Archive for what’s wrong with mike?

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.

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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 Fifteen

Posted in New Moon, Recap with tags , , , , , , , on May 25, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

For those of you who didn’t believe Bella could honestly get any stupider, this chapter is going to confuse and frighten you.

Bella spends all her free time at La Push, and Jacob follows her around when she’s not in La Push. Mike notices, and asks if she’s dating that guy. Oh, nooo, we’re just friends.

Mike’s eyes narrowed shrewdly. “Don’t kid yourself, Bella. The guy’s head over heels for you.”

“I know,” I sighed. “Life is complicated.”

“And girls are cruel,” Mike said under his breath.

God, now I really feel bad for Mike. The kid really never stood a chance. I don’t suppose he’s got alien or ESPer blood in him? Something supernatural? Just to give him a fighting chance?

The issue of Jacob’s constantly high temperature comes up. Bella asks if having a 108-109 degree body temperature is one of those wolf things, and he confirms. Uh, no, it isn’t. He comments that Quil has really grown lately, too, and his grandfather is complaining about his fever, so it would be long before he’s One Of The Pack.

Jacob worries that he is somehow less human because he is so awesome at being a werewolf. He then asks if Bella ever got totally creeped out being with vampires. Well of course she didn’t, because they’re just so wonderful and beautiful and perfect and boring. He asks her about the manpire powers the Cullens have, and she hesitantly tells him.

Um, let’s see… more “character development,” uh… Bella spends yet more time at the beach… she can’t stand staying at Emily’s place because of all the ~*love*~… God, I’d almost forgotten how boring this chapter is.

One day, Jacob apologizes for ruining her spring break, and promises to take her to do something fun. He remembers promising to take her cliffdiving, and says they can do it tomorrow. Bella hasn’t had an Edisode in forever, so she agrees greedily.

Unfortunately, the next day, the pack gets a fresh whiff of Victoria and they’re busy hunting her for hours. Bella loiters at the beach, watching a storm build, and goes crazy with boredom, much like I am. She gets depressed because now she won’t hear Edward today.

Bella decides she’s had enough of boredom and waiting and not trying to commit suicide. She decides she’s going cliff diving by herself.

Right now.

In the middle of a building storm.

With the waves crashing around like crazy.

She drives her truck to the top of the cliff, steps out to the edge, and smiles as she hears Edward begging her not to kill herself. I’m just waiting for the bitch to finally do it. I’m tired of boredom, overwrought narrative, stupid superpowers, flat characters, and plot holes. I want this to end. End it, Bella. Or are you too chicken?

Bella throws herself from the cliff.

Yessssss.

She hits the water and is all “Haha I am awesome,” before the current catches her. She is surprised. She is shocked that the water is so violent, in the middle of a God damn storm.

So anyway she drowns. Not kidding. She stops fighting it, stops swimming, just sinks in the water, and thinks happily of Edward.

Almost a year after her abusive boyfriend left her unconscious in the forest and stole her things, Bella Swan commits suicide by throwing herself from a cliff into the storm-tossed sea.

Remember, girls: the more you suffer, the more it means you care.

Chapter Nine

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

God, how did I get so bleeding far ahead? I’m on chapter 18 in my actual reading. I have to find something else to do on my afternoon break.

Okay, chapter nine, let’s see… oh right, this one.

I was like a lost moon–my planet destroyed in some cataclysmic, disaster-movie scenario of desolation–that continued, nevertheless, to circle in a tight little orbit around the empty space left behind, ignoring the laws of gravity.

Ow that hurts. Lost moon? Seriously? Are we that unabashedly codependent?

It’s okay, because Bella has Jacob to distract her from all her terrible, horrible problems. Or just the one. Which isn’t even a problem. She’s still too stupid to realize that the Cullens have done her a favor.

Jacob gives Bella a box of candy hearts for Valentine’s Day, and jokes about her being his valentine and slave for life. Oh, but Bella knows he isn’t joking, she knows, and tries ever so hard to think of a way to reestablish their boundaries. She does this by saying she can’t bike on Friday, she’s got to go to a movie with her “friends.” When Jacob’s face falls, she reneges on her steadfast ironclad strong-willed indomitable determination to Just Be Friends, and invites him too.

