Ok, ok, hold on. Don't leave me just yet.
I know the title for this blog post might disgust a lot of people, and make some lose respect for me. But hear me out.
I have loved reading for as long as I can remember (really, Kristen?). My mum used to leave me in the bookstore for hours on end while she would shop. She always knew I would be exactly where she left me. She wasn't a bad parent, before you go thinking that, she knew the owners of the bookstore and I was a devil child that would throw the worlds biggest tantrum if I had to go shopping with her.
So I read a lot. Babysitters club, mostly. Then I graduated to Sweet Valley High. I read many other books, of course, for school and books that I picked up in the thrift store, and loved many of them including The Time Traveler's Wife, LOTR & HP. Then I just stopped. I don't know. I had overdosed on reading. No more, I said, no more.
When I was a bit sick, I got obsessed with Keira Knightley. She had a movie coming out, called Pride & Prejudice and I wanted to read the book before I saw it, because books before movies, like bros before hoes. And I loved it. I fell head over heels and read it a thousand times, mainly because I hoped one day to understand it. But nothing else interested me. I kept reading P&P.
Then a friend suggested this new series, Twilight. All 4 books were already out and the movie was coming out in a few months. I asked her what it was about and she said, well, a vampire. I rolled my eyes like no way. I'll hate it. But she insisted, so I read them. And I loved them. I read them in less than a week and thought they were the best thing since sliced bread. I saw the movie and each one after that, and apart from the shocking acting, loved them too. I found a whole new love for books and suddenly my to-read list was miles long.
I read P&P at least 70 times a year, so I thought I would try Twilight again not even a year later. And it did not hold up, shockingly. I pushed through. The flaws started to peek through. I finished it again, with less love than last time but I still enjoyed it. Fast forward to now, I have probably read the books 4 times, max. I did enjoy them originally, but they don't hold up, and there are so many flaws and ridiculousness it's, well, ridiculous. However, I still think it's worth a read. Maybe not as an adult, I am glad I was like 21 at the time. Sure that's technically an adult, but no.
Twilight is a good book to start from. It is simple, it is an easy read, it touches on a few things, but doesn't ever really go into complicated sentences or character depth. It's corny and cheesy, the plot is weak, and the love triangle is pitiful. It doesn't even compare to the greats, but everyone has a different opinion of what is great and amazing, and for something to sell over 16 million copies, Stephanie Meyer had to be doing something right. I'm not trying to come off like I hate Twilight now, or that I'm too good for it, absolutely not. I genuinely loved it, and it will always hold a spot in my heart, and bookshelf.
Do you think people read as much as they used to? Maybe because all I did as a child was read, and I had no friends, I have this delusion that children used to read more than they do now.
The number one reason I like Twilight, for myself, is because it got me back into reading. Yes, it's simple and mindless with a thousand flaws. I didn't want to read Harry Potter when it first came out because it was SOBIG and I was totally against the bandwagon. But I appreciated that it was making kids read again. Or maybe they never stopped, but I felt like they did. Eventually I read Harry Potter, and it was beyond amazing and is one of the best series ever written and absolutely holds up and I can read them time and time again. Twilight not so much. But if Twilight gets a generation of non-readers into reading, how can I hate it? I will never read Fifty Shades, but a friend of mine who professed her hatred of reading the first time I met her, now reads a zillion books a month because of Fifty Shades. Of course, they are all books like that, not my style, but she's reading. Reading is good, in any shape or form.
I love this post about why this woman does not want her daughter to read Twilight, truly I do. But my thoughts are - if my daughter, or any child wants to read, really wants to read a book - I would love for them to read whatever they want, even Twilight. I just hope they graduate from it like I did and move on to bigger and better things, because oh - there are so many - so many!! - books that are amazing and wonderful and trump Twilight a thousand times over. I hope my (non-existent) children love reading, I hope they love Austen, Tolkien and Rowling, among many others.
No, I don't want my daughter to be Bella or look to her as a role model, but jeepers I didn't turn out like the girls from the BSC or SVH, they are just books. Reading is so much more than what you are reading. It develops your imagination and encourages you to dream. It improves creativity and concentration. Reading exposes you to new things, and you can learn so much like new words or possibilities. Reading helps you understand the world, and the people in it. Above all, reading is a fantastic source of entertainment, it reduces stress, and helped me discover me. It's kinda like how I love Pride & Prejudice but don't expect you to.
So there you go, don't stone me. Have you read Twilight?