kippurbird: (sleep? What sleep?)
I dreamed that I was Edward Cullen last night.

I was rather interested in Jasper.

I also discovered why I was an evil cranky bastard.

I has a permanent hard-on. See if I'm the consistency of stone then it would be impossible for me to have a flaccid penis. Since I don't have a flaccid penis, I'm constantly hard but unable to get off in any comfortable way, likely because masturbation is evil.

So, yeah.
kippurbird: (Sylar stole Spock's brain.)
Pacifism in story telling.

Okay, it needs a better title than that, but it sort of gets to what I've been thinking about the last couple of days. A couple days ago I finished reading Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire. It was an ARC I got at Comic Con, the actual book coming out on September first. I say that because it is a good read. I enjoyed the story, the world and the characters. The basic plot in one sentence is: an urban fantasy where a changling (half fairy in this world) tries to solve the murder of one of the full blood fairies. While I have my nitpicks and things about the book, those are not going to be discussed here. I don't think it's fair to criticize a book when people can't read it for themselves yet. I did notice one particular thing though that really bothered me and which I'd like to look at a bit more. The main character, October Daye was passive.

What do I mean by passive? She solved the mystery not by actively searching things out but more like following leads that people gave her. "Go here" or "Do this" she was told instead of "I bet if I go here..." or "Maybe I should do this". In essence she was lead around and pointed in the right directions after talking to people about what happened to her instead of coming up with the realizations on what to do on her own. This didn't detract from the story as I was reading it, but it did occur to me later in a Fridge Logic moment. (Aren't you glad I didn't link to TvTropes?)

As I started to think about it I noticed that other people like Eragon, Tristan and Bella also had this passive hero trait.

In Brisingr recently Nasuada told Eragon that he must go to the dwarves and make them pick their king sooner than later. He is told to do this and then he goes. It makes him feel like an errand boy. But wouldn't it be much better if he went to her and said, "I need to go to the dwarves to make sure they pick the right king" and she tried to convince him not to? There would be active conflict instead of him saying "I think that's a bad idea". It is, I think, better if the protagonist is the start of the conflict as opposed to the one who is given the conflict. I don't mean starting a fight so much as making a decision to do something which at the time might not seem wise but later will play out to be... whatever. At least the protagonist decided to do something instead of have something done to them.

Tristan basically stands around like an idiot for the entire book unless someone hits him. Really what did he initiate? Nothing. Wigg basically took him around and told him stuff that he needed to do. Sure there was the Prophecy that said pretty much anything Tristan does is the right thing, but it is for most of the book, Earwig saying "we need to do this to stop the great big evil and here's how" and not Tristan saying, "Okay these people killed my parents, kidnapped my sister and destroyed my country we need to stop them and you're going to help me".

Twilight, with Bella, has a different form of passiveness. She does go out and do things to discover who/what Edward is, but in her relationship with Edward she doesn't do anything. She lets him set the rules. She doesn't say no to him. Anything he wants to do to her is okay. She never says no. Which in this sort of novel, one that focuses more on romance than killing things, is an important part in defining their relationship. The fact that she doesn't say no to anything renders her blank with no preferences to anything in how she sees the world or how she wants a relationship to go. The only thing she has is "I want" which isn't very deep.

On the active side of things, Peter David's King Arthur series comes to mind. These books are about King Arthur in modern times. In the first book he decides that the best thing he can do to help people as a king, is to run for mayor of New York city. And he does. He takes the initiative, even though Merlin thinks it's a bad idea and is constantly calling him an idiot, and goes for it. He tries. Even with his faults of being scrupulously honest and never lying. Refusing to lie even if it might make him look like a total crackpot. Despite the risks, he does something about a problem he sees.

Imagine if Tristan did that. If he was eager or at least willing to take on the throne. If he was willing to throw himself out to protect his people, his family, instead of just standing around with his thumb up his ass. He would forced Wig to tell him about those evil sorceress and who they were and what they wanted. Or if Eragon decided that they needed to go to the Varden instead of Brom saying they should go.

Stories should be about people doing things. Having adventures, falling in love, making choices. Choices are what should drive the plot instead of events happening that make them react. Then it just feels like a series of events. Which is the biggest problem with books like the Inheritance Trilogy and the Twilight Saga. The protagonist never decides to do anything. They never have any wants or desires. The never do anything. Sure they move and talk and do things, but the things they do are just reactions to being told to do something. And who wants to read that?
kippurbird: (*_* SHINY!)
So, those Twilight promo cards my dad sold on EBay for me?

Netted a total of 156 dollars. The lowest sold for twenty one dollars, the highest for thirty four.

Seeing as how I get half, I just made myself seventy eight bucks.

Off of freebies and Twilight fans. =D
kippurbird: (Clue By Oar)
Fan Brats! I <3 them!

So, Seduction got another review. This time from a Vampirebooklover. They said:

What was that? Edward is not a stalker nor will he ever be. He realy cares
for Bella and isn't trying to play with her. Why would Bella ask him to drink
her blood? She wants to be a vampire not dead.

Mah reply:

I'm afraid we do have a bit of a differing opinion on the matter of Edward and his stalkering. I believe that he is a stalker because he exhibits all the signs of the classical stalker. Also "loving" and "caring" about someone is one of the reasons why a person stalks another.

If you note, it takes place before Bella knows how Meyers Vampires are made, so it's a logical assumption that she would ask for him to take her blood.

Finally vampires = dead.
kippurbird: (OHMIGAWD!)
The Twilight Trading Cards?

Went for $35.00.

kippurbird: (Chedder monk)
So those Twilight cards up on Ebay? They're currently at $26.95. The starting bid was $0.99. Yowzers.
kippurbird: (Twilight Wedding)
Last summer I went to San Diego Comic Con and picked up several Twilight Freebies. They're Promotional Cards for the books and movie. On a whim I had my dad put them up on Ebay. I figured, why not? They're Twilight, it's popular. Etc. Etc.

We put it up for 99 cents on Monday. Today it's at $10.95. The auction doesn't close until the 16th. My dad says Bidding really gets crazy when the auction starts to close. So, I'm curious now how much will it go for?
kippurbird: (>:D Heh)
Ignorance! I love it.

I was following the links and ended up at a U SA article on Stephen King. He mentioned some of his thoughts on various authors including Meyers. In the comments below there's this gem.

Why is he saying that? Btw is he a writer? Well I don't know. But if he isn't a writer that has had books on New York Times bestselling list he shouldn't be talking. Meyer is great, and she has made it better than him. If she wasn't a good writer then why is everyone reading her books? She is great no matter what!!! You can't tell a writer that they suck when they've already dominated some spots on TOP.

kippurbird: (:D)
This has been a long and torturous bumpy ride. But now? Now it is over. My dear pigeons, I present to you Twilight's epilogue.


