[emphasis mine]Alcyone wrote:[snip]In MS he doesn't sound in love; he just sounds obsessed. Creepily so. When he calls it love, it sounds more like a euphemism. There's just something about it that "love" I don't believe, as if it's contrived rather than flowing naturally. Not to mention Edward is narrating and I don't believe him to be any more a reliable narrator than Bella.
Ok, see, I tried to stay away . . .
Here's my thing: how Edward "sounds" to one person does not an argument make. It's a perception -- a perfectly, brilliantly valid perception, albeit one I happen to disagree with. I've been perusing and I can't find a single snippit of "evidence" proffered to back up that perception and I suspect I never will because, ultimately, it all boils down to a personal interpretation. And that can never be successfully argued.
What I've seen in this discussion thread is a lot of suggestion about what people *personally* find appropriate in behavioral matters of love. And though that is all we can ever use to contextualize our readings, it's really terribly unfair to characters who have their own parameters. The only thing that can be suggested as evidential regarding this perception is what the person who invented it meant to convey. SM has, as far as I know, repeatedly insisted that Edward truly loved Bella well before New Moon. Whether or not that comes across to each and every one of us is a combination of personal mores and authorial insufficiency. If she's telling us what she meant to convey, but some aren't "getting" that, then it's either a personal thing or it's relative artistic failure.
Y'all can decide which. But that, too, is something that'll never be successfully argued.
And while I'm at it . . . I'm not sure where I stand on the position of; "I know what she (SM) said, but that's not what I believe." We're all given books to do with what we will, but I don't know how far I, personally, can stand up and say that I disagree with the intent of the person who invented the story. I can certainly say, where applicable, that I disagree with the expression of it, or the idea of it, but I don't think I'd have a reasonable leg to stand on if I were to effectively tell the author that she were . . . wrong.