I’m not sure how she didn’t “accidentally” end up with more boyfriends this way.

Random mortal friend #27: Who’s that guy you’re with, Bella? New boyfriend?
Bella: Oh, no, he just thinks he is.
Random mortal friend #27: Uh. Are you going to tell him he’s not your boyfriend?
Bella: Well I tried! I told him he was too young. But then sort of called him beautiful, shared an overlong hug, and invited him to a movie.

It hurts to know that people like this actually exist.

So Bella invites Mike to a movie, since it looks like she lied about the movie thing to begin with. Lying seems just about as easy as breathing to her. Mike starts to get the Wrong Idea so she quickly orders him to invite everyone else they know, too. Poor Mike. He needs to kill himself or be an injun or something to get this girl’s attention.

Well, as luck would have it, everybody either cancels because they don’t like Bella, or they’re sick with some flu. So it’s just Bella, Jacob, and Mike. Oh, this couldn’t possibly get awkward.

“I remember this guy,” he said in a low voice as Mike parked across the street. “The one who thought you were his girlfriend. Is he still confused?”

Bella: Gee, Jacob, are we talking about Eric, Tyler, Mike, or Edward?

The boys posture needlessly at each other and play “Bella likes me more” for the whole day. Bella has to sneak Jacob into the theater, because he’s ~*so much younger*~ than her. They sit on either side of her and subtly try to hold her hands. Then suddenly Mike gets sick and they go home. Woooo! I think the Golf Channel is probably more exciting than this.

Jacob and Bella wait in the lobby while Mike ralphs in the bathroom. Jacob puts an arm around her, and she protests, leaning away from him. So, he grabs her hand, and asks if she likes him better than Mike, or any of the other guys she knows. Ah, very mature.

“But that’s all,” he said, and it wasn’t a question.

It was hard to answer, to say the word. Would he get hurt and avoid me? How would I stand that?

Uh, I don’t know, like an adult? Oh, I have an idea, why don’t you keep lying and pretending like he’s your boyfriend, so he doesn’t get hurt! I’m sure that’ll work out super for both of you in the end.

Jacob insists he’s okay with her just liking him as a friend. He asks if it’s still “the other one,” and quickly adds that she doesn’t have to talk about it. Good, I really don’t know if I can stand more of this melodrama.

Anyway, they finally address the issue of Jacob liking her more than she likes him, and he insists that isn’t something that bothers him, as long as she’s okay. When Mike finally stumbles out of the bathroom, they drive home. Jacob is burning up now too, but swears he feels fine. Bella immediately assumes the flu, but we know what it is–werewolf puberty.

Bella angsts some about how she’s damaged, empty, broken, wasted, etc., and that Jacob is wasting his time. Booooohoohoo. She justifies her need to use him as a crutch, though. Yet again, we are shown that Bella is more than capable of doing stupid, horrible things (taking cold medicine to sleep, insulting her father, using Jacob), but we are treated to a dissertation on how she would normally never, ever do this. Someone is in denial about their perfect little Mary Sue.

Jacob decides that maybe he is feeling ill, and excuses himself out.

“It’s just that, I know how you’re unhappy a lot. And, maybe it doesn’t help anything, but I wanted you to know that I’m always here. I won’t ever let you down–I promise that you can always count on me. Wow, that does sound corny. But you know that, right? That I would never, ever hurt you?”

This paragraph made me love Jacob. Edward never did or said anything like this–all he’s ever done is hurt Bella, and then Smeyer shoves in our faces how he really only did it because he loves her. Jacob is a good kid. He actually seems to care about Bella and want her to flourish, have fun, live life, unlike Edward’s whole tepid “no if i made u a vmapire u would miss prom” BS.

However, the fact that later Jacob is just as abusive and manipulative as Edward makes me hate Smeyer even more.