Bella is all dressed up and doesn't know why. Edward is all dressed up as well. She doesn't have a clue why this could be. Instead, we get a meandering on how Edward looks.

He threw a mocking smile in my direction, and my breath caught in my throat. Would I ever get used to his perfection?

"I did mention that you looked very nice, didn't I?" I verified.

"Yes." He grinned again. I'd never seen him dress in black before and, with the contrast against his pale skin his beauty was absolutely surreal. That much I couldn't deny, even if the fact that he was wearing a tuxedo made me very nervous.

First off, just in my writerly opinion a mocking smile is not the same as a grin. Mocking indicates that you're laughing at them. Grinning indicates that you're laughing with them. The fact that Edward is mocking her and that she never mocks back makes me feel like she's being laughed at for being such a fool. Also, notice the description of the clothes.

Alice played -in a remarkably cute phrase - Guinea Pig Barbie with Bella. Putting her in a frilly dress. Her reasoning for doing this? She reminded me that she didn't have any memories of being human, and asked me not to ruin her vicarious fun. Sooo... Alice couldn't play dress up with herself? She needs to be human to put make up on people? She doesn't put make up on or dress nicely since she got changed? She has no personal hygiene? What's worse, Bella actually believes her. I seriously fail to see what one has to do with the other.

To make things even more annoying, suddenly Edward has a cell phone. Remember, Carlisle had to hand them out when they were splitting up. Now, he has one just in his pocket and it's his cell phone instead of a cellphone. The second meaning that he's just borrowing it or he has it for an unusual circumstance. But as it belongs to him, it means that he owns it and it's a regular part of his make up. On his cell phone he receives a call from Charlie.

Charlie had been...difficult since my return to Forks. He had compartmentalized my bad experience into two defined reactions. Towards Carlisle he was almost worshipfully grateful. On the other hand, he was stubbornly convinced that Edward was at fault- because, if not for him, I wouldn't have left home in the first place. And Edward was far from disagreeing with him. These days I had rules that hadn't existed before: curfews... visiting hours.

GASP you mean that Charlie actually thinks that someone Bella said she didn't like any more who then followed her out to Phoenix to expressively make her change her mind and then was involved in an accident that seriously inured her is bad for her?! You mean he's actually finally acting like a parent instead of a piece of cardboard!? SHOCK! SHOCK! SHOCK! Charlie showed some character! What is this book coming to!? Oh wait, it doesn't matter, we're at the end. I like the visiting hours. It makes it sound like Charlie is doing police supervision. Unfortunately, it's too little too late. And is thrown out the window in a few paragraphs.

See, Tyler has shown up at Charlie's house expecting to take Bella to the prom. This scene utterly baffles and angers me. Bella has been back for quite a while and Tyler would have had plenty of opportunities to confirm plans with her on when they're meeting up. And Bella had plenty of opportunities to, if he had asked, tell him no. The only purpose of this scene is so that Bella can realize that she's going to the prom... and Edward can continue his creepy stalker streak.

I'm sorry if there's been some kind of miscommunication, but Bella is unavailable tonight." Edward's tone changed and the threat in his voice was suddenly much more evident as he continued. "To be perfectly honest, she'll be unavailable every night, as far as anyone besides myself is concerned . No offense. And I'm sorry about your evening." He didn't sound sorry at all. And then he snapped the phone shut, a huge smirk on his face.
(bolding mine)

Edward has just said that she's not allowed to make decisions on what she wants to do at night. Why couldn't she be allowed to go out with Tyler, if only as a friend? Or Jessica. What he should have said is that he and Bella were dating which would indicate that Tyler's romantic intentions were unwelcome. His phrasing though indicates that anyone's attentions would be unwelcome. That only he has the right to be with her. This is utterly controlling, creepy and stalkery. As well as abusive. One of the signs of abuse is not letting the abusie do what she wants with people, controlling their every movement and friends. Not only that but Edward is unapologetic. He doesn't care that Tyler's evening is ruined. I know I'd be sorry if someone paid a lot of money for something and it didn't happen.

But here? Edward is obviously gloating about winning the Bella Prize. She's not a person but a thing to be one and trotted around like a prize horse.

Now Bella realizes that she's going to the Prom and is horrified. And she's been having vague suspicions all day and prom is no where near them. Edward is angry that she starts to cry. Why? Because Edward tricked her into going somewhere she'll feel humiliated at. He utterly dazzles her, He turned the full force of his scorching golden eyes on me and she once again becomes passive and allows him to do what he wants her to do.

All the Cullen kids are going to be there, even Rosalie. Edward says it prefacing it with an ellipse, as if he's reluctant to have her go. Why shouldn't she if her husband is going? The reason being? She still acts as if Bella doesn't exist. And if she doesn't act like Bella exists then she is in the wrong.

Remember how a few bits ago Bella says that Charlie didn't like Edward and felt like it was all his fault that Bella got hurt? Well apparently he was in on Edward taking her to the Prom. But wait! I thought Charlie didn't like Edward! Oh Noes Charlie's brief spot light of character has gone down the tubes for the sake of the Romangst. There should have been something of Tyler being preferred to Edward or anything. BUT... yeah. That would get in the way of the romance.

The Prom is being held at the school gym and for some reason Bella finds balloon arches and garlands of pastel crepe paper funny. Never having been to a prom I don't know why this would be considered funny or not. But, we see the other four Cullen kids dancing on the floor. They've completely taken it up because everyone is in awe of them.

I looked at the dance floor; a wide gap had formed in the center of the floor, where two couples whirled gracefully. The other dancers pressed to the sides of the room to give them space - no one wanted to stand in contrast with such radiance. Emmett and Jasper were intimidating and flawless in classic tuxedos. Alice was string in a black satin dress with geometric cutouts that bared large triangles of her snowy white skin. And Rosalie was... well, Rosalie. She was beyond belief. Her vivid scarlet dress was backless, tight to her calves where it flared into a wide ruffled train, with a neck like that plunged to her waist. I pitied every girl in the room, myself included.

My first thought when reading this? Is that Jasper and Emmett dancing together. And my mind went all OHH SLASHY!! And then... wait... that doesn't fit at all. Then we get to the girls. And as they're Speshul and Pretty they get the big description. Even longer than the location itself. Edward drags her on to the dance floor and dances with her by putting her feet on his.

Then Jacob shows up. Edward is Not Happy at seeing him. Especially since Jacob wants to talk. GASP someone Bella is friends with wants to talk to her! How HORRIBLE! Edward lets Jacob cut in giving Bella an intent look. It makes me feel like he's telling her that if she does or says anything he disproves of, she'll be in trouble.

