Twilight Chapters 6 and 7

This was done being written on time, but I haven’t found any spare time to actually post the damn thing.  This is what happens when you count on getting a break at work to piss around on the internet because it’s been soooo slooooow lately, I’m sure I’ll have lots of time!  Which is always the time the universe decides to spite you.  Anyway, enjoy.

Chapter 6: Scary Stories

This one is thankfully shorter than chapter 5 and if we’re lucky it will be just as overloaded with dialogue. The more dialogue the less inner monologue!

The chapter starts with Bella complaining. I’m sure you’re shocked. At lunch the day after the blood incident, Jessica is asking her about what happened with Edward at lunch that day and Bella complains that she’s probably just fishing for gossip. Maybe if she had actually established at any point that Jessica was known for spreading gossip I might actually buy that.

She whines that despite knowing Edward wasn’t going to be there, she still kept hoping he would show up. That’s just kind of sad. The nicest thing she has to say is that maybe their trip to the beach won’t be completely miserable.

greatest-office-gifs-ice-cream

Some girl named Lauren gets snippy when they’re leaving the cafeteria and she thinks Bella can’t hear her, saying she thinks Bella should just sit with the Cullen’s instead of them. Bella takes this to be malicious in not wanting her around at all, but I have an alternative theory. Perhaps because the Cullen’s are so insular, other people have tried to befriend them and been pushed away, but now Bella seems to have been welcomed so they assume she’ll eventually just leave them and become just as insular. Perhaps it’s less ‘I don’t like her sitting with us’ and more ‘they think they’re too good for us, soon she will too.’ Mike defends her, but she bitches that it came off ‘territorial’ instead of just being happy someone defended her.

There’s a pointless conversation with Charlie that evening about where Edward said he was going camping and it apparently being bear infested. In the morning the sun wakes her up and she acts like it’ll disappear if she stops staring at it.

Apparently all the teenagers in this small town have their own cars. I have a really hard time buying that. Most small towns (and from what I can tell this one is no exception) aren’t exactly known for having tons of money flowing in. How they could all afford to buy their kids cars, even if they’re cheap used ones, is beyond me. In my bigger town where Llama and I went to high school, most people I knew occasionally had access to a car, but barely anyone had their own vehicle they could use every day to get back and forth from school. I had access to my dad’s truck once I got my licence, and I was pretty much the only one in the house that used the damn thing other than the weekends when my dad would take the dog and go to the woods or lake, but I still only got to use it to get back and forth from school on rare occasions. Llama apparently had access to a car every day, but still. It wasn’t exactly common. Is this different in the US or is Meyer just bad at knowing what kids have access to? Or are all of Bella’s ‘friends’ just the richest people in town? I’m going to go with that since they all seem to be the kids of people who own a store or something rather than people who just happen to work there. It would be awful for Bella to have poor friends. God for fucking bid.

God forbid

This actually raises a new question; how is Bella paying for this truck? She says she had limited funds when she got their and she doesn’t have a job, so how can she keep putting gas in the damn thing?! Where is this money coming from?! If her mom and/or dad are giving her money on a regular basis for it then FUCK YOU SO HARD FOR BEING A BITCH TO YOUR PARENTS YOU ENTITLED LITTLE BRAT! If not, is she selling drugs on the side? Stealing? WHERE IS THIS MONEY COMING FROM?!

Apparently one of the girls is mad at Bella because Bella tripped over her in gym and Bella feels like this is going to be an awful day because she’s going to get bitched about all day. But you know, I’d probably not want to be around the girl that can’t stand up straight without tripping people too. So, you know, there’s only so much sympathy I’ve got for her getting dirty looks all day.

“We’re just waiting for Lee and Samantha… unless you invited someone,” Mike added.

“Nope,” I lied lightly

This is the first outright lie of the chapter. Two pages in. The first technical lie was a lie of omission where she says she’s not going to tell her dad that Edward is taking her to Seattle, but I let that one slide. This one though? No, she admits it’s a lie. And I’m going to keep calling her out on her lies because every chapter she points out how much she doesn’t like lying.

youve-never-seen-a-hypocrite-before

“Will you ride in my car? It’s that or Lee’s mom’s minivan.”

“Sure.”

He smiled blissfully. It was so easy to make Mike happy.

“You can have shotgun,” he promised. I hid my chagrin. It wasn’t as simple to make Mike and Jessica happy at the same time. I could see Jessica glowering at us now

Can’t imagine why. It’s not like she confided in you that she liked Mike and you assured her that she could have him and now you’re responding positively to his affection right in front of her face after having let him believe he still had a chance with you. Oh wait.

Maybe if Bella actually tried to be a decent friend to some of these people that Lauren girl and the one from gym class wouldn’t hate her. But that would require Bella actually being nice to someone.

She spends a few paragraphs talking about how pretty the drive is, which is boring, but at least it’s positive, so I’ll let the needless filler slide. When they get to the beach they build a driftwood bonfire that glows blue. Mike tells her it’s the salt that turns it blue. He’s not wrong, but he sure as hell isn’t right either. Metal salts turn fire blue. Common compounds that cause this are copper, lead and arsenic. Not sea salt. Breathe in the fumes Bella. Breathe deep.

take-a-deep-breath-sherlock-calm-down1

She talks about how when she would go to Forks for the summers before she demanded her dad take her on vacation instead, she used to love coming to this place. She loved the way it looked, she loved having fun with her dad, and she loved the tidal pools the guys are talking about going to see. This re-raises the question of what the fuck was so bad about this place that she decided she never wanted to come back? But whatever. She’s trying to decide whether or not she wants to join them on the hike to the tidal pools or stick by the fire. She’s worried she’s going to trip into the tidal pools so doesn’t want to go, but Lauren decides to stay so she goes anyway.

There’s a whole page talking about the hike and the tidal pools, but absolutely nothing happens. Nothing. No one talks, no one trips, no one does anything except look at the pretty stuff in the water. It sounds pleasant, but entirely unnecessary.

When they get back to the beach the group that stayed behind grew to include some kids from the reservation. Including Jacob, the werewolf. If that’s a spoiler, what are you doing reading these reviews? And another girl named Jessica, as well as 5 other people who Bella never bothered to remember the names of because god forbid we expect her to pay attention to anyone other than herself.

It was relaxing to sit with Angela; she was a restful kind of person to be around

shock and awe

OH MY GOD SHE SAID SOMETHING NICE ABOUT SOMEONE OTHER THAN EDWARD!

It was relaxing to sit with Angela; she was a restful kind of person to be around — she didn’t feel the need to fill every silence with chatter.

ryan-annoyed-o

…Apparently I should read the whole thing before reacting. ‘I liked Angela; she never talked to me.’ Is not a compliment. It’s saying ‘she’s the best because she’s the easiest to ignore’.

Anyway, after everyone else wanders off, Jacob comes over and sits by Bella. She describes him similarly to Edward. And I don’t mean he looks like Edward, he actually is the opposite of him in every way, I mean she uses the same kind of wording. Basically she finds him to be really pretty and wants you to as well. But then it turns out she has to hate him.

“You’re Isabella Swan, aren’t you?”

It was like the first day of school all over again.

“Bella,” I sighed.

How dare he not be psychic! Anyway, he’s the youngest child of the guy Charlie bought her truck from. He has two older sisters who Charlie and Billy used to set up on play dates while they went fishing.

Of course, I’d kicked up enough tantrums to end the fishing trips by the time I was eleven.

I hate you Bella. So much. Just, so very, very much.

Edward hates you too

Edward hates you too

 

I am thankful to learn that neither of the sisters are there anymore, both having left the area. That means fewer characters for Bella to hate on.

They talk for a while about the truck and it’s boring but dialogue takes space away from Bella’s hateful thoughts, so I like it. Jacob apparently is making it obvious he likes her (of course he likes her. Everyone likes her. Why? She’s horrible! She’s not described as being really attractive and she sure as fuck isn’t nice or interesting, so why does everyone like her?! I DON’T GET IT!) and that makes Lauren unhappy. Supposedly.

“You know Bella, Jacob?” Lauren asked — in what I imagined was an insolent tone — from across the fire.

So she doesn’t actually know it’s an insolent tone, she’s just assuming. Bella goes on to describe her as having ‘fishy’ eyes. I don’t know if she means ‘fishy’ as in suspicious, or if she thinks Lauren looks like a fish. I legitimately can’t tell, the way she puts it.

Lauren asks if Bella knows if the Cullen’s were invited, but before she can answer the guy she didn’t bother catching the name of earlier says that the Cullen’s don’t come to their area. Tyler then distracts Lauren with a CD because apparently she’s a magpie.

I was still turning over the brief comment on the Cullens, and I had a sudden inspiration. It was a stupid plan, but I didn’t have any better ideas. I hoped that young Jacob was as yet inexperienced around girls, so that he wouldn’t see through my sure-to be-pitiful attempts at flirting.

lowest creature

You. Fucking. Bitch. At least with Mike she kind of seemed to be trying not to hurt him, or at least using that as her excuse to avoid coming clean about her lack of feelings for him. She is outright saying she is going to intentionally string Jacob along to get information about Edward, the guy she actually wants. THIS IS VERY HORRIBLE AND IF YOU DO THIS YOU ARE A TERRIBLE FUCKING PERSON! Men have feelings too you know! In fact many studies have shown that men have a harder time recovering after rejection/break ups than women because we’re shitty about talking to each other about emotions so they kind of stick in there and eat away at us. So this isn’t some victimless crime here. This is her playing with the emotions of someone who will be hurt by it. And since he has done ABSOLUTELY nothing to her AT ALL, this is just exceptionally cruel.

“So you’re, what, sixteen?” I asked, trying not to look like an idiot as I fluttered my eyelids the way I’d seen girls do on TV.

“I just turned fifteen,” he confessed, flattered.

“Really?” My face was full of false surprise. “I would have thought you were older.”

This is the point in this book where my levels of rage are so strong that if I weren’t doing this blog I would print off the PDF copy of this book and light it on fire on my deck.

“Do you come up to Forks much?” I asked archly, as if I was hoping for a yes. I sounded idiotic to myself. I was afraid he would turn on me with disgust and accuse me of my fraud, but he still seemed flattered.

Did you catch that? It’s subtle. She just called him an idiot. When Twilight had its turn being popular my roommate’s girlfriend was all over this fucking series. She loved the books and dragged him to all the movies, and made him read the books. He told me once that they weren’t actually that bad. He was clearly confused. But I bring that up to point out that I couldn’t even escape this crap in my own apartment, so I am painfully aware that there is a ‘team Jacob’, and that that means that people actually want Bella to end up with him at the end of the series. My question is why? So far he has been very nice to her, and she is being the biggest bitch in the entire town. Set him up with Jessica or Angela! Or your own little self-insert character! Why would you want a character you like to end up with someone so horrible?!

i-m-so-confused-o

She flirts with him some more till Jacob admits that the Cullen’s aren’t allowed on the reserve. He says he’s not allowed to tell her why, but then one smile from her and he spills the beans. Dumbass. And yes I do know I just gave Bella shit for calling him stupid, but that was before he was actually acting stupid.

Jacob tells her that the natives on the reserve are werewolves (to which she doesn’t have any reaction at all) and that the Cullen’s are ‘the cold ones’ who are banned from the reserve by his great grandfather. They are the enemies of werewolves and normally would be killed by them, but because the Cullen’s were different and didn’t hunt humans, they were left alive as long as they stayed off the reserve. He outs them as vampires.

Part of the peace pact between the reserve and the Cullen’s was not revealing their nature to the ‘pale faces’. So by telling Bella, he’s risking starting a war between them and ending a generations old truce. Because a girl flirted with him. Awesome. He still doesn’t deserve to get dicked around, but wow. That’s a special level of dumb right there.

“I guess I just violated the treaty,” he laughed.

“I’ll take it to the grave,” I promised, and then I shivered.

Liar.

Mike shows up and Jacob asks if he’s her boyfriend.

“No, definitely not,” I whispered. I was tremendously grateful to Jacob, and eager to make him as happy as possible. I winked at him, carefully turning away from Mike to do so. He smiled, elated by my inept flirting.