Jacob leaves, promising to call when he gets home. Bella goes inside, wishing Jacob were just her brother. Fun fact, did you know Stephenie’s brother is named Jacob? Self-insertion characters indeed. Bella waits by the phone, but Jacob never calls. When she calls back, it takes eight rings for Billy to pick up and say “Oh, uh, yeah, he’s too ‘sick’ to call. Right, ‘sick.’ No no no, don’t come over here, just stay at your wolf-free home. Uh huh. Yeah. Bye.”

So Bella throws up some (the flu, not the melodrama, this time), and passes out on the bathroom floor. She spends the whole day there sleeping on a towel.

Charlie claimed that he had to work, but I suspected that he just wanted access to a bathroom.

Chica, your father sucks.

So Bella gets better 24 hours later, which is a real drag, because I was really getting into that riveting throwing-up action. Do you guys see why it was hard for me to muster the strength to even recap this? Bella finally gets a hold of Jacob, who still sounds like crap. It’s the werewolf. Flu. Werewolf flu. He’s totally not a werewolf!

And so he hangs up.

Uh, end of chapter.

Wow, I am so wasting my time with this book.

Chapter Five

Posted in New Moon, Recap with tags , , , , , , , , , on May 13, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

Completely off-topic, but Prince of Persia blew my freaking mind. Easily worth the two traded-in-games-that-came-free-with-our-PS3 and $30.

Chapter five begins at Bella’s part-time job. That’s right. She has a job. See, Stephenie is sensitive to women’s rights. Bella works at Newton’s, the sports store owned by Mike’s family. Two grizzled old camper-type-guys are talking about running into a black bear, bigger than a grizzly. Why didn’t they describe it as a big, black grizzly? Nobody knows! Is that foreshadowing I smell? I don’t know why the hell a werewolf would look like a bear, but whatever!

Bella drives home, and explains how… no, you know what. You get a quote.

I always had nightmares now, every night. Not nightmares, really, not in the plural, because it was always the same nightmare. You’d think I’d get bored after so many months, grow immune to it. But the dream never failed to horrify me, and only ended when I woke myself with screaming. Charlie didn’t  come in to see  what was wrong anymore, to make sure there was no intruder strangling me or something like that–he was used to it now.

I’m going to rephrase that in outraged, big girl English.

Bella has night terrors every night for four months.

Every night for four months she wakes up screaming.

Every night for four months.

Charlie learns to ignore it. Charlie, a cop, learns to ignore the fact that, after finding his little girl unconscious, alone, and disoriented in the woods, she wakes herself up screaming every night.

What. THE. HELL.

You know, I’ve been accused multiple times of overthinking this series. I’ve been told I need to set aside the criticism and just enjoy it. There is a significant difference between suspending my disbelief and turning my brain off altogether. This would never happen. THIS WOULD NEVER HAPPEN.

Oh GOD I feel like I need to hit something. Did this woman know a God damn thing about realistic human behavior before she wrote this? Jesus H. Christ.

Okay. Let me calm down. Gotta center myself.

Bella describes her nightmare, which is basically just her alone in the woods looking for Edward and he’s not there. Yeah, that’s it. Good, classic symptom of a night terror–dreaming about some impossible task that triggers anxiety. I’d like to point out that night terror sufferers will also exhibit signs of depression. I could just choke somebody right now.

Thinking about how hard life is and how much she hurts now that her controlling abusive boyfriend has dumped her makes her stop the car and curl up on the seat. She explains how now that she looks like hell with pale pasty skin and black circles under her eyes, she could almost pass for a vampire now! Right? RIGHT?! I COULD TOTALLY PASS FOR A VAMPIRE. MAYBE EDWARD WILL COME BACK AND LOVE ME AGAIN. AHAHAHAHAHAHAH.

She stops to think how unfair it is that he broke his promise to stay with her forever and ever and ever, and that he made her promise to not hurt herself. How stupid is that? She should totally not have to follow through on that. Luckily, Bella has stopped her truck right in front of a house selling two broken-down motorcycles. Charlie thinks motorcycles are reckless and stupid, and Charlie doesn’t seem to give a crap about Bella’s well-being, so she immediately decides she’s buying a motorcycle as a means of indirectly killing herself. That’ll show Edward for leaving her.

