Monday, July 13, 2009

I Read Twilight and Hate It: Chapter 4

       A note on spoilers and what I know about the series.  I feel I should mention, just in case anyone was worried about spoilers, that I don't plan on spoiling anything in the book early.  That is to say, I'm going through everything in order and I'm not going to spoil something that I haven't come across yet.  However, these reviews are meant to be a substitute for actually reading the book, so any spoiler information that occurs in the book will occur in my review as well.  For example, if there were a big spoiler in the 15th chapter, I wouldn't mention it until my review of the 15th chapter.  If you want to avoid spoilers, it'll pay to read my reviews in order.  It would be hard for me to spoil information early on anyways, because I haven't read the book before (each chapter's review is written before I start reading the next chapter), and know little about the events that take place.  What I did know before starting this project is: It's about a girl named Bella and her Romance with a boy named Edward.  Edward is a vampire and sparkles in the sun.  Also, all the fan-girls want to jump his bone.  Even though the fact that Edward is a vampire hasn't explicitly come out yet, I still don't consider it a spoiler, since anyone who knows someone who knows someone who likes Twilight is aware of this fact.  I also know that there's a character named Jacob at some point in the series (whose bone none of the fan-girls want to jump) and a certain piece of information about him which may actually be a spoiler so I wont bring it up now.  For everything else that happens in the book, I'm hearing about it for the first time when I do that chapter.  Anyways, on to chapter 4: 

    The dream that Bella hinted at at the end of Chapter Three was surprisingly boring; just your standard chasing-after-someone-but-can't-catch-up-to-them affair.  "After that, he was in my dreams nearly every night, but always on the periphery, never within reach."1  
    At school, Bella ponders about why no one saw Edward teleport across the parking lot.  I use "teleport" loosely here, because the book doesn't actually describe how he got from point A to point B; it just makes note of how fast he was there (and, of course, how gorgeous he looked once getting there).  For all I know, he could have ran super-fast, or just made a really long leap. None of these are the kinds of actions that would go unnoticed be a large crowd of people.  Bella has a theory as to why no one noticed him, though: "no one else was as aware of Edward as I always was.  No one else watched him the way I did.  How pitiful."1  Edward may have super-strength and super-speed, but Bella has acquired her own superpower: Stalker Senses.  Also, I sincerely hope that she's using "pitiful" here to describe herself for obsessing over Edward, rather than everyone else for not obsessing over Edward.
    Actually, this raises the question of why the other girls aren't obsessing over Edward.  I mean, it's not like Bella just has really uncommon taste in men.  It seems like every Twilight fan out there wants to marry Edward, so it only makes sense that lots of the girls in the school would be interested in him as well.  Maybe he did something just a week before Bella arrived that turned all the girls off to him, like showing up to school in nothing but a cape and soiled Spiderman underoos, and everyone remembers it but no one's mentioned it to Bella yet. Who knows.
    Anyways, Edward is back to his Bella-hating stoner mode, and has stopped talking to her in their Biology class (because I guess the plot was just moving too fast).  There's a girls-ask-boys dance coming up and a lot of drama circulating around the school because of that (or at least a lot of drama circulating around Bella's head).  Jessica asks Bella for permission to ask Mike to the dance.  She asks him, he says maybe, because he wants to see if Bella will go to the dance with him before he agrees to going with Jessica.  So, he asks Bella to the dance, and she makes up some excuse about going to Seattle that weekend.  Actually, pretty much every character with a name, including the guy who almost hit her with his van ("Tyler") asks her to the dance.  Edward, however, does not.
    Edward, in Biology class, calmly tells Bella that it would be better of the two of them weren't friends.  He didn't say why not, because that would be all too un-mysterious.  Bella kind of freaks out and has a bitch-fest at him when he tells her this (I guess because she's not used to when guys don't all bow down before her).   She then storms off to P.E., where she continues to think about him some more.
    Actually, when she's storming off to P.E. she stumbles and drops all her books before right in front of Edward, and he picks them up for her.  It's supposed to be one of those "OMG, I was so embarrassed I could die" moments (along with another showcase for Ed's super-speed), but really it's hard to feel sorry for her.  Everyone has a friend (you all know who yours is) who just likes complaining.  They make it sound like they have the worst life in the world by taking every little thing that happens to them and blowing it up like the Hindenburg.  They're not really miserable, though, they just act miserable because they enjoy telling people about all the bad things that happen to them; it's fun for them.  Bella is that kind of person.  She complains about the weather, she complains about her parents, she complains about being unattractive, she complains about being attractive, she complains about Edward being around, she complains about Edward not being around.  I'm sure when she was in Phoenix, that she complained about everything there, too.  So don't feel sorry for her when she dumps her books in front of the guy she lust-hates; it'll just give her complaint fuel for months to come.
    That night, her dad is (allegedly) suspicious when she starts cooking peppers that night because "the closest edible Mexican food was probably in southern California."1  Yeah, too bad they're not in a Mecca of international cuisine like Arizona.  Actually, as a point of fact, Washington is an agricultural powerhouse, and many people living there have immigrated from Latin America (both legally and illegally).  A quick Google Maps search of Forks reveals that there are no less than four Mexican restaurants in the small town (none of which are Azteca), and the census info states that roughly 15% of the population is “Hispanic or Latino.”2  I’m sure at least a few of those 15% (or 485 people) are from Mexico, but I guess that Meyer doesn't consider the food made by Mexicans to be real Mexican food; only that made by Californians.
    Anyways, she and her dad have some boring discussion about gas-mileage and her getting lost in Seattle, etc.  She points out that she used to live in Phoenix, which is five times the size of Seattle.  I don’t know how she figures this.  Phoenix is actually less than four times the size of Seattle, as far as square-mileage goes.  The population of Phoenix is roughly 3 times that of Seattle, and population of the Metropolitan area is less than double.3  
    The next day, Edward displays his super-speed again, grabbing Bella's fallen keys in the parking lot.  Because he loves drama, apparently, he's now going back on his previous no-friends proposition and offering her a ride to Seattle on the weekend she planned on going (with the pretense of his Volvo getting better mileage than her truck). He does this in a "velvet, muted"1 voice.  To review,Edward's voice is  "low,"  "attractive," "soft," "musical,"  "velvet," and "muted."  Edward himself  is "interesting," "brilliant," "mysterious," "perfect," and "beautiful."1  That's not a list from all the descriptions so far, though; all those are from one paragraph.  Anyways, Edward insults her/offers her a ride and Bella hates him/accepts the ride (abusive relationship in the making?) Bella also questions Edward about his flip-flop on the friend issue:

        "Honestly Edward," I felt a thrill go through me as I said his name, and I hated it.  "I can't keep up with you.  I thought you didn't want to be my friend."
        "I said that it would be better if we weren't friends, not that I didn't want to be."
        "Oh, thanks, now that's all cleared up."  Heavy sarcasm.1

    Yeah, thanks Meyer.  The sarcasm was so subtle; thanks for labeling it.  I wouldn't have been able to guess that that was sarcasm without you cluing me in. 
  And so ends chapter four.  Stay tuned for Chapter Five.


1Meyer, Stephanie Twilight. “Chapter 4: Invitations” Little, Brown and Co., 2005

2Source: US Census.

3Information from Wikipedia, because I’m lazy.

No comments:

Post a Comment