makes me laugh until I choke.

P.S. The reason Bella has less friends now is because Lauren and Jessica don’t like her, and have an “anti-Bella agenda.” We are supposed to think they are both major bitches because they don’t like Bella. Never mind that they both dislike Bella for very valid reasons.

Um, this goes on for a few pages. I wonder if Stephenie is trying to address complaints that Bella has no life outside her possessive controlling boyfriend? Or if she really just thinks I want to read six pages of Bella’s father going “Make some friends, dammit!”

The conversation finally ends. Bella gets her mail, which includes a letter of acceptance to University of Alaska Southeast–chosen specifically because Juneau has an average of 321 overcast days a year. Ew. Charlie opened it first, which is lol a crime.

Then, the moment you’ve all been waiting for arrives–Edward shows up. And he’s miraculous, with perfect pale skin, a square jaw, full lips, sharp cheekbones, a (uh) marbley forehead, and rain-darkened bronze hair.

Also he’s cold and dead, manipulative, and devoid of any personality. But we get three paragraphs describing how beautiful he is, so I guess I’d better respond with ~*he’s so dreamy*~

They touch each other and gaze into their eyes and then Charlie shows up and ruins everything.

Edward has brought a set of college applications as their front. Charlie asks where Edward has been accepted to, and he’s all “Oh, you know. Syracuse. Harvard. Dartmouth. University of Alaska Southwest.”

And Charlie doesn’t even bat an eye dear Lord.

Edward mentions something about going shopping, and Charlie freaks out about Bella going to Seattle. I would make a comment about how big Seattle is and how unlikely it is she’d run into the new vampire serial killer who mysteriously drains every body of blood, but… well, this is Bella we’re talking about here, and she’d probably go wandering unsupervised through back alleys the first chance she got.

Edward wouldn’t have taken her to Seattle anyway. He was thinking Portland. Four and a half hours away. God, it must suck to live in Forks.

Jesus, this just keeps going. Bella decides she doesn’t want to fill out the Dartmouth application, and goes to crumple it up and throw it away. Edward snatches it away from her, and announces that he signs her name better than she does anyway. That’s right. He’s forging her signature on the applications to colleges he wants her to go to. I don’t care if you think it’s sweet that he’s trying so hard to get her into Dartmouth. If you think Edward is chivalrous then you are wrong.

Bella doesn’t even think twice about this, neither about how creepy it is nor controlling he can be. Oh, Edward, you’re just trying way too hard for her sake!

This is also the first time we ever–ever–hear about new vampires. Apparently, they are ravenous beasts with no self-control. That’s funny. I seem to recall Alice’s backstory involving her calmly having visions about Jasper and then going to find him. But maybe we’ll retcon that now that something new has come in and overridden everything.

Anyway, guess what, Edward confirms that the killings in Seattle are being done by a new vampire. But the Cullens, apparently, don’t give a crap–it’s not their territory and it’s not their business. That’s just downright compassionate of Carlisle, wouldn’t you agree?

They talk about going somewhere safe to eat animals, just the two of them. Edward mentions how awesome wolves taste, and Bella gets all panicky. Jacob is having a hard time right now, and it’s all her fault! Edward tries to tell her it isn’t, while the rest of us go “YES IT IS.”

When Bella brings up that Charlie’s condition for her not being grounded is she needs to be friends with Jacob again, Edward throws a fit. It’s “out of the question.” It would “break the treaty.” Does she want to start a war? There’s no point in discussing this.

What just happened?

He tries to change the subject to Wuthering Heights (the first book I’ve ever seen Bella read in the whole of this series), and she changes it back. He absolutely will not let her see Jacob. No discussion. No compromise. He then goes back to his favorite tactic–blaming all the bad things that happen on her, since she is a “trouble magnet.”

And then we get three more pages of him telling her which friends she can and can’t see, culminating in this:

He kissed the top of my head and sighed.

“No werewolves.”

“I’m not going along with that. I have to see Jacob.”

“Then I’ll have to stop you.”

He sounded utterly confident that this wouldn’t be a problem.

I was sure he was right.

WHAT

I mean

Ohhhhh he’s sooooooooo protective of her, trying to save her from the big bad werewolf that has never actually done anything to hurt her and was, in fact, a better friend to her than Edward has ever been. I’m sure this has nothing to do with the misogyny inherent in these amazing, brilliant books. Telling her which friends she can and can’t see certainly isn’t a symptom of abuse, and Edward is really very chivalrous in protecting her from things she doesn’t need protection from, and, in fact, without her even asking!

Edward Creep-o-meter: (Where one is “Take him home to meet Dad Charlie,” and ten is “change the locks, get a pit bull, file a restraining order, and buy a taser”) Seven

Crap, there’s an epilogue.

Posted in Recap, Twilight with tags , , , , , , , , , , on April 24, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Bella, all dolled up in a fancy dress, with a fancy do, and a fancy leg boot, is being helped into the Volvopire by Edward, dressed in a tux. Alice spent all day prettying her up, which actually is sort of a cute mental image. With how Alice’s hair is described (sticking out in all directions, like she were just shocked–hey!), I’m surprised Bella didn’t come out of this with a fauxhawk or something.

