HeidiTown takes on “Twilight,” Chapters 1 ““ 5

The saga begins…

Synopsis: Bella has moved from Phoenix, Arizona to the tiny town of Forks, Washington. The sun-loving girl isn’t too happy about the move, but it’s a self-imposed exile from her mother and her mother’s new husband. At Bella’s new high school, she is a bit of a novelty. Before long, several boys are vying for her attention, but those aren’t the boys appearing in her dreams. It’s the mysterious Edward, a beautiful, otherworldly creature who haunts her every move and every thought. When Edward saves her from an out of control van in the school parking lot, their lives seem to become inexplicable intertwined.

As soon as I started reading chapter one, I remembered why I put this book down the first time. While I do not claim to be a grammar perfectionist, Meyer’s writing style breaks all the rules I learned from my creative writing teachers in high school and my English professors in college.

Perhaps she gets away with it because she writes YA fiction. Here are a few examples directly from the first five chapters.

Meyer overuses filler words like “that.” Although the word is necessary at times, most of the time it is superfluous.

In order to convey  to the readers what Bella looks like, Meyer has Bella look in a mirror. My college English professor would protest. There are many other ways to describe a character without resorting to the “mirror scene.”

Perhaps the most annoying aspect of the book thus far is Meyer’s tendency to add an adjective after each line of dialogue. After Edward speaks, for instance, he usually smirks, snickers, chuckles or smolders.  

Good dialogue should speak for itself. In other words, if the dialogue is well written, we know the character is smirking without having to be told. By the way, doesn’t it seem like Edward smirks a lot in this book?

This being said, I now confess, I am a tiny bit hooked. Despite my irritation at Meyer’s writing during the first few pages, by chapter five, I found myself ignoring these minor aggravations and beginning to enjoy the story. Although I think Meyer’s writing is juvenile, she taps into what it feels like to be a high school girl.

I do not wholly identify with Bella. For instance, I like to dance and although I was serious, I was fairly outgoing in high school. However, just like Bella, if I liked a boy, I was mean to them.

Yes, if you are a male from my high school, and I was mean to you, I probably had a crush on you. The more I liked a boy, the nastier I acted towards him. I had forgotten about this aspect of high school until reading the first five chapters of this book.

Meyer’s also captures what it feels like to have a crush on a boy – the butterflies, the inability to think coherent thoughts when he is near, and the intense rush of excitement at the mere mention of his name.

Honestly, how did any of us make it through high school with all those raging hormones? And why didn’t any incredibly handsome vampires with smoldering ocher eyes go to my school?

To read the entire saga of HeidiTown’s trip through “Twilight” (in chronological order), click on this underlined sentence.


  1. Ah, I’m jealous of your Twilight virginity. I’m so glad you got past all the ‘thats’ and ‘smirks’ to enjoy the story and sometimes awkward walk down memory lane. Her writing gets better as the series goes on but she definitely has her flaws. (Stephenie. Well, Bella does too but you’ll have to wait for Eclipse to fully appreciate my urge to throw our heroine out of a speeding car. Dumb bitch.)
    Do we over-analyze a piece of chocolate when we eat it? No. Enjoy the sweet gooeyness that is Twilight without embarrassment.


  2. I gave Meyer a bit of a break on her use of language simply because “Twilight” was her first novel. Read any talented and accomplished author’s first novel (“Harry Ppotter and the Philosopher’s Stone” for example) and compare it to their more recent works and you’ll be astonished by the differences in style, form, and the overall strength of their narrative ability. (I’ve done this also with Stephen King and Tess Gerritsen and it continues to hold true.) I read the first book in the series because my ex-girlfriend gave them to me and said that I absolutely NEEDED to read them. She also forced the movie on me, but I’ve mostly recovered now. I’ve read worse books, but I actually doubt that I’ll be reading the others. Maybe that’s my loss. Maybe If I actually spend the time to read “New Moon”, I’ll be able to see what all the hullabaloo is about. Maybe Meyer improves her technique between books one and two. I highly suspect she must have between books one and four or they wouldn’t have sold eighteen trillion copies each. Anyway, that said, if you really want an entertaining supernatural yarn, read Jim Butcher’s series of novels: The Dresden Files (which start with the story “Storm Front” which adds further credence to my first novel theory). They also have vampires, but Butcher’s vamps are not whining little emo bitches who cry about having to eat deer and pine after girls a fifth their age.


  3. This is the bookseller’s daughter here – okay, here we go. I enjoy vampire novels, however there are just certain things I haven’t been able to tolerate about the recent brand of vampire novels that are clogging bookshelves like cancer cells! Ever since Anne Rice’s vampire books, vampires have been slowly de-fanged and “prissified”. The vampires of today’s novels are self-loathing, lonely misunderstood beings who seem to be attracted to only young air-headed girls! Gone are the fearsome, true Undead: the blood sucking fiends from hell that Bram Stoker and Stephen King introduced me to. It seems that no one is capable of writing a vampire novel that includes staking (with LOTS of blood), crosses, garlic, holy water, and shape-shifting as well as the brave band of normal, average human beings who group together to stand against them. Nowadays, we have vampires who are immune to all the ancient methods of disposal, as well as the fact that they are incapable of doing anything remotely scary. I was UNABLE to finish this drivel mostly due to the fact that Bella the narrator is a total air headed girl and a whiny clumsy one at that! The prose bothered me – it’s too flowery with too many useless descriptions instead of smart action.
    Apparently Meyer’s ego is too big that she can’t write a simple “he said” “she said” dialogue scenario. I’m a tad dismayed that you’re getting a little bit hooked. Don’t waste your time. I did!


  4. It is almost like you have been bitten by a lost boy and are starting to feel the change in your soul as you become immortal. Next step… Exchange bed for coffin. Be careful! You may find yourself a full badge wearing “twi-tard”.


  5. Steve – God, I hope so. I get brownie points for each conversion:-)


  6. Aha! So the “twi-tards” are real. Couldn’t believe it when I first heard about them.


  7. I can’t stand Edward. Seriously, I just want to punch him in his undead face. I do like Alice though. I have yet to read the book–just saw the movie. I’ll get the book…eventually. Right now I can read Heidi’s take on things. 🙂


  8. Oh, and I agree with Sloane–this vampire thing is out of control. These prissy vamps overtook a whole huge section of Border’s. I thought I would get my blood sucked out just walking by.


  9. Now that’s a little violent Amy. Why do you want to punch him in that pretty face of his? He’s soooooooooooooooooo hot and soooooo twinkly!!!
    And I’m glad you survived your walk by the “Prissy Vampire Books” section at B&N. LOL!!!


    1. Don’t get Amy mad; I once personally witnessed her destroy an entire city because they wouldn’t admit that J.K. Rowling was cooler than Stephanie Meyer. Girl gets hardcore when she’s honked off.


  10. HAHAHAHA…I love that you said he “twinkles.” That’s just hilarious.


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