The main problem with Twilight isn't its sparkly vampires who lack all traditional weaknesses, or even its anti-feminist sensibility. When you get right down to it, the trouble is that the writing is terrible, filled with cliche phrases ("smoldering eyes"), repeated words (294 "eyes" in 498 pages) and the reductive characterization of its main characters (Bella is clumsy, and I guess she likes books. Or something).
On a recent car-trip with my husband and the writer Chip Cheek, we mulled over the question: What if great literary writers of the last 200 years had penned Twilight instead?
"Call me Bella." A tome about the length of the original series investigates Bella's monomanical search for the vampire who stole her virginity. There's an entire chapter devoted to describing the devastating whiteness of Edward's skin, and several on the physiognomy of vampires, starting with their skeletal structure outward.
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