Archive for lamest villain ever

Chapter Nine

Posted in Eclipse, Recap with tags , , , , , , , on September 14, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Hmmm, I’m getting ahead again. Time to start future-dating these.

Edward creep-o-meter: 3 — I know, I’m alarmed too.

So Bella comes home from her kidnapping and house arrI mean sleepover and Charlie has left her a note. While he’s actually here. Why didn’t he just tell her?

The note is about calling Jacob. Apparently he feels really bad for telling Bella to go off and die instead of becoming a vampire. Bella’s all “HMPH!” and stomps upstairs, as Charlie chides her for not being forgiving.

Bella has her mind set on laundry. Yes, readers, laundry. We are about to have a very exciting  laundry sequence.

Some of Bella’s clothes are missing, as well as her pillow. First she figures Alice popped them in the wash, because, well, I guess we all have friends who, um, randomly do our laundry for us? But her clothes are not in the wash, and neither are they in her hamper. I know you guys are on the edge of your seats here.  Unfortunately, the thrilling conclusion to “Where in the World is Bella’s Red Blouse?” will have to continue later, because Edward has arrived.

Edward’s golden eyes were wide, his nostrils flared, his lips pulled back over his teeth.

u r so pretty

Edward, faster than anyone can see him, runs up to Bella’s room, and then back downstairs. He grabs Bella around the waist and pulls her into the kitchen, looking around for laundry thieves. Edward indicates that someone has been here, one of his people. No, he doesn’t mean a gay man–although that would explain the missing blouse.

Don’t worry, though! It’s no one we know. I would hate for Victoria to sully her 0 line record for this series.

Clearly, they both reason, clearly whoever it was is just looking for Bella, and doesn’t seem to want to eat anybody. Charlie comes in at this point, demanding to know what they’re hissing about, and when he sees Edward’s furious face and Bella’s panicked one, he assumes they are fighting.

Charlie’s expression changed. Abruptly, he was grinning. “If you two are having a fight… well, don’t let me interrupt.”

Still grinning, he put his bowl in the sink and sauntered out of the room.

That’s our Charlie. Dad of the Year material right there.

Edward insists that they leave, and gives his “brothers” some calls we don’t get to understand because he’s just talking that fast. Apparently this is yet another vampire power.

I let him drag me along then, too panicked to think clearly. Charlie met my frightened eyes with a smug grin, which suddenly turned to confusion. Edward had me out the door before Charlie could say anything.

What, exactly, is the point of Charlie’s character? We are told he is a cop, yet he has never once demonstrated this through action or behavior, or even talking about work. His daughter is, he assumes, fighting with her boyfriend, and then he watches Edward drag her out while she looks terrified. And Charlie just stands there. He doesn’t chase after them, shout, demand to know what’s going on, he just lets a boy he openly dislikes literally drag his daughter out the door.

So, clearly, Stephenie reasoned that Bella must have a father, because she’s not immaculately conceived (although at this point it wouldn’t have surprised me). And hey, a cop father would be interesting, because “cop” is a masculine profession. And that’s where she stopped? You can argue that Charlie is stunted and unused to being a father, but Jesus, is he unused to being a law officer as well?

I hate these books so much.

Edward and Bella race to the Cullen mansion, where Edward heckles Alice for not Seeing someone pawing through Bella’s room. Alice stands up for herself, and Edward is about to just keep being a dick when.. he.. stops and apologizes.

This is really starting to confuse me. I guess Bella is making him “more human” or someone told Stephenie that her male lead was “a sociopathic asshole” or something.

Nobody seems to put two and two together on the whole “new vampires” thing from chapter one, and Victoria hating Bella’s guts. Seriously. No one thinks “Wait, maybe Victoria is making the vampires and she sent one of them to root through Bella’s underwear for some messed up reason!”

Instead they assume it’s the Volturi making sure that Bella is a vampire. Which I guess uh. Going through her clothes would totally prove.

Esme tries to argue that maybe this whole thing is a coincidence. Honestly, at this point, I’m reeling from the fact that the plot of a Twilight book was introduced before chapter twenty. Seriously. And there was even some foreshadowing of it in the first chapter. I’m floored.

