A Translation Of Twilight Hate

This was on the Amazon.com page for THE SHORT SECOND LIFE OF BREE TANNER: AN ECLIPSE NOVELLA, the new Twilight book by Stephenie Meyer:

As if the first one wasn’t bad enough… This is the most ridiculous “vampire” series ever. The only thing Meyers’ vampires have in common with traditional vampires is the blood drinking and pale skin. She turned them into super heroes and super villains. And come on… they GLITTER in the sunlight! Even Stephen King called her a mediocre writer at best. And how many adjectives are really needed in a single sentence?! She caters to a bunch of teenagers, in essence teaching young girls that it’s okay to be in an abusive relationship with a much older guy… Just what I want my daughter to learn right? I will only allow my children to read them so they have a basis of comparison when it comes to great writing versus sub-par. I feel really bad for Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart. They’re great actors that got roped into garbage roles and will forever be remembered for this nonsensical, overrated, soft-core porn for teens. (source)

Half of you didn’t even read it all the way, because you’ve heard this same review 8,341 times already. Let me translate it for you:

Years ago, there was a general feeling that the ‘cool people’ were required to hate on Twilight. This was especially true for guys. I know this from experience with my friends in college — even I, at the beginning of my TwilightGuy.com writing journey, kept the Twilight books on the furthest end of my shelf so they were least-likely to be seen, and told roommates my trips to Los Angeles were for ‘some film premiere’.

But nowadays, it’s changed somehow. You still have the ultra-purist literary folks who hate on anything not penned by Cormac McCarthy (this is coming from a former English major who’s felt this sentiment from the inside), but mostly, it’s not the ‘in-thing’ to hate on Twilight anymore. Guys who openly put the series down are branded as basement-dwellers, loveless nerds, or old men with no connection to youth culture. Every girl I’ve met or dated for the past two and a half years has read Twilight in some degree or another (ranging from the regular reader to the insane, regularly-kissed-cutouts-of-Edward-Cullen fangirl, who terrified me). Guys: you are stupid not to at least pick this book up, because it’s now the Sparknotes to 85% of young girl’s hearts.

These people who pull up the same old arguments (“vampire’s can’t sparkle!” *falls into fits on the floor*) are starting to sound like an old broken horn. It’s like the bully calling a fat kid fat in the eleventh grade. He’s been told he’s fat for eleven years. Your insults are neither creative nor new. It’s not like he’s going to go away, so you’re just making yourself look like a sad tormentor desperately trying to fill a hole in your life.

I’m a fan, and I poke fun at these books just as much as everyone else. I spent almost two years poking fun at this series, and five million readers later I still do it. But it isn’t a matter of whether or not you LIKE the series, as it is a matter of NOT LOSING YOUR MIND ABOUT IT. Girls who cut their necks hoping Robert Pattinson will drink their blood: psychotic. Girls who buy copies of Twilight just to dance around and burn them on camera: also psychotic. They’re books. Have you nothing better to do?

Literary criticism is so very important to our business, because it makes us better. But the Twilight Saga has been all criticism’d-out. There’s been no stone unturned, so these little rants on Amazon are just the same broken-record babble. It’s like people who still roar Harry Potter was written by Beelzebub. Someone at least find a synonym for ‘Vampiresdontsparkle!!!‘.

I’ve read years worth of Twi-hate sites and emails whining about how Stephenie ruined vampires, and female characters, and stories for girls, and the literary business, and caused the oil spill. But how can someone ruin what was created by imagination anyway? There’s no such thing as vampires (THE SALTS! FETCH THE SALTS!). Vampires were created by legends, myths, pop culture and stories like Twilight. There is no patent on ‘vampire’. So anyone is free to change them into whatever they want, because there isn’t a real mold from which they were formed. I could write a book with vampires who wear pink fedoras and eat dirt, and no matter how loudly someone whined, the book police wouldn’t be able to stop me.

For those many of you (I know who you are) who read my site more because you enjoy my between-the-lines pokes at the Twilight Saga, I understand your pain. It’s the Jane Eyre of our generation, but it’s certainly no Jane Eyre, because it’s not meant to be Jane Eyre, and Stephenie would probably be the first to remind us of that. When Jane Eyre came out, was it the Odyssey of their generation (“The nerve of that Brontë: her heroine’s lover not being named Penelope! Everyone knows love interests must be named Penelope!”). But at some point, the whining has to stop. Your criticism is losing its power. When he keeps yelling the same insults over and over, nobody really listens to the bully anymore.

–Kaleb Nation

but you TL;DR’d before you got this far ;)

THE SHORT SECOND LIFE OF BREE TANNER: AN ECLIPSE NOVELLA” by Stephenie Meyer is in stores today.

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