Monday, December 29, 2008

Shocking, but True

Since my children were very young, I faithfully read every book they were interested in. This has led to some interesting conversations about Quidditch, missionaries, survival skills, rhyming words, and vampires. Yes, I recently read Stephenie Meyer's Twilight.

If you are horrified by this fact, I suggest that you skip this post and check back with me tomorrow for a new topic.

Are you still there?

Not only am I in the middle of the second book of the series, I also went to the Twilight movie with my teenage girls... and my mother. This story of true love isn't just for teens.

I was pleasantly surprised to find good themes in the first book. Ultimately the story is less about vampires and more about a boy and a girl resisting temptation. They must love each other with very little physical contact. Edward fulfills every girl's dream by showing self control and loving her more than himself. Each character in the story makes a choice - for good or for "evil."

Stephenie Meyer, a Mormon author, even selects and apple for the cover of her first book to exemplify the choices that each person has to make. Will you choose to be a monster? Will you choose to meet the needs of someone else even if it means making a sacrifice? Will you be like the Cullens and value human life? Will you be like Bella who takes a risk on those who are rejected by society?

Sure. There are negative things in the story, too. Bella should not be walking around at night alone. Duh! And the obvious fact that the whole vampire things is a little uncomfortable. But I would recommend that you not pass judgment until you've looked at the overall themes that Meyer conveys.

From a literary perspective, I was frustrated by the first 20 pages of the book because it need some editorial help. As most writers understand, our work improves as we write more. It was easy to relax and enjoy the read as I delved in deeper.

As I continue to share this journey with my teens, I'll let you know if I still feel the same way. For now, I am focused on this conversation about purity and the sacrifice of true love.

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