Everyone agrees to a rotating schedule of watching Bella’s house in case someone else sneaks in to try on her jeans. Bella sort of just stands there as everyone argues about who’s trying to kill her and what they should do about it. Not exactly the most proactive character we’ve ever seen.

They go back. Charlie is smug because he thinks they’re still fighting. Jesus, whatever, Dad. Do us all a favor and just don’t be a character. I’d rather a Charlie Brown style adult we never see the face of and never actually understand.

Jacob called again. Poor guy.

She calls him the next morning (after warning Edward that she’s going to let Jake off the hook). Jacob apologizes rather fervently and offers up a life of servitude. But they’re totally not werewolf soulmates or anything. Bella sort of brings up that someone was kind of in her house yesterday and all the vamps are spooked, which means Edward takes the phone and he and Jacob have a Male Bonding Moment over how best to protect their clumsy, useless, mutual love interest.

Bella is like a Mac Guffin made human. She serves absolutely no purpose but to drive the plot. I never thought I’d see a main character that is, in all actuality and simplicity, a freaking plot device.

Anyway, we get a play-by-play of the conversation, which is basically “Edward said this. Then he paused. Then Edward said this. Then he had a longer pause.” It goes on for about a page and a half. Bella just sits there stupidly as everyone hustles to save her from the Laundry Vampire.  She finally gets the phone back, and Jacob is all “yeah we totes got this covered, I’m coming up there to scent out your panty thief.”

Annnd that’s it. Another chapter down. God damn it, these are so boring.

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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.

Epilogue

Posted in New Moon, Recap with tags , , , , , , , , , , on June 26, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Aaauuuugghh

I was content to play Puzzle Pirates until my skull turned as soft and porous as a Sara Lee spongecake, but will my mother settle for anything less than me continuing to read this subtext-laden, eyeroll-inducing, sparklemongering piece of literary offal?

Short answer: No.

As I said before, about… whoa, wow, more than a week ago (can you guys really blame me?), there is an epilogue to this story. It really is more like an additional chapter. I’m not sure what sets epilogues apart from honest-to-God chapters, but then, neither, apparently, does Stephenie.

So, okay, the epilogue.

Everything goes back to normal a la a 30-minute sitcom. Math is still really hard. Bella’s friends still think she’s a loser. Edward is forcing Bella to go to college (for her own good). We are treated to a small aside about how, of course, Edward has already gone to Harvard, so he doesn’t need to go to a particularly prestigious college this year–wonderful for everyone since Bella has no goals whatsoever and will probably end up shuffling her way to community college.

Already been to Harvard? Why the hell is he even bothering with high school anymore? Is he really just doing it to pick up girls 90 years his junior? (blegh)

There’s thinly veiled plot mechanisms, and then there’s Stephenie Meyer’s writing.

Bella and Jacob are no longer BFF, and I say, good for him. He’s not returning her phone calls, and Bella is wondering “oh no was it something I did,” which we all know the answer to: yes yes a thousand times yes. Bella waits until Edward is kicked out every night (by a “grimly gleeful” Charlie) to make her calls to Jacob, because Edward gets an angry (dare I say, jealous) look on his face any time she mentions Jacob’s name. This is because he wants to protect her, and it has nothing to do with possessiveness or his need to control her. I swear.

The fairy tale was back on. Prince returned, bad spell broken. I wasn’t sure exactly what to do about the leftover, unresolved character. Where was his happily ever after?

That doesn’t come until Breaking Dawn, as many of you know. A minor spoiler for those of you who don’t know–the only reason Jacob has been so madly in love with Bella is because he is actually the destined soulmate of her dhampyr “half-vampire” daughter.

Yes. I’m serious. He’s actually “imprinting” on one of Bella’s eggs and not her. I wonder if he’ll start impressing on one of Edward’s sperm cells later.

So, in short, Bella will marry Edward, have his baby, and Jacob will get the consolation prize–the baby. The only reason I have the will to continue reading this crap is to get to the shining paragon of übercrap that is Breaking Dawn.

Anyway, where was I. No longer BFF. Bella throws a snit in front of Edward on the way home over it, and he tries to convince her that it’s not her they hate. Right, no. Of course not. It couldn’t possibly be Bella that’s the problem here. Everyone freaking loves Bella.

