A Descent Into Madness, Twilight Review 9

Guys, I am really just grossed out. I’m not saying that to be funny or cute, I’m not exaggerating. I’m genuinely disturbed by what went down over these last two chapters. There is no romance here. There’s nothing sexy or inspirational or aspirational about any of this. This is not something anyone should look at and hope to have someday, nor should they cherish it if they already have it. This is as unhealthy as a relationship gets and you should run if you even think you might be in one like this.

 

Twilight, Chapter 9: Theory

 

This chapter, as with most, picks up mere moments after the last one ended. I personally don’t really care for that style. It makes the story seem to drag on. Chapters, to me, should be largely self-contained, more like small short stories that make up one big story. But since there’s practically no story to speak of in this book, I suppose it doesn’t really matter.

So far, every time we’re in the car with Edward, he’s described as driving too fast. I’m not sure why that is. I guess vampires get impatient or something. But they are also, apparently, able to exert perfect control over a vehicle moving at high speed, so much so that several times, Edward is described as not even paying attention to the road. I’m really not sure what aspect of vampirism grants one control over not just motor vehicles, but all the variables around them as well.

Edward and Bella are continuing their conversation from the restaurant. He graciously allowed her to ask him questions and he seems to be answering them honestly for once. She asks what he meant when he said he couldn’t hear her thoughts (because I guess saying, “I can’t hear your thoughts” isn’t clear enough for Bella who, let’s not forget, couldn’t add immortal, cold, and bloodsucker together to make “vampire”). He tells her that her brain is somehow different from everyone else’s. Naturally, Bella takes it as rationally as you or I would. Oh, did I say she took it rationally? Yeah, I meant the complete opposite of that.

“‘My mind doesn’t work right? I’m a freak?’ The words bothered me more than they should—probably because his speculation hit home. I’d always suspected as much, and it embarrassed me to have it confirmed.”

This is the sort of knee-jerk reaction I’ve come to expect out of Bella. She’s portrayed as being intelligent, deep, and independent, but really she’s just self-conscious, self-loathing, and completely submissive to Edward’s will. Also, I hate her.

When Bella happens to notice that Edward is driving 100mph, several things happen. First, she says “Holy crow,” which is the dumbest phrase I’ve ever heard and she needs to stop using it. Now. Second, she quite understandably freaks out and asks Edward to slow down. She’s the daughter of a cop and on top of that, has no interest in becoming a pale, whiny stain on the highway. Edward, who could crash his shiny silver Volvo against a brick wall and walk away unscathed, just makes fun of her for being so scared. He graciously drops his speed to just over 80mph and they continue with their conversation, but not before he snaps at her to shut up about his driving style.

Their conversation turns to what Bella thinks Edward is. As usual, he mocks her, asking her what sort of superhero she guess he is now. Though she never comes out and says the word “vampire,” she tells him about the story Jacob told her and that ultimately, she doesn’t care what he is. This seems to throw him for a loop. However, finding out that she’s not bothered by him being whatever he is seems to encourage him to be more open to answering her questions. And again, while the word “vampire” is never used by either of them, he essentially confirms everything. Here’s more or less how the conversation went:

BELLA: So, why can you come out in the sun?

EDWARD: Because that’s just a myth.

BELLA: Um, okay, how about burning up in sunlight?

EDWARD: Dude, I just told you that was a myth. Are you stupid or something?

BELLA: Or, sorry. I was mesmerized by your perfect everything. What about coffins?

EDWARD: What about them?

BELLA: Do you sleep in them?

EDWARD: God, where do you get this stuff, TV? No, I don’t sleep in a coffin. Are we done?

BELLA: I guess so.

EDWARD: Jesus you’re stupid. You didn’t even ask the most important question.

BELLA: LOL, sorry! What’s that?

EDWARD: Aren’t you the least bit curious if I drink blood?

BELLA: Not really. Jacob said you were harmless.

Edward goes on to explain just how not harmless he is, essentially telling Bella how hard it is not to eat her face. Bella notes that she’s not worried because he only gets “crabby” when he’s hungry, and when he’s hungry, his eyes turn black. Since his eyes aren’t black, he’s not hungry and her face can remain right where it is. To that, he gives a little chuckle and compliments her on how observant she is.

“I didn’t answer; I just listened to the sound of his laugh, committing it to memory.”

God, she’s as creepy as he is.

Bella asks if Edward had gone hunting the previous weekend. He confirms that he did and tells her how anxious he’d been to leave her. You’ll never guess why.

“‘It makes me…anxious…to be away from you.’ His eyes were gentle but intense, and they seemed to be making my bones turn soft. ‘I wasn’t joking when I asked you to try not to fall into the ocean or get run over last Thursday. I was distracted all weekend, worrying about you. And after what happened tonight, I’m surprised that you did make it through a whole weekend unscathed.’”

Seriously. He’s saying his hunting trip was ruined because he spent the whole time worrying that she was going to kill herself as a result of her clumsiness. She’s already incredibly self-conscious about her clumsiness and here he is, reinforcing her own belief that she’s a klutz. And not just that, he’s saying it in a way that’s sure to make her feel guilty. He’s telling her that her clumsiness is now affecting him because it forces him to spend his time worrying about her. What. A. Dick. And there’s more. Remember when she fell on the way back to camp before she met Jacob?