Note how she made a point to turn away from Mike to wink and whispers her response, so she can keep leading Mike on too. I’m starting to doubt she’s not telling them she doesn’t like them on purpose instead of just out of wanting to avoid uncomfortable situations. Mike does still defend her in gym class and to Lauren, so maybe she wants him to keep liking her so he’ll keep defending her. Note also that she’s going out of her way to keep Jacob on the hook too.

Hagan-i-dont-like-you

“So when I get my license…” he began.

“You should come see me in Forks. We could hang out sometime.” I felt guilty as I said this, knowing that I’d used him. But I really did like Jacob. He was someone I could easily be friends with.

Except you know that’s not what he wants. You counted on that fact. You abused that fact. But you’re going to make it okay to yourself because you want to be friends with him, so it’s not a complete lie?! FUCK YOU!

This whole chapter she’s been making a point of saying how young or old people look. She’s 17, the oldest kid is 19, and Jacob is 15. I don’t recall there being a huge difference in people’s appearances around these ages. How the hell does she know people are ‘too old to be in high school’ when they’re only a year older than the average grad?

She promises to go with Charlie next time he goes to see Billy, and then they go home. End of chapter. Thank fuck.

Chapter 7: Nightmare

The titular nightmare is Bella in the woods being called to by Jacob and Mike, and then Edward shows up and she goes to him, Jacob turns into a wolf and tries to kill Edward. This couldn’t be less obvious if she was beating someone over the head with a Vampire The Masquerade book.

This chapter is so very boring… She goes on the internet and looks up vampire myths. She clings to the one myth she finds that mentions good vampires. And of course that’s what they’re going to turn out to be. I’m now on page 7 of this chapter. There is simply nothing worth talking about. It’s just bitching about the internet being slow, bitching that Forks is making her a crazy person, bitching about Charlie, bitching that the myths don’t fit Edward…

She goes for a walk in the woods and decides she’s not crazy, that vampires are real, and Edward is one. That’s another 3 pages of descriptions of trees and Bella bitching.

Bored Now

She decides that she can’t leave Edward alone like he suggested because the thought of doing so leaves her ‘in agony’. Seriously. They’ve had all of three conversations that weren’t a fight, and not being with him makes her ‘in agony’ and ‘despair’. This is not healthy. At all. Not even a little. I know teen romances are stupid, but wow. She decided that he is a blood sucking monster, and he’s warned her that he’s dangerous to her, and she barely knows him AT ALL, but she CANNOT be away from him. No. Just no.

And I knew in that I had my answer. I didn’t know if there ever was a choice, really. I was already in too deep.

Let me say this again; THREE conversations that weren’t a fight. Three.  And all three of those conversations did contain small fights, so they aren’t even three genuinely friendly conversations.

She goes back home, does her homework and goes to bed. The next morning she talks about how it’s sunny out, and then goes on about how when Charlie smiles she can almost see why her mom married him. I find this incredibly condescending. She says that most of the man her mother was attracted to has faded away, but that she sees glimpses of why they fell in love and married ‘too quickly’. It sounds like she’s putting all the blame on Charlie. But we still have no idea why she left except that Bella said that her mom hated Forks as much as she does. And you know, maybe she wouldn’t hate Forks so fucking much if her mom hadn’t made it sound like the fact that he wouldn’t leave there is the reason she grew up without a present father! Maybe she wouldn’t think the rain was the worst thing ever if her mother hadn’t been trying so hard to get away from it that she went to a fucking DESERT and passed on that hate to her daughter!

I know it takes two to make a relationship work so I am not trying to say that Renee was a bitch for leaving him because fucked if I know what actually happened at this point. I’m just saying it seems really unfair from where I’m standing for her to constantly hate on her father when all the info we have so far implies that Renee left him because of Forks not because of anything he did.

By dint of much elbow grease, I was able to get both windows in the truck almost completely rolled down.

…Dint? Dint… That says dint. What the fuck is dint?

dint  (dnt)

n.

  1. Force or effort; power: succeeded by dint of hard work.
  2. A dent.

tr.v. dint·ed, dint·ing, dints

  1. To put a dent in.

  2. To impress or drive in forcibly

‘By force/effort of much elbow grease’ …nope, still doesn’t sound right… Why would she use that word? Why not just say, ‘with some elbow grease’? Word of the Day calendar?

Anyway, now that I’ve had that weird little moment, she gets to school early and goes over her homework. She comments that it’s already done because she has a ‘slow social life’. Because apparently the only kids that actually do their homework on time are the losers. Fuck you too Bella. Fuck you too.

fuck you too

Mike shows up, they talk about her homework, she says that she did her English essay on misogyny in Shakespeare. Considering the first half of this chapter had her choosing a man she barely knows over her own physical and mental well-being because he’s pretty, I find that kind of insulting. Like Meyer actually gives a shit about feminism.

“I was going to ask if you wanted to go out.”

“Oh.” I was taken off guard. Why couldn’t I ever have a pleasant conversation with Mike anymore without it getting awkward?

Because you keep going out of your way to make him think he still has a chance with you! You hid your comment about him not being your boyfriend from him. You told him the only reason you weren’t asking him to the dance was because you were going to Seattle, not because you weren’t interested. You told him to go with Jessica just so he could still enjoy the dance, not because she liked him and you thought they would make a cute couple (that’s what she said to him; that he should still enjoy the dance, so he should just take Jessica up on her request and have fun) you sat next to him on the ride to the beach instead of suggesting Jessica sit there. You went with him on the hike at the beach which he didn’t know was just because you were avoiding Lauren. If you want him to stop asking you out, tell him to stop asking you out instead of constantly telling him he still has a fucking chance you stupid twit!

plague

“Mike…” I hated being put on the spot. “I don’t think that would be the best idea.”

His face fell. “Why?” he asked, his eyes guarded. My thoughts flickered to Edward, wondering if that’s where his thoughts were as well.

“I think… and if you ever repeat what I’m saying right now I will cheerfully beat you to death,” I threatened, “but I think that would hurt Jessica’s feelings.”

She managed to put so many of my problems with her in one short bit.  Fantastic

She managed to put so many of my problems with her in one short bit. Fantastic

 

Remember that time she said she wasn’t a violent person? I do. Also remember that time I called her a twit for constantly telling him he still has a chance? That feels so long ago… But yeah, that’s what she’s doing here. Again. ‘I’m not turning you down because I don’t like you, I’m turning you down because the girl I keep pretending is my friend likes you and I don’t want to hurt her feelings! But remember, I do like you, she’s the one getting in the way!’

He’s shocked, she gets pissy at him for not knowing Jess likes him (which is admittedly kind of dense of him) and then while he’s still confused she literally runs away without explaining anything further. So she leads him on, then she gets mad at him. Yeah, this is really the character I want to keep reading about. If you want to read a book about an overdramatic twit obsessed with prettiness and terrified of aging (that comes up later in the series) read The Picture of Dorian Grey. So very, very much better. And you’re supposed to think he’s an entitled jackass.

When I saw Jessica in Trig, she was bubbling with enthusiasm. She, Angela, and Lauren were going to Port Angeles tonight to go dress shopping for the dance, and she wanted me to come, too, even though I didn’t need one.

See what I’ve been saying about Jessica? Bella has been nothing but mean to her, she even did that whole thing I bitched about in the last chapter with responding to Mike’s flirtations in front of Jessica’s face, and she’s still trying to involve her. She genuinely wants Bella around, and her opinion on things even after Bella has been so mean to her. Jessica just seems to be a really naïve, nice young girl, and Bella is constantly ignoring her or bitching about her. Jess would be well within her rights to not want Bella there at all. Or to stop talking to her, period.

I was far too lost in my own frenzy of anticipation to notice much of what she said. I was painfully eager to see not just him but all the Cullens — to compare them with the new suspicions that plagued my mind.

Hold off your judgement. This isn’t the bad part yet.

As was my routine, I glanced first toward the Cullens ‘ table. A shiver of panic trembled in my stomach as I realized it was empty. With dwindling hope, my eyes scoured the rest of the cafeteria, hoping to find him alone, waiting for me. The place was nearly filled — Spanish had made us late — but there was no sign of Edward or any of his family. Desolation hit me with crippling strength.

I shambled along behind Jessica, not bothering to pretend to listen anymore.

there it is

Congratulations Bella; you topped my rage meter beyond what you did to Jacob!

Seriously. SERIOUSLY. I can’t even WORDS. She’s SO UPSET that Edward isn’t there she’s stopped even PRETENDING to listen. She wasn’t even listening in the first place, and now she’s so heartbroken that they took an extra day for their camping trip (well, they stayed home because it was sunny, but she doesn’t know that) that she can’t even PRETEND to listen to someone she CLAIMS is a friend who JUST A FEW MINUTES BEFORE went out of her way to make Bella feel included and wanted. You can’t even show her the basic fucking decency of paying attention to what she’s saying because you’re so obsessed with listening to your own thoughts, and then SO SAD that he’s not there, that you can’t even PRETEND you like her more than you like the sound of your own thoughts! Dorian Grey was NICER than you, and he dumped a woman who he was engaged to marry because she sucked at acting! AND murdered someone!   At least when his friend talked he actually fucking paid attention! Or at least had the decency of TELLING the poor guy he was boring him.

THAT’S RIGHT! I JUST SAID A MURDERER IS NICER THAN BELLA. And I fucking stand by it!

The rest of the day passed slowly, dismally. In Gym, we had a lecture on the rules of badminton, the next torture they had lined up for me. But at least it meant I got to sit and listen instead of stumbling around on the court. The best part was the coach didn’t finish, so I got another day off tomorrow. Never mind that the day after they would arm me with a racket before unleashing me on the rest of the class.

In what universe does it take two days to learn the rules of Badminton? It’s a pretty simple game… It’s also really hard to hurt anyone since the birdie barely weighs anything at all.

intorduction_badmintonfffff

I was glad to leave campus, so I would be free to pout and mope before I went out tonight with Jessica and company.

First: campus, like ‘dint’ above, is technically correct here. But no one uses it to colloquially refer to a high school. No one.

Second: you need to be free to pout and mope? Pretty sure you’ve been doing that since you noticed he wasn’t there.

Apparently though Mike asked Jessica out on a date so they’re putting off the dress shopping till the next day. Bella says she tries to be happy that he asked her out, but she specifies that it’s that she’s happy Mike is finally catching on that she doesn’t want to date him. Not that she’s happy Jessica got a date with the guy she liked.  What Bella thinks is that it’s awesome having someone around to toss off your unwanted scraps to. FUCK. YOU. And she specifies also that as much as she wishes she could be happy, she can’t be, because it meant that Jessica was rescheduling the plans she had only agreed to to distract her from the lack of Edward. I cannot think of a strong enough epithet to shout at this book.

So I'll use them all

So I’ll use them all

She wants to be happy that using her friend is finally paying off, but it means her other way she was currently using her ‘friend’ got pushed off, so she is upset that her two abuses of this poor girl conflicted.

She goes online and checks her email. She has apparently been ignoring her emails from her mother for days again. Pretty sure it was only two chapters ago she tried to garner sympathy from Edward by saying her mother was her best friend. That’s what you do to your best friend right? Ignore them? And then get mad that they aren’t more patient with you because their annoyance that you can’t even be bothered to check your email once in several days (when she was online for a few hours the day before researching vampires) is an inconvenience to you? That’s totally friendship and love and respect! Yeah! Bella was the responsible one and her mom was the useless scatterbrained one right? Totally.

Outside in Charlie’s small, square yard, I folded the quilt in half and laid it out of the reach of the trees’ shadows on the thick lawn that would always be slightly wet, no matter how long the sun shone.

That is just not how anything at all works.

doesn't work that way

She lays in the sun, sulks that Jane Austin used names that start with ‘Ed’ too often, and sunbathes until Charlie comes home. Edward is creepily stalking her, but she doesn’t know that (it’s just obvious to anyone with a brain) she just knows that she feels like she’s not alone, and goes inside to see Charlie.

“Dad,” I said during a commercial, “Jessica and Angela are going to look at dresses for the dance tomorrow night in Port Angeles, and they wanted me to help them choose… do you mind if I go with them?”