When they get home, Charlie is in a rage, and there in the driveway is Jacob’s truck with the two bicycles in it. Oh man, he totally told Daddy on her. Bella is livid, and, because she is a girl, starts crying. Oh my gosh, Jacob is like so totally mean! Yeah, she more or less says that.

I could never imagine Jacob could be so petty and just plain mean.

Welcome to breaking someone’s heart, you stupid slut.

So um, they have a yelling match. Edward keeps Bella behind him at all times, to “protect” her. Bella accuses Jacob of wanting Charlie to have a heartattack just like Harry–there’s the manipulative girl we’ve come to know and love. Edward does the floundering plot a favor and reads Jacob’s mind–Jacob turned in the bikes and tattled on Bella in the hopes that she would get grounded from seeing Edward. This impressive leap of logic brought to you by: teenagers.

Bella whines that she’s already grounded, which is why she hasn’t come to La Push to complain at him for not taking her calls. Jacob is all “oh, uh, oops,” and Edward, once again, violates the poor kid’s privacy by reading his mind.

“He thought I wouldn’t let you, not Charlie,” Edward explained again.

Not exactly a stretch, considering later Edward does just exactly this. Edward then decides to do the chivalrous thing and thank Jacob for taking care of Bella while he was gone. I had an ex pull this once and it pissed me off more than anything else–I don’t need a man to “take care of me,” and neither, for that matter, should Bella. But since she is a character written by Stephenie Meyer she absolutely depends on men to rescue her from something as mundane as a God damn paper cut, so I guess chivalry is alive after all.

Jacob also takes the time to warn Edward that the treaty means that if he bites a mortal–say, oh, I don’t know, his girlfriend–then the treaty is off and it’s werewolves vs. vampires time. Oh nooo dear God I hope that actually happens. These books are so freaking lame and boring a good old fashioned fight scene might do us some good.

Edward and Jacob fight over who’s going to kill Victoria (who has disappeared, by the way. She was the “villain” of this “book” and wasn’t in a single freaking scene), and Charlie roars and shouts for Bella. She pauses before running off to accept her punshiment so she can look at Jacob with big, wet eyes and say “You pwomised we’d still be fwiends.” Edward pulls her away, and even Bella notes that it’s in restraint instead of protection. Everybody shouts for a while.

Uh, yeah. Jacob finally leaves, and Edward and Bella go to Charlie. Uh.

The end.

Wow.

Well.

I, uh. That was a… well, it was a collection of words on pages.

I can’t really imagine how these books could get any more dull at this point.

Chapter Twenty-Four

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 17, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Lukas texted me at work today to say “I can’t tell if you are kidding about the Twilight thing.”

What part was most believable, you guys? Mormon vampire divorce, or Jasper insisting on being called Jasmine?

Chapter twenty-four is, arguably, the last chapter in this horrible book. I say “arguably” because again, for some reason, there is an epilogue, instead of… I don’t know… a chapter twenty-five.

I’m sorry to get your hopes up, but Edward does not get staked at this point in the series.

Edward carries Bella to his house, because–remember–she’s not allowed to drive anywhere.

Wait, I’m sorry. According to a commenter from a few weeks ago, she is allowed to drive (which is very kind of Edward, to give her permission to drive her own car), it’s just that Edward is better at it, even though we’ve never heard anything that at all corroborates the apparently fan-held fact that Bella sucks at driving. Edward is really very chivalrous, and I’m sorry for thinking he’s a controlling dirtbag with the personality of a can of Pringles.

While they’re piggy-backing it, Bella explains to Edward that she has no problem trusting him–trusting that he won’t leave again–but she doesn’t trust herself to not drive him away, because she is oh so tragic and boring at the same time. Yep, remember, it’s all her fault. She then tells him that she doesn’t fear the Volturi as much as him, because all the silly Volturi can do is kill her. Edward can leave her, and there’s just nothing compared to that.

When Edward looks appropriately horrified, Bella complains that he shouldn’t be sad. Uh, what? You just said that him leaving you was worse than dying. Ohh no, I didn’t mean to make you feel bad about that! Sorry, pumpkin!

“So–since you’re staying. Can I have my stuff back?” I asked, making my tone as light as I could manage.

