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Guilty Pleasure

[Longhorn Review] Guilty Pleasure

Material Type: All, Books — Tags: New Moon. Meyers, Vampires, Werewolves — Posted on December 9, 2010, 3:30 pm

By: Stephenie Meyer

New Moon by Stephenie Meyers is the sequel to her bestseller Twilight. New Moon
is the continuing story of Bella and Edward as they face new challenges to their
relationships. A fantasy novel, the book deals with the disconnect between the human
life, Bella, and that of vampires, the world in which Edward exists. An especially
close encounter at her birthday party involving one of his family members brings the
real dangers of their relationship to light. As Edward leaves Bella behind to keep
her from the dangers she encounters as his girlfriend, Bella struggles with the loss
of her love and the subsequent darkness into which she is plunged hence the symbolic
title New Moon, the darkest phase of the lunar cycle. After months of depression and
what feels like months of reading, Bella’s horizons brighten when she rekindles her
acquaintance with an old family friend, a young member of the Quileute tribe named
Jacob Black. As Bella and Jacob’s friendship grows deeper, Bella seems to come out
of her funk, but she also clings to the memory of Edward by throwing herself head
first into dangerous situations that cause his apparition to appear discouraging her
from putting herself at risk. Although her friendship with Jacob helps her through
her break up, a secret Jacob keeps threatening to tear them apart. Despite her
growing attachment to Jacob, when Edward’s life is at risk because one of her
exploits leaves him thinking she is dead Bella rushes to Italy to keep him from a
suicide mission.

New Moon is a fantasy novel that spins a tale of vampires and
werewolves with the human emotions of love, passion, and longing. Themes of
immortality and the blurry lines of the conflict between right and wrong propel the
plot of the story as the characters struggle through the difficulties of family,
friends, and significant others. The depth of the relationships and their
definitions and boundaries are a major conflict throughout the novel as well as well
as the cause for much of the action. New Moon uses allusions to classic literature,
especially drawing from the tragedy of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet and Wuthering
Heights, the classic stories of star-crossed lovers faced with challenges, as Bella
and Edward are similarly encountering. The complex nuances of the immortal world
present the lovers with problems that could end in tragedy, and the battle to
achieve happily ever after, or even just safety, drives the plot of the novel
through the actions of the characters. Meyer’s prose leaves something to be desired,
and lines such as “They have a name for someone who smells the way Bella does to me.
They call her my singer—because her blood sings for me”(Meyer, 490) feel sappily
sentimental, but her expert characterization, especially in the case of Bella and
Edward, makes the novel engrossing and worth reading. The extensive cast of
characters creates an intricate plot that keeps the novel diverse and surprising,
although it is not intricate or complex. Bella’s emotionally driven actions create a
sense of the depth of the characters’ love for each other which creates interest.
This book falls under many genres making it universally appealing as it is romantic,
a buddy story, and the classic battle of good versus evil in a complex world where
everything seems to be shades of gray. New Moon is well classified as a Young Adult
Novel, and while it is a decidedly easy read, it is a guilty pleasure that gives
back with its uplifting message that true love really can conquer all, both mortal
and immortal.

Meyer, Stephenie. New Moon. N.p.: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, 2006. Print.

Reviewer: Jessica Glosson

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Jacob gets Eclipse'd

[Longhorn Review] Jacob gets Eclipse'd

Material Type: All, Books — Tags: Eclipse. Vampire, Jacob, Meyer, Stephenie, Twilight, Werewolves — Posted on December 9, 2010, 3:31 pm

By: Stephenie Meyer

The Twilight Saga: Eclipse was released this past summer in theaters. The film is
based on Stephenie Meyer’s 2007 novel, Eclipse, and it picks up from the previous
book, New Moon. Immediately, the first scene portrays Victoria in the process of
creating her newborn army of vampires. Through the creation of an army, Victoria is
attempting to exact revenge against Edward, the Cullen vampire who killed her
eternal mate. However, Victoria specifically targets Bella instead because by
killing Edward’s love, she may truly achieve the vengeance she had been desperately
craving.