Good God, I wish I were exaggerating. Bella goes up to the house and asks for the price on the two motorcycles. The kid just gives them to her for free, since they haven’t worked in years. “That’s okay,” Bella says. “I know someone who builds cars.”

Gird yourself, Jacob. You’re Bella’s new emotional crutch.

Bella gets directions down to the Blacks’ place from Charlie (who demands to know what’s wrong as soon as he answers the phone. As if you care, Dad). Jacob is excited to see her. Also, he’s a six-foot-five sixteen year old. CRAP ON A STICK this kid is huge.

Bella comes in, says hi to Billy, makes a big show about how she likes Jacob and missed him. We all know she’s just craving some male attention. Mike doesn’t count because he’s a stupid mortal and won’t live forever or turn into a werewolf that could pass for a bear. Bella gets Jacob alone in his garage and explains the sane part of the situation–she’s got broken motorcycles but don’t tell Charlie.

Now, here’s the hard part. Jacob is… well… I like him. He’s sweet. He’s happy. He’s normal (for now). Bella is almost tolerable around him, because she’s not constantly whining about the gaping oozing squirting rotting hole in her chest. I like Jacob.

Which is probably just going to make me angrier in the long run.

Chapter Two

Posted in New Moon, Recap with tags , , , , , , , , , , on May 6, 2009 by Rachel Vampirely

When we last left our indomitable heroine weak, spiritless little floozy, she was bleeding on the floor of her boyfriend’s family’s home. Awkward.

Emmett forces Jasper outside. Everyone save Alice, Edward, and Carlisle evacuate, covering their noses. My dad used to be able to clear a room like that too, but more because he’d just had chili and less because his blood was so deliciously tempting. Bella opts to have Carlisle stitch her up right then and there rather than taking her to the hospital, because they would, of course, have questions. Thus begins Bella’s practice at hiding the injuries she sustains thanks to Edward. Speaking of which, the marble bastard is brooding and glowering the whole time, before Alice can shoo him off. Then Alice finally can’t take being in Bella’s presence anymore (she’s like an IQ black hole) and vamooses as well.

Leaving Bella and Carlisle alone in the room.

Now, it’s a well known and proven fact that if you’re a young person, and even just a little bit pretty, and Carlisle is alone with you, he’s basically going to bite you. Because he wants to “save” you. In this case, I think Carl is waiting for Ed to do the job. Maybe he’s hoping that all that time Ed spent alone in his room, listening to classical music, working tirelessly on his hair, showing no interest in girls, was just a phase.

Yes, that’s why the Cullens are so thrilled with Bella. She’s not a boy.

Bella and Carlisle have a nice little chat while he picks shards of glass out of her arm and sews her back up. They end up having a philosophical, semi-religious conversation about whether or not vampires go to hell, or even have souls. Carlisle, it seems, has been working for centuries at deluding himself into think that if he just tries hard enough, he can overcome being damned. Sorry, bud, it really doesn’t work that way.  Especially when your “doing good” is convincing yourself that damning other people along with you–children for that matter–is a swell idea.

Edward, it turns out, believes that vampires don’t have souls. Which I guess is why he doesn’t want to bite Bella. I’m not sure how much a bad thing this is for her. She’s been hollowed out completely and the only thing left inside is a note saying “IOU a personality — Stephenie.”

Anyway, Carlisle recalls the story of Edward and his parents dying of the flu back in 19-I don’t give a crap-00. Ed’s mom went first, but before she went, she grabbed Carlisle by the arm and demanded that he save her son. “You must do everything in your power. What others cannot do, that is what you must do for my Edward.” Carlisle convinces himself that she knew about his “gift,” and so, he dragged Edward’s body out through the morgue, while the kid was still barely alive, spirited him off to his sanctum or wherever the hell Carl was living, and bit the crap out of him.

