The Twilight Series. I was teaching when they came out and wanted to read them since they were such a big phenomenon. I wished I hadn’t started at points, because when I start I have to finish…
The only character I liked was Jacob, because he was the only one who was in any way credible, and he was barely that. Bella and Edward irritated the heck out of me. Bella is a whiny emo who thinks she is intellectually superior to those around her because she can read, not realising that she’s kind of like Catherine in Northanger Abbey- brainwashing herself into believing she’s in love because she’s obsessed with melodrama. And as for Edward, the less said about the controlling, manipulative stalker the better.
The writing was generally poor, and the allusions to Wuthering Heights were tantamount to sacrilege in my world- a love triangle does not make a relationship like that of Catherine and Heathcliff.
Things were repeated all the time. The four books could easily have been condensed into two. The attempts to write passion were laughable. If they’d ever actually had sex (you know, that was explicit, not the kind that is alluded to by torn pillows and a battered woman lying in a state of bliss…) then it almost certainly would have been up for a bad sex award “his cold, marble lips pressed very softly against mine… I would be in his marble arms”. Is it something lacking in me that the idea of getting busy with a corpse/stone statue doesn’t make me weak at the knees?
It may get people reading, but I worry about the kind of message that it sends out about love and romance. I think that there’s enough propaganda around which makes you think that relationships should function in any particular way, without this kind of negative relationship being held up for impressionable people to view as an ideal.