On the other hand, the love story continues with Edward and Bella who are
very much in love. Bella is in the process of contemplating about becoming a vampire
and finally marrying Edward but Jacob will not allow it. Jacob attempts to interfere
with Edward and Bella’s relationship due to his own feelings for Bella that started
in New Moon. He claims that Bella is making a mistake and that she would not have to
change for his love, as opposed to becoming a vampire for all eternity. Upon
discovering Jacob’s true intentions, Edward then becomes enraged and creates a
situation where Bella begins to distrust him. She then considers Jacob’s reasons to
be with him and stay human.

Eventually, the love story becomes intertwined with the
upcoming war and both werewolves and Cullen vampires reluctantly join forces to
protect Bella and defeat Victoria. The overwhelmingly powerful newborn vampires, led
by Victoria, are a force to be reckoned with but Jacob and Edward continue to focus
on the fight for Bella’s love. As both clans of vampires and werewolves prepare for
the imminent battle, Bella is battling her own mixed-feelings for Jacob and Edward.
Bella knows Victoria is coming for her and yet she does not dismiss Jacob’s advances
which creates a dramatic and competitive atmosphere, in the midst of battle.
However, when Victoria and her army finally arrive, Edward and Jacob’s collective
efforts successfully protect Bella and defeat Victoria and her army. In the battle,
Jacob suffers mortal injuries and in spite of this, Bella’s concern for Jacob’s
injuries resumes a platonic role. Edward wins Bella’s love, again.

Reviewer: David Ko

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The Twilight Saga: New Moon

[Longhorn Review] The Twilight Saga: New Moon

Material Type: All, Books — Tags: Fantasy, Motorcycles, New Moon, Twilight, Vampires, Werewolves — Posted on May 2, 2011, 3:39 pm

By: Chris Weitz

New Moon, the second movie of the series, continues the story of a relationship
between a human girl in high school, Bella Swan, and her vampire lover, Edward
Cullen. The movie begins with Edward leaving Bella behind due to a series of events
that causes Edward to believe staying with Bella would be harmful to her. Bella goes
on to suffer from a state of depression until she begins to hang out with her friend
Jacob Black. We later find out that Jacob, a werewolf, hates vampires and vice
versa. Through a series of misunderstandings, Edward believes that Bella has killed
herself and he attempts to do the same. These events lead to Bella having to try and
save Edward before it’s too late.

The basis of New Moon follows the interactions
between Bella and Jacob since Edward leaves at the beginning of the movie and does
not return until near the end. This differs from the first movie, where the audience
focuses on the interactions between Bella and Edward. Nancy Gibbs, the author of a
review of New Moon for Time Magazine, states how “the worst thing about New Moon the
book is the best thing about New Moon the movie” (para 3), referring to the focus on
Jacob rather than Edward.

Gibbs continues to go on to give her take on Edward,
describing his appearance as “pale passion and tortured restraint [with]… eyebrows,
like muskrats determined to mate, [hunched] together in the middle of his sunken
face, [and] the few times he smiles, it looks as if it hurts” (para 3). Gibbs
contrasts Edward by describing Jacob as “warm, tawny, genial and [being] able to get
Kristen Stewart's shrink-wrapped Bella to stretch out and relax a little onscreen”
(para 4).

Gibbs has a pretty strong sense of ethos, being a writer for Time
Magazine, but it takes a blow based on her descriptions of the main characters.
These descriptions of the two love interests of the protagonist Bella are somewhat
exaggerated but justifiable based on what we see on screen. Although justifiable,
clearly Gibbs had an extreme bias towards Jacob, which makes her review less
credible to the die hard Edward fans. The Twilight series has created a “Team Jacob”
and “Team Edward” fan base, and the harsh criticism of Edward’s character does not
favor well among “Team Edward” fans.

The movie’s overall appeal targets teenage
females with the series focusing on the love between a girl and two males and her
struggle to decide who to be with. Although the producer targets females as the
primary audience of the film, this does not mean that males cannot enjoy the movie
as well. New Moon incorporates action and fight scenes and moves along at a good
pace. The movie has plenty pathos appeals on the sides of romance and action.

Gibbs, Nancy. "New Moon Review: Team Jacob Ascending." Rev. of New Moon, by Chris Weitz.
Time. N.p., 19 Nov. 2009. Web. 20 Apr. 2011. .

Reviewer: Dan An

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