Monday, February 9, 2009

Watch your neck! Twilight's vampires are not your typical blood-suckers.

Have you jumped aboard the Twilight train? I know that this story about a vampire in love with a mortal has been beaten to death, chewed and spit out, so I'm going to take a fresh and different perspective that hopefully even non-readers will enjoy. So bare with me, faithful reader, and stick your neck wayyyyy out in order to be bitten by the vampire bug!

Stephenie Meyer, the author of the Twilight Series, depicts vampires in a less stereotypical and dramatic form than what centuries of tales have taught us to believe. The notion of the vampire, those mythical nocturnal beings that thirst for mortal blood, has been around for as long as death has been knocking on our doors. Fear of the unknown and also of the unexplainable has been a common issue for centuries. I mean, our ancestors burnt so-called witches in fear that they would put evil spells on us or brainwash common-folk into devil worship. Was any of this true? Hmmm...probably not, but the fear that it COULD be true is what scares us. I mean, anything is possible, especially things we cannot explain. Twilight's vampires, the Cullen family, are anything but fearful. The Cullen's are able to work and go to school in daylight, and although they live in a city where rain is definitely more common than sunshine, they are still walking among the living. How, you might ask, are they able to do this without piercing every mortal neck in sight? Teaching themselves to resist human blood, all Cullen family members are vegetarians....they feast on only animal blood.

The most common characteristics of a vampire are wide-spread and I'm sure you can clearly visualize one...jet black hair, translucent skin, and pearly whites (with a sharp, glossy finish, of course!). You've learned this common form of the vampire as a child, especially around October 31st. Old folklore tales describe vampires as the "non-dead", but the Cullen family are anything but corpse-looking. All members are described as being beautiful, with creamy white skin and delicate facial features. They walk with grace and are soft-spoken. I'd say they're just plain old perfection...minus the whole blood-sucking thing, but I'm willing to overlook that.

Stephenie Meyer allows her talented mind to run wild in this first book of four in the series. Looking at the bigger picture, this book is really about impossible love between a vampire and a teenager. Sounds corny, right? I thought so too, until I started reading. This book has a way of sucking you in (haha, get it?) and leaves you begging for more at the end. I think the reason why this story holds so much power is because it plays on our notions of fear. Could vampires really be living amongst us? Highly unlikely, but definitely not impossible.
I am currently in the process of reading the second book, New Moon, so stick around for a post about that one too!

Mortals beware...Happy Reading!
Photos courtesy of

1 comment:

  1. I agree that while Stephenie Meyer is an amateur writer, she really has a way of making you invest in the characters. Can't wait for the New Moon post because I liked that one a lot better.