Monday, August 11, 2008

Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer

I finished Breaking Dawn on Saturday. It took me until today to process everything. That and I didn't have time to blog while obsessing over the Olympics.

I really loved this book. I've read the reviews, I've read the reasoning behind people's disappointment. I don't get it. I understand that every person is entitled to their view but I hope that every reader is making their own decision and not jumping on the proverbial bandwagon. If my friend hates the book, I must hate it too! That's the wrong way to read/watch/experience anything. Make your own judgements, I'll respect that. Respect me now.

Warning. . . There will be spoilers. I can't discuss my thoughts without them so stop reading now if you don't want to know.

I loved that Stephenie got the wedding over early. This was fairly significant but such a minor thing in the scope of the book. Bella was in her own world and seemed to float through the preparations, just handling them, not experiencing them. It wasn't until she saw Edward that she realized it was what she wanted.

The honeymoon was not graphic, keeping with the fact that these books are young adult. Some wanted a graphic scene but a few destroyed pillows and a broken headboard get the point across. I did get a bit mad at Edward at this point. His need to protect Bella was irritating when she obviously wasn't worried. It all worked out though.

Then there's the pregnancy. . . This is when some readers really got mad. I thought it was exactly right. One of the themes through all the books was human experience. Edward wanted Bella to have as many human experiences as she could. He forced her to go to the prom, he wanted her to go to college, he wanted her to marry him. They never thought a baby was possible, so that was one experience they were both prepared to give up.

Some critics thought that Bella was too young, never wanted a baby, etc. . . Yes she was young but she was prepared to stay that age forever. If she were going to have a child, it would have to happen while she was young. Nobody thought it was possible so why would she worry about birth control? As for never wanting a baby, how do we know? It wasn't on the top of her list but as soon as she found out she wanted that baby. She handled it maturely and maternally. She knew this might be her only chance to have a child and she was prepared to sacrifice it all.

Then there's Jacob. . . I loved his point of view. He grew up a lot, standing up for what he knew was right. It was refreshing to not have to go through the pregnancy in Bella's head. I thought it was very poignant for he and Edward to be the ones to deliver the baby and save Bella's life. His determination to bring Charlie back into her life was impulsive but it worked. As for imprinting, I thought it was perfect. He had always had a bond with Bella. Now we know why. I hope that the next books she writes (after Midnight Sun) will be Jacob and Nessie's story.

The only thing that barely disapointed me was the final showdown with the Volturi. It dragged on a bit with a lot of talk and little action. That's my only complaint because frankly I didn't want anyone to die.

This book took over the last week of my life. It exhausted me to read but I loved it. Thanks for the ride Stephenie.

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