“Jessica Stanley?” he asked.

“And Angela Weber.” I sighed as I gave him the details.

He was confused. “But you’re not going to the dance, right?”

“No, Dad, but I’m helping them find dresses — you know, giving them constructive criticism.” I wouldn’t have to explain this to a woman.

Fuck you Meyer. I’m not even dignifying this with a rebuttal.

“We’ll leave right after school, so we can get back early. You’ll be okay for dinner, right?”

“Bells, I fed myself for seventeen years before you got here,” he reminded me.

“I don’t know how you survived,” I muttered, then added more clearly, “I’ll leave some things for cold-cut sandwiches in the fridge, okay? Right on top.”

FUCK.

YOU.

WHY ARE THERE NOT STRONGER CURSE WORDS IN MY VOCABULARY?!

Aahhhhhhh

She presumed from day fucking one that he couldn’t cook rather than giving him any chance at all. Maybe she doesn’t like what he was eating, but that’s still no reason to treat you FATHER with that kind of disrespect! He didn’t have to let you move in with him you know! He could have said no! He wanted you there for some fucking reason. He loves you. Because he’s your dad! And you are treating him like a fucking child! I’m pretty sure he can find the fucking sandwich meat without you telling him which fucking SHELF it’s on!  I wouldn’t talk like that to my five year old niece!

I would like to take a moment away from the section of this chapter currently threatening to give me an aneurism and point out that none of her concern over Edward has been that something happened to him and his family while they were out camping.  In the area she was informed is full of bears.  No, the concern is that he left her and won’t come back in time to take her to Seattle. It never even crosses her mind that they might all be missing school because something bad happened like there was a death in their family outside town or anything. It’s all about her. If someone I care about disappears without explanation my first thought tends to be ‘OMG I hope they’re okay!’ not ‘OMG they’re leaving me without telling me!’ It takes a special kind of selfishness for that to not just be your first thought, but your only thought.

Before leaving for dress shopping Bella leaves her dad a note telling him, again, where she left the sandwich meats. I’m pretty sure you can hear me saying ‘fuck you Bella’ to that by now. I shouldn’t even have to type it at this point.

The chapter ends, and my blood pressure is grateful.

relief

The last year and a half or so I’ve been working on my depression. I used to get depressed a lot, but I don’t anymore. Not to the extent I used to.  Part of that is that my situation is better, part of it though is that I’ve got a list in my head of everything about my life that I genuinely appreciate, and I add to it on a regular basis, and I go over it in my head a couple of times a day. I also go out of my way to say ‘I appreciate you doing this for me’ and such to people who help me, or who just listen to me rant for a while when something goes especially horrible.  Or just friends who have been good friends in general.

I bring this up, because I want to say something I appreciate about this book. I appreciate that this book is only 24 chapters and an epilogue instead of the 60 chapters of The Host. I appreciate that so very, very much. I don’t even care that there’s three more books after this one. I just care that this one is shorter than The Host.

How can this book suck so hard? Someone PLEASE tell me why this is so well liked. PLEASE! EXPLAIN IT TO ME! I DON’T UNDERSTAND! If you like it because you see yourself in Bella then I’m sorry but you are a BAD PERSON and you should take a good look at how you view the world and the people around you! If it’s because you like Edward and/or Jacob, then I still don’t see how you can like this book because the whole thing is about them wanting to be with a girl who doesn’t deserve ANYONE’S love! I DON’T GET IT!

Ugh. Whatever. Till next time, check out The Llama’s take on these chapters (she goes into way more detail on the first half of chapter 7 than I could). I’m going to curl up and weep that this got popular.

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Twilight Chapter 5

Just one chapter today. Time issues happened and I wanted to put something up at least because I really don’t want to go back to just putting things off till it’s ‘done’ and getting back into not getting anything done at all. But I did make this one a little more detailed since it’s stand alone. Hopefully more than one chapter on Thursday!

Chapter 5: Blood Type

This chapter is nearly twice the length of the last chapter. Whhhyyyyyyy

Just_Why

It wasn’t till class ended that I realized Mike wasn’t sitting in his usual seat next to me. I felt a twinge of guilt. But he and Eric both met me at the door as usual, so I figured I wasn’t totally unforgiven.

Seriously, if you want these guys to leave you alone, you sure as hell aren’t acting like it. She’s bitched and moaned multiple times about how horrible it is that they won’t leave her alone. She goes on about how she wants Mike to stop following her around. These guys just got rejected and probably feel let down and just need some space.

Mike seemed to become more himself as we walked, gaining enthusiasm as he talked about the weather report for this weekend. The rain was supposed to take a minor break, and so maybe his beach trip would be possible. I tried to sound eager, to make up for disappointing him yesterday. It was hard; rain or no rain, it would still only be in the high forties, if we were lucky.

Unless you’re planning to do a new take on the ice bucket challenge, no one is going to the beach at that temperature. Anyone that does is a crazy person.

Jessica babbled on and on about her dance plans — Lauren and Angela had asked the other boys and they were all going together — completely unaware of my inattention.

I asked before why Bella was friends with Jessica since she clearly seems to hate the poor girl, but I think a better question is why is Jessica friends with Bella? As far as I can tell she puts in genuine effort to be nice to this awful excuse for a human being, but all Bella ever does is ignore her and use her. If Jessica could hear the things Bella thinks about her she’d be perfectly justified to punch her in the goddamn face.

Disappointment flooded through me as my eyes unerringly focused on his table. The other four were there, but he was absent. Had he gone home? I followed the still-babbling Jessica through the line, crushed. I’d lost my appetite — I bought nothing but a bottle of lemonade. I just wanted to go sit down and sulk.

“Edward Cullen is staring at you again,” Jessica said, finally breaking through my abstraction with his name. “I wonder why he’s sitting alone today.”

See what I mean? She talks again about how she’s ‘babbling’ but then, suddenly Jessica is saying something about Edward and low and behold she’s worth listening to again. I don’t think Bella understands what being a friend actually means.

Don't know what it means

Edward invites her to sit with him and Jessica seems shocked. Bella feels insulted by her shock because she takes it to mean someone like him would never want to sit with someone like her, but come on. The entire time she’s been at that school save the one day in biology where they did a lab together, they’ve been at each other’s throats if they’ve even acknowledged each other’s existence. It is not unreasonable for Jessica to find this confusing! BELLA finds this confusing so why the fuck does she think Jessica isn’t allowed to?! Oh right, because she’s a FUCKING BITCH.

I sat down automatically, watching him with caution. He was still smiling. It was hard to believe that someone so beautiful could be real. I was afraid that he might disappear in a sudden puff of smoke, and I would wake up.

Just so much fuck you. So much.

They start talking, he says he’s putting himself through hell anyway so he might as well go all the way, Bella is confused. Anyone that knows the existence of the series at all knows what this means, and honestly if he were hitting on anyone actually worth hitting on I would actually be okay with this particular exchange. The fact that Bella sucks so goddamn hard makes me wish he would just eat her instead of flirting though.

whos hungry

Maybe this says more about me than the book, but I actually would probably be doing pretty much the same thing he is during this conversation… In fact I’ve had similar conversations where I go back and forth intentionally confusing the hell out of the person I’m talking to with a smug grin on my face the whole time. Basically he’s saying he wants her (in more ways than one) and saying he’s tired of trying to stay away from her, so he’s going to do what he wants to do instead of what he felt he should be doing. And she has no idea he’s inferring he could very well end up murdering her violently. And… yeah, that is totally something I would do in that situation… Given that I know he gets incredibly, disturbingly creepy later in the book I don’t know how I feel about that.

“So, in plain English, are we friends now?”

“Friends…” he mused, dubious.

“Or not,” I muttered.

He grinned. “Well, we can try, I suppose. But I’m warning you now that I’m not a good friend for you.” Behind his smile, the warning was real.

“You say that a lot,” I noted, trying to ignore the sudden trembling in my stomach and keep my voice even.

“Yes, because you’re not listening to me. I’m still waiting for you to believe it. If you’re smart, you’ll avoid me.”

She’s dumb as a post. But seriously, he’s being kind of fair here… He’s not telling her the nature of the risk, but he reasonably can’t. He’s telling her his choice is to be around her, but she should choose to ignore his advances and keep her distance for her own good. He is being clear, consistent, and constant. This is the third or fourth time he’s said it now. He keeps giving her a chance to back away and she keeps walking forward because she’s obsessed with how pretty he is. I don’t know. I know he gets stalkery, and obviously he’s a creeper for doing that, but seriously, when a guy is telling you ‘no, really, it’s in your best interest to avoid me’, you should probably listen.

listen-to-me

They come to an agreement, but he asks what she’s thinking. She tells him that she’s trying to figure out what he is, which gets him tense. He asks if she’s got any theories, she says she does, and thinks, but doesn’t say, that she’s been comparing him to Batman and Spiderman in her mind. He asks what her theories are and she won’t tell him because apparently knowing the names of comic book characters is embarrassing (soooo much fuck you, Bella. So much).

“That’s really frustrating, you know,” he complained.

“No,” I disagreed quickly, my eyes narrowing, “I can’t imagine why that would be frustrating at all — just because someone refuses to tell you what they’re thinking, even if all the while they’re making cryptic little remarks specifically designed to keep you up at night wondering what they could possibly mean… now, why would that be frustrating?”

He grimaced.

“Or better,” I continued, the pent-up annoyance flowing freely now, “say that person also did a wide range of bizarre things — from saving your life under impossible circumstances one day to treating you like a pariah the next, and he never explained any of that, either, even after he promised. That, also, would be very non-frustrating.”

“You’ve got a bit of a temper, don’t you?”

“I don’t like double standards.”

We need to talk...

We need to talk…

Nope, trust me, as someone who has one; that’s an anger problem. That’s not just getting pissed at double standards, that’s going from a calm and normal conversation where you seemed fairly relaxed to immediately getting defensively pissed off way faster than most people would. Had this been a more tense scene, or even the one the day before where he asked her to Seattle and she was mad at him at the start, then this reaction would be perfectly normal.  But it wasn’t.

Plus, seriously, how many times do I have to discuss the fact that him getting cold after saving her wasn’t unexplained or unreasonable?! YOU WERE BEING A FUCKING BITCH! He is being unreasonable by being frustrated at you for not telling him everything. No argument here on that at all. But not to the point where you should be biting his head off over every single thing that he’s ever done that you didn’t like. It’s not like you guys had been good friends or dating or anything when all of this happened. You’d barely even spoken. Also I highly doubt his cryptic remarks were ‘specifically designed’ to keep you up at night. He doesn’t know you. He has no obligation to tell you all his fucking secrets you self centered little brat!

justbecool_zpse6882f12

I have actually skimmed over a few things that Edward has done that I’ve felt were kind of shitty because Bella’s obnoxious shittiness just completely over powers everything else in this goddamn book. So in fairness I will point out some problems with other characters:

Mike, Eric and Tyler have serious boundary issues and need to start picking up on the signals Bella is sending. She’s clearly a hateful bitch and she’s probably putting off some physical signs she doesn’t want them around. Tyler in particular she’s told to stop apologizing to her about the car accident and he’s ignored her requests more than once and that isn’t right. He should respect her wishes and back off, especially if he really is sorry for what he did.

Charlie is not a terribly attentive father. But I have a hard time really faulting him for that since he’s never really had to be one.  He’s clearly trying, but just doesn’t know what he’s doing, so I don’t know if I should have even given him a paragraph here.

Edward has been a dick multiple times. He’s constantly smug, and intentionally vague. The vagueness is understandable, but the smugness is less so. A little smugness can be cute for flirting, too much is clearly an indication of genuinely thinking you’re better than the person you’re talking to. Though he’s always talking to Bella, so maybe that’s justified. He’s also being conflicting with his ‘stay away from me’ message. He’s flirting with her while telling her to back off despite that it’s pretty obvious she finds him attractive, so he’s basically saying ‘I know you’re not going to listen, because I’m playing my pied pipers flute while telling you to walk away, so I can assuage my guilt because I technically gave you fair warning.’ And that’s a pretty massive dick move.

Jessica hasn’t done anything actually wrong and Bella should really piss off and cut that poor girl a break. She seems nice.

