Reading Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer
I have a game: take a shot every time you read one of these words or phrases:
As some of you know, this 264 page document (Twilight from Edward’s point of view) was leaked onto the interwebs and a resigned Meyer published the thing on her blog. She prefaces with this: “I think it is important for everybody to understand that what happened was a huge violation of my rights as an author, not to mention me as a human being”. Hm. And: Oh please! Maybe if you stick Meyer in Gitmo for writing this drivel with Lizzie England as her jailer, then we can talk about violating her rights as a human being.
I have a lot of complaints about Midnight Sun (and jokes in my head ending with punchlines like “stick it where the midnight sun don’t shine”) but my two major complaints are repetitiveness akin to Chinese water torture and Meyer’s mistaken idea that to be a good writer she needs all this flowery, superfluous language. I wish her editor would take her aside and tell her that good writing can be quite simple and even spare.
The idea of writing Twilight from Edward’s point of view isn’t a bad one. He’s a mind reader, he’s exhibited extreme reactions to Bella, we wondered what precipitated those reactions in Twilight, he ran away for a while and we wondered what he was doing while he was gone. However, none of this really gets explained, and instead, what we get is information we already know or gleaned from the first book. The thoughts he hears from Bella’s friends Mike and Jessica we already figured out, his “burning thirst” is what accounts for his extreme reactions to Bella, and we knew that too, and only a page or so is devoted to his time with his vampire friends in Alaska. Meyer is a bit lazy here, and I think she’s taken the easy way out. She’s portrayed Edward as thinking of Bella as a sort of insta-soulmate (thanks to Dea for that phrase) which doesn’t make any sense since he doesn’t know anything about her and can’t even read her thoughts.
What results is a retelling of Twilight with $5.00 words, flowery descriptions (I believe the phrase is “purple prose”), the constant repetition I mentioned above, and a waste of my time.