Now, here’s what really happened in my mind. Carlisle has been alive for near 300 years. He’s losing it. He’s a carnivore on a vegetarian diet. He’s lonely as hell. He sees a dying mother with her attractive dying son, and thinks I want one! Mom dies, demanding that Carl save her son, like any mother would, and Carlisle, in his already warped mind, hears her begging him to bite Edward. Well, shucks! She wants him to vamp Ed up. Steal the near-dead body of a young man, chew on him in various places, wait a few days, and bam! Carlisle has his own special family now, just like he always wanted.

See, if it were actually written like that, this would be a very different blog.

Edward comes back, still brooding and stone-like. They get Bella a new, non-blood stained shirt, agreeing that Charlie probably won’t notice. I’d be outraged, but they’re probably right. Charlie is a pretty terrible dad. Jasper is beating himself up for almost killing Bella (dude, I would have given you a prize if you’d pulled it off) and Alice is trying to be there for him. Mama Esme is mopping the floors with undiluted bleach. I’m not so sure that’s good for hardwood flooring, but whatev. She does it with such straight-forward efficiency that I wonder if this isn’t the first bloodbath she’s ever had to mop up.

Esme and Carlisle have a ridiculously sordid life, in my mind. I keep that fanfic idea shelved next to “Bella ditches Edward and explores the forbidden with Alice.”

Someday, ff.net. Someday.

Edward drives Bella home and begins the painful process of breaking up with her. She’s an idiot and completely codependent, so she has no idea that’s what he’s trying to do.

“Mike Newton could have held your hand while they stitched you up–and he wouldn’t be fighting the urge to kill you the whole time he was there. Don’t try to take any of this on yourself, Bella. It will only make me more disgusted with myself.”

“How the hell did Mike Newton end up in this conversation?” I demanded.

“Mike Newton ended up in this conversation because Mike Newton would be a hell of a lot healthier for you to be with,” he growled.

“I’d rather die than be with Mike Newton,” I protested. “I’d rather die than be with anyone but you.”

Oh good Lord.

They finally get to the house and stop freaking talking. Charlie is still watching the game. He actually manages to notice that she’s favoring her arm.

“What happened to your arm?”

I flushed and cursed silently. “I tripped. It’s nothing.”

“I tripped. And fell down the stairs. And hit the doorknob. He loves me okay HE LOVES ME!!

Dad Charlie buys it, Bella goes up to her room, and Edward is… still brooding. Sheesh. He brought the last two presents, one of which is a pair of plane tickets to Jacksonville care of Emse and Carlisle. The other is from Edward, and is a mix-CD of songs he wrote himself. Awwwwww he’s such a sweet tortured beast. He gets her some tylenol. She asks what he’s thinking. This is intense stuff, you guys.

They kiss, because, you know, they’re teenagers in bed. This time, Edward goes for the Forbidden Open-Mouth Kiss, breaking all his carefully established, control-enhancing rules for celibacy preventing Bella from getting nom’d. She’s all “YES YES I WANT TO DO IT WITH A DEAD GUY” when he finally pushes her away. Edward is, if I may, a cockbite. Bella seriously needs a copy of He’s Just Not That Into You.

My personal favorite  chapter is the one about “He’s just not that into you if he won’t have sex with you.” I believe the chapter ends on a picture of a flag, and says “Here’s a flag. Color it red. There’s your red flag.”

Wait, I’m reading New Moon. Uh, let’s see… open mouth kissing, Bella writhes around, Edward disengages. Hmm, for some reason, Edward is breathless after this. Even though he doesn’t need to breathe. That’s a bit odd, wouldn’t you say?

Before Bella falls asleep, she realizes that Edward kissed her like that in the last book, before she was sent off to Phoenix with Alice and Jasper. Oh but he couldn’t possibly be breaking up with her, setting the entire plot for the second book by spinning her off into a whirlwind of self-destruction, clinical depression, and almost getting it on with that native boy, could he?

Hurting her to protect her? That doesn’t sound like Edward at all.