Jacob shot up, before he was shorter than her, now he's taller than her. Minor detail, but I imagine it'll help for him being a potential love interest next book as you can't possible date someone shorter than you. Billy, Jacob's dad, wants him to deliver a message to Bella. Long and short of it Billy wants her to break up with Edward, (he didn't believe that Bella fell in Phoenix-at least someone has sense)and that to warn her that, "We'll be watching". Bella laughs it off as Billy meaning well. The dance ends. Edward cuts back in.

Edward is mad, not at Billy for saying those things, but at Jacob, for two reasons. One: He made Edward break his promise of not letting go of her all night. (Does that mean he'll go into the bathroom with her if she needs to wee?) and two: he called Bella pretty instead of beautiful. Um... right. Odd reasons to get irritated at a person. But I think it's mostly because Jacob showed an interest in Bella who is Edward's. He really needs to get her a dog collar for that.

Edward takes her outside, it's twilight. GASP SIGNIFICANCE saying "Twilight, again," he murmured. "Another ending. No matter how perfect the day is, it always has to end." He brought Bella to the Prom so that she could have a life experience. Bella says that it would only be a parallel dimension of her going to a prom. The reason why she went is because Edward took her. Bella wishes there was some way to explain to how very uninterested I was in a normal human life.

That is not healthy. She has completely given up her life just so that she can be with him. She will do anything to be with him. Again, I bring up that point that if Edward asked her to kill someone or he'll leave, she will kill them. This is not romantic. You are supposed to have interests outside of The Guy.

Finally Edward asks Bella what she thought was going to be happening because they were all dressed up. She thought he was going to turn her.

Yes. That's why they got all dressed up. So that he could inject her with a nasty venom that'll cause her great amounts of pain and kill her. Definitely a black tie event. Edward is at least reasonable about this, even if he does kill the twilight metaphor. So ready for this to be the end... for this to be the twilight of your life, though your life has barely started. You're ready to give up everything. Bella merely points out that it's not the ending it's a beginning.

She is suicidal. She has been throwing herself at a man who can kill her, threaten to kill her and is now begging for him to kill her. Sure, she'll come back as a vampire, but there's no way of knowing that she will. Well, we know she will because she's the heroine, but she doesn't. She just wants to die to be with him. This isn't romance, this is a tragedy.

She gives up for now as they both renew their vows of I Love you Forever.

The End.

*Does the happy dance*
kippurbird: (Boom!)
Twilight, the Last Chapter (not including the Epilogue)

Chapter 24 An Impasse

Previous chapter: Edward has some of Bella's nummy blood but it doesn't do anything to him. Bella is seriously hurt. D: James is MIA. And Bella is all fuzzy in the head.

What should happen in this chapter, we see James taken down in a huge climatic battle where Edward almost loses but doesn't and manages to still save Bella by getting her to the hospital in time. What does happen in this chapter: Not that.

Bella wakes up from happy fog land in the hospital with tubes and wires and Edward sitting right next to her. She apologizes to Edward for being stupid and not telling him that she thought James had her mom. Personally, I think this is one of the times she is right in apologizing. That was the stupid thing to do.

Her mom is at the hospital and safe. When Bella asks what they told her regarding her extensive injuries, Edward replies, "You fell down two flights of stairs and through a window." He paused. "You have to admit, it could happen."

Um. No. First of all, any competent doctor could tell that's not what happened. The injuries that you get from falling down two flights of stairs and a window are quite different that those you would get from getting smashed into a mirror and having someone step on you leg. There would be traces of mirror in her wounds as well and how does that explain the bite mark on her hand? Unless they mind-whammied the doctors, they would have told Bella's parents something completely different than what the Cullen's did.

Also, while we're at it, "if it could happen" we should have seen it before. From Bella slipping on the ice to falling on her face when getting of her truck. She should have had more scars and broken bones, the sort that would make people suspicious and call Child Abuse. There's no way that could have gotten away with no comment. Not in any sort of reality today.

"You have a broken leg, four broken ribs, some cracks in your skull, bruises covering every inch of your skin and you've lost a lot of blood. The gave you a few transfusions. I didn't like it - it made you smell all wrong for a while."

Then we get to the whole Edward Sucking Her Blood point.

"How did you do it?" I asked quietly. He knew what I meant at once.

"I'm not sure." He looked away from my wondering eyes, lifting my gauze-wrapped hand from the bed and holding it gently in his, careful not to disrupt one of the wires connecting me to one of the machines.

I waited patiently for the rest.

He sighed without returning my gaze. "It was impossible... to stop," he whispered. "Impossible. But I did." He looked up finally, with half a smile, "Imust love you."

Well, I don't remember any of that. He sucks her blood and then is "It's all clean." I don't remember hearing any strain or anyone telling Edward to stop or a tightening of her wrists... nothing to indicate that he was having difficulty. Just saying you are doesn't mean anything, unless you can back it up.

While I'm at it, I just realized something else. The only reason why Bella's clumsiness seems to be needed is as an excuse as to why Bella got hurt so badly. It gives her parents a blanket reason to accept her injuries. If it hadn't been constantly mentioned through out the book, it would come out of nowhere. But still, it does come out of nowhere because Bella is never shown to be clumsy. (I refuse to acknowledge the badminton racket incident.)

Bella apologizes for tasting even better than Edward thought she would. He says she shouldn't apologize for that but instead for "For very nearly taking yourself away from me forever" Why is this something she should apologize for? Why can't she leave him forever. Bella's response doesn't help at all. "You wouldn't have let me go" And that is not at all creepy. Or possessive. He's right there admitting that he won't give her freedom if she asked for it. He won't let her go and live her own life. This is, of course, romantic.

Oh hay, remember James? He pulled a Fan Fic Voldemort death.

"What happened to James?"

"After I pulled him off you, Emmet and Jasper took care of him." There was a fierce note of regret in his voice.

It's just like those fan fics with the Mary Sues with Volde getting mentioned with two lines and then forgotten. James isn't spoken about again. The Big Bad of the book is completely forgotten about with two sentences. He doesn't even warrant a paragraph. Or even dying by the Hero's hand. The sidekicks take care of him. The cardboard cut out side kicks take care of him, apparently rather easily and he's no longer of importance. He added nothing to the story and nothing would be lost if he wasn't there. He was a complete and utter non-entity. Which is not what villains are supposed to be. They're supposed to impact the story. Even Galbatorix, who we haven't seen has more impact, because Eragon actively worries about him and what he's done. James should have shown up sooner, had a larger presence and be I dunno... dangerous.

But! As he's not important, I don't get any more data on what to do about him. Instead we move on to the Cullen's story as to why they're here. He came with Carlisle and Alice to talk to sense into her. Carlisle being there for Parental Supervision. Of course, why Edward needs to talk sense into Bella is unaddressed. Obviously, wanting to leave Forks and Edward is senseless. And why doesn't Charlie follow Bella to talk sense into her instead of the guy she hates? Just... a bit of logic on my end. Coming up to their room, Bella tripped, fell and went through the window. Alice fabricated evidence.

