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?
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.
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.
8. An easily-overcome addiction to human blood.
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.
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?
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?
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.