This is what I want Jessica to say to Bella

This is what I want Jessica to say to Bella

Having said that, every single one of those things I have said are things that only came up once or twice in the entire book so far, and are all punctuated on both sides by Bella being terrible. I cannot emphasis that enough. Every. Single. Paragraph. Bella is saying something horrible about someone or over dramatic whining about the weather.

They have some more back and forth, it’s relatively normal and thankfully because of the spacing, takes up a couple of pages so that’s a few fewer pages of Bella’s thoughts I have to read. She asks Edward if he’ll give her fair warning next time he intends to go all radio dead air on her and he says he will. But he asks if she’ll answer a question for him in return and she agrees.

“Tell me one theory.”

Whoops. “Not that one.”

Don’t think too far ahead do you?

He looked down, and then glanced up at me through his long black lashes, his ocher eyes scorching.

That does not sound right… Why does that make me feel gross to read? Oh right…

2011-12-02-sexy

More back and forth, she complains that his prettiness is hypnotizing and she caves and tells him one of her theories. They have a little super hero origin story nerd off, and again, if I didn’t hate Bella with every fibre of my being this would probably be a conversation I would totally have and that kind of pisses me off.

“What if I’m not a superhero? What if I’m the bad guy?” He smiled playfully, but his eyes were impenetrable.

“Oh,” I said, as several things he’d hinted fell suddenly into place. “I see.”

Really? You’re just putting that together now? How fucking dense are you?! What did I say earlier about listening when someone tells you it’s in your best interest to stay away from them?!

“You’re dangerous?” I guessed, my pulse quickening as I intuitively realized the truth of my own words. He was dangerous. He’d been trying to tell me that all along. He just looked at me, eyes full of some emotion I couldn’t comprehend.

“But not bad,” I whispered, shaking my head. “No, I don’t believe that you’re bad.”

I’m just going to sit here and bash my head against the wall for a while. Don’t mind me.

Weep then die

“You’re wrong.” His voice was almost inaudible. He looked down, stealing my bottle lid and then spinning it on its side between his fingers. I stared at him, wondering why I didn’t feel afraid. He meant what he was saying — that was obvious. But I just felt anxious, on edge… and, more than anything else, fascinated. The same way I always felt when I was near him.

First thing: anxiousness and feeling on edge are indicators of fear. Also, being fascinated by something doesn’t mean you aren’t afraid of it. I’m terrified of spiders but I know way more about spiders than anyone with a fear of them reasonably should. Second thing: you’re a fucking moron. If someone is telling you they are dangerous, flat out telling you they are a danger, and you should stay away, do not ignore them just because they give you butterflies in your tummy. If you do, I will personally place the Darwin award at your grave.

Bella realizes lunch is almost over and they should be getting to class, but Edward says he’s skipping. She declares she’s going to class anyway, but then hesitates and almost sticks around with him before bolting to class anyway. The teacher gets out a kit and starts pricking people’s fingers. Apparently there’s a blood drive in a nearby city and so he’s decided to take this as an opportunity to show everyone how to type blood. This is clearly why Edward was skipping, but again, we don’t know that yet.

Bella apparently gets sickly at the sight of blood. That’s one phobia I’ve never understood personally, especially for women, but whatever. Anyone who’s seen me kill a spider knows I have no room to pick on anyone for their phobias. The teacher tells someone to take her to the nurse and obviously it’s Mike that does it.

firm grasp of the obvious

She gets Mike to stop and let her sit on a bench when they’re outside and away from the class. And I’m starting to get why Meyer decided the school was multiple buildings. If it was all one, she couldn’t have her go outside like this to get to the nurse and run into Edward and have him and Mike fight over her. Which is exactly what happens. Mike acts like an obnoxious little brat who doesn’t want someone else to take his toy away and Edward just ignores him completely, scoops Bella up in his arms which she gushes over while also being horrified not wanting to puke on him.

Edward starts picking on her for what happened, though he wasn’t actually told, so since Bella seems to pick up on all of his behaviour and immediately build conspiracy theories around it, the fact that she says nothing about that fact is plot convenience at its best. You could say it was because she’s sick at the moment, but she certainly didn’t seem to have any issues keeping track of things while she was being tossed around like a rag doll in the van incident, so I don’t accept that excuse.

Apparently despite Mike following them, he doesn’t actually go into the nurse’s station. This is not explained. There’s a few pages of absolutely pointless back and forth that comes off normal enough. It’s weird to me that so much of the back and forth between these characters when Bella isn’t being angry and Edward isn’t being emo actually comes off as real dialogue. Bella is so hateful in her internal monologue and she has absolutely no conversational rapport with anyone else, but the bits that are just normal talking between these two? They’re genuinely not badly written. They’re not even just decently written, I could actually understand why they might have a thing for each other, if I didn’t know what she actually thought! If this was third person instead of first and we didn’t have to listen to her go on about how much she hates him before she acts like she’s in love with him, this might have been salvageable. Maybe. At least this far into the book anyway.

Basically, just take Bella out of the book and it could be good. Sadly Bella is the entire goddamn book.

Anyway, apparently Mike had gone back to the classroom, and apparently while he was there, another kid had to be taken to the nurse. Edward advices Bella to leave before she sees him and she bolts. He gets confused as to why she’s listening to him and she says she can smell the blood so she knew what was coming.

“People can’t smell blood,” he contradicted.

…Apparently I’m not people. And apparently Bella isn’t either. She describes that it smells like rust and salt and that’s what makes her sick. So she probably shouldn’t be going to a beach on the ocean, but whatever. She has a sad little exchange with Mike where it’s pretty clear he knows she likes Edward, not him, and gets mopey while also making sure she’s still going to the beach with him and his friends which I still think is a massively stupid idea. But she says she’s still going, and then he reminds her she has gym class after this, which, after Mike leaves, Edward helps her lie to get out of. Because, again, she’s totally not a liar you guys. You know, except when it suits her needs. But that doesn’t count.

screaming internally

Edward cons the nurse into letting him take Bella home, and the nurse gets all flirty with him which is creepy on so many levels, but Bella just wonders why she can’t ‘flutter’ like the nurse is. I think she means flirt, or maybe flutter her eye lashes? Never really understood why that was supposed to be attractive though. I’ve always thought it looks like you’re trying to shake something out of your eye lashes… But Bella wishes she could do it instead of thinking about how weird it is that the nurse is flirting with a minor and Edward escorts her out of the building.

Bella invites him to go to the beach with them on the weekend, but I actually think that’s kind of horrible of her to do. Mike made it abundantly clear, and she pointed out how clear it was so she definitely got the message, that Edward was not invited. So she’s doing this knowing how uncomfortable it’s going to make him simply because it suits her. Things like this are why I can’t get passed how horrible she is. She is so consistently self-absorbed as to outright acknowledge that she knows other people have problems with what she does, but then she does them anyway because she wants to, and then complains when everyone doesn’t just think it’s the bestest thing eversies. Why does Meyers seem to be incapable of writing a main character that’s not a bitch? I can see she’s capable of writing characters that don’t suck, so why are her protagonists always bad people? I don’t get it!

i-feel-like-im-taking-crazy-pills

Edward, unlike Bella, actually considers Mike’s feelings in all this and says it’d be mean to push the guy since he’s clearly already upset enough over the initial rejection, there’s no need to rub it in his face. Bella thinks he seems amused by the idea of hurting him more, given the context I think he’s just amused that she’s willing to do it to him. Either way it kind of takes away from the positive of him considering Mike’s feelings by making him also be a dick at the same time. Though I suppose he has no connection with Mike so he has no reason to care about his feelings at all save basic human decency so I’ll say it’s only half dickish.

“Mike-schmike.” I muttered

What are you, four?

She tries to go to her truck and Edward drags her by her coat to his car, saying he promised to get her home safe so he’s not going to let her drive in her condition. She rightfully gets pissed by this and demands he let her go, but he doesn’t. So the leeway I gave him above disappears and he’s just an ass. So I just get to hate everyone. I’m so excited to keep reading.

She eventually gives in, pouting (her word) about it. He apparently has this

playing, which is a fantastic piece, and I really really wish Meyer would stop making me see myself in Edward because fuck Edward. Classical music is beautiful music and anyone that thinks otherwise is an uncultured charlatan. You do not have to be a broody, sulky ‘older than his years’ person to enjoy classical music.

“What is your mother like?” he asked me suddenly.

I glanced over to see him studying me with curious eyes.

EYES ON THE ROAD!

“She looks a lot like me, but she’s prettier,” I said. He raised his eyebrows. “I have too much Charlie in me.

I really hope she explains at some point what her problem with her dad is. She really seems to not like him and I have absolutely no idea why…

She’s more outgoing than I am, and braver. She’s irresponsible and slightly eccentric, and she’s a very unpredictable cook. She’s my best friend.” I stopped. Talking about her was making me depressed.

If she was really your best friend you’d have finished your school year in Florida with her. Or answered your fucking emails once in a while. Or called her from time to time. Or actually previously expressed any love of her whatsoever outside that she ‘needs’ you to take care of her. This is more of The Host’s problem where the things the character says go completely against the things she thinks, making everyone around her think she’s better than she actually is.

He asks how old she is and the response makes me want to slap her.

“I’m seventeen,” I responded, a little confused.

“You don’t seem seventeen.”

His tone was reproachful; it made me laugh.

“What?” he asked, curious again.

“My mom always says I was born thirty-five years old and that I get more middle-aged every year.” I laughed, and then sighed. “Well, someone has to be the adult.”

You are massively childish. MASSIVELY. You are the definition of the childish teenage brat.

spoiled brat

He asks why her mom married Phil, and she basically says her mother is immature and so she went with a guy as young physically as she was mentally. Again, don’t really come off as being too respectful and loving there Bella. But anyway, Edward asks if she approves of him and she says it doesn’t really matter what she thinks, but he makes her mother happy so it’s fine, though she clearly doesn’t actually approve. He asks if her mother would extend her the same courtesy, which is basically him asking if her mother would approve of her dating him.

Edward goes a bit psychopath on her by dropping his smile into a massively serious look and asks if she’s scared of him right now. She says no, and he puts the big grin right back on. And this is yet another warning sign that you’ve gotten in the car of a serial killer and should probably flee. That or he’s just fucking with her for fun since she’d been such a bitch to him a while back and he’s finally getting some pay back. But we all know the real answer is psychopath.

She asks him about his family, he says that his birth parents died so long ago he doesn’t really remember them and Carlisle and Esme are loving, wonderful people and he’s quite happy to have them for parents. She asks about his siblings, and he says that they’re probably getting pissed at him right now for making them wait in the rain. So after a quip about lying to Charlie about what happened, she gets out of the car. He says he’s ‘starting his weekend early’ and heading to where he and his family go camping on a regular basis. She tells him to have fun and he asks her to be careful since she’s an accident magnet. Which is actually a fair observation because so far she has basically tripped over everything you can possibly trip on and a few things I’m not convinced it’s actually possible to trip on.

tripped

And that’s how the chapter ends. Glimmers of decent writing buried in a mountain of inner monologued garbage. I hate this book. I hate this book even harder now than before because Meyer is clearly capable of writing something decent. She just needs someone to tell her to tone things down. From what I’ve heard even fans of this series tend to think Bella is a bit of a bitch, so it’s not even just people who hate the series going into it. And I was genuinely prepared to give it the benefit of the doubt! I really thought it was going to be better than The Host! I figured Meyer in an element that required less research and where the protagonist was an author surrogate (apparently the series was a dream she had of her perfect guy and she just had to write it down) with an editor at a time before she had the right to ignore everything the editor said, that it had to be at least better. And aspects of it are… The main character though? If this is supposed to be Meyers’ self-insert fiction then I really never want to meet the woman.

Check out The Llama’s take on this chapter and see you next time!

Twilight Chapters 1-4

Round 2! Really got to figure out why my autosave function keeps fucking up and losing my work…

Preface:

The preface for this book is actually pretty good. It’s, presumably Bella, talking about ways to die. She talks about how she’d never considered how she would go, but that she thinks it’s probably a noble death to die in place of someone you love. It’s an effective opening that draws you in and sets a tone. I really really wish it was the tone of the rest of the book.

