Oh, Alcyone...you're a hard act to follow. Um, bunnies...? (*wipes tears of laughter from her cheeks*)
Alcyone wrote:You've been brainwashing ouisa. I really don't like you right now.
Hee. I haven't, I haven't.... I just post my implausible readings of these books and she reads them. Same as you, only to different effect. Obviously.
Yes, because the world's clumsiest girl isn't self-destructive enough. She needs a repressed, controlling vampire with too many issues to enumerate to seal her fate.
You forgot to mention that she can't even remember to breathe
. Talk about deficient survival instincts....
Which nails the precise reason why I first began to have problems with this relationship....We had nothing to go on character-wise; it was almost like he was just a pretty face and it is perfectly acceptable to change all your priorities just for a pretty face. I was raised to believe that physical traits are important--if the physical repulses you, it doesn't matter how wonderful a character the person has, you'll always turn away--nevertheless, character is still the most important and the only means through which to judge someone. However, we had nothing.
Well yes. (Not to repeat myself or anything (*grin*)). I agree: the minute you look at it critically, it's completely unfathomable what Bella sees in Edward (and even more vice versa); but what Stephenie does so brilliantly is to evoke the phenomenology of falling in love. As I think I wrote to Tennyo long ago, it's almost a kind of emotional pornography. Being in love is an intoxicating emotion, and Stephenie has a genius for recalling it to mind. We vicariously feel what Bella feels to a completely preposterous degree. And love is notoriously blind.... Edward could have an Why are we talking about a donkey?'s head on, but the way Stephenie walks us through Bella's emotions, every precious missed beat of her heart, we wouldn't even notice....This is the point of Midsummer, isn't it? Love IS often bizarre and baseless and arbitrary in its inception -- it's only after time that it becomes grounded in something real.
his insufferable arrogance (this coming from someone who admits to being insufferably arrogant and then shudders at the thought of sharing a characteristic with Edward)...
Ok, I'm definitely missing something here (*grin*). Because...Aro is so NOT humble either. Is it only arrogant adolescents that give you the screaming habdabs? Does it become a less grating trait after the first couple of thousand years? Or is it just something irresistible about that oniony skin, so that his defects of personality are as nothing?
I'll admit to this image being one of the few I liked (and not because Edward is suffering, though that may be partly it). I'm an author who likes to torture characters. I like pitting everything against them just to see how they stand the blows. Pain and suffering bring out one's true personality, stripped of all facades. At least with this, I agree with you. He withstood the agony with certain grace, even if his actions toward the source of his suffering may be irrational, creepy and sometimes downright frightening. I understand self-immolation, the desire to change one's fate, even applaud it.
Well, yes. (And nicely put!). I rather thought you'd feel this way about it. So tell me then, what do
you learn of his true personality? It's still not enough, I take it, to see a point to Edward. Or to like MS better....
But I can't condone many of his actions toward Bella. The need to torture oneself doesn't mean you can torture another, even if Bella is just as masochistic and senseless in this as he is.
Ah. Interesting. Can you explain this? Pushy and insensitive, I get -- but in what sense is he torturing her? I don't see that (except in the very complicated sense -- which he himself belatedly recognizes in Eclipse -- that trying to get Bella to realize what she's losing if by becoming a vampire only makes her inevitable decision to go ahead with it all the more agonizing...).
...Am I incapable of saying something nice without working in an insult somewhere?
December wrote:Yes, it’s the story lurking at the back side of the tapestry of TW -- but what one begins to realize (and this was true even before MS appeared) is that the underside to Bella’s story is much darker and more complicated than she or we readily recognize.
Speak for yourself. After several other YA novels, novels and manga relating to a vampire-human romance, I predicted almost every hurdle in their relationship and all of Edward's conflict (sans the prudyness. Kuroe is not a prude). Made it unoriginal to boot.
Not sure if we're talking about the same thing here or not. What I had in mind wasn't so much the hurdles to their relationship (predictable) as the seriousness with which -- beneath the fluffy romance -- Stephenie was taking the dark side of her vampires' existence. As seen from Bella's starry-eyed,17-year-old perspective (which is to say the reader's), the Cullens' lives are as untroubled as Alice makes it seem. Sparkly superheroes with a disability. Like most readers, I think, I was slow to pick up on the fact that this darker reality WAS part of Stephenie's story (even if she didn't directly show it to us): and its implications were driving her plot and shaping her characters' actions in not-so-evident ways. Until BD at any rate....
But of course, the story of BD was established before
she began to explore those implications in MS, NM and EC....
I am capable of not commenting on the control comment. That would just be too easy. *smirk*
Actually, he made his own abyss. That god complex of his...
Now here you've lost me. How is Edward responsible for that first day in Biology when he nearly falls back into the blackest savagery?
Was it firefly who mentioned he would have been more likeable if he'd snacked on infants too?
It was indeed....
Edward should eat a few babies, start a few wars, massacre a roomful of lawyers... It might improve his character.
December wrote:Where Bella is concerned, at any rate, Edward attains the kind of total imperviousness to temptation that has taken Carlisle centuries to perfect. For love...
You are perfectly content with his acquiring this imperviousness through love, while I would prefer it to be mostly due to his own character. Love may have provided the catalyst, but I would consider so much more a stronger character if he'd slaved there without needing that catalyst, through sheer strength of will.
Well, you're a hard taskmaster, aren't you? You want Edward to acquire in a mere seventy years or so the imperviousness it took even Carlisle centuries to develop. I take your point that release from his craving for Bella's blood comes to him out of the blue, gratis, with the shock of believing her dead. (Though of course not from the pain that accompanies the craving). On the other hand, the appalling strength of will it needed to take Bella's blood from her hand (and then stop) when James bit her seems to me trial enough of his character that I'm happy to grant him a few unfought-for blessings, on down the line. It's not as if he hasn't struggled ferociously with his thirst for her every second of the months they've been together.
Or, as had been touched on before, if he simply showed some form of compassion as his family does, rather than sheer selfishness.
Oh I'm getting so confused now...was it earlier on this thread or on TUGMP (or is it a post I'm still drafting?) that I was writing about the fact that there are many roads to virtue -- and if a moral code, rather than naked compassion, is the staff that holds someone up on that stony path, I'm not inclined to cavil.
December wrote:So yes, MS is a love story: Edward and Bella’s love for one another is the radiant spindle around which this other story of darkness and suffering and redemption turns.
He was redeemed? When?
Heh. Well. I guess opinions differ.... If you prefer, released. Plucked out of the dark night of his changeless existence and granted love, joy, the ability to see himself for something other than a monster....
December wrote:though I think Stephenie leaves Edward and Bella’s relationship underspecified deliberately, to allow their love story to be a kind of Everyromance.
But the relationship is just wrong! It is so radically antifeminist and so obviously balanced to favor one direction, rather than both... Doesn't really qualify as an Everyromance. More like a nightmare masquerading as a dream.
Ah well. Tastes differ. But yes you're right: there probably can't be such a thing as Everyromance for just that reason. Leaving her characters underdefined allowed Stephenie to make her fantasy as capacious as possible, but if it doesn't float your boat to start with -- if it's more like a cannonball below the waterline -- nothing is going to make the romance more appealing to you....
I tried to make this shorter. Honestly, I tried....