When he touches her cheek.. her heart starts to beat erratically. And when he kisses her, her heart stops. This. Is. Not. A. Good. Thing. Bella cares not, as she wasn't finished kissing him. They kiss, the monitor goes wild. No doctors come rushing in. That is the point of the heart monitor, after all, to make sure the heart keeps beating and when it stops to let people know you're having issues. But as that would ruin the romance, no one shows up.

Except Bella's mom. Edward goes to pretend to take a nap on the couch. He can't leave Bella alone with her mother even for a few minutes of mother daughter privacy. Not that it means much. Renee tells her that she's been sedated for several days and that Carlisle looks like a model and Alice is such a nice girl. Mom is surprised that she's made such good friends in Forks. So, Bella distracts her with "Where's Phil".

Phil got signed! Wonderful news! Bella can move to Florida where there is sun! But OH NOES Then Bella wouldn't be able to be with Edward! Bella says that she lives in Forks and Renee is horribly reasonable in saying that she doesn't have to anymore.

Bella protests. One of the things she uses is that Charlie needs her. He'd been doing fine for all these years, and all of a sudden he needs her. Fortunately, mom shows a bit of sense and realizes it's Edward, saying that she thinks he's in love with her. But then she says that Bella is too young to be dating. She's seventeen and Edward appears to be seventeen. But Bella assures her that it's just a crush.

Mom tells her that she'll stay the night, like she has been because she's too nervous to go home. Seems there's been some nasty crime around. The Ballet studio has been burned to the ground... and they left a stolen car in front. That's how they got rid of James. Mom is convinced that she'll be okay because Edward is watching her.

Edward is just some guy. They're not married... yet... and mom doesn't even know him. Yet, she trusts Edward enough to leave him to watch over Bella. This is, of course, because Bella's mom suffers from Author knows that Edward is okay so She does too. This is, of course, just to get her out of the way so that it can be Edward Bella time again.

Once again, there is the "If I leave you then I can't hurt" you round about with Bella "I don't want you to leave me." "But if you're hurt, I'll kill myself" "But if you're not here I'll kill myself!" "Don't Kill yourself! I won't leave you!" "Don't leave me! Don't leave me!"

Essentially, that's it. Really. Talking about how much it hurt to see the other hurt and how they can't stand to see the other hurt so they shouldn't be around it but Bella can't have Edward leave her or else she'll die.

And then we get to the point of the venom, and how come Edward just didn't allow her to change. Edward says, But it just seems logical... a man and woman have to be somewhat equal... as in, one of them can't always be swooping in and saving the other one. They have to save each other equally." And then he says that she has saved him.

Annnd then we go onto to the "Change me!" "No! You need to live!" "You are my life!" "I won't do it to you!" "But I want you too!" "What about your family!" "They'll be fine even if I said a minute ago that they wouldn't!" "I won't end your life!" "I Need to live my own life!"

And this one is always lovely, I glared at him. "I man not die now... but I'm going to die sometime. Every minute of the day, I get closer. And I'm going to get old."

Age really shouldn't be a factor here. It sounds like she wants him to turn her so that she won't get old. Yes, I know, she is going to get old, but they should be happy enough to enjoy their life together and then... well she dies. But instead her insistence that she can only be happy with Edward if she's not getting old makes her look shallow. As if she's afraid he won't love her if she gets old. Potentially a realistic idea, but the way it is presented it's not.

Finally we learn that Alice saw Bella getting turned into a vampire. Edward doesn't believe it will happen but Bella refuses to bet against her. Of course we know that Alice is right. Even if it's not in this book. Bella gets drugged and falls asleep.

And that's the end of the book, not including the epilogue. Which will be TOMORROW. And then NaNo

Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today!
kippurbird: (Fantasy writers)
I was kindly directed to Meyer's FAQ for Breaking Dawn in which Meyer's discusses things like Feminism and other things when writing her book.

Some Highlights and my own personal opinions follow.

Why the big build-up for a fight that didn't happen?

I'm not the kind of person who writes a Hamlet ending. If the fight had happened, it would have ended with 90% of the combatants, Cullen and Volturi alike, destroyed. There was simply no other outcome once the fight got started, given the abilities and numbers of the opposing sides. Because I would never finish Bella's story on such a downer—Everybody dies!—I knew that the real battle would be mental. It was a game of maneuvering, with the champion winning not by destroying the other side, but by being able to walk away. This was another reason I liked the chess metaphor on the cover—it really fit the feel of that final game. I put a clue into the manuscript as well. Alice tore a page from The Merchant of Venice because the end of Breaking Dawn was going to be somewhat similar: bloodshed appears inevitable, doom approaches, and then the power is reversed and the game is won by some clever verbal strategies; no blood is shed, and the romantic pairings all have a happily ever after.

No. I'm sorry. You do not do that. If you are setting up your readers for the Big Fight then you deliver the Big Fight. This is not setting up a twist ending but instead pulling the rug from under your reader's legs and giving the a completely different story. If you don't want to have the Big Fight, you should hint through out the story that it may not happen. Not only that, just because there's a Big Climatic Battle doesn't mean that everyone has to die. Look at the Lord of the Rings. They have a HUGE Epic Battle, and not one of the remaining Fellowship dies. If you want it to be a battle of wits, then you make it a battle of wits from the very beginning, even if you are hinting at bloodshed. Hinting at both is probably the best way to do this as it allows the reader to wonder which way is it going to go! How will it be resolved. Finally bloodshed =/= romantic pairings being unable to live happily ever after. Though, happily ever after kinda sounds boring.

More Fun to Follow! )
kippurbird: (Fuck you duck)
Second to the last chapter!

Chapter 23 the Angel.

Bella is drifting in and out of consciousness. And she thinks she's dead because she's hearing the voice of an angel. It's Edward crying out in horror while behind him an awful tumult that my mind shied away from. A vicious bass growling, a shocking snapping sound, and a high keening, suddenly breaking off... Her angel keeps on crying for her while she tries to assure him that it'll be okay, but she can't speak or anything. Being seriously injured and all.

We get a fuzzy description of Bella's injuries, her ribs are broken as is her leg, she's lost blood and her head's cracked. Oh and her hand is on fire. James bit her.

On the hand.

James, the hunter, the monster, was able to control his blood lust when he knows he could drive Edward into an utter frenzy of anger and present to him a greater challenge.

And he bites her.

On the hand.

As opposed to tearing her throat out or brutally murdering her in horribly messy ways. This is what he wanted to do with Alice's sire, so why wouldn't he have done it with Bella. Beyond the fact that the plot requires Bella to stay alive.

