October 30, 2008

Breaking Dawn

By Stephenie Meyer
I put off reading this book for a while. I’m not sure exactly why, but I think I was worried. Bella Swan, the main character of the four books in the Twilight series, is very emotional. She feels things deeply and sometimes makes what I consider stupid decisions because she’s so darn self-sacrificing. It’s hard for me to read a book when I just want to reach into the story and shake the characters and yell “What are you doing!” I was worried that this story was going to drift irrevocably in that direction and I didn’t really want to put myself through that.
But finally I couldn’t put it off any longer, so I picked up, all 768 pages of it, gritted my teeth and started. At first, I was right. Bella was an idiot and I was going to hate this book. Then everything changed. It reverted back to the quality writing and great story-telling of the first three books and it never looked back. Stephenie Meyer has proven herself an excellent story-teller. She’s able to write romance without being soppy and gross and she’s able to write suspense without being a scary chiller, which is quite a feat. I will admit that I did have moments while reading when I had to set it down and take a break because it was INTENSE, both emotionally and physically.
The book is split into three parts. The first is told from Bella’s perspective and then we hear the events from Jacob’s (her friend) perspective, and then it goes back to Bella’s story. It’s a very interesting way to see events and to experience the story and it truly adds to the book. It also added to the question of “Will the good guys all make it?” If Stephenie can tell their stories from the perspective of someone who hasn’t been the narrator all along does that mean that the narrator isn’t going to last until the end of the book? Before the book came out there was enough speculation about the ending of this series to cast doubt on Bella’s ‘happily ever after’.
While I’m not going to say if there is a storybook ending or not, I will say that I was pretty satisfied with it. It does veer off a bit with the first part, but it’s necessary to make the story complete and full. I’ve never been a fan of the Edward-Bella-Jacob love triangle either, but this book does a great job of tying it all in and making it a necessary part of the other books in order to complete the overall story.
It’s a great book and totally worth reading. And…Bonus: it’s good for weight-lifting in a pinch, especially if you get the large print edition.

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