Haha, yeah! Remember that one time? He totally stole her things? That was hilarious!

“Your things were never gone,” he told me. “I knew it was wrong, since I promised you peace without reminders. It was stupid and childish, but I wanted to leave something of myself with you. The CD, the pictures, the tickets–they’re all under your floorboards.”

Okay, first of all, Edward knew it was wrong to not theft her things. It was stupid and childish to not steal from her. What? Second, couldn’t he just do what a normal guy does and give her a freaking t-shirt or something? No, he’s just going to pack away her belongings, like some kind of blood-sucking squirrel.

Bella suddenly decides that she knew the whole time. That some part of her, deep down inside, knew that Edward still cared about her. Gee, where was that Bella for the 400+ pages of mind-numbing sobbing and whining? (Sorry, I mean, gosh Bella, you’re so brave and strong.)

This is her given reason for why she hears voices.

Not joking! She tells Edward that she knew, all along, that he still loved her, and so she heard his voice in her head when she attempted to kill herself uh did things that were like so totally reckless and dangerous.

She just knows this has to be the case, too. Her words bring her a “sense of conviction” and “rightness.” Yes, folks. Bella hearing voices is not a manpire power, nor is it because she is textbook schizophrenic or even pants-on-head retarded.

Edward loved me. The bond forged between us was not one that could be broken by absence, distance, or time. And no matter how much more special or beautiful or brilliant or perfect than me he might be, he was as irreversibly altered as I was. As I would always belong to him, so would he always be mine.

It’s because she knew ~*Edward still loved her*~

Oh. My. God.

Edward takes a moment to tell her how brave and strong (BRAVE AND STRONG!!!!!) she is for surviving without him. Oh, I have no idea how she managed the 16 years before. Apparently all Ed did was curl up into the foetal position, rock back and forth, and chant “I’m okay. I’m okay. I’m okay. I’m okay.” If this is true, then, yeah, I guess Bella is a Real American God Damn Hero. All she had to do was pass out in the woods, wake up four months later, and start bitching about the hole in her chest.

They finally get to the FRIGGING HOUSE augh. The Cullens all sit around their dining table–why do they have a dining table? Nobody knows!–and Bella delivers her grand speech.

Which, essentially, is “omg can u make me a vmapire now? pllllzzzzz??”

I mean, sure, she brings up a good point–sometime in the future, Marcus is going to come down here and play Six Degrees From Kevin Bacon with everybody using his Magical Relationship Radar, and nobody wants that.  So Bella puts it to a vote. I still can’t decide if this makes sense or is absolutely retarded. The fate of her soul is being decided by democracy?

Edward counters that the Volturi won’t be able to find Bella, because their resident tracker does it by reading brainwaves or some crap, and since Bella is (as of this book) immune to vampires, he won’t be able to find her! Tadaaa. Forget all about how James could track her, Jasper could manipulate her emotions, Alice can see her in the future, and uh, Carlisle cares about her? As of New Moon, Bella is immune to vampire powers, okay, and no take-backsies.

Emmett, the bro vampire, thinks this is an excellent idea. Jasper agrees because he is a boy, and the girls disagree because they are soft women.

Anyway, the voting. Edward says no, duh. Everybody else says yes, except for Rosalie.

“I don’t mean that I have any aversion to you as a sister. It’s just that… this is not the life I would have chosen for myself. I wish there had been someone to vote no for me.”

I THOUGHT CARLISLE SAVED YOU???!

I miss Rosalie the Bitch. Well, anyway, that means the vote is Yes, so Edward goes into the other room and breaks things. Not joookkinnng~ he marches off and we hear crashes from off-stage. Remember, ladies, if a man has a temper, it’s a good thing, because it means he is passionate about protecting you!

Bella, being the font of reason and logic she is, turns to Alice and says “Okay, my room or yours?” Alice’s eyes get huge, and Edward comes back into the room, screaming bloody murder.

He was in my face before I had time to blink, bending over me, his expression twisted in rage. “Are you insane?” He shouted. “Have you utterly lost your mind?”

He’s so sweet and protective of her! Alice tries very politely to tell Bella that she’s not ready to just turn a woman to her side. She’s not up for that kind of commitment. Well, okay, then maybe Carlisle will do it! Bella’s sort of a slut, it seems.

