smitten_by_twilight wrote:No one has mentioned the pregnancy and birth yet! I had a dual reaction to this. First, as a woman, I find it a little trite to be reading about a pregnancy resulting from a honeymoon night, and especially one so difficult and bloody and life-threatening ... I mean, that's been done to death, people. Some people do have easy pregnancies and deliveries ... lots, or the species would have died off. However, it is pretty logical that a hybrid pregnancy would be physically challenging. It was "realistically" done, with the frequent urination and the borrowed sweatshirt and everything.
Sorry, I meant to return here to write some more in response to your other questions but I've been so busy recently.
Does it [our gender] impact our perceptions of how the pregnancy and birth were written?
If I go back to the first time I read BD, specifically the pregnancy and birth scenes, I found it slightly irritating because the whole blood and gore scene just seemed gratuitous to me. However, I'll try to bear in mind that it is not an ordinary pregnancy.
The main issue I have with this is that SM was happy to write such a graphic birth scene and yet she steered well away from any honeymoon love-making scene. I'm not a fan of gratuitously graphic sex scenes in books but I do think that when bedroom scenes are well-written and tastefully portrayed, they're okay. I would have preferred that instead of the whole birth scene and I can't really understand SM's viewpoints as a writer in terms of this. Sure, this series of books has a wide audience and BD was always going to be read by a younger audience as well as a more mature readership, but I don't see that there is much difference (in terms of age rating) between a tastefully written bedroom scene and the birth scene. If SM was trying to keep the book suitable for younger readers, avoiding sex scenes completely but then writing a graphic birth scene doesn't make sense to me.
Back to the gender issue, I really don't know if my female gender particularly impacts my perceptions of these scenes but I have to say I agree with you: certain parts of it are just too cliched. I think I am the same as you though; I have conflicted thoughts about this because of my points above and also because I guess the whole dangerous pregnancy thing does serve a plot point in that Bella is facing the ultimate challenge from the world to which she was first introduced in Twilight.
Hmm, I'm not a fan of the birth scene though and I really hope they don't over-hype it in the movie.