While spending time with a group of friends over the weekend, the conversation turned to books. And before long, many of my girlfriends started gushing over the latest in the whole vampire phenomenon... Twilight.
For those who don't know, author Stephenie Meyer has written a series of books about a "hunky" vampire named Edward who (of course) falls in love with a human girl who he can't be with - for obvious reasons. Much gooey love and sexual tension ensues.
Oh... and also? Much to my friend Jay's SERIOUS chagrin, these vampires - when exposed to direct sunlight -- glitter. (Bram Stoker is rolling over in his grave.)
Anyway, I'll be the first to admit that I'm SO not above fluff books. I love me some fluff. Every now and again, I just want to read something that doesn't require thinking. Something light and fun. Which is why, even though I resisted at first, I picked up the first book in the series.
And again, I'll admit that I liked the first book (even though the print was huge and the style almost made me revert back to an insecure preteen who just so wanted to experience her first kiss...)
So, since I thought Twilight was decent... I picked up the second book. And?
It was royally bad. So bad that I gave up on the series. Until a friend told me that the second book was the least favourite of many readers, but the third one redeems it.
So I picked up the third book. And?
It sucked, too.
When I explained my dislike of the books to another friend on the weekend, her response was "Oh Heather - you just need to lighten up."
And while I can understand why she said it (I sounded like the snotty English major that takes herself and her literature very seriously)... I stand by my judgement.
I normally lap up all the rom-com and mushy goodness that one can take. I love a good sappy romance that makes you walk around with a goofy grin on your face afterwards. I love it when the guy gets the girl. I love happily ever after.
But when it's poorly written, and the lead female character is a weak-minded pushover who falls apart unless she's got her burly vampire (or werewolf) to take care of her... I just can't get in line.
For adult women who just enjoy the book for whatever they take from it - sure... go ahead and enjoy it. But for young girls - what is this teaching them? What are they learning? What are they learning about love? About strength of character? Are preteen girls self-aware enough to not be influenced by a story that revolves mostly around sexual tension and less about real, emotional love?
Then again, it is just a book about vampires who glitter. Maybe it's been too long since I've been a young girl.
Of course, in my day... preteen books were good.