Edward interjects at this point that they don’t have to turn her now. They can just wait a few years. Let him dangle it over her head. He can withhold it as punishment for later, when she insists on seeing her friends against his wishes. God forbid Bella actually get things her way for once in this series.

Er, anyway, Edward reminds Bella that she still has parents, and they will naturally come looking for her. He suggests that it would be less conspicuous if they just waited until Bella graduated from high school and moved out of Charlie’s house. Isn’t this just delaying the inevitable? Also, aren’t we expecting a bit much from Charlie to notice that his daughter has become a vampire?

Everyone agrees to wait until after graduation, and Edward carries Bella back home. He then attempts to bargain with her. Yeah, I know he just said “we’ll wait until graduation” but now he says he wants to her to wait five years instead.

“No way. Nineteen I’ll do. But I’m not going anywhere near twenty. If you’re staying in your teens forever, then so am I.”

It’s a good thing all these kids are apparently Mormon. When she’s supposed to be 21, she’s going to regret she ever said that.

Edward realizes that bargaining for time isn’t going to work, so he switches targets–they have to get married first.

Yes. Yes. You just read that right. They are waiting until marriage before they bite each other. It’ll be special that way. Your first bite is  always special. And once you’ve been bitten, you can’t go back to being unbitten! It’ll be more meaningful when it’s with your husband.

To make this even more hilarious, Bella–Miss True Eternal Love, dying without her beloved, cannot go a day without seeing his face, hallucinates when he’s not there, the model covert-Christian soulmate-lover herself–freaking panics at the idea of marrying him. She was prepared to spend eternity with her one true love. Taking his name and filing joint taxes though–that’s not a commitment she’s ready for.

Bella gives some watered-down excuse about how her parents got divorced, and then quickly switches gears to how her mother wouldn’t approve. Edward calls her on her BS, but smugly holds it over her head. If she wants him to bite her, then she has to do exactly what he says. Not at all creepy.

Edward makes some joke about rings and Bella shrieks. Charlie wakes up, Edward hides in the closet (like he’s been doing for the last two books HEYO). Charlie attempts to talk to Bella about how she’s in trouble for running off. He asks if she can’t give him one good reason to not ship her off to Jacksonville. She’s all “you can’t make me ptbbbbbbb.” Her explanation for what was going on is that Edward heard about her cliff diving and she had to go to L.A. to explain in person.

This puts Charlie in a state, roaring about how Edward didn’t do crap for her when she was clinically depressed for almost a year, and, essentially, how he is a rotten kid. All true.

“I want you to stay away from him, Bella. I don’t trust him. He’s rotten for you. I won’t let him mess you up like that again.”

“Fine,” I said curtly.

Charlie rocked back onto his heels. “Oh.” He scrambled for a second, exhaling loudly in surprise. “I thought you were going to be difficult.”

“I am.” I stared straight into his eyes. “I meant, ‘Fine, I’ll move out.'”

As Dad looks about ready to have a heart attack, she starts cooing about how she doesn’t want to leave, but if he wants her to stay, he’s going to have to be nice to Edward. After all, he wants Bella to stay with him, right?

Wow.

Poor abused Charlie is forced to “think about it” as Bella demands her privacy. Edward reappears and half-heartedly insists she not start anything with Charlie over him. She reluctantly agrees not to, and then…

“Besides…” I grinned. “If Charlie kicks me out, then there’s no need for a graduation deadline, is there?”

Good God! She’s learning! Oh my Lord, are we going to have two passive-aggressive manipulative sissies in this series?

Anyway, something about souls, yadda yadda, nobody gives a crap.

Chapter Twenty-One

Posted in New Moon, Recap with tags , , , , , , on June 1, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

It is neither a psych ward, nor a grizzly bear. It appears to be some kind of… modern office building. Huh. That’s new.

Everybody seems to be scared silly of Jane. Of course, since she’s the Littlest Vampire, she probably has the scariest freaking power. Does she beam the entirety of the Twilight Saga into someone’s brain just by looking at them? I think that would incapacitate a Navy freaking Seal. I’d be terrified, too.