Oh, and, Bella has no idea what’s going on. Not until Edward gets a call from Charlie, informing him that Tyler wants to know why Bella isn’t there to be his date to the prom.

Oh MY GOD Bella throws a fit. I would, too, if I were somehow stupid enough to not know that high school prom was coming. Crap on a stick, how meatheaded and tunnel-visioned do you have to be to miss prom planning, prom signs, guys asking girls out, girls chattering about dresses and shoes and hair, guys chattering about hotel rooms and beer…

Right. Bella.

Well, all the  vampires are there. By the way, Rosalie still hates her and her still-living womb. Everyone is super pretty, and we are treated to paragraphs about just how pretty they are. Edward helps Bella dance by having her stand on his shoes like she’s a toddler.

Suddenly, injuns!

Jacob Black is here, for some unknown reason. He sidles up to the happy mixed-race couple and asks if he can dance. Edward hisses at him, I’m not even kidding, but Bella says it’s fine. There is some awkwardly cute flirting. Jacob calls her pretty. Aww.

He fills her in. Billy the Meddling Indian paid Jacob $20 to come to this prom. Never mind that this won’t even cover gas money (speaking of which.. how did Jacob get here? he’s only 15), seriously dude, your dad had to pay you?

The reason Billy paid Jacob to come to prom was specifically so he could find Bella and tell her that Dad wants her to break up with Edward.

How exactly did Billy expect this to pan out? “Oh! Really? My father’s friend that I barely remember, much less know, wants me to break off with someone I literally cannot breathe without? Sure! Not a problem. Hey, now that I’m single, wanna get down and dirty and make a litter?’

Bella says no. Duh.

Jacob finishes the message with “We’ll be watching,” looking intensely embarrassed the whole time. Poor kid. I can’t believe daddy is sending him on his drama errands. I would have told the old man to stuff it, personally, but Jacob is in love with this idiot and wanted to see her dancing with some gorgeous white kid all night.

Edward reappears, glaring at Jacob until he leaves. He then sighs and says how much that native kid is getting on his nerves. Bella isn’t pretty, what an insult, she’s much more than even beautiful. Ugh.

Anyway, Edward leads her outside, and they get to talking. He took her to prom because he doesn’t want her to miss out on her life because of him. Bella (and I) both argue that she wouldn’t have gone to the prom in the first place, so she’s not really missing anything. Bella confesses that she was sort of hoping all the dolling and dressing up was for her Bite Day, which Edward immediately calls absolutely retarded.

Edward insists that he’s not worth her becoming an immortal perfect absolutely beautiful sparkling creature who is forever young and strong and talented. Why on earth does she want to be a vampire? He makes like he’s going to bite her, right there at prom, and it’s all tense and sexual and crap, until he psychs her out and simply kisses her. Oh, you, pretending like you’re going to inject me with a fatal and excruciatingly painful poison!

I will leave you with the last paragraphs of this stinkfest, this pile of refuse, this hot burning injection of pure misogyny, codependency, abuse and necrophilia.

I touched his face. “Look,” I said. “I love you more than everything else in the world combined. Isn’t that enough?”

“Yes, it is enough,” he answered, smiling. “Enough for forever.”

And he leaned down to press his cold lips once more to my throat.

eeeeeeeeeeeewwwwwwwww

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you

Twilight.

Chapter Fifteen, part one

Posted in Post is Unrelated, Recap with tags , , , , , , , , on April 15, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

ADVERB COUNT: 77

BELLA LIKE-O-METER is absolutely 0.

Bella wakes up to Edward sitting in the chair across from her bed, watching her. OH EDWARD SIIGH. She throws herself into his arms and confesses she thought last night was a dream. His response? “You’re not that creative.”

I’d be a little more upset if he wasn’t correct. There is absolutely nothing interesting, new, or even strong about this so-called heroine. I am still suspecting he’s keeping her around as an emergency food supply.

Oh, look, a paragraph about Bella washing her face. Merciful crap, Stephenie, no one cares.

Bella talked in her sleep more, it seemed. She said she loved Edward. I’m not sure how she can be so coherent while sleep-talking. I normally talk about returning your mining skill within 90 days with receipt, if you don’t like it.

Edward tells Bella that she is his life now. Codependency, go! He then tells Bella it’s time to eat, because he needs to make her decisions for her now. Bella makes a joke about him eating her. Oh man, it’s so funny that he could kill her at any moment. He attempts to make her breakfast himself before he realizes that he doesn’t eat and doesn’t know what humans actually have for breakfast. It’s hilarious and not at all boring, I swear.

The actual plot of the chapter eventually happens in the form of Edward inviting Bella to his place to meet his “folks.” Bella asks if Alice saw her in her  visions, and Edward responds rather oddly. Is Alice gunning for Bella too? That would be hilarious and probably the only thing that could make me enjoy the book at this point.

Edward insists Bella tell her dad Charlie that he’s her boyfriend. Bella says “I was under the impression that you were something more, actually.” Undead lifemate? “We’re getting vampire-married, after we figure out how to keep him from crushing my skull.”