Chapter 1: First Sight

Bella is the single most entitled character in fiction I swear. I thought Wanderer was bad…

The chapter begins with Bella being driven to the airport by her mother. She says it’s 75 degrees in Phoenix (where she’s leaving from) and I have to say, I was at the Phoenix airport one day this summer and I would have killed for it to have been only 75 degrees. So I’m assuming that puts this in fall or winter… It’s not explicitly stated anywhere so I’m just using that as a hint.

I was wearing my favorite shirt — sleeveless, white eyelet lace; I was wearing it as a farewell gesture. My carry-on item was a parka.

As a Canadian I find the assertion that she needs a parka for anywhere in the US outside of Alaska insulting. But as someone who wears the same coat in +40 Fahrenheit as I wear in -40 (oddly enough -40 is the same whether you go by Fahrenheit or Celsius), perhaps I’m not the right person to judge that…

She’s going to Forks, Washington. So not even as far north as the main portion of the US gets, and not even on the colder of the two oceans. We learn that her dad’s lived there her whole life, but her mother ‘escaped’ with her when she was only a few months old. From that description you might think she escaped an abusive husband, but no, Bella is just being melodramatic about how awful Forks is.

drama queen

It was in this town that I’d been compelled to spend a month every summer until I was fourteen. That was the year I finally put my foot down; these past three summers, my dad, Charlie, vacationed with me in California for two weeks instead.

This is only paragraph 2 of chapter 1 and already Bella has made it abundantly clear to the reader that she is the most entitled, spoiled, miserable little brat that’s ever been passed off as the protagonist. She ‘put her foot down’ and MADE HER DAD FLY HER TO CALIFORNIA TO VISIT HER! If I were him I would remind her that he is legally entitled to his visitations with her and she is not old enough to get to say where those visitations should be!

It was to Forks that I now exiled myself— an action that I took with great horror. I detested Forks.

Really? I was under the impression you loved it! And no, she doesn’t say WHY she’s going. At least not in this chapter.

I loved Phoenix. I loved the sun and the blistering heat. I loved the vigorous, sprawling city.

She describes herself as exceptionally pale later in the chapter, so I’m going to have to argue with her assertion that she loves the sun.

Her mom tells her she doesn’t have to leave, then Bella goes on about how useless her mother is:

How could I leave my loving, erratic, harebrained mother to fend for herself ? Of course she had Phil now, so the bills would probably get paid, there would be food in the refrigerator, gas in her car, and someone to call when she got lost, but still…

She makes her mother sound like she’s incapable of doing anything for herself, even so simple as making sure her bills are paid or she eats. I am not being facetious or mean when I ask if her mother is mentally handicapped. If she actually needs help with all of that, perhaps Bella SHOULDN’T be leaving, no matter her reason. Or perhaps Bella shouldn’t have been in her primary custody to begin with, because how the hell did a woman who is too scatterbrained to feed herself possibly take care of a baby alone?

by all accounts

She lies to her mother that she’s going there because she wants to and her mother buys it. How that’s even POSSIBLE I have no idea. If she’s made it so clear in the past that she detests the place as to refuse to go even for 2 weeks a year, the only 2 weeks a year she ever gets to see her father, then her mother MUST be slow if she doesn’t know that’s bullshit. Or maybe her mother secretly hates her and just doesn’t want to feel bad about seeing her leave. Maybe her mom has been being a tool this whole time trying to get Bella to decide she’d rather live with her dad. Given Bella’s personality I wouldn’t blame her.

“I’ll see you soon,” she insisted. “You can come home whenever you want — I’ll come right back as soon as you need me.”

Come back from WHERE? Meyer, I know you love exposition, this would be the one time that would be okay!

She complains about the trip, and then she complains that Charlie (who she always calls Charlie, not Dad,

“Mom’s fine. It’s good to see you, too, Dad.” I wasn’t allowed to call him Charlie to his face.

and I have no idea why as other than that she’s a bitch and hates where he lives, I can’t see any level of hatred for her father himself. It doesn’t even seem like her parents split because of antagonism, it seems her mother is just constantly leaves men and moves on to a new one when she’s tired of the last one.) will pick her up in the police cruiser. Now; my dad was an RCMP officer when I was in high school. He had an unmarked car. He was not even supposed to drop me off at school on his way to work. The regular cop cars were even MORE off limits. You are NOT allowed to use the police vehicles for personal use because it’s seen as an abuse of power and miss use of government property. So this kind of irritates me… But Bella is bitching that she just doesn’t want him to pick her up because it’s ‘embarrassing’.

She goes on about how she’s going to have to get her own car because she doesn’t want to be seen in his, but when he picks her up he tells her he was already aware that she didn’t like him picking her up in the cruiser, so he bought her a truck. HE BOUGHT HER A TRUCK. And of course she’s not happy. She even gets snippy because he brings up a memory she’d rather forget. Which as far as I can tell is just having been in this town before. She doesn’t elaborate.

She bitches about how much it rains in Forks. Complains about the lack of sun. Complains about the cruiser. Complains about how much maintenance her FREE truck will require. Her dad tells her he’s already got that arranged in an affordable way because he thought of everything and just wants her to not be miserable while she’s there. He has no idea why she’s moved there either because apparently Bella didn’t even bother to explain her reasons to her PARENTS let alone the readers.

sheldon-gif

She says that her being happy in Forks is an impossibility. What a miserable bitch. It is ALWAYS possible to be happy when your biggest problem seems to be that you don’t like the weather. You just need to suck it up and realize that there’s more to life than sun bathing, which you clearly didn’t even fucking do anyway! She even admits the scenery is beautiful, but then adds that it’s TOO pretty. It’s ‘alien’. This bitch is just TRYING not to be happy.

She DOES actually seem to like the truck when she finally sees it, but then clarifies that that by no means means she can be happy!

“Wow, Dad, I love it! Thanks!” Now my horrific day tomorrow would be just that much less dreadful.

Anyone that likes this character is just wrong. Anyone that sees themselves in this character makes me depressed.

The room was familiar; it had been belonged to me since I was born.

I found a typo.

Leave me my petty victories

Leave me my petty victories

Charlie also bought her a computer and got the internet for her. Instead of being happy about that she complains that she’ll have to share a bathroom with him. God for fucking bid. I once shared 1 small bathroom with my parents, my sister, her husband, their daughter, AND their obnoxious roommate! And I was HAPPY about getting to stay there! Mind you that situation was temporary while I moved out to this province trying to get set up and my parents were visiting for an extended period of time, and now I have 2 bathrooms despite that it’s just me living here, but I’m also old enough to pay my own goddamn rent. So suck it the fuck up princess.

She says the best thing about Charlie is that he fucks off and leaves her alone. She obviously words it differently, but that’s what she’s saying. This man has been nothing but nice to her. We have ABSOLUTELY no reason to believe he is ever anything but nice to her. He bought her a car and a computer. He’s giving her a home where she is welcome and loved. I know people who would KILL to have loving, supportive parents. Not even ones that gave them free stuff, just ones that actually wanted them.

She starts complaining about how school is going to suck.

I would be the new girl from the big city, a curiosity, a freak.

Maybe, if I looked like a girl from Phoenix should, I could work this to my advantage. But physically, I’d never fit in anywhere. I should be tan, sporty, blond — a volleyball player, or a cheerleader, perhaps

Huh. As far as I know, the only thing the average person who’s never been there associates with Arizona is old white racists, weird new agey things/people, and Canadians who don’t want to winter in Florida… I think she’s thinking of California.

Instead, I was ivory-skinned, without even the excuse of blue eyes or red hair, despite the constant sunshine. I had always been slender, but soft somehow, obviously not an athlete

Know what it means when you’re skinny but ‘soft’? It means you’ve got almost no muscle definition at all. It means that despite being skinny, your body fat percentage is higher than it should be. Congratulations; you’re what people in gyms like to call ‘skinny-fat’ and also the type of person that tends to end up being really surprised when they’re diagnosed with diabetes later in life, because that’s a fat person disease and you’re skinny! Go for a walk every once in a while.

Is it obvious I hate this girl? I don’t think it’s obvious enough yet.

Hate Her

Maybe it was the light, but already I looked sallower, unhealthy. My skin could be pretty — it was very clear, almost translucent-looking — but it all depended on color. I had no color here.

Translucent skin is a possible indicator of several disorders including Cushings Disease, Cancer, iron deficiency, anemia…

Facing my pallid reflection in the mirror, I was forced to admit that I was lying to myself. It wasn’t just physically that I’d never fit in. And if I couldn’t find a niche in a school with three thousand people, what were my chances here?

First of all; how does not standing out physically mean you won’t fit in physically? Not being what you happen to consider drop dead gorgeous (and personally tanned blonde cheerleader types don’t generally do it for me, but to each his own) means you can’t fit in at all? And maybe if you couldn’t fit in in Arizona, you’ll have a better chance of fitting in somewhere so drastically different. Maybe you could take this as a fresh start. But I suppose that would require being open to the idea of being happy. And we can’t have that.

Sometimes I wondered if I was seeing the same things through my eyes that the rest of the world was seeing through theirs.

I’m going to guess and say you’re probably right about that! But not for the reasons you want to believe.

I skipped over her going to bed crying over nothing but her self-imposed ‘hell’ because ugh. But in the morning she eats with her dad and comments that all the pictures on his wall are the wedding photo of him and her mother, the photo in the hospital after she was born, and her school pictures. The man really loved her mother, and really loves her. I feel really bad for this guy. Instead of realizing how much her dad loves her and thinking maybe she can be okay with staying with him for the rest of the year before she goes off to college, she thinks about how embarrassing the pictures are and how she wants to try and talk him into putting them away.

She then goes on about how the fact that he never got over her mom makes her uncomfortable and leaves early for school to get out of the house. And complains about the weather. Every single thing this girl does or thinks is a complaint.

like to stop listening

The school is a collection of small buildings. Is this normal for small towns in the US? I’ve lived in a couple of small Canadian towns and they either have a regular school or you have to go to a neighbouring town that has a regular school. I’ve never heard of a school that looks like a collection of small houses…

She gets nostalgic for metal detectors. What? Why? How? Then she complains that the head office is too warm. For someone who bitches that it’s not warm enough in that town I find this irritating. She also bitches that there are too many plants.

The desk clerk is very friendly and helpful and she returns that by faking a smile and leaving as fast as she can. She gets to class (taking a whole page of needless descriptions to get there) and whines about the teacher’s response to her presence, and whines about how the students are looking at her, and goes on again about her skin tone. Then she complains that the reading list is boring because she’s already read it all and wonders if her mother will help her cheat by sending her the essays she’d already done on them for old classes and drifts off in class thinking about how to win that argument with her mother.

When the bell rang, a nasal buzzing sound, a gangly boy with skin problems and hair black as an oil slick leaned across the aisle to talk to me.

“You’re Isabella Swan, aren’t you?” He looked like the overly helpful, chess club type.

Hey! I was in chess club, bitch!  Chess club is not an insult, don’t use it like one!

Bitch I will Cut You

He asks what her next class is, she tells him it’s ‘government’, which I call bullshit on. Small town without even a proper school building and less than 400 students would likely not have the funding to have electives like ‘government’.

The guy’s name is Eric and Bella bitches about his helpfulness as he offers to show her where her next class is. I bet she wouldn’t be complaining if she didn’t think he was ugly.

She makes a bad joke and then sighs heavily and thinks that him not getting it means the whole town doesn’t have a sense of humour because she’s horrible. Eric doesn’t catch on that she doesn’t like him or that she’s horrible, so for some reason he hopes they have more classes together and points her towards her building.

Oh right, I’ve been skipping over the parts where she trips over her own feet on a regular basis. She does that a couple times.

There was always someone braver than the others who would introduce themselves and ask me questions about how I was liking Forks. I tried to be diplomatic, but mostly I just lied a lot.

Pretty sure that’s what diplomacy actually is.