They get in an elevator. Yep. Just one human bloodsack and five vampires. Nothing dangerous about that. At the reception a floor up, another human woman is at the desk. That’s… odd. She’s friendly and doesn’t seem to care at all that there are vampires here. Huh. A pet?

They go through some more doors and a little boy vampire joins them. He and Jane seem to be a “thing.” Sure, but are they the truest of true loves? Alec comments on how “this” (Bella) could possibly be the cause of all this trouble, and Felix calls dibs on her. Edward gets all mad and growly and stuff, he’s soooo protective of her you guys, I’m getting the vapors over here.

They are led through a hidden door into a castle turret room, perfectly round and cold, and made of stone. A handful of sophisticated, beautiful vampires are just lounging in here, like there was some sort of Camarilla meeting going on here. I mean, there isn’t, of course, because Stephenie stayed away from anything vampire while writing these books, since research is the Devil or something.

Then, Aro appears.

Aro has long, jet-black hair, papery thin skin, and a voice like “soft sighing.” Aro is also one of the three most powerful Volturi. And uh… he seems sort of… you know… flamboyant.

Aro is just delighted that Alice and Bella have come here with Edward, the idea makes him as gay as a jaybird. He floats around, sighs, and calls people “dear” a lot. Alice and Edward are tense and probably scared, but I don’t believe there’s anything to even fear from this guy, unless you don’t like showtunes. He is exceedingly familiar with Our Heroes, until finally explaining that his power is he can read people’s thoughts by touching them–not just what they’re thinking now, but every thought they’ve ever had. That’s sort of handy. So all he had to do was, ah, “touch” Edward to know what was going on.

Wait, that means he had the entirety of Twilight beamed directly into his brain. Maybe that’s why he’s so unhinged.

Two more Volturi arrive, Caius and Marcus. Aro tries to share his excitement.

“Marcus, Caius, look!” Aro crooned. “Bella is alive after all, and Alice is here with her! Isn’t that wonderful?”

Neither of the other two looked as if wonderful would be their first choice of words. The dark-haired man seemed utterly bored, like he’d seen too many millennia of Aro’s enthusiasm. The other’s face was sour under the snowy hair.

Aro: OMG U GUYS LOOK LOLOLOLOL THIS IS SOOOOOO GR8
Marcus: Yeah sure.
Caius: Whatever.

Aro doesn’t let their sourpuss attitudes ruin his sparkling day. Marcus comes to him and touches his hand, briefly, which I guess is all Aro needs, because he starts murmuring about how fascinating and amazing this all is.

Alice’s expression was frustrated. Edward turned to her and explained again in a swift, low voice. “Marcus sees relationships. He’s surprised by the intensity of ours.”

Aro smiled. “So convenient,” he repeated to himself.

I’ll say. This guy’s whole purpose in life is to be here when Edward and Bella are so he can tell the other two just how much they weally weally wuv each other. Awwww.

Couldn’t you use this power for political gain? To, I don’t know, take over the world?

Aro continues to go on and on and on about how awesome Edward is for not eating Bella. Seriously. He gets praised for having so much will-power, for having such restraint, for being so perfect and awesome and manly. Nobody seems to realize that Aro is coming on to him. We just needed to be reminded again of how amazing and wonderful Edward is, since we’ve missed that so much for the last 470 pages.

Aro asks if he can see if his power works on Bella, since she seems to be immune to Edward. And what do you know, she is! Then he asks if they can test Jane on her, which everyone is pretty keen on, except for Edward. Nobody can handle the entirety of the Twilight Saga jammed into their head, not even Bella!

Edward throws himself in front of Bella as Jane turns to look at her. He immediately crumples to the floor, writhing in agony. Hey, I was right! As Edward rolls around on the ground for a while, Jane turns her terrible gaze to Bella, and…

Nothing happens.

Actually, what I’m imagining is that scene from “Being John Malkovich,” where Malkovich entered his own head. What would happen if you made Bella read her own stupid novels?

Jane gets all pissed that Bella is immune to her too, and I’m wondering if we’re actually supposed to believe all this. Alice can see Bella in her visions, so clearly she isn’t immune to manpire powers. Or am I just supposed to conveniently forget that for the sake of the plot?