Chapter Fourteen watches you sleep

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

ADVERB COUNT: 52, back to normal.

BELLA LIKE-O-METER: I think it’s politically incorrect to make fun of her at this point.

Let’s talk about vampires.

The head of House Cullen, a manpire named Carlisle, found Edward dying of the Spanish influenza in 1918. Edward was 17 at the time. Edward’s parents were already dead, and Edward himself on the way out. So Carlisle takes a bite. Edward says he saved him.

This Carlisle vamp is described as very humane, the most compassionate of all of them. Being turned into a vampire is left at being “very, very painful.” Edward also divulges that Carlisle acted out of loneliness–he chose Edward because no one would miss him were he to become an immortal creature of the night, and, well, Carlisle wanted a son.

I’m not really sure how to take this. Carlisle, a vampire, was lonely, so he made a 17-year-old boy go through the painful process of vampirization, and also possibly damning him to eternal suffering and torture in the darkest pits of Hell for being one of the Devil’s black army. That’s, uh, that’s really noble of you, Carl. I’m sure Heaven would have blown anyway.

Esme, Edward’s “mom,” supposedly fell from a cliff. She was brought to the morgue even though her heart was still beating. There’s so much wrong here I’m not sure where to start. She “fell” from the cliff? Right. And people couldn’t find pulses at the beginning of the 20th century? Okay. Carlisle chomps her and now he has a wife.

Rosalie was meant to be Edward’s girlfriend. That’s right. Carlisle specifically bit her so Edward could have a playmate. This is reaching epic levels of sick and wrong. I’m supposed to respect and adore this manpire for playing God with people’s lives, because he just really wanted to play house?

Emmett was rescued by Rosalie. Apparently a bear was about to eat him. Irony! They fell in love and get married every few years. I don’t get that either.

Alice and Jasper are by far the most interesting. All we get on Jasper is that he belonged to another “family,” a different kind of family. I guess he means either another vampire clan that actually ate people like they’re supposed to or maybe Jasper was a crackbaby? Who knows. Jasper got randomly depressed and wandered on his own, something I’m sure Bella sympathizes with, and Alice found him. Alice is a clairvoyant, it seems, and she knew to seek out Jasper, and then the Cullens. Alice’s visions are “most sensitive to non-humans.” Remember that. It’s going to be important and really stupid in the second book.

Alice, for some reason, has no memory of her life before she was Embraced chomped on. She woke up alone. This–this is interesting! Why don’t we have a book about Alice? I’m tired of reading about Swoony McFallsalot.

Vampires, we learn, are nomads. Makes sense. Apparently most of them prefer the north, because of the constant cloud cover. Again, the sparkling. Edward is worried about causing traffic accidents and spontaneous Pride Parades.

I am actually a little disappointed when they reach Bella’s house and stop the discussion of other vampires. I want to know more about Cullen’s Stepford vamps! This family puts the “fun” in “dysfunctional.” Edward lets himself in, which is just weird enough for Bella to actually notice.

“The door was unlocked?”

“No, I used the key from under the eave.”

I stepped inside, flicked on the porch light, and turned to look at him with my eyebrows raised. I was sure I’d never used that key in front of him.

Ruh-roh.

“I was curious about you.”

“You spied on me?” But somehow I couldn’t infuse my voice with the proper outrage. I was flattered.

She was flattered. She was flattered. She was flattered that he broke into her home, snuck into her room, and stared at her, at night.

HARE FRICKING KRISHNA, WHAT ON EARTH IS WRONG WITH THIS GIRL?

“How often did you come here?”

“I come here almost every night.”

I whirled, stunned. “Why?”

“You’re interesting when you sleep.” He spoke matter-of-factly. “You talk.”

“No!” I gasped, heat flooding my face all the way to my hairline.

She doesn’t call the cops. She doesn’t order him off her property. She doesn’t change her locks, ask her father how to use a pistol, get a dog, get a restraining order, she doesn’t even cuss.

She’s embarrassed that he’s heard her talking in her sleep.

