Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Reason and Madness

Well -- before I begin my ramblings about my latest aberration from sanity, let me go into detail about my visit to Minnesota. It was beyond wonderful to see Caleb and Selah, two of the most supportive and friendly people in the world, again. They took me all over New Ulm (which is beautiful, by the way) and they also showed me Flandreau State Park. Seeing them was really fantastic. I wish so much that we were living in the same city.

After New Ulm, I saw Colleen in Mankato. It was equally good to see her, and to meet her friends at school. I am so blessed with the friends I have - thank you, Lord Jesus.

Okay, on to my insanity.

Anyone who knows me knows that I have a hard time liking what most people like. I don't like The Hunger Games, I don't like the "What Does the Fox Say" (stupid song,) and I never minded the superhero movies, but I don't really like those either. I also never liked Twilight. I know - shocker, right? Well, thanks to YouTube, I got the chance to watch some critiques of Twilight, and ... I don't know. Some of the stuff they were criticizing just didn't sit right with me. For example, the Screen Junkies Honest Trailers made some snide comments about the movies being pro-life. So I spent a while considering getting it, just to see it for myself.

I finally caved on Monday (Monday the 7 - the day before the Biggest Literary Disappointment arrived) and got the eBook. And here is my critique of Twilight:

Let's just say that Stephanie Meyer will never be in my Top 5 Authors list. Those spots are filled by Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, J.K. Rowling, Jim Butcher, and Brian Jacques. John Flanagan would be sixth and Alison Weir would be seventh, but based on Twilight alone, I can comfortably say that Stephanie Meyer would be ninth or tenth. Rick Riordan and Erin Hunter used to have her beat, before their series went all crazy. In any case, I didn't care much for the romantic aspect of Twilight, but I actually really enjoyed the rest of it. Meyer absolutely captured the feeling of the Olympic Peninsula in her description, and maybe it's just because I lived so long in western Washington, but I could really see the places where Bella was.

Bella and Edward themselves weren't so bad, although I have to agree with Edward that Bella was being ridiculously reckless. Also - I absolutely refuse to be part of Team This or Team That, but Jacob was absolutely fantastic. He was so adorable.

As for the plot, it was not exciting or thrilling. It was, however, a story of people being kind and doing what was right. The best way I can describe it is to use a quote from Gandalf in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey:
Saruman believes it is only great power that can hold evil in check, but that is not what I have found. I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love.
Twilight was no adventure story. It did not have thrilling, gripping action. Instead, it was just a story about someone trying to find her way and do the right thing in her small life. That is no bad thing. 
So, in short, I was pleasantly surprised by Twilight. It's not an action story - not even a little bit - but for a pleasant story of people doing good things, it was one of the better books I've read. I still don't understand the hordes of screaming fan girls, but I think the harsh blasting some people give it is totally undeserved. I would recommend this book to girls from middle school and up.

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