Last minute rescues are always an option. And far more dramatic. A great big fight between Edward and James, very cool.

There is dramatic talking! Alice saying Edward has to do it! Edward refusing! Caralisle saying You have to try and suck it!

Out the venom.

See, the thing I don't get here, is why is Edward doing it? Edward has the overwhelming desire to eat Bella. Edward has to fight for control all the time he's with her, touching her. He almost killed her the last time he smelt her blood... from a paper cut. He's been plotting to kill her through most of the book. Caralisle has had tons of practice not getting excited at the smell of blood. He works with bloody patients all the time. He's a doctor, he'd know what he'd be doing.

But it's more romantic if Edward does it. He doesn't seem to have any issues with that, he sucks it out and I'm curious as to how this works. We don't get any explanation for it. And Edward is basically having himself a nice shot of heroine. And he has no problems with not finishing her off. He doesn't even mention anything about how nummy she tastes.

"Is it all out?" Caralisle asked from somewhere far away.

"Her blood tastes clean," Edward said quietly. "I can taste the morphine."

Very clinical. Not a bit of strain. It's as if this entire plot point The MAJOR plot point about the difficulty of their relationship (not that it acted like one), doesn't exist. There should have been arguing, strain. Carlisle demanding that Edward stop. Tension. Fear even on Bella's part.

This should have been one of the tensest moments in the book. Edward is faced with the one thing he's been wanting the entire book. Bella's blood. And he should be fighting it. Arguing against it. There should be some reason why he needs to do it and not Carlasile.

But it's not.

It just happens, passing over quickly without a thought.

And then Bella passes out again, after mentioning to Alice that James knew where she came from.
kippurbird: (Vampire! Oogah Boogah!)
Something had really been bothering me about the Chapter from Twilight last night. And I finally figured out what it was. Bella does not act like the Heroine when confronted by James, but instead the Damsel in Distress. She's tied up, essentially and being used as bait for the real interest, Edward. She's just a means to and end.

While this itself isn't necessarily bad There is no reason why Bella can't be kidnapped to be used as the damsel in distress, it's just that she acts like one. When she is in Jame's clutches she doesn't try to do anything to stop him. She just stands around and lets him monologue. Then she continues to be passive, letting James beat her to a pulp. She never tries to run. She never tries to protect herself. She is completely passive, just like she has been through the entire book. She waits for Edward to rescue her.

Even though she has told Edward through the letter not to come to her rescue and appears to be acting in a non-passive manner, she still allows James to dictate her actions. He says to tell no one and she tells no one. There is no reason why she shouldn't tell anyone and create a plan to help and protect Bella and her mother. Edward could have read James' mind and they would have discovered that her mother wasn't there. Bella could have called her mother in Florida and learned that her mother was still there. There are hundreds of things that could have been done that wouldn't require Bella walking into the lion's den like a drugged sheep. There are ways that this could of been handled by where Bella isn't passive.

But instead, Meyers has removed Bella from the action, letting her sit in her castle with her guards while Edward goes out to try and stop the bad guys. We hear only third hand, Bella getting her information only from Alice, and who knows how much she edited, what is going on. And by that time it has been considerably watered down. It could be argued that by doing this, more tension is created because we know what is happening but are helpless do anything. But in this case, it doesn't work. Mostly because we aren't given this information. Instead Bella exists in an empty hole, unable to give suggestions and only able to worry about Edward. Only able to angst about Edward. She doesn't even worry about herself.

She is much more vulnerable to James than Edward could be. Edward is a vampire with vampire backup. Bella is only a squishy human. Her thoughts aren't "What will happen to me if Edward doesn't stop James?" but instead, "What if Edward is hurt? What if he dies trying to protect me? How will I live with myself?"

Another problem that helps with Bella's passivity is the fact that the vampires don't have any weaknesses. The only way to kill them is by tearing them apart and setting them on fire. There's no way for an ordinary human to fight them. To kill them. One of the things that work with the vampires in other stories is that humans have a fighting chance. It may not be a good chance, but they can still protect themselves from the vampires.

For example, in the Buffy-verse, there is the Slayer, the Chosen One who is Supposed to fight vampires. She has the inherent knowledge and skills, the strength and the training to successfully hunt and kill vampires. But ordinary humans can also kill vampires, even if the odds are stacked in the vampire's favor. Stakes, garlic, fire, magic and others are all possible weapons to hunt and kill them. Had Meyers vampires not been made of marble, then Bella could have been more proactive. Even if it was stabbing James with a kitchen knife she took from her house. At least she would be doing something. She may not have been successful, but she could still have tried. And it would have made her less passive. She wasn't waiting for her knight to rescue her, but instead trying to rescue herself.

But since the Meyers vampires are completely untouchable by human hands (unless, I imagine you are Oddjob with his razor hat that can take off marble statues' heads) the human protagonists can do nothing. Thus rendering them helpless and unimportant. They can do nothing but stand passively by and wait for rescue.

As this book is told from the human's point of view, it is uninteresting. We don't get to participate in the action, but instead watch it like we were watching a movie. We are too to detached. And being so, rendered as helpless and passive as our heroine, Bella.
kippurbird: (Beer!)
Walking to my parents house today, I saw several bumper stickers in support of Prop Eight. For those who don't know, it's a proposition on the California ballot to over turn the court's decision to allow gay marriage. We voted no on it (yay absentee voting) my dad saying -jokingly- if they want to make the same mistakes as straight people then let them. But the point of this is that I'd seriously liked to talk to them about why they think so. An honest and frank discussion... perhaps involving newspaper.

Moving on.

Chapter Twenty Two, Hide and Seek.

Having set into place Edward showing up and likely getting Bella's mother killed by James by telling him not to follow, Bella is now ready to go. Before they can, however Alice has an attack. One of those Seer attacks. One of those convenient Seer attacks. That happen just in time to give the heroes important information that they might need.

Alice doesn't tell them anything. Just that she saw the same room as before. It's obvious she's hiding something. Just like it's probably obvious that Bella is trying to hide something, as Meyers uses the same sort of language to describe how they act.

Bella believes in the Ankh-Morpok way of saving. She keeps her money in a sock. I guess I'm just too used to credit cards and debit cards that I find it odd. It's something that kids do. She takes it out of her sock and puts it in her pocket. Apparently she doesn't have a wallet? Or a checkbook? Just saying.

On their way to the airport, Bella asks how her powers work.

"Yes, things change...," she murmured - hopefully, I thought. "Somethings are more certain than others... like the weather. People are harder. I only see the course they're on while they're on it. Once they change their minds - make a new decision, no matter how small - the entire future shifts."

I nodded thoughtfully. "So you couldn't see James in Phoenix until he decided to come here?"

"Yes" she agreed, wary again.