There is absolutely and completely no. hope. for this character. I hope she dies of exsanguination and nobody freaking cares. I hope she is brutally murdered by a cougar-emulating vampire before she can freaking breed.

I’m trying not to just sob at this point, because I know this doesn’t happen. I know she breeds.

Dad Charlie comes home, and Edward vacates. Charlies asks why Bella isn’t going to the dance with that nice Mike Newton kid. The audience just sighs and shakes their heads. Bella rushes upstairs after telling her father that she’s going to bed DON’T CHECK ON ME see you tomorrow SERIOUSLY DON’T COME UPSTAIRS. Edward is waiting for her, of course, on her bed, naturally. She orders him to stay put while she showers. Oh, goody, a paragraph about Bella brushing her teeth, showering, brushing her hair, and oh god oh god I’m having an aneurysm.

Edward and Bella, two teenagers in love and totally hot for each other, keep each other up all night, in her bed… talking.

They talk. Yep. No kissing. No petting. They don’t have sex. They talk.

Has Stephenie ever been a teenager?

Bella gets around to asking Edward why he bothers with eating animals, if it’s so hard to resist human blood. He responds with this:

“… But you see, just because we’ve been… dealt a certain hand… it doesn’t mean that we can’t choose to rise above–to conquer the boundaries of a destiny none of us wanted.”

Hold up, I thought Carlisle saved you? You know, from dying a natural death? And now you’re in a wonderful happy family that totally loves you and stuff?

I’m so freaking confused.

Anyway, here’s a breakdown of everyone’s super vampire powers:

  • Edward can read minds.
  • Alice can see the future (sort of.)
  • Emmett is super strong.
  • Jasper has empathy manipulation–he can make people feel certain emotions.
  • Rosalie is… uh… super stubborn, apparently.
  • Esme loves passionately. Wait, these are getting sort of lame.
  • Carlisle is incredibly compassionate. What?

Okay, I guess they can’t all be winners? I think my vampire superpower would be the ability to read Twilight and not puke all over it!

Wait, there’s more. Where do vampires come from? They have to have started somewhere.

“Well, where do you come from? Evolution? Creation? Couldn’t we have evolved in the same way as other species, predator and prey? Or, if you don’t believe that all this world could have just happened on its own, which is hard for me to accept myself, is it so hard to believe that the same force that created the delicate angelfish with the shark, the baby seal and the killer whale, could create both our kinds together?”

Um. Yes. Yes, that is hard to believe. Considering that you are Satan’s children, unclean spirits residing in desecrated bodies, that your very existence is a mockery of the light of God’s creations, yes, yes it is bloody well hard to believe that a loving, divine being created you.

Also, creationist vampires? What the hell, SMeyer?

Bella questions Rosalie and Emmett getting married, and finally asks if it’s “the same as it is for humans.” Edward answers yes, it is much the same.

“Was there a purpose behind your curiosity?”

“Well, I did wonder… about you and me… someday…”

He was instantly serious, I could tell by the sudden stillness of his body. I froze too, reacting automatically.

“I don’t think that… that… would be possible for us.”

Edward awkwardly tries to explain that he’s just so strong and powerful and dangerous that he could totally accidentally kill her. He has to focus on controlling himself to keep from crushing her skull in. I empathize with you, man, I feel a powerful urge to crush her skull myself. But what does this have to do with marrying her? Also, wouldn’t the more pressing concern be that you are going to be 17 forever?

He seemed to deliberate for a moment. “I’m curious now, though,” he said, his voice light again. “Have you ever…?” He trailed off suggestively.

…Been married? What?

She blushes and immediately denies it. Oh. Ohhhhh wait! They’re talking about sex. Why the hell didn’t they say “sex?”

“Edward, will we ever have sex?” “No baby, I’m sorry, I’ll accidentally cave your skull in.”

I guess vampires wait until marriage. Because they’re really concerned with upholding God’s law after, you know, being willingly embraced into the life of a blood-sucking light-abhorring monster.

Good Lord, I hate this book.