Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Day 15: The lure of Twilight

I finished reading the first of the Twilight books, which I've been intending to get to for some months. I wanted to see what all the buzz was about; I like to understand sweeping cultural phenomena. Dan Brown's DaVinci Code also fell into this camp, though I have to say that Stephanie Meyer is a better writer than Mr. Brown. Her heroes are empathetic and likeable, and while the story contains a bit of action/adventure, it doesn't rest on action alone.

All that on the plus side.

I can see why tween and teen girls go ga-ga over it. Edward is a beautiful bad boy who is saved from his own darkness by the love of a good woman (er, girl). It is outrageously, unapologetically romantic. I'm guessing that if the Harlequin Romance crowd discovers it there could be a whole new wave of fans.

While we aren't talking Romeo and Juliet quality, the love and desire and control and sacrifice portrayed reflect what is in fact true and beautiful. Our feminine hearts cry out for this kind of love, for a hero who will deny himself and save us from the threats of the world. And while I don't know how many guys read it, it is in some ways a good model for young men, demonstrating heroic virtue and self denial.

Interesting stuff. And I think for once it might not be a horrible cultural influence unlike much of what our young people receive.

As for me? I found myself alternating between being Bella and being Edward. Between lightness and dark, between darkness and light. Temptation and desire, restraint and self indulgence.

I thoroughly enjoyed it.

1 comment:

Cynthia said...

That sounds like a book that tears one away from the ordinary...which is, afterall, the goal of good fiction.