You mean, people's futures change when they make decisions?! GASP I would have never guessed! I'm not sure if this could be really considered a proper precognition or not. It's more of an advanced warning system. That doesn't always work. But, unfortunately, she doesn't make used of it, much like Bella isn't making use of the fact that James has no idea what she is doing.

They get to the airport and after waiting for a while, Bella says that she wants to eat breakfast. She asks Jasper to come with her and as they walk, she escapes into the woman's bathroom. It has two exits and she leaves through the second one where she can escape to the elevators. She runs in the airport. Not at all suspicious. No one does anything about it though and the security is non-existent.

She gets outside, hops on a hotel bus. From the hotel she catches a cab. The cabbie complains about having to drive to Scottsdale, which is twenty minutes away, according to Bella. Seeing as how cab drivers make their money by time and distance, and it's only twenty minutes away, I really don't think the guy would complain. And likely, there might even be traffic. Which is even more money!

I'm being petty, I know.

While she's getting driven, she fantasizes about all the places she and Edward could have gone. Apparently running a few feet is reckless.. and she can't wait to be in his marble arms. Still find that creepy.

She finally gets home and discovers that no one is there. Instead, there is a phone number. She calls it. James answers. Tells her to go to the ballet studio.

WHY! What is the purpose of that?! Why does he need her to go wild goose chasing? It serves no purpose except to draw out the wangst as she Rushes to the ballet studio! Oh Noes What Will She Do If Something Happens To Her Mother?! I CAN'T STAND THE TENSION!!! WHAT WILL HAPPEN?!

She gets to the Dance Studio and in a genuinely surprising twist, Bella's mom isn't there. James was using old VCR tapes with her mom's voice on them. That's actually pretty clever. Though, James for some reason is wondering why Bella isn't upset that he tricked her.

I'm .. duh... her mother isn't really in danger. There isn't a hostage situation. There's just her.

James gives a remarkably funny remark in regards to Bella. It's amazing - some of you seem to have no sense of your own self-interest at all." This is in regards to selfish, this is all about me, Bella. Irony.

And James is not Preethy.

He was standing a few feet away from me, arms folded, looking at me curiously. There was no menace in his face or stance. He was so very average-looking, nothing remarkable about his face or body at all. Just the white skin, the circled eyes I'd grown so used to. He worl a pale blue, long-sleeved shirt and faded blue jeans.

If I remember correctly, and I do, Alice said that one of the things that happen when you become a vampire is that you become UBER SEXEH to attract food. SO! We just had a Authorial Convenience Plot Device here. See, if James was UBER SEXEH then he could be considered GOOD because GOOD= PRETTEH. But Meyers wants James to be EVEAL so then he can't be PRETTEH. Because then Bella might be attracted to him. And if she's attracted to him, then she would be unfaithful to Edward and there would be tension! And maybe even PLOT! But, as we've all seen, this cannot happen. SO, James is merely, average. He's not Good like the Civilized Cullens. And so he doesn't get to be Pretty.

Bella continues to be dumb as she says that she doesn't think Edward will come for her because she says not to in her letter. I can't recall a single instance where he's done that, and neither does she. What makes her think he'll listen to her when her life is in danger?

James is disappointed that there hasn't been much of a challenge. If he wanted a challenge he should have attacked the Cullens three to seven. That would be a fighter's challenge.

Blah, blah, James Monologues. Blah... humans are predictable, he knew Bella would do this... waited for that... Victoria helped. Gloat, Blah.

We get another technology shift. Though, now I will say that the VCR thing is acceptable as many people do have a lot of their old family stuff on VHS tapes. Though, it still doesn't explain the phones. See, now, James has a palm-sized digital video camera. But, no one has cellphones except the Cullens. Riiigght. There's another one of those, Author knows, but Bella shouldn't know moments when James widens the frame.

Then, much to my utter disgust and horror. The thing that made me want to chuck this book across the room. It turns out that Bella wasn't the target. It was Edward. It was all for him, of course. You're simply a human, who unfortunately was in the wrong place at the wrong time, and indisputably running with the wrong crowd, I might add. AND he's the one who killed Alice's sire. He wanted to get Bella to get at Edward. Wondering if Edward would turn Bella, much like Alice's sire turned her to keep James away from Alice. He says that Edward was too weak to make that choice.

So, he only took Bella, to get at Edward, to see what he would do. And so Bella wasn't even the intended victim. If Bella hadn't been there, none of this would have happened. Of course, that's stating the obvious. If the Cullens had actually thought properly and gotten Bella out of there, none of this would happen.

In perhaps a very satisfying moment, James smashes Bella into the mirrors. She gets hurt. Badly. And then! James' breaks her leg by stepping on it! Isn't this fantastic?! I love James! Then! He smashes her face into the mirrors! There is blood! And pain! And Blood! And I can't believe I'm so happy about Bella getting hurt. You're not supposed to be happy about the heroine getting hurt.

Still, very satisfying.

Bella passes out as James goes to eat her BRAAAIIINSSS....! I'm mean her blood. >.>

Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today! Adopt one today!

Sorry... just... this irks me. It just feels wrong.
kippurbird: (*headdesk*)

1. October: Finish Twilight.
2. November: NaNo.
4. December: Brisingr.

Chapter 21: Phone Call

We've only got FOUR chapters left in Twilight. Scary, huh? Especially since we haven't like, seen any real plot until about three chapters ago.

An issue I'm having here is the lack of a time line. I don't know how much time has passed. There has been mentioned of meals appearing, which sort of indicates that at least a couple of days have passed. But other things, like James being fooled for so long don't make sense if he's such a good tracker. After all, they said that the clothes would only fool him for a while.

Here Bella begins the chapter with, I could feel it was too early again when I woke, and I knew I was getting the schedule of my days and nights slowly reversed. Days indicates at least more than three, for such a schedule adjustment. This fogginess makes it hard for me to tell what is going on. How much danger is Bella in? She doesn't feel very tense at all, merely commenting on that fact. There is a definite lack of tension here.

She goes into the other room where Jasper and Alice are talking, Alice still sketching. Bella has the remarkable ability to tell what direction things are facing, the window being in the south wall for example. Having done a lot of drawing, I can safely say that there is no way to know how to perceive this. This is the point here of the Author knowing before the Character. After a few more touches, Bella recognizes the house as her own. Thus, she would know that the windows would face south. It's a small continuity error that most people wouldn't notice, but it is the point of the author placing information that only she knows before hand.

Jasper makes with his empathy calm downiness which makes her feel dull and unfocused. Alice calls up Carlisle and we learn that he, Edward, and Emmett are going to come and get her to hide. Like that really worked well the last time. But of course Bell is all Edward? YAY!!