She seems to make a friend whose name she doesn’t bother remembering and she picks on the poor girl’s hair and height while ignoring everything the girl was trying to talk to her about. The unnamed girl invites her to sit with her and her friends for lunch and she accepts, and doesn’t bother to listen to the names of anyone she’s introduced to. Because why even bother TRYING to make friends! She was so set on the idea that she couldn’t that she’s self-sabotaging. Sadly all these people are too dumb to catch on and they all think she’s awesome.

Yup.  Soooo awesome.  Just gonna sit here and contemplate how awesome it is.

Yup. Soooo awesome. Just gonna sit here and contemplate how awesome it is.

We finally see Edward and his family. They’re all apparently unbelievably gorgeous and she stares at them like a magpie trying to figure out how to steal a piece of tinfoil. They all have food in front of them, but aren’t touching any of it. I know this is because they’re vampires and don’t eat, but if that’s the problem then why draw attention to that fact by having uneaten food on your plates? Why bother going to the cafeteria at all?

Now that the girl serves a purpose to her, Bella can be bothered to remember her name. She gets Jessica to tell her who the pretty people are. They’re the adopted children of the local doctor and his wife. Four of the five are also dating. Which is only not weird because I know their circumstances. To outsiders that would look too much like incest to not make them stand out, so if they want to be ignored why not hide that fact?

Bella bitches that Jessica doesn’t seem to like them so that means she must be a jealous bitch. Can’t possibly be that there’s actually a reason for it. She reiterates that she thinks she must be jealous when Jessica tells her that Edward doesn’t date.

One of my new acquaintances, who considerately reminded me that her name was Angela, had Biology II with me the next hour. We walked to class together in silence. She was shy, too.

You’re not shy, you’re self-absorbed. Big difference.

60873-Alison-Brie-yes-theres-a-diffe-MSnz

Edward is in her Biology class and apparently acts like she’s the most repulsive thing he’s ever laid eyes on. The only empty seat is beside him, and he spends the whole class edged as far away from her as his seat will allow with a massive scowl on his face. She justifiably finds this unnerving and tries to hide from him and check that she doesn’t smell bad. For once she’s actually responding in a way I can see a reasonable human respond.

At the end of the class Edward bolts and Bella gets hit on by another guy. This one’s name is Mike and he’s ‘cute’ in a ‘boyish’ way. I’m either going to hate this character or feel massively bad for him. Possibly both. She comments that he was the ‘nicest person she met all day’, to which I have to wonder what was wrong with Jessica. She was nice. Her shy friend Angela was nice. Eric was nice. The desk clerk had been nice. Who wasn’t nice other than Edward?!

Mike hits on her, telling her that he doesn’t get why Edward was acting that way, because he’d have loved to have been the one sitting beside her. She smiles and walks away without responding, thinking he “wasn’t enough to ease my irritation”. Because the people around you are just tools you use to boost your mood and if they’re not good enough then you can just toss them aside right? Glad we’ve established that early.

She gets out of participating in gym and at the end of the day she goes back to the office to drop off some paperwork and there is Edward, trying to get out of their only shared class. He fails, gives her a dirty look, and she’s very confused and feels like crap. And again, that’s actually a completely justifiable response.

makes sense

Chapter 2: Open Book

The book starts with Mike being assertive and sitting next to her in English, and walking with her to her next class, and she says she’s ‘flattered’ that it made ‘chess club Eric’ (seriously, fuck you Bella) jealous.

She feels like she’s finally making strides with people now that she has a whole table’s worth of people flocking around her at lunch. If this is what she considers ‘doing okay’, what the fuck does she actually WANT? The whole SCHOOL to sit with her at lunch?

She makes a whole list about every little thing bad with the day, and on that list is that Edward isn’t there. He made you feel like shit. He acted like you were walking poison. Him not being there should be a GOOD thing.

Mike, who was taking on the qualities of a golden retriever, walked faithfully by my side to class.

I’m starting to take this personally.

It looked like I was going to have to do something about Mike, and it wouldn’t be easy. In a town like this, where everyone lived on top of everyone else, diplomacy was essential. I had never been enormously tactful; I had no practice dealing with overly friendly boys.

JfEw28h

I was relieved that I had the desk to myself, that Edward was absent. I told myself that repeatedly. But I couldn’t get rid of the nagging suspicion that I was the reason he wasn’t there. It was ridiculous, and egotistical, to think that I could affect anyone that strongly. It was impossible. And yet I couldn’t stop worrying that it was true.

You’re right. It is ridiculous and egotistical. But, I actually have to give her some leeway on this. The strength of his reaction to her probably does justify that thought coming up once or twice at least. Though the fact that she’s ‘worried’ it’s true is confusing. She shouldn’t be ‘worried’, she should be happy he’s not there, regardless of the reason. He made her feel like shit. For no reason. If someone does that to you, you should not like them. You should not want them around. And you should definitely not feel like you did something wrong. You are not responsible for how other people react to your very presence. If she had actually done something to him, fine, she can feel bad. But she didn’t. She should understand that his mental state is not her responsibility. No one should ever feel responsible for other people’s problems.

Remember how in the last chapter Bella ragged on Jessica for being jealous of the Cullen’s? Of course you do, I only mentioned it two pages ago. Well when she’s on her way home, she sees them getting into a ‘shiny new Volvo’ and notices that they’re wearing designer clothes, and thinks it’s ‘excessive’ for them to have both good looks AND money. Yet she’s totally better than Jessica. Jessica was jealous! Bella isn’t jealous, she’s just thinking of the balance of the universe! It’s a karma thing!

The isolation must be their desire; I couldn’t imagine any door that wouldn’t be opened by that degree of beauty.

Because remember kids; the only thing that matters is being beautiful.

20219-and-nothing-else-matters

She goes shopping because apparently Charlie has lived alone for nearly 2 decades without learning how to feed himself so Bella must do it. I don’t see how that’s actually possible, but okay. He doesn’t even go with her to get groceries, he just gives her money and she goes on her own and gets supper ready. Her mom’s sent her a bunch of emails wondering why she hasn’t sent her anything letting her know she got in safe, and considering my own mother does the same thing, this is another thing in this book that actually comes off as something real people do.

She tells her mother to relax and realize she’s not going to check her email every 5 minutes, but it’s been more than 5 minutes, it’s been a few days. You are her 17 year old daughter who went alone to the other side of the country and she hasn’t heard whether you actually made it or not for days. My mother would have had a heart attack by that point and I haven’t lived at home in over a decade.

[Charlie] hung up his gun belt and stepped out of his boots as I bustled about the kitchen. As far as I was aware, he’d never shot the gun on the job. But he kept it ready. When I came here as a child, he would always remove the bullets as soon as he walked in the door. I guess he considered me old enough now not to shoot myself by accident, and not depressed enough to shoot myself on purpose.

Serious moment here: chances are if that thought occurs to you, whether you realize it or not, you ARE that depressed. Please talk to someone. If it even occurs to you that that is something you could do, there’s a good chance that it occurred to you because part of your brain was considering the viability of the option. This isn’t true for everyone obviously, but I have seen people who didn’t think they were that depressed (or thought they just had no right to be that depressed) who one day found themselves completely breaking down over ‘nothing’ and trying to kill themselves. Please do not let this be you.

“What’s for dinner?” he asked warily. My mother was an imaginative cook, and her experiments weren’t always edible. I was surprised, and sad, that he seemed to remember that far back.

Sad? Why would that be sad? I would be nervous if someone was cooking for me when I knew they probably learned from someone who had a bad habit of making food that I couldn’t eat. Hell, I get nervous when there’s someone new cooking because there are lots of people who think they can cook, who don’t seem to understand what spices are for. Or who think popping a frozen pizza in the oven counts as ‘cooking’.

americas favourite flavour

It seems Charlie has some issues with Bella and her mother leaving. Over supper she tells him about the people she’s been meeting in school, he gives some background into their families, and she obviously asks about the Cullen’s because she’s obsessed with how pretty they are. He gets really mad talking about how the town won’t except them despite that they should be happy to have such a skilled doctor around, and how ‘they stick together, like a family should’. Though he also later talks about how attractive Dr Cullen is so perhaps it’s not resentment over his wife leaving him and taking his only child so much as he’s defensive over his crush.

Bella doesn’t catch on that there may have been a not so subtle dig on her mother there, and just talks about how pretty they are some more.

For some reason Charlie doesn’t help her with the dishes, which I find kind of annoying. She cooked, he should clean. It’s only fair. But apparently Meyer is pushing the more ‘traditional’ role of women in the household. Such a wonderful role model, this one.

Edward is out of school for the rest of the week and Bella obviously notices every single day he’s absent. And instead of dealing with Mike’s unrequited crush on her, she accepts going to the beach with him and his friends. Because that’s exactly how you should handle unwanted attention: just go with it!

just go with it

Bella uses the word ‘bogus’. Is that a thing kids still say? I thought that was a 90’s thing.

All in all, I was feeling a lot more comfortable than I had thought I would feel by this point. More comfortable than I had ever expected to feel here.

Oh my god! Does that mean you can be, gasp, happy?!

“Wow,” Mike said. “It’s snowing.”

I looked at the little cotton fluffs that were building up along the sidewalk and swirling erratically past my face.

“Ew.” Snow. There went my good day.

…Of course not.

And there’s more than a page of her complaining about how horrible it is that it’s snowing and people are throwing snow balls. And then she goes to lunch and Edward is back and omg you guys, it’s soooo awful! She considers faking sick and skipping their shared class. For someone who says at the start of the book that she’s a terrible liar she has lied a LOT. I am not exaggerating when I say that nearly every single interaction she has with other people something she says is tagged with some variation of ‘I lied’. This one is that her fear over Edward being back gets everyone worried about her so instead of telling them that this guy made her feel uncomfortable and unsafe and she is worried now that he’s back, she’s telling them she’s feeling sick. And again I feel the need to be serious; if someone makes you feel that fearful, you should tell someone. You have a right to feel safe. If someone glares at you like you killed their dog and they’re plotting revenge, you should probably tell someone.

She stares at Edward until he finally looks in her direction and she ducks her head and stares at her table instead. Jessica notices that he’s looking at her and comments on it, Bella considers beating her to get her to stop looking in his direction. This is our protagonist people.

heavy sigh

I’ve seen books where the main character was a jackass, but they’re usually intended to be a jackass. Either they learn some kind of lesson, you’re supposed to realize why what they’re doing is awful, or the character has some other redeeming quality that makes them still endearing enough to want to follow along. I know Bella doesn’t learn to be less of a bitch to people, I know we’re not supposed to see her relationship with Edward as a bad thing (unless you’re one of the people who wanted her to get with the werewolf I guess) and Bella doesn’t have any redeeming qualities that would give me reason to want to keep following her to see where she ends up. Remember; when you’re writing from a single perspective, the main character should in some way be likeable. Your readers should give a shit about what happens to them.

She gets to biology and Edward introduces himself, saying he ‘didn’t get a chance to’ last time. Bella starts to wonder if she’d misinterpreted his hate face last time and it hadn’t actually been all about her. If I didn’t already know it was totally all about her, I would think this was room for character growth and a lesson about jumping to conclusions.

She makes herself look smart to Edward by being really good at the lab they’re doing. She’s only that good at it because she says she’d already done that exact lab in Phoenix. So he’s impressed with her intelligence, and she gets smug about it, when really she’s just cheating. Though in her defense he’s doing the exact same thing. So they’re both smug jackasses. Awesome.

tenth-doctor-fantastic

The teacher calls her on her cheating, but Meyer can’t let the readers think she’s not smart so he says that she must have been in an advanced Biology class! Ooooo! We’re supposed to be impressed! I took mostly advanced classes in high school including Biology. Want to know why? BECAUSE THEY’RE EASIER! Funny thing about advanced classes is they tend to be paced differently and more open to discussion. They’re generally for people who actually enjoy the subjects they’re working on and want to cultivate that environment rather than just shoving a bunch of people who just want a science credit into a room and trying to get them a passing grade. It’s an entirely different environment that’s a lot more pleasant to learn in. There are exceptions, obviously. Advanced math classes are harder as there’s not really a lot of discussion to be had on calculus. But sciences and language courses? Much easier.

