Rereading Twilight: Chapters 1-3

Rereading Twilight: Chapters 1-3

Saleena Nival

Once upon a dark, dark time there lived a sixth grade Saleena whose heart stammered at the thought of dreamy Edward Cullen. Lost in the shadows of twilight, she read and reread the books more than eight times, watched and rewatched the movies more than ten, and dreamt of marrying and remarrying Robert Pattinson, despite their twelve year age difference. Age is, after all, but a number.
Sixth grade Saleena’s bedroom walls were ridden with movie posters and she proudly titled herself as a Twi-Hard. Anyone who disliked her obsession just “didn’t understand” and the young girl had no shame.
Alas dear readers, this tale has a happy ending…or does it?
Sixth grade Saleena soon grew to be seventh grade Saleena and then eighth grade Saleena, and as the years passed by, the books were opened less and less and eventually Pattinson’s not-so-dreamy face disappeared from her walls one by one.
Finally, Freshman Saleena opened the first book and couldn’t read past the first few pages without an overwhelming urge to projectile vomit. She had seen the light; she was cured of the blindness Edward’s sparkling skin had caused.
However, all good things must end, and so does this hiatus of the Twilight Saga.
 
Before
The thought of rereading Twilight jarred my spirit. However I went into it like a little kid in a haunted house: hiding behind my fingertips but unable to look away.
I noticed a lot of things when I dug out my old copy of “Twilight” from the bottom of a cardboard box. The first: the book is very worn out. This is indicative of cringeworthy Twi-Hard days, no doubt. The Second: the inside front cover.

Wow, what a beauty. Not only are the pages the color of a dried coffee stain, but the cover is also hanging halfway off the book. The additional proclamation of possession on the inside cover is a nice touch. Good job, sixth grade Saleena, and nice penmanship.

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I actually cringed when I flipped to this page. Surprisingly, 12 is still my lucky number, however I presently treat books with more respect than this.

 The last of the observations was in the text, as seen in the picture to the right.
After this, apprehension stirred in my stomach. What was I getting myself into? I stopped reading these books for a reason, and that reason is that I do not enjoy self-torture. Despite this, I still began to read.
 
Summary Chapters 1-3
The book starts off with a negative three sentence preface that foreshadows Bella Swan’s death at the hands of a “hunter.” According to her descriptions, her soon-to-be murderer is a pretty friendly guy. She also seems very accepting of her death sentence, so I am pretty excited to revisit this part.
The first chapter, “First Sight,” sort of made me want stab my eyes out with a dull butter knife. Bella leaves her beloved city of Phoenix, Arizona to live with her simple father, Charlie (she respectfully calls him by his first name behind his back) in Forks, Washington. She only ever spent time in Forks during the summer up until she turned 14 when she “put her foot down.” Since her mother remarried, Bella took it upon herself to move in with her Dad. Despite this being her own decision, she makes it very clear that she will be extremely miserable with her dad. He seems like a pretty nice guy and even bought her a truck as a welcoming gift, but hey, not everyone is appreciative.
Anyway, like the mature adult she is, she cries herself to sleep and wakes up to her first day of school. A small town celebrity–Charlie is the Chief of Police– and something new to look at, Bella quickly gains at least fifty male fans before lunch time.
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This is the teaser at the back of the book. Honestly, Bella’s second point is unnecessary because of her first point; of course he thirsts for your blood, Bella. He’s a vampire!

During lunch, she sees a table of five sun-deprived models: Edward, Emmett, and Alice Cullen and Rosalie and Jasper Hale. The town gossip, Jessica, tells her how weird they are and how they were adopted by Dr. Carlisle Cullen and his wife (unnamed) who are in their late twenties. One of the hottest of the bunch, Edward, looks at Bella a few times and then the lunch period ends.
Bella then makes her way to Biology, where she meets the alluring Edward who automatically despises her, although they exchange no words. At the end of the day, she also encounters him trying to change Biology periods.
The next chapter, “Open Book,” comes around and describes a boring few weeks, absent of the mysterious Edward. Bella brags that she has already read all the books on the English list and found a quiz on Wuthering Heights easy, which is super exciting to read. Finally, towards the middle of the chapter, Bella expresses her distaste for snow and everything else that is happy in the world. Edward also makes an appearance after a month absent from school (which no one but Bella seems to notice…is Edward a figment of her imagination? Now that would be a plot twist).
Biology comes and the class is doing a lab that superstar Bella has already done. Slightly bi-polar, Edward decides he no longer hates Bella and sparks conversation, in which she tells him her entire life story. She explains that she moved to Forks because she is an adult who makes adult decisions and then whines about it nonstop. Somehow, this appeals to hottie. She also notices how his eye color has changed, but Edward denies everything.
Bella nearly dies in the third chapter because she finds snow chains so exceptionally emotional that she does not notice a large van skidding toward her, but Edward (who she sees standing at his car at least fifty feet away from her) saves her life. She is utterly confused because it seemed like he stopped the out-of-control van with his hands, shoulders, knees and toes, but he insists that he was standing right beside her and pulled her out of the way. Stubborn as a bull, Bella argues with him throughout the entire chapter.
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Twilight’s cover. I actually like this design; it is simple, yet appealing. Before the preface, Meyer includes a quote from Genesis 2:17, “But of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. thou shalt not eat of it: for in the day that thou eatest thereof though shalt surely die.” I do not particularly remember the book relating to this quote, but maybe I will connect the dots.

Commentary
To be honest, the only chapter I truly despised was the very first one (and the preface).
In “First Sight,” Bella is as gray and depressing as the cloudy sky. Even though she has made it blaringly clear she has made the decision to move on her own accord, she never stops complaining about it and comes off as a bratty child.
The first impression she gives is that she is a half-glass-empty type of girl. Even when Charlie buys her a truck that she absolutely loves, she says “Now my horrific day tomorrow would be just that much less dreadful.” Wow. 
This unpleasant characteristic is actually not that unique and even less interesting. The thing that is most annoying is her hypocrisy. She claims she is a mature adult, yet she doesn’t attempt to see the bright side of things and pouts and whines about the entire situation that she put herself in. She claims she is being selfless, yet everything she says is, “poor me; I hate everything; I’m so miserable; I can’t wait to leave this town; I’m ugly; my life sucks.” It is not these thoughts that are irritating, but rather her denial that she is a typical teenage girl who has typical teenage problems. I can see how she appeals to tween girls.
The story began to pick up when the Cullens were introduced. When Bella first sees them, she says they are sitting as far from her table as humanly possible, yet she describes all of them in perfect detail. I didn’t realize she was already a vampire with perfect vision; when did that happen?
Edward is quite pleasant in the second chapter, albeit too nosy. He actually sounds flirty, which confuses me because he is talking to the dullest person in the world, but if he’s into that, who am I to judge? Bella’s reaction to him–confusion, attraction, irritation–is somewhat normal. If I were in her shoes, I’d probably act the same way.
Gee, thanks Emily.

In the third chapter, “Phenomenon,” Edward is hot and cold. After he saves her, she obviously sees that he did some pretty humanly impossible stuff and when she confronts him, he acts like she spit in his cake. Being rude is obviously not going to get anywhere and it will only make her want to know your secrets more. Not very smart, Edward. I’m not mad; I’m just disappointed.
Overall, I thought it would be worse, and I am not dreading the next three chapters. That must mean something, right?
 
Read the next few chapters here!