And then Bella remembers her mother and is very, "What about her?" Alice and Jasper say that they'll stay until she's safe. Which really, I don't think would work. After all Bella's mother is James' leverage over Bella. So, if he were to leave, he'd take Bella's mother with him, or just kill her as she would be designated as "useless". She tries to point this out and they're all, it's okay, we'll handle it. Then Jasper tries to put her to sleep.

You know, they're manipulating Bella as much as James is, but he isn't doing it in the name of helping her. They aren't trying to trick her. He just wants to eat her. The others don't appear to have a reason beyond "helping" her. But if they really wanted to help her they would have taken care of James as soon as he became a threat.

Bella runs out of the room so that Jasper can't put her to sleep.

I walked to my room and shut the door, slammed it really, so I could be free to go to pieces privately. This time Alice didn't follow me. For three and a half hours I stared at the wall, curled in a ball, rocking. My mind went around in circles, trying to come up with some way out of this nightmare. There was no escape, no reprieve. I could see only one possible end looming darkly in my future. The only question was how many other people would be hurt before I reached it.

The only solace, the only hope I had left, was knowing that I would see Edward soon. Maybe, if I could just see his face again, I would also be able to see the solution that eluded me now.

What it appears to me is that, Bella has become so dependent on Edward that she is incapable of thinking for herself and requires Edward to come up with the solution. Only when he is there will she be able to know what to do.

Bella's mother calls and we get the typical, Person who is holding someone hostage giving the other instructions while pretending to be the hostage, phone call. Of course, the usual demands are made, Come alone or your mother dies.

And of COURSE Bella is going to do this. They ALWAYS do this. It's STANDARD procedure. James is nowhere near where Bella is staying. He has no way of knowing what Bella is going to say. They could make plans on how to rescue her mother without James knowing.

Instead she writes a weepy letter telling Edward that she loves him, that she has no choice because James has her mother and that he shouldn't follow her. Hoping that he won't do that.

Of COURSE he'll follow her. All the Cullens will follow her. And they don't know where Bella lives so it'll take them a while for them to find her. Except that Alice will have one of her premonitions and they'll bust in and try to rescue her and it'll all go bad.

But instead, Bella writes her letter, tells no one, And then I carefully sealed away my heart.
kippurbird: (*_* SHINY!)
Twilight cracky goodness

Your result for Howard Gardner's Eight Types of Intelligence Test...


37% Logical, 51% Spatial, 45% Linguistic, 10% Intrapersonal, 4% Interpersonal, 25% Musical, 6% Bodily-Kinesthetic and 57% Naturalistic!

"This area has to do with nature, nurturing and relating information to one's natural surroundings. Those with it are said to have greater sensitivity to nature and their place within it, the ability to nurture and grow things, and greater ease in caring for, taming and interacting with animals. They may also be able to discern changes in weather or similar fluctuations in their natural surroundings. They are also good at recognizing and classifying different species.

'Naturalists' learn best when the subject involves collecting and analyzing, or is closely related to something prominent in nature; they also don't enjoy learning unfamiliar or seemingly useless subjects with little or no connections to nature. It is advised that naturalistic learners would learn more through being outside or in a kinesthetic way.

Careers which suit those with this intelligence include scientists, naturalists, conservationists, gardeners and farmers." (Wikipedia)

Take Howard Gardner's Eight Types of Intelligence Test at HelloQuizzy

Adopt one today! Adopt one ! Adopt one today! Adopt one today!
kippurbird: (What goes on in Kippur's head)
Thought about an essay. About Twilight's use of the Other and it's encouragement for complacency in potentially abusive relationships. Dunno.

Also a different kind of vampire story by [ profile] jeriendhal Go Read! Give lavish praise!

Stare *_*

Oct. 22nd, 2008 07:59 pm
kippurbird: (Twilight Wedding)
Pain Bad.

Pain better when shared.

I'm in pain.

I share with you.

Bloody stupid Ears.

Chapter Twenty: Impatience

Now I have sort of mixed feelings of what Meyers did here. By taking Bella away from the action of James, we loose some of the tension and fear, the only thing Bella is worried about here, now is Edward's safety, as opposed to her own. Meyers does try to fix that with putting Bella's mother in danger, but still is almost secondary. Bella is going to be sitting around, being passive.

So, Bella wakes up in a hotel room after having been driven all night from Forks to Phoenix Arizona. At twice the legal speed. I'm surprised they weren't pulled over. Or the car didn't die on them. After all, cars aren't made to go that fast for so long. I wonder if they stopped for gas? They'd have too. Bella finds Alice's neck, despite being granite, comfortable. Maybe she has some kind of stone fetish?

The chapter is mostly Bella angsting. She basically goes around in a sort of daze of timeless boredom and why hasn't Edward called yet? It's all wait, wait wait. Jasper and Alice sit still and there is waiting. And more waiting.

We stay in the room. Alice called down to the front desk and asked them to ignore our maid service for now. The windows stayed shut, the TV on, though no one watched it. At regular intervals, food was delivered for me. The silver phone resting on Alice's bag seemed to grow bigger as the hours passed.

My babysitters handled the suspense better than I did. As I fidgeted and pace, they simply grew more still, two statues whose eyes followed me imperceptibly as I moved. I occupied myself with memorizing the room; the striped pattern of the couches, tan, peach, cream, dull gold, and tan again. Sometimes I stared at the abstract prints, randomly finding pictures in the shapes, like I'd found pictures in the clouds as a child. I traced a blue hand, a woman combing her hair, a cat stretching. But when the pale red circle became a staring eye, I looked away.

And on. And On. It goes. For eight pages.

We change topics when we learn how vampires are made.

Ahahahaaaa.... Stone Statues are supposed to be physically attractive to their prey. Truly an Adonis here.

I wonder what happens when you change a fat or/and ugly person? Or even the idea of beauty being in the eye of the beholder? What if you don't find whatever the Cullens look like as attractive? Or old even.

Meyers Vampires are venomous.

No. Really.

They are.

"The venom doesn't kill - it's merely incapacitating. It works slowly, spreading through the bloodstream, so that, once bitten, our prey is in too much physical pain to escape us. Mostly superfluous, as I said. If we're that close, the prey doesn't escape. Of course, there are always exceptions. Carlisle, for example."

She's making it sound like the venom is like a vampire's appendix. Oh, we don't need it to kill people, it's just there. And, personally, I don't think a venom that causes pain would be a good way to incapacitate a victim. Paralyzing venom would work better. I think that's how most of them work in the natural world.

And then Alice has a vision.

James will be in a room with mirrors. At first they think it's a ballet studio. There's a VCR and a TV. The presence of the VCR indicates, that yes, we're in the late 1990s. Which is confusing with the smaller phones. And I'm surprised they got reception out in the middle of Forks. At that time... I'm sorry, I think I'm paying too much attention to research details. Sorry.