“‘I fell,’ I sighed

“‘That’s what I thought.’ His lips curved up at the corners. ‘I suppose, being you, it could have been much worse—and that possibility tormented me the entire time I was away.”

SERIOUSLY. He reiterates just how awful a time he was having because he was so preoccupied with worrying about Bella not tripping and falling off a cliff or something. Yeah, what a super great guy you’ve found there, Bella. Ugh. He tells her that he actually got back like a week ago but skipped school because the weather was too nice and he can’t be seen in sunny weather. When Bella asks why, he just promises to show her sometime. Boy oh boy, I can hardly wait. This admission that he had been back the whole time also led to one of the worst lines ever written. For reals.

“I was frustrated, almost angry, as I thought of how much disappointment I had suffered because of his absence.”

UGH.

At one point during their conversation, Bella describes Edward’s voice as “velvety.” Now, that’s the second time she’s used “velvet” to describe the sound of his voice and I’d just like to know what the hell that means. Seriously, what does it mean?!

Anyway, Edward finally gets to the part of the conversation where he yet again tells Bella that he’s not safe to be around, she shouldn’t hang out with him, blah blah blah. He’s pretty harsh with her and as a result, she starts crying. Well, Edward will have none of that in his car.

“‘Are you crying?’ He sounded appalled.”

Let me repeat that. “HE SOUNDED APPALLED.”

Can someone please point out where the romance begins? Because so far, Edward has been nothing but terrible to her. Even when he saves her life, he mocks her and treats her like an idiot. And now he made her cry and is just disgusted with her for showing such weakness.

By this time, Bella notes that they’re back in Forks and that what should have been an hour drive has taken less than twenty minutes. Now, I did the math, folks. Would I be me if I didn’t? The distance between Forks and Port Angeles is, according to Google, 56.3 miles and would take an estimated 1 hour and 4 minutes to drive. Even rounding up from her “less than twenty minutes” estimate to an even twenty minutes, they would have had to have been driving a constant speed of 168.9mph to make the trip. The only logical conclusion, therefore, is that vampires can bend reality and shorten the distance between two points. Or Stephenie Meyer is just bad at her job.

So they finally reach Bella’s house and a couple things happen. First, after telling Bella for what must be the hundredth time that he’s dangerous and she shouldn’t associate with him, he promises to save her a seat at lunch tomorrow. What?

“It was silly, after everything we’d been through tonight, how that little promise sent flutters through my stomach and made me unable to speak.”

Silly isn’t the word I’d use. If you can almost get raped then get yelled at for it then forced to eat when you weren’t hungry then belittled, mocked, and patronized for twenty minutes and still find the person doing it so appealing that the mere promise of seeing them the next day renders you so excited that you’re speechless, I would not describe that feeling as silly. I would describe it as sick. Bella, you are sick. Edward spent the whole evening calling you an idiot child who is incapable of taking care of herself and whom he worries will accidentally fall to her death because she’s just that clumsy. He has no respect for you. None. Why is he somehow even more attractive to you?

Then there’s this gem. Remember how Bella noted that his jacket had a particular scent that wasn’t cologne? Yeah, try to keep your lunch down with this one.

“‘Sleep well,’ he said. His breath blew in my face, stunning me. It was the same exquisite scent that clung to his jacket, but a more concentrated form. I blinked, thoroughly dazed.”

You have no idea how badly I wish I had made that up. Holy crow, guys. She really just said that.

After a really awkward and prolonged good-bye, Bella finally gets out of the car and heads inside, promptly lying to her father about pretty much everything. Then she goes upstairs and takes a shower, where she has some sort of shaking fit as if she were freezing despite saying that the water was scalding hot. To be perfectly honest, I have no idea what happened. I was very confused by the whole scene. She gets out and dries off and then curls up on her bed and just when I thought this book couldn’t get any worse, I read the final paragraph of the chapter, which I am convinced was the first part of this awful series Stephenie Meyer ever wrote.

“About three things, I was absolutely positive. First, Edward was a vampire. Second, there was a part of him—and I didn’t know how potent that part might be—that thirsted for my blood. And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him.”Image

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About J. R. Walker

My name is Josh and I'm an aspiring writer currently attending Southern New Hampshire University online to get my degree in Creative Writing. I currently have over a dozen short stories under my belt, as well as a number of novels in varying stages of completion. I have yet to be published but I'm hoping to self-publish within the next year or so. As a writer, I'm also an avid reader. My current inspirations are H. P. Lovecraft, Stephen King, Jo Rowling, and George R. R. Martin. Besides being a writer, I'm also a fairly decent knitter and crocheter.
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2 Responses to A Descent Into Madness, Twilight Review 9

  1. Actually, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was the meadow scene which came first, seeing how SM’s dream of that scene is apparently what kick-started this whole mess.. That said, the “About three things…” paragraph was probably written immediately afterwards.

    I would dearly love to know why anyone finds Edward attractive as a character. He just seems…off, on many levels.

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