Anyway, we learn that she moved to Forks because Phil, her mother’s newest husband (who she says is too young for her) is a minor league baseball player and moves around based on what team he’s playing for at the moment and she felt like she was tethering her mother to Arizona. But if she was willing to move why not just move to where Phil was going? It’s not like ball players switch teams mid-season. Yeah he would travel for games but you don’t move every time you have an away game. I’m sure at 17 she can handle her mother going away for a few days at a time if she wants to go with him. There is absolutely no justification for her to move to a place she hates instead of going to a place she’d rather be with her mother (her mom mentioned being in Florida earlier in the emails, and I’m pretty sure Florida isn’t cold and wet).

“She stayed with me at first, but she missed him. It made her unhappy… so I decided it was time to spend some quality time with Charlie.” My voice was glum by the time I finished.

“But now you’re unhappy,” he pointed out.

“And?” I challenged.

“That doesn’t seem fair.” He shrugged, but his eyes were still intense.

I laughed without humor. “Hasn’t anyone ever told you? Life isn’t fair.”

Pooooor baaaaaby. I feel soooooo bad for you! Let me get out my violin!

smallest violin

Edward says he thinks she’s ‘suffering more than she lets on’ as though she’s got actual justification for her perpetual bad mood instead of her just whining that everything isn’t the way she wants it to be because she’s too dumb to realize there was a better choice. She gets snippy at him and he asks if he’s annoying her. She says she’s annoyed that she’s so easy to read, and he says he actually finds her very difficult to read. It’s a really pointless and annoying exchange that I could have done without.

The chapter ends with her whining about Mike some more and then also using the fact that he likes her to get out of doing anything in gym class, because of course. Why would I expect anything else at this point? And then she gets laughed at in the parking lot when she nearly hits another car.

Chapter 3: Phenomenon

This is a thankfully significantly shorter chapter. It’s also really stupid.

She bitches about the weather, because it had the audacity to snow and how dare the weather not take into account that she’s a klutz and never freeze over!

I felt excited to go to school, and that scared me. I knew it wasn’t the stimulating learning environment I was anticipating, or seeing my new set of friends. If I was being honest with myself, I knew I was eager to get to school because I would see Edward Cullen. And that was very, very stupid.

Yes, that is very, very stupid. Glad we’re on the same page.

In the last chapter she’d commented that his eyes were a different colour than they had been the first day and he looked at her like she had three heads.

I should be avoiding him entirely after my brainless and embarrassing babbling yesterday. And I was suspicious of him; why should he lie about his eyes?

consider the following

Perhaps because the fact that you noticed and memorized the eye colour of someone that you only have one class with who never even spoke to you when you couldn’t even remember the names of the people you’d spent three classes talking to is weird? And you’re being obsessive and creepy? And pretty massively presumptuous that you’re right with absolutely no evidence but your memory that’s clearly faulty?

She complains about how covered in ice the driveway is but I find it pretty obvious that Meyer does not come from a place where snow and ice are common. Because if she did she would know that everyone with half a brain in places like that keeps a bag of salt or sand or something on hand to spread on the ice for that very reason. And since Charlie was smart and considerate enough to put chains on her tires for her before he left that morning I would be surprised if he didn’t spread some sand on his driveway to keep her from falling.

My truck seemed to have no problem with the black ice that covered the roads.

…Okay, yeah, definitely not from the lands of ice and snow. Look, black ice and regular ice? Not the same thing. Not exactly anyway. Black ice refers to surprise ice. Ice you didn’t know was there because it’s virtually invisible on the black pavement, hence the name, and you suddenly find yourself unable to stop. Regular ice covered roads are just called ice covered roads.

This is what the roads would look like.  There would be slick ice, but it's not 'black ice'

This is what the roads would look like. There would be slick ice, but it’s not ‘black ice’

Charlie had gotten up who knows how early to put snow chains on my truck. My throat suddenly felt tight. I wasn’t used to being taken care of, and Charlie’s unspoken concern caught me by surprise.

So maybe you should consider being nicer to him? Just a thought.

For some reason when there’s a van skidding towards her in the icy parking lot about to squish her into a tiny blood flavoured Bella pancake, she takes the time to notice where Edward is standing. Because that’s definitely relevant enough to pay attention to at this specific moment in time. Though she says she ‘doesn’t even have time to close her eyes’ before she’s going to be crushed, so how the fuck she had the time to look around and assess his relative position to her is a little weird. But it’s just a plot point so it obviously had to be mentioned or we wouldn’t know that Edward is a wizard!

Wait, sorry, wrong series.

Wait, sorry, wrong series.

Obviously Edward saves her from getting killed but she smacks her head on the pavement anyway. The van keeps coming towards her and Edward stops it with his bare hands, drags her out of the path, and plants the van where people would have expected it to end up so fast that Bella says he was blurry. Obviously though she saw all of it and couldn’t at all chalk it up to head injury or confusion. Nope, she knows exactly what she saw and she must be right.

Edward says he’d been standing next to her when the car hit when she asks how he moved to her side so quickly, but she doesn’t except this. The students start swarming and someone shouts to get Tyler (the driver) out of the van. DO NOT DO THAT! If you see a car accident where there may be serious injury particularly to the head or neck, DO NOT MOVE THE PERSON YOURSELF UNLESS THERE IS IMMINENT DANGER! If you are not a trained medical professional just call the ambulance.  For the love of god you will probably kill or paralyze them! DON’T DO THAT!

She fights with Edward some more about his location prior to the crash and he promises to explain later if she’ll just piss off about it now. When the EMT’s arrive she gets mad at him for telling them she probably has a concussion. And at no point in any of this has she said ‘thank you for saving my life’. Instead she gets mad that her dad showed up. Because how DARE your father be concerned that you ALMOST DIED!

how very dare you

Actually I need to think about this for a moment. You know, most cars in parking lots, especially after a fresh snow/ice, aren’t going more than… what the hell is the equivalent in MPH, 10? Probably 10MPH. That’s enough that getting pinned between the van and her truck would definitely have done some damage, but she made it sound like it was careening towards her at highway speeds. How could she possibly not have had time to move on her own?

She bitches that Edward gets to go to the hospital without a stretcher. She bitches that her dad is there in the waiting room. She bitches that there are other kids in the waiting room. And, wait, why ARE the other kids in the waiting room? What the hell is up with that?

Apparently Tyler is in ‘rough shape’. And again I point out the speeds he was going he’d maybe have whiplash (if he wasn’t wearing a seatbelt) and could have some bruises (if he wasn’t wearing a seatbelt). Beyond that he should be fine. But he goes on and on about how sorry he is for nearly hitting her and he confirms her theory that Edward wasn’t there by asking how she got out of the way and being confused when she says he saved her.

They wheeled me away then, to X-ray my head. I told them there was nothing wrong, and I was right. Not even a concussion.

Is she implying that you test for a concussion with an X-Ray or just saying that the X-Ray confirmed no cranial fractures and they also independently confirmed she doesn’t have a concussion? If the latter; that’s poorly worded. If the former, you don’t check for concussions with X-Rays. Hell, the fact that she remembers the accident in such vivid detail practically rules out a concussion anyway. Also the way she puts that she’s making a concussion seem like the mild possibility. A mild fracture is a lot less potentially harmful than a concussion. A concussion can kill you. It can screw up your memory, it can screw up your ability to speak… There is nothing not serious about a concussion.

So I was trapped in the ER, waiting, harassed by Tyler ‘s constant apologies and promises to make it up to me.

How dare he be upset about nearly killing another human being! Suck it up, you’re annoying the center of the universe!

bow to me

Edward comes and smiles as he tells her he’s there to free her from the prison that is the hospital and his dad comes in behind him. Obviously he’s the prettiest of the pretty people. She gets snippy when Dr Cullen suggests she should go home and rest for the day because Edward gets to go back to school. She sounds like a petulant little child.

“It sounds like you were extremely lucky,” Dr. Cullen said, smiling as he signed my chart with a flourish.

“Lucky Edward happened to be standing next to me,” I amended with a hard glance at the subject of my statement.

“Oh, well, yes,” Dr. Cullen agreed, suddenly occupied with the papers in front of him. Then he looked away, at Tyler, and walked to the next bed. My intuition flickered; the doctor was in on it.

If this were any other book she would be a crazy person. Yes, the fact that he doesn’t jump for joy that his son jumped in front of a car careening towards him to save a stranger totally means there’s a cover up going on. Can’t possibly be that he’s concerned that his son could have died and it makes him uncomfortable to think about. She gets Edward alone and gets petulant again.

“You owe me an explanation,” I reminded him.

“I saved your life — I don’t owe you anything.”

I flinched back from the resentment in his voice. “You promised.”

You still haven’t said thank you. Mind your own courtesies before you expect others to.

“Nobody will believe that, you know.” His voice held an edge of derision now.

“I’m not going to tell anybody.” I said each word slowly, carefully controlling my anger.

Surprise flitted across his face. “Then why does it matter?”

“It matters to me,” I insisted. “I don’t like to lie — so there’d better be a good reason why I’m doing it.”

Every single interaction she’s had has included a lie. EVERY. SINGLE. ONE.

“Can’t you just thank me and get over it?”

“Thank you.” I waited, fuming and expectant.

…Nope. That doesn’t count.

We scowled at each other in silence. I was the first to speak, trying to keep myself focused. I was in danger of being distracted by his livid, glorious face. It was like trying to stare down a destroying angel.

1701 percent done

“Why did you even bother?” I asked frigidly.

He paused, and for a brief moment his stunning face was unexpectedly vulnerable. “I don’t know,” he whispered.

Neither do I!

When Charlie takes her home he tells her she has to call her mother and she gets so mad that he had the AUDACITY to tell her her daughter was in the hospital that she slams the door shut like a toddler having a temper tantrum. FUCK I hate this character SO MUCH!

She bitches some more about Charlie being a concerned parent and then goes to bed early and dreams of Edward because of fucking course she does.

Chapter 4: Invitations

She describes her dumb dreams about Edward which are dumb so I’m not going to go over them. She goes on about how annoying Tyler is over the next month, not at all considering that what happened was clearly traumatic for him and maybe she should suggest he seek counseling to deal with his guilt issue and help him moved past the incident instead of just getting mad at him for bothering her.

She also assumes he must have a crush on her because Mike and Eric don’t like him so apparently he’s another rival for them to fight with. And again at no point has she told them she’s not interested and perhaps they should stop fighting with each other and realize she’s not a prize for the victor in their rivalry. She just continues to be annoyed by their affection while also completely abusing it for personal gain.

For some reason everyone in the school is obsessed with her instead of Tyler or Edward. If this were any of the many schools I’ve been to (I moved a lot) the people getting all the attention would be the one that nearly did the killing and the one that did the saving. Especially since the saviour was the mysterious loner everyone thinks is attractive, and especially since every single witness says he wasn’t actually there until she was on the ground. This is not how reality works.

doesn't work that way

When he sat next to me in class, as far from me as the table would allow, he seemed totally unaware of my presence. Only now and then, when his fists would suddenly ball up — skin stretched even whiter over the bones — did I wonder if he wasn’t quite as oblivious as he appeared.

He wished he hadn’t pulled me from the path of Tyler ‘s van — there was no other conclusion I could come to.

Yes. That is totally the most logical explanation. It’s that he wishes he had let you die. Totally can’t be that he’s just hoping you’ll drop the whole thing and fuck off. Can’t be that he doesn’t care for you as a person what with how ungrateful you were to him. Nah, it’s that he wishes you were dead! Obviously! I know I do!

She gets super depressed because Edward doesn’t like her. She’s surrounded by friends (not just the clingy guys, she says her table at lunch is full of people) she’s in a loving home with a supportive and caring father, free truck, doing well in school, but because the attractive guy doesn’t like her, nothing else matters.

She says her emails to ‘Renee’ (apparently she calls her mother by her first name too instead of ‘mom’. Why? What purpose does this serve? What is the point?) ‘alerts’ her to her depression. She calls and is concerned, but Bella lies to her some more about how it’s nothing, it’s just the weather. I wouldn’t bother pointing out all the lies if she hadn’t said in every single chapter so far how she hates lying or how bad she is at it. Don’t bring attention to your characters hypocrisies if you don’t want them noticed!