Bella is wondering if they should call, but THEN with timing of Isn't That A Convenient Coincidence, the phone rings. These are supposed to be set up as ominous foreboding in books like these. In comedic situations, they'll precipitate a humorous something happening. But here there should be a sense of dread, instead it just feels... convenient.

James, sorry, the tracker is heading towards Bella.

Still Bella gets to talk to Edward and she goes all floaty. I felt the hovering cloud of despair lighten and drift back as he spoke. It's almost like a euphoric addiction, her reactions to him. She's gotten her Edward hit. In fact as soon as Edward hangs up, she gets all depressed again. Sounds like a drug to me.

James will be in a room with mirrors. At first they think it's a ballet studio. There's a VCR and a TV. The presence of the VCR indicates, that yes, we're in the late 1990s. Which is confusing with the smaller phones. And I'm surprised they got reception out in the middle of Forks. At that time... I'm sorry, I think I'm paying too much attention to research details. Sorry. Still, James is playing around with a VCR and Alice is drawing it for them so that they know what the room looks like.

Bella thinks that it might be the ballet studio that she went to which is right near her house. A bit too close for comfort so she borrows Alice's phone, after making sure it was safe to use, and tells her not to go anywhere until she talks to Bella.

Then Bella goes back to staring at the walls.

Adopt one today!
kippurbird: (Default)
I think I'm manic. It's one in the morning and I'm writing this. I'm yawning, but I'm awake. Also, I was bouncy all day. RIGHT so, Manic Twilight.

Chapter Nineteen.

This is a semi-effective chapter. It would have been more effective I think if we had actually gotten to know Charlie better as a character. I shall explain. Emmett, Edward, Alice and Bella go to Charlie's house. Edward knows that James isn't there. Currently I'm shipping Edward/James. They know each other so well. Bella is crying because she doesn't know when she'll see Emmett again. It's odd. She feels worse about not seeing someone she just met than she does about anyone else, like say Jessica or Mike. Both of them have had serious contact with Bella, but they're not mentioned as being in possible danger. It's like they don't exist.

Not important. They get to Charlie's house and Edward tells her that she has fifteen minutes to get out. There are declarations of love. "I love you," I sad in a low, intense voice. "I will always love you, no matter what happens now." That reminds me of a bad romance novel line. She should be wearing a low cut bodice and Edward should have pale white skin that was granite har... wait, never mind.

To convince Charlie that she was leaving for real, she storms in screaming that she hates Edward. She screams about how she hates Forks and everything. And then she says something that her mother said to Charlie when she left him.

The thing is, it would have greater impact if we knew more about Bella's parent's relationship before hand. We know that there are still pictures of her mother in his house, but we don't know why. Obviously they're divorced or her mom wouldn't have gotten remarried. But he must be carrying a torch for her still. After all, he doesn't appear to be seeing anyone else and is just living by himself. In fact he seems to be and was, completely static until Bella showed up. And now he'll be completely static again.

The only relevant information he gives us is that Bella's mom might be coming back in the end of the week to Phoenix.

Then something interesting happens. James is no longer referred to as James but instead, "the Tracker". Meyers has dehumanized him. This will make it better later on in the story when there's the big fight between him and Edward. Edward won't be killing another sentient being but instead an animal that needs to be put down. He won't be a murderer this way. You can't murder a tracker, you can murder a James. If Edward murdered a James then he wouldn't be perfect anymore. Murderers aren't perfect and for Bella and his romance, Edward has to be perfect. (Or as I learned from wikipedia, it's not Edward who kills James but Jasper and Emmett, still the point stands).

James follows them. But doesn't attack them.He is tracking them. Bella wants to know why James is so interested in her.

It goes like this:

1. Bella smells yummy.
2. Edward defended Bella, which made her even more appetizing.
3. The Rest of the Cullens defended Bella, which makes her a yummy challenge.

So, they basically set Bella up as an appetizer on a plate for James because they kept her around instead of getting rid of her when they first sensed the vampires coming. Especially since Alice can see the future. I think the other vampires are trying to tell Edward something.

Just a thought.

To continue the idea of James being nothing more than an animal and Edward and the Cullens better than him, Edward says, he doesn't think he'll have any choice but to kill James and that Carlisle won't like it. He says it in such away that it sounds like he's putting down a dog.

Finally we learn what can kill a vampire: You tear it to shreds and burn it. I wonder what happens if you just burn it. Or just tear it to shreds.

While we know just about as much about Laurent as we do James and Victoria, he's the only one that they dignify with a name. Victoria becomes "the woman". She and James are both blood thirsty animals who love hunting while Laurent only joined up because he felt it was better than getting eaten by James. Since he is obviously a good person in bad circumstances, he gets a name and leaves in peace. His entire point in the story is to be all OHGMAIWD U DON NO HOW EBIL JAMEZ IZ!!!!11!!!

That function having been fulfilled, he leaves, sounding like he might convert to the Cullen way of life.

Laurent having left, they do a sort of Emergency Shut Down on the house by having all these huge metal shutters cover up the windows. An odd thing to do, because we've already seen Edward able to pull trees from their roots and stop cars and two vampires sound like thunder crashing when they run into each other. How exactly are metal shutters supposed to stop vampires, when they're likely to be able to punch through the wall?

Just a thought.

Edward tells Rosalie to change clothes with Bella and Rosalie refuses. She even gives a perfectly legitimate reason, "What is she to me? Except a menace - a danger you've chosen to inflict on all of us." Sadly this gets promptly ignored. It would have been an interesting interaction between Edward and Rosalie as Edward has to justify his actions of putting the family in danger for, as Laurent called her, a snack.

It gets dropped, and Edward tells Esme to change clothes with Bella instead. Edward is actually acting rather like the head of the coven than Carlisle. Carlisle doesn't bother to protest or say anything for or against Edward's actions. Instead he allows Edward to order his wife around.

Bella gets passed along like a football. She and Esme change clothes to confuse the scent. And Esme is able to fit into Bella's obviously much smaller clothes.

They split up with Alice and Jasper taking Bella down to Phoenix when the coast is clear. They have cell phones. Carlisle is handing them out. I would think that maybe the story is set before cell phones were numerous, but they're a "tiny silver cell phone". And when they're that size, everyone has them. People who can't afford them have them. It's a plot convenience. After all why does he need to hand out cellphones instead of everyone having them? The Cullens are obviously rich enough (see their cars and clothing) so they should have been touting the cell phones around with their cars and clothes in their trying to blend in.

Alice and Jasper take Bella off, Alice offering to carry Bella. Bella admits that this is the first time anyone has asked her permission. So they've all been tossing her around like, as before mentioned, a football. If they had seen her as an actual person, they would have said something to her about it.

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