Calling All Twihards – This One’s for You
You read that right. It’s time to pull your Robert Pattinson poster out of retirement and tape it back on the wall. “Twilight” is back! After 15 years since the novel’s initial release, author Stephenie Meyer released “Midnight Sun” on August 4 of this year. Note that the newest book is not a continuation of Edward and Bella’s love story but is instead a recount of the exact same story. While the first book was solely in the perspective of Bella, the newest addition to the saga shows the plot and it’s progression through the eyes of Edward Cullen.
“Midnight Sun” is 658 pages of [kind of] brand new “Twilight” content. Just as the original series was, this novel was published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers. It has been number one on the Amazon Charts, for most sold fiction, for nine weeks.
The novel is the sixth published work in the “Twilight” world, though the first four books are the main installments in the series. “Twilight” released in 2005 and its three sequels released annually until the series conclusion in 2008. Meyer released an addition to the series in the form of a novella, “The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner,” in 2010. A different version of the original novel was released in 2015, in celebration of the ten-year anniversary of “Twilight’s” initial release, titled “Life and Death.”
Now, after six full novels and five feature films, the plot and characters are still being fleshed out.
If you somehow missed the “Twilight” craze of the mid-2000’s, the plot is fairly easy to follow. The story revolves around two main characters, Edward and Bella. Edward is a vampire, but he prides himself on his feeding habits. He, and his entire vampire family, choose not to drink the blood of humans. After decades of practice, he’s restrained enough to go to high school without trouble. His willpower is tested through the arrival of a new classmate. Edward is instantly intrigued by the new girl, Bella, but has a hard time dealing with his immortality. Together, they have to figure out how a vampire and a human can have a relationship when the possibility of killing her regularly crosses his mind.
There’s something to be said for the author’s ability to completely recycle a story, while also adding so much complexity and depth to the characters. That being said, the deeper look into so many of our favorite citizens of Forks was surprising, but desperately needed. Edward’s abilities to see into people’s minds allowed for the author to create relevant character dynamics, without even being in the perspective of said character. While we could see physical interactions in “Twilight,” “Midnight Sun” allows the reader to hear characters’ true thoughts, uncensored. This added layer of complexity built on the once-flat roles throughout the books. Edward’s version of the tale proved to be worthy purely for the sake of the side characters. Fan favorites, like Rosalie and Jasper, were finally further fleshed out into more well-rounded characters.
For fans, or those familiar, a deep set feeling of familiarity and comfort have really aided in the setting of this book. Instead of learning about brand new characters and a new plot, this story is one that has already been told. Since the Twilight Saga made its sensational debut, it was a well-known and well-loved story. The series and the movie franchise ended years ago, so the hype and love for this story has dwindled. Being brought back to this world after so long without it, the book becomes a nostalgic wonderland for those who were fans a decade ago.
One thing people should be aware of is that this book has an intended audience. If you’re not that targeted audience, this newest addition probably won’t be worth it for you. This book is for people who will appreciate the newest layers of complexity to well-known characters and plots. That being said, this book cannot and should not stand on its own. This should be thought of as a companion to the original novel, not a substitute.
If you were one of the kids that went to the midnight movie premieres, had “Team Edward” written on everything, or held a deep desire for an old, orange beater truck, this book would probably bring you a lot of joy. “Midnight Sun” is a dream for those who have been seeking unanswered questions from the original 2005 book, understanding of how the relationship accelerated so quickly, more in depth Cullen family dynamics, and sweet moments from Edward’s point of view. Though this book may not challenge anyone academically, or make anyone think critically, it was an entertaining world to be immersed in after so long. This installment was truly one to remember.
Stephenie Meyer graduated with a degree in English, from Brigham Young University in 1997. Outside of the “Twilight” universe, Meyer has written two adult novels. There are rumors she will continue writing subsequent “Twilight” books.