For some reason they’re still planning a trip to the beach. It snowed and froze over. Unless this beach is several hours south then I am very confused as to how they think this is beach weather. Do you have any idea how cold that water would be?!

Jessica made me aware of another event looming on the horizon — she called the first Tuesday of March to ask my permission to invite Mike to the girls’ choice spring dance in two weeks.

what you said makes no sense

…Wait… oh man am I ever confused as fuck… okay… if the upcoming dance is the middle of March, that means… everything prior to this was happening in February? I thought baseball season was in the summer. Why would her mom need to follow Phil around in the middle of hockey season? Why was it surprising to everyone that there was snow in February? Why was this the first snow of the new year? Why would she move part way through the school year if she already did all the shopping and bill paying and her mother wasn’t getting rid of the house? Why not just finish up the school year in Arizona and have her mom send her money? Why are they going to the beach in MARCH in a northern state?! Why does my head hurt?!

“Are you sure you don’t mind… you weren’t planning to ask him?” she persisted when I told her I didn’t mind in the least.

“No, Jess, I’m not going,” I assured her. Dancing was glaringly outside my range of abilities.

“It will be really fun.” Her attempt to convince me was halfhearted. I suspected that Jessica enjoyed my inexplicable popularity more than my actual company.

Or perhaps she just recognizes that the guy she likes has a massive crush on you and she knows she has no chance to get him to go with her if you’re going to the dance. You really don’t like this girl do you? Why would you hang out with someone you clearly don’t like? You’ve said nothing nice about her at all! You wonder why you had no friends in Phoenix? It was because they all knew what a bitch you are while everyone here hasn’t figured it out yet!

The next day, I was surprised that Jessica wasn’t her usual gushing self in Trig and Spanish. She was silent as she walked by my side between classes, and I was afraid to ask her why. If Mike had turned her down, I was the last person she would want to tell.

Well, that is, unless she actually thought you were her friend and wanted someone to comfort her and make her feel better. But that would imply you were her friend and I probably shouldn’t make such assertions.

Mike talks to her at the start of Biology, says he told Jessica he would ‘think about it’ when she asked him and asks if Bella had intended to ask him to the dance. Instead of taking this perfect opportunity to make it clear that she doesn’t like him so he can move on and maybe her friend can have a chance, she continues to string him along by saying that the only reason she’s not asking him is because she’s going out of town that day so he should just go have fun with Jessica. She is hurting two people by doing this while also continuing the trend of attention she does not want. Everyone loses by her not just saying, ‘I’m sorry, I’m not interested in asking anyone to the dance.’ That’s it. That’s all she had to do.

He handed you the easy button and you threw it away

He handed you the easy button and you threw it away

“Bella?” His voice shouldn’t have been so familiar to me, as if I’d known the sound of it all my life rather than for just a few short weeks.

It’s not even a few short weeks, you’ve talked to him three times and outside of that he never speaks.

“It’s better if we’re not friends,” he explained. “Trust me.”

My eyes narrowed. I’d heard that before.

“It’s too bad you didn’t figure that out earlier,” I hissed through my teeth. “You could have saved yourself all this regret.”

“Regret?” The word, and my tone, obviously caught him off guard. “Regret for what?”

“For not just letting that stupid van squish me.”

He was astonished. He stared at me in disbelief.

Again; not wanting to be someone’s friend, and finding someone annoying, is not the same as wishing they were dead. The fact that Bella thinks that way suggests to me that she would rather everyone she doesn’t like die horribly. Just saying.

When he finally spoke, he almost sounded mad. “You think I regret saving your life?”

“I know you do,” I snapped.

“You don’t know anything.” He was definitely mad.

Can’t imagine why! I totally wouldn’t be mad that someone thinks I’d be okay with letting a virtual stranger die just because she kinda bugs me. That’s a perfectly reasonable thing to assume.

I kind of feel like using gifs of the actors that starred in these movies is cheating a little bit, but whatever.

I kind of feel like using gifs of the actors that starred in these movies is cheating a little bit, but whatever.

Gym was brutal. We’d moved on to basketball. My team never passed me the ball, so that was good, but I fell down a lot. Sometimes I took people with me. Today I was worse than usual because my head was so filled with Edward. I tried to concentrate on my feet, but he kept creeping back into my thoughts just when I really needed my balance.

Chances are if you need all your attention to not fall over, you probably have an inner ear issue you should really see someone about. You should probably also see someone about your obsession issues.

Apparently Tyler’s van had been completely totaled and ended up being sold for parts. Even if he’d been going 20mph instead of the more expected 10, I can’t imagine how he could have received THAT MUCH damage. I just don’t get it.

math-exam-doesnt-make-any-sense_547

Eric finds her after school and asks her to the dance, she says she’s flattered but she’ll be in Seattle that day, so maybe next time. So it’s not just Mike she’s keeping on the hook. Seriously; if you want a guy to STOP asking you out, don’t say ‘maybe next time’. They will take that literally.

When she’s trying to leave, Edward blocks her exit long enough for Tyler to come up and ask her to the dance too, and she says the same thing to him she said to Mike and Eric. Bella considers rear ending Edward’s car because she believes he’s laughing at her. This girl is massively self-absorbed. And surprisingly violent.

Jessica calls her while she’s making supper to get giddy over Mike saying yes to going with her and Bella uses her to try and get the other two off her back as well by getting Jess to set them up with her other friends. Jess doesn’t realize she’s being used so she does exactly that. If you want to know the difference between using someone and being nice to them, think about it this way: why are you doing the thing? Is it because the thing would genuinely benefit the person you’re doing it for, or are you doing it because the thing benefits you and the possibility of them enjoying it is just a bonus? If the latter; congratulations, you suck.

She goes back to making supper and thinks about Edward some more.

What did he mean, it was better if we weren’t friends?

My stomach twisted as I realized what he must have meant. He must see how absorbed I was by him; he must not want to lead me on… so we couldn’t even be friends… because he wasn’t interested in me at all.

Why are you upset by this? Other than how pretty he is, you have expressed nothing but disdain for him. It’s not because he saved your life, since you kind of seem to hate him for that. An hour prior to this you were considering ramming his car because you thought he was a jackass. WHY IS THIS A PROBLEM?! This is what you WISH would happen with the other three guys! But woe is Bella. So horrible that the guy she hates doesn’t love her.

Punch you in the face

Of course he wasn’t interested in me, I thought angrily, my eyes stinging — a delayed reaction to the onions. I wasn’t interesting. And he was. Interesting… and brilliant… and mysterious… and perfect… and beautiful… and possibly able to lift full-sized vans with one hand.

Your only evidence of his intelligence is that he kept up with you in biology. So by that logic he’s no smarter than you are. Everything else you list there is basically ‘omg he’s hot and he won’t talk to me, I NEED HIM’.

“Dad?” I asked when he was almost done.

“Yeah, Bella?”

“Um, I just wanted to let you know that I’m going to Seattle for the day a week from Saturday… if that’s okay?” I didn’t want to ask permission — it set a bad precedent — but I felt rude, so I tacked it on at the end.

Indy is confused

…I’m sorry, what? How does asking your father for permission to go to a big, dangerous city, alone, that you’ve never been to before, set a bad precedent? He’s your dad. He KIND of has a say in that. Especially since legally speaking that’s his truck you’re taking. And he’s a cop so he knows better than you what trouble you can get yourself into.

“Are you going all by yourself?” he asked, and I couldn’t tell if he was suspicious I had a secret boyfriend or just worried about car trouble.

Or, you know, maybe he’s your dad, and a cop, and worries about how the big city is dangerous and easy to get lost in and end up in a bad neighbourhood alone and in a beat up old truck that could break down. She doesn’t seem to have a cell phone to call if something goes wrong and even if she did she makes it sound like it’s a pretty long drive so he would struggle to get to her if she needed him.

“Seattle is a big city — you could get lost,” he fretted.

“Dad, Phoenix is five times the size of Seattle — and I can read a map, don’t worry about it.”

‘Daaaaad, the city I’ve lived in for years and had time to get used to with other people around making sure I was okay all the time is sooooo much bigger, so that TOTALLY means I won’t get lost at all!’ Anyway, he eventually caves after she bitches some more.

The next morning, when I pulled into the parking lot, I deliberately parked as far as possible from the silver Volvo. I didn’t want to put myself in the path of too much temptation and end up owing him a new car.

Ahhh, true love ❤ You know it’s strong when expressed through a desire for property damage.

Sarcasm

I fumbled with my key and it fell into a puddle at my feet. As I bent to get it, a white hand flashed out and grabbed it before I could. I jerked upright. Edward Cullen was right next to me, leaning casually against my truck.

“How do you do that?” I asked in amazed irritation.

“Do what?” He held my key out as he spoke. As I reached for it, he dropped it into my palm.

“Appear out of thin air.”

“Bella, it’s not my fault if you are exceptionally unobservant.” His voice was quiet as usual — velvet, muted.

No commentary, I just think that’s a fantastic burn.

Anyway, she confronts him about blocking her last night and he admits that was so Tyler could ask her out. She asks if he’s trying to irritate her to death since the van didn’t do the job, and again he gets completely justifiably pissed. She should really suck it the fuck up and piss off.

My palms tingled — I wanted so badly to hit something. I was surprised at myself. I was usually a nonviolent person. I turned my back and started to walk away.

Really Bella? Really? You’re non-violent? Shall we recount how many times you’ve thought about hurting people so far in this book?

Edward asks if she’d like a drive to Seattle since he overheard her. This rightfully confuses Bella since he said they shouldn’t be friends and that’s kind of the antithesis of that statement. But he says it’s because he was planning to go anyway and her truck didn’t look like it would make it all the way there.

“It would be more…prudent for you not to be my friend,” he explained. “But I’m tired of trying to stay away from you, Bella.”

Oh yeah, you tried so hard. I can tell.

“Will you go with me to Seattle ?” he asked, still intense.

I couldn’t speak yet, so I just nodded.

He smiled briefly, and then his face became serious.

“You really should stay away from me,” he warned. “I’ll see you in class.”

And that’s how the chapter ends. With Edward being a confusing dick.

So yeah, this is now way too long so I guess this is the end of part one and I’ll see you next week with part two of Twilight. It’s just riveting so far, I know you want to see what Bella whines about next!

Check out The Llama‘s posts on these chapters!  Till next time!

The Host Review: Chapter Forty-Two: Bait and Switch

Sorry people. I really didn’t want to give up, but after writing the review for this chapter 4 times only to have it get lost through my own stupidity or computer error, I just couldn’t stomach reading it again. So I stopped for a while hoping maybe some distance would make me able to try once more. But then I found myself feeling guilty writing anything own because I felt like I should get this done, which made me resent the book even more, which led to a vicious cycle of not getting a damn thing done ever. Then there were a lot of personal things going on distracting me even more and getting me kind of depressed, but they’re really not things I want to share here. Suffice to say I haven’t forgotten about this goddamn book though.

Which brings me to what I’m going to do with it. I can’t bring myself to review the rest of the book. I just can’t. I need to look at something new. Maybe someday I’ll come back and finish it, but right now every time I open it up to try and write that goddamn chapter a 5th fucking time all of a sudden grass growing is absolutely goddamn FASCINATING. So I won’t be finishing The Host. If you want in depth breakdowns of the rest of the chapters The Llama did finish it (and then set it on fire on her deck) and you can check it out there, but I’ll summarize the rest.

We left off with Wanderer trying to convince Ian to kiss her because Wanderer banished Melanie from her brain and then felt bad (not for Melanie or Jared though, just Jamie. She didn’t feel bad that she killed Melanie, she felt bad that she lied to her brother about it. Because Wanderer is a fucking horrible person. Never forget that) and the whole scene comes off as incredibly dumb, horrible and a lot uncomfortable. Eventually Ian gets her to explain what the fuck is going on, so he goes and gets Jared who fixes everything because of course it’s that easy.

Wanderer wants to go get alien medicine to fix Jamie’s wound (which would have been fine if anyone in this universe had half a brain, but then there would be no drama so whatever) but no one will let her go. Jared kidnaps her in the middle of the night after everyone goes to sleep and takes her to go get alien medicine for Jamie. It goes without any issues whatