Friday, February 13, 2009

"New Moon" by Stephenie Meyer

Just finished reading "New Moon"... the second book from Stephenie Meyer's four-part "Twilight" series.

The book picks up where "Twilight" left off with Bella (human) dating Edward (vampire). From Stephenie Meyer's official website, here's a key passage from the first chapter...

"Shoot," I muttered when the paper sliced my finger; I pulled it out to examine the damage. A single drop of blood oozed from the tiny cut.

It all happened very quickly then.

Edward threw himself at me, flinging me back across the table...

I tumbled down to the floor by the piano, with my arms thrown out instinctively to catch my fall, into the jagged shards of glass. I felt the searing, stinging pain that ran from my wrist to the crease inside my elbow.

Dazed and disoriented, I looked up from the bright red blood pulsing out of my arm—into the fevered eyes of the six suddenly ravenous vampires.

So... an intriguing beginning to the book for all who enjoyed part one of the series (myself included), but as a whole it seemed like the story fell short.

There was definitely some interesting development of characters (notably Jacob Black, Bella's friend) and storylines, but sometimes things seemed to get a bit muddled. The consequence of this for me was either hard to follow action or abrupt drops in story threads.

The other criticism I would have is that the writing got weepy (lots of "can't live if living is without you") and felt like it should be set to a Taylor Swift high-school ballad. That said, the books aren't really written for my demographic so I shouldn't quibble here.

All of this said, I did really enjoy book one of the series (particularly the first half) and am terribly impressed by a writer who came out of nowhere with a great first book (story of that here) as well as someone who gets a lot of people reading (i.e. J.K. Rowling). "New Moon" as a book probably isn't the greatest piece of writing ever done (or even the greatest Stephenie Meyer writing), but does have some interesting development to Bella's story as part of the series.

If someone liked "Twilight" and wants to continue the saga, it's certainly not a bad use of time to read "New Moon" as a prelude to "Eclipse" and then the conclusion book... "Breaking Dawn".