Too bad I can’t forget what a terrible writer Smeyer is.

Aro started to laugh. “Ha, ha, ha,” he chuckled.

I SWEAR TO YOU THAT LINE IS IN THIS CHAPTER. I had to re-read it like four times to even believe what I was seeing. How did this get published.

Aro asks if Edward and Alice would like to join their little club. Both of them politely decline, because the Volturi are, let’s face it, hella lame creepy. Aro then asks if they can turn Bella, since she’s obviously going to be super powerful as a vampire. Edward says no way, which makes Bella assume she is ugly and hateful and Edward doesn’t want her.

Well, that settles it. Edward and Alice can go, but they’re going to have to eat Bella. Edward is, naturally, upset at this prospect, so Aro cuts him a deal. If they promise to turn Bella into a vampire later, then they can go.

Yep. Simple as that. Alice comes up, touches Aro, he’s all “OoooooOOOooooh, soooo interesting,” and lets them go. Man, that was scary you guys, I wasn’t really certain if they would see the Power and Strength of Their True Love and let them go. Bella whines in her head about how Edward finds her repulsive and doesn’t want her to be an immortal irritation (haha!), which I’m just delighted to have to read more of.

They beat a hasty retreat when a group of fourty-something tourists come into the room. Oh, look, it’s feeding time at the zoo! Heidi, another vampire, dressed like, uh, well, a skank, brought them all here. The group starts running, but they barely reach the door at the end of the hallway when the screaming starts.

…Okay, I have a question.

Fourty tourists go missing, no trace, nothing. I think it looks something like vampires have to eat once a month to stay fit, which comes out to 480 people going missing every year. Nobody noticed? Nobody thought “Well gee, there are all these people that go to Volterra and never come back”? Seriously?

Believe it or not, this chapter was the climax. The rest is all denouement. Slow, boring, contrived denouement.

Chapter Ten

Posted in New Moon, Recap with tags , , , , , , , on May 22, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

I have a huge dent to make in my reading, and I’ve got some free time. What better way to spend the Friday of my Memorial Day weekend than re-reading parts of New Moon? Kills brain cells better and faster than Corona, I’ll tell you that.

So Jacob never calls back. Oh noooooo now Bella will have to learn how to be happy with herself all on her own! Bella calls so much that Billy stops answering. A few days later, she drives down to see them, and the house is empty. They must be at the hospital! She rushes there and the nurse says no, they weren’t in. Isn’t that a patient confidentiality thing? Why is the nurse telling this random, zombie-looking girl who has and hasn’t checked in? She makes Dad Charlie call his friend on the rez to ask about the Blacks, and all Charlie can get is “they’re having phone line problems which is why you can’t call. Also, Jacob has something called werewolf mono?”

Bella googles “werewolf mono” because apparently she doesn’t know anything about mono good Lord. Because she is as good as a doctor, she realizes (thanks to WebMD) that Jacob couldn’t possibly have mono, because he hasn’t been kissing anyone. That you know of, Bella. Maybe the Quilbry are more than “friends,” if you catch my drift.

Bella decides that she’s going to give them a week and then start getting “pushy.”

A week was long.

And like, so totally hard! So Bella goes back to screaming herself awake every night, and Charlie dutifully ignores her. The phantom pain in her chest is getting worse. Oh, yeah, that terrible “hole” description from earlier? Keeps coming up. I am getting really freaking tired of melodramatic descriptions of how Bella has to hold herself together. She literally will double over and clutch at her sides because her chest hurts. What the hell. This is so freaking stupid.

I wasn’t handling alone well.

No, really?

Saturday finally arrives and she calls Billy. Oh, Jacob is better now. He’s out. With friends. Yeah. Don’t come over. Click. Bella immediately assumes this is about her, and decides that Jacob has abandoned her because she’s just too broken and tragic for him. Charlie pretends to care about her for a few paragraphs, before leaving to go fishing, cautioning her against being outside, because, you know, bear, eating people now, that sort of thing.

Bella says, screw that, I love wandering aimlessly and alone through danger. She grabs her compass and map and decides she’s going to find her special meadow on her own.