Oh for God’s sake, would we hurry up and meet the interesting characters please?

Bella agonizes over what to wear. Oh God. She comes downstairs and declares herself decent, to which Edward manhandles her tenderly and insists that she is indecently tempting. Oh God. He kisses her, and she faints.

Oh GOD I am not even KIDDING she FREAKING FAINTS.

I just

I can’t

what is

I have to go.

BRB.

Chapter Thirteen, new adverb high score

Posted in Recap, Twilight with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

ADVERB COUNT: 97. Ninety and seven. 97!!

BELLA LIKE-O-METER: Oh god 1.

Edward does not burst into flames. He does not hiss “No, natural light!!” and melt into a puddle of viscous goo.

He glitters.

This is not a metaphor.

He sparkles in the light, like a frigging suncatcher. His skin looks as though it were embedded with diamonds. Oh God I wish I were joking.

So let’s recap the pros and cons of being a  vampire.

Pros:

1. Super awesome power, chosen at random. (Pick from clairvoyance, telepathy, empathy, and uh, compassion.)
2. Super strength, speed, and senses.
3. Aphrodisiac breath.
4. Heart-stopping beauty.
5. Don’t need to breathe!
6. Uh, totally immortal?

Cons:

1. You have to drink blood They talk a lot about what a pain it is to just drink animal blood, but uh, clan Cullen seems to be surviving just fine, angst notwithstanding. What, are vegans constantly in emotional anguish because they won’t have a steak?
2. Sparkling I don’t know what the hell his problem is. He’s going to be a hit at clubs. Put this back on the pro list.

Pros, continued:

7. Sparkling.

So um, what’s the big deal with being a vampire? Where, exactly, is the downside? I’m not convinced here.

I mean, sure, sparkling is sort of embarrassing when you’re trying to be all manly and impressive, but seriously.

So anyway. Edward freaking sparkles which only makes him prettier and we are treated to pages and pages of angelic beauty, awkward touching (not even sexual touching, just face stroking and hand-holding), and… really incredibly creepy dialogue.

“I’m the world’s best predator, aren’t I? Everything about me invites you in–my voice, my face, even my smell. As if I need any of that! … As if you could outrun me,” he laughed bitterly. … “As if you could fight me off.”

He delivers this line while jumping around the glade and ripping apart huge trees. Bella remains unafraid, because, say it with me, she is a colossal idiot.

Edward explains to Bella that everybody has a specific smell, and for reasons unknown, she smells absolutely amazing to him, which caused him a lot of trouble on that infamous day in Biology. Seriously guys, he almost ate her. Seriously. He’s dangerous and you need to be afraid. He tells Bella she is his “brand of heroin,” which makes me gag ever so slightly. Bella asks if this weird scent-frenzy happens to the other vampires too, and Edward brings up that it has happened twice to his “brother,” Emmett.

“What did Emmett do?” I asked to break the silence.

It was the wrong question to ask. His face grew dark, his hand clenched into a fist inside mine. He looked away. I waited, but he wasn’t going to answer.

“I guess I know, ” I finally said.

HO HUM, YOUR BROTHER IS A MURDERER. LET’S LOVINGLY STROKE EACH OTHER MORE!

Edward continues on this bizarre, messed-up path of the conversation, describing how he had come up with ways to lure her out of school with him alone so he could kill her. How when she saw him in the office that day he was considering killing her and the office lady, since it was just “one other frail human” to take care of.

Even in light of this frankly horrifying testimonial, Bella is unmoved. The best we get is a brief moment of pity for Ms. Cope for almost unintentionally causing her violent death. Oh my God. Does this girl understand that Edward sees her as an Extra Value Meal with breasts?

Anyway, Edward went to Alaska for… some reason, and then came back when he realized he was being a gigantic pussy. Then we begin on whatever  chapter that was when suddenly he was all smiles and friendliness for his future meal.

By the way, he had been listening to her conversations through her friends’ minds since day one. Not creepy at all.

But he loves her.

They touch some more, I wish fervently that the author wasn’t a grossly immature Mormon and I could get a decent love scene at some point to break up the monotony, but no so luck. Edward drops hints that he apparently has never been lusty before. He’s been a 17 year old boy for 90 years, I find this very hard to believe. Bella puts her head to his chest and hears… nothing, and sighs in happiness.

Ugh ugh ew ew ew ew

Edward gives her a piggy-back ride down the mountain, running at Superman speeds. This makes her motion-sick and dizzy, which only sets us up for the swooning at the KISS SCENE:

Edward hesitated to test himself, to see if this was safe, to make sure he was still in control of his need.

And then his cold, marble lips pressed very softly against mine.

EEEEWWWW EW EW EW EW HE’S DEAD YOU STUPID TWIT HE’S DEAD

Anyway she swoons a little and, predictably, he refuses to let her drive.

” … Besides, friends don’t let friends drive drunk,” he quoted with a chuckle. …

“Drunk?” I objected.

“You’re intoxicated by my very presence.”

Aaaugh why does Stephenie Meyer hate me.