Breaking Dawn: From the eyes of a 30 something year old dad

breaking_dawn_cover_by_tranquilitysurreilFinally got to read Breaking Dawn. Here’s my three sentence review.

Starts slow. Waxes triumphant. Ends with a fizzle (kind of).

Yep. That’s about it. There are times in the book when I thought: This is the best book I have ever read. There are others when I thought, “That’s it?”

It doesn’t take anything away from what the book series really is, though…one of the most haunting yet addicting stories ever written.  As I was finishing the book, I started asking myself, what is it about this book, written for a supposed teenage girl audience, that enraptures a 30 something year old dad?

And when it all comes down to it, for me, I think it’s the contradictions of love.  Every guy wants that Bella, that girl who completes us, and yet, we’re vampires (or wolves) underneath the skin, struggling with the fight inside of us to no to ruin what we have. We’re constantly in a fight against who we are and who we want to be. When the Indie Girl and I got married, we used to laugh at people who were engaged who thought that being married would be like one long date.  Yeah, life happens, it gets complicated, and can be frustrating. But, I think that Twilight shows a life obtainable…a relationship that can really be happy. One that I am constantly working towards, despite the “monster” I can be.

Then again…it could just be that the idea of being a super strong vampire who lives forever and pretty much has all the money he could ever want is just REALLY cool. So, who knows.

Two More Notes before I close this (Spoilers):

1. At some point when you’re reading this book, and you read about the vivid romantic exploits  of a newly married couple on their honeymoon, you start wondering…”Wait, how many 12 year old girls did I see in line to buy this book in August, again?”  Yeah, the themes are too mature for pre-teen girls, I think. Book one was very easily pre-teen chick lit. But book 4? definitely aged at least 10 years. Which brought up another question in my mind: As an author, at what point do you decide to write for your audience and write in spite of your audience?

2. ***SPOILER**** I have to say that I was disappointed in the ending. I expected a fight. I really thought we’d see the Volturri taken down, and, a la another very popular book series, we’d see at least a few characters sacrificed. But in the end, it just fizzles. No one dies. The Cullens and the Volturri make amends and part their separate ways. At one point, I started thinking that Edward was the tragic character…that in the end, Bella would die, and he would be left with  Renesme as the memory of a love that was perfect…a love that could never be.

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Twilight Music

twilight_200806041504Anyone who has read the Twilight Book series by Stephenie Meyer knows that a major part of each book is the soundtracks Stephenie listens to while writing (Muse usually gets top billing). I have to admit, it’s been one of the draws of the books because the power of the music is written into each agonizing experience and woven into the haunting tapestries of the book series. If you’re like me, you may have been anticipating the soundtrack as much, if not more, than you anticipated the movie. Well, since I’m planning on taking the Indie Girl to see the movie for her birthday this week, I thought I’d get into the Twilight mood and listen to the soundtrack….and after a first glimpse, I have to admit, it’s not as powerful or even “twilight-worthy” as I was expecting.

First of all, letting Perry Farrell headline any soundtrack is probably a bad idea. But at least that song has the same feel of the songs listed in the books. But the rest of the CD isn’t all that spectacular, and I’m disappointed. It sounds more power punk than haunting. And where it diverges, it’s odd. Robert “Edward Cullen” Pattinson is trying to break into music now? And I never imagined Iron and Wine a goth-type outfit.

The only Muse appearance is Supermassive Blackhole, which isn’t as powerful as most of their toons. Come on guys, can’t you write a new song for the girl who has single-handedly converted a whole new market of raving pre-teen girls to the Muse nation? (Ok, maybe I answered my own question there)

I will admit, the high point is The Black Ghosts’ “Full Moon”. Fantastic piece.

But other pieces by Linkin Park, Mutemath, and Collective Soul (really, they’re still around?!) are more of the same, and don’t do anything for me.  I also don’t think Paramore is the greatest fit here, but the music isn’t that bad.

I wonder what Stephenie thinks about this selection?

BTW…reviews on Breaking Dawn (yes, finally) and the Twilight Movie are coming soon.

Early Review of Breaking Dawn

So apparently, a lot of people are finding me through Google looking for early reviews of Breaking Dawn, the 4th installment in Stephenie Meyer’s wildly popular vampire novels.

Being a fan…I’m flattered you’re coming here. But, since I don’t have any inside-access to the publisher or to Stephenie’s publicist, and thus, do not get an early review copy…all I can give for an early review is this:

“I’m sure it’s going to be drop dead fantastic.”

And yes, you can quote me on that….and then if you happen to meet a publicist for Stephenie, tell them to send me a book…and I can give a real review.

Oh…and if you don’t like my vague and disappointing “review”…here’s a “just as disappointingly-vague” review of the book by Stephenie Meyer herself:

Amazon Sucks

Weeks ago, I pre-ordered the new Death Cab for Cutie CD “Narrow Stairs” through Amazon so I could review it early on this site. Trying to get the free shipping, I also pre-ordered Cold Play’s Viva la Vida and the next book in the Stephenie Meyer “Twilight” series, Breaking Dawn. In spite of all my efforts to the contrary, Amazon is intent on sending me everything when the Meyer book comes out (in August).

So, rather than getting a nice review of Ben Gibbard’s new stuff…I get to review Amazon’s service for pre-ordering. So here you go:

It Sucks.

Yes, you can quote me. Even though I specifically requested the contrary, they did what was best for them, and went ahead and labeled my purchases to be shipped all together. So there you have it. If you want to pre-order something, AND you were hoping to get it before the rest of the Western Hemisphere got it so that you’d have at least the jump on a few people for a review…don’t go through Amazon.