Let’s see… three pages about her hiking and whining about how hard it is to be alone… Ah, here, she finds the stupid place. She falls down, curls into a ball, and pours out the melodrama. The meadow is empty, empty like her heart! God I wish she would just get into drugs or something. My eyes have been rolling so hard I’m afraid they’re going to pop out of my head.

But wait! A figure steps out of the woods and sees her. He’s totally a vampire? OMG IS IT EDWARD?!!!?!??!

No, it’s just Laurent.

Wait, it’s Laurent!

When we last left Laurent, he was playing turn-cloak and tattling on James to the Cullens. They sent him up to Alaska for reprogramming, so he could live a peaceful unlife eating cute bunnies and kitties instead of people.

Bella is incredibly happy to see him–stupidly so. Oh, look, a vampire, and she’s all alone! I’m just certain he’s not going to eat her and one of her boyfriends isn’t going to have to jump in and save her. This is what you get for making your own decisions, Bella!

“I did go to Alaska. Still, I didn’t expect… When I found the Cullen place empty, I thought they’d moved on.”

“Oh.” I bit my lip as the name set the raw edges of my wound throbbing.

She means the metaphorical and overdone hole in her chest. He hasn’t actually bitten her or anything yet, so don’t get too excited.

“They did move on,” I finally managed to tell him.

“Hmm,” he murmured.

What? As opposed to shouted? Has “hmm” ever not been murmured?

“I’m surprised they left you behind. Weren’t you sort of a pet of theirs?” His eyes were innocent of any intended offense.

Ha, I’d forgotten how much I liked Laurent. People don’t have feelings, they’re cattle!

So they make small talk, and Bella realizes that his eyes are still red, and not gold like good vampires. Late to the thinking party, she figures out that he’s still eating people. Like vampires are supposed to. Too bad! I hope you die.

A psychotic edisode starts up, and Edward not-so-helpfully orders Bella around through the encounter. They continue with smalltalk, bordering on monologue. I wish he would hurry up and kill her already. Bella stupidly asks if Laurent ever hooked up with Victoria again, and he’s all “Oh, yeah, you know, I’m here on a favor, but she’s going to be mad when she finds out I’ve eaten you.”

Okay, now we’re monologuing. Victoria was ever so upset when Edward killed James (even though… he didn’t. As I recall, Jasper and Emmett took him out). She reasons that she can just kill Bella, and that’ll make everything square. Laurent was here to spy on how well-protected she was, so Victoria could swoop in for the kill.

“Then why not wait for her?” I choked out.

A mischievous grin rearranged his features. “Well, you’ve caught me at a bad time, Bella. I didn’t come to this place on Victoria’s mission–I was hunting. I’m quite thirsty, and you do smell… simply mouthwatering.”

Wait, hunting what? I thought you were eating people? Why aren’t you anywhere near a hiking trail or camp site or something? Why am I still alarmed that I’ve found a plot hole?

Bella tries begging for her life, and arguing with him, and Laurent continues to not eat her. Uggh would something happen already, it’s been like five pages.

Oh wait, here’s some werewolves.

Yeah, these huge wolves just sort of stroll into the meadow. Laurent is all “oh snap” and makes a break for it. Bella is shocked, just shocked, that a vampire ran from three wolves the size of Volkswagens, because apparently she has never seen a movie.

The meadow is empty again, and, like a white woman in a horror flick, she runs screaming and crying back to her car, falling down every thirty seconds. I’m dismayed when her truck starts immediately. That is not part of the cliché, Stephenie!

Bella returns home, freaked out, and Charlie actually notices. She tells him the bear is not, in fact, a bear, but three enormous wolves. He comments that the ranger had said the tracks were all wrong for a bear, but wolves just don’t get that big. Right, which is more likely–a bear with wolf legs, or a really big wolf? Forks is populated by idiots.

By the way, Charlie saw Jacob down at the rez, and apparently he’s grown another half-foot. That’s not odd at all! Ho hum. Bella goes to bed terrified that a red-headed vampire is going to come kill her in the night.

Did Victoria even have any lines in Twilight?

Checking… ahh… nope. Not a single line. She hovers behind the two men and looks crazy a lot. That’s it. Wow.

I hope she’s more interesting than James was.

Discussion questions

Posted in Twilight with tags , , , , , , , , , on April 25, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

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.