X Marks the Pedwalk
Book Review

Twilight book review plus a Vampire Mix Tape

by Ashley Schimenti and Jennifer Link

Stephanie Meyer has resurrected the vampire genre with her novel Twilight, not since Louis and Lestat have I been so drawn to the undead.  Meyer has crafted a vampire romance capable of reaching the masses and holding their interest.

Bella Swan and Edward Cullen are not your average teenage couple, Bella is accident prone and Edward is torn between his urges to kill Bella or save her.  Oddly enough Bella doesn’t care; she would rather die than be without Edward.

Edward is not the only vampire living in Forks; he is part of a family of vampires who live an alternative lifestyle.  When another vampire becomes determined to taste Bella’s blood, it is up to Edward and the other Cullens to save her.

Edward Cullen fits the classic image of a vampire, he is desirable and mysterious.  His character is one that the ladies are going to fall in love with and I must admit I found myself daydreaming about the perfect Edward Cullen.  Bella is also a very likable character; she truly is just a normal everyday girl.  She isn’t the most beautiful or the most popular, so I think many girls can relate to her as they read the story.

The action in the story is wonderfully intertwined with the romance, which makes this novel enjoyable for both genders.  Meyer does an excellent job of developing the characters and the plot to the point you almost think this could really happen.  I also enjoyed her spin on the vampire story, a lot of the basics are there, but she develops a new explanation as to why vampires cannot go in the sun (their skin sparkles).

Meyer’s writing is strong; her use of dialogue really helps with the flow of the story.  She actually made me feel like I was back in high school with Bella and Edward.  I also enjoyed her descriptions, she brought the small town of Forks to life, which is actually a real town in Washington and it does have the reputation of having the most rainfall.  It’s very apparent that Meyer did her research for the novel and in turn helped bring this story to life.

Once you have read the book, I would head to the theater to see the much anticipated Twilight movie.  It was released in theaters on November 21, 2008.  There has been much speculation about the movie and if it is able to live up to the book.  The movie stars Robert Pattinson as Edward and Kristen Stewart as Bella.

I would strongly recommend Twilight, you may be intimidated by the size of the book, but once you start reading, you won’t be able to put it down.  I was so drawn to the book; I completed it in a day.  Twilight leaves you wanting more and luckily the saga continues in the next book New Moon.

if you like the Vampires you might like…
the Vampire Hunter D series – by Hideyuki Kikuchi
The Vampire Hunter D series of novels has been published in English (originally in Japanese) by DH Press (prose division of Dark Horse Comics) and I would recommend them to anyone who enjoys books, films, etc. about vampires.  D is a half vampire half human vampire hunter in a futuristic world where vampires came into power and then crashed the whole world into a new dark age.  One reason I enjoyed Twilight was because I thought it was rather unique for a vampire story.  The interpretation of vampires in the Twilight series and the background stories I found to be very interesting and I the felt same about the Vampire Hunter D novels.

if you like the Lovestory you might like…
the Paradise Kiss series – by Ai Yazawa
Paradise Kiss is both a manga and anime.  I would recommend the anime over the manga if you are not a fan of this sort of thing, because the anime is more accessible.  Paradise Kiss is about a group of high school fashion students preparing for their graduation fashion show.  The two main characters Yukari (also known as “Caroline”) and George are similar in personality to Bella and Edward.  But even more so, the dynamic of the lovestory in Twilight is extremely similar to the dynamic between Caroline and George.  And if you developed a little crush on Edward, you’ll defiantly develop a little animated character crush on George.

if you like the Vampire Lovestory you might like…
the Sookie Stackhouse series – by Charlaine Harris
The Sookie Stackhouse series follows the life of a young waitress (Sookie) in Bon Temps, Louisiana.  Vampires have just revealed their existence to the rest of the world and are struggling with being accepted.  Sookie falls in love with a vampire named Bill Compton, due to their relationship Sookie is thrown into a world she just found out existed.  Sookie is not all she seems either, she is able to hear people’s thoughts and due to this it has created a lot of problems for her.  She is seen as an outcast in her small town. Throughout the series Sookie is introduced to werewolves, witches, faeries, and shape-shifters.  The introduction of the new species helps keep the storylines fresh and ever-changing.  Sookie also enjoys the company of the different beings, because for some reason she cannot hear their thoughts, which gives her some much needed peace and quiet.  The first book in the series is Dead Until Dark.  Harris’s novels have also been used to create a television show called True Blood which is on HBO.

Vampire Mix Tape
She Wants Revenge – Tear You Apart
Makes a good soundtrack if you want to amp the book out of the PG-13 realm.  When the chorus is taken literally, it might very accurately describe how Edward may have felt when he first meets Bella, and when taken perhaps more how it was intended, how Bella felt toward Edward.  Plus it has that lovely teenage romance tone to it.
Concrete Blonde – Bloodletting (the Vampire Song)
The song is called the Vampire Song, that should be enough.  Gets you in the vampire mood.  Although Northwestern US makes a great unexpected setting for a vampire story, this song has a more Anne Rice location.
Bauhaus – Bela Lugosi’s Dead
Ah yes, Bela Lugosi, the original vampire.  The vampire loves human story is not so new, let’s not forget Dracula and Mina.  And of coarse Mr. Lugosi was the first thing that popped into my head read when I first read the name Bella Swan.
The Sisters of Mercy – Cry Little Sister
The classic vampire soundtrack song, the theme song to The Lost Boys did a better job accompanying it’s movie than the odd soundtrack chosen for the Twilight movie.

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