Recently, my 12 year old daughter read the book. She, too, is crazy about Bella and Edward and all things Twilight. So, I finally broke down and read it. I'm going to apologize now, just once, to all you Twilight fans. I'm not impressed.
First of all, the subject matter doesn't appeal to me. I'm not a romance reader, and even less when it involves teenagers who profess their love on their first "date." All the mushy, gushy, lovey-dovey, ooey, gooey "I can't live without you" stuff just isn't my style.
Second, the vampires were created as such romantic characters, with movie-star qualities and extra-sensory abilities that I found to be over the top. Yes, vampires are unrealistic to begin with (aren't they?), but they weren't the dark, scary vampires who only come out at night, who drink human blood, who sleep in coffins and have sharp incisors - the stuff myths and legends are made of. I would have liked that better! Edward sparkles like diamonds in the sunlight? Give me a break!
*Spoiler Alert* I found the plot to be overly predictable and unbelievable. Edward's shift from disdain to undying love for Bella did not make sense, even when an attempt was made to explain it later in the story. He saves her from certain death. I saw that coming. Edward is absent during the "blood" lab. Big surprise. Bella leaves Forks, and her feeble attempt at explaining to Charlie why she was leaving was poorly done. Her arrival at the dance studio and her miraculous rescue was much-too-common. The attempt at explaining why she was back in Forks was not addressed to my expectation. And the prom? I expected some twists, turns, and surprises, but alas, there were none. Since this was Meyer's first published novel, her writing lacked substance and style as well. I just couldn't fall in love with the characters.
I didn't HATE the book, but I would only rate it mediocre, much to both my daughters' chagrin. I don't understand the Twilight madness. Fortunately for Stephenie Meyer, the general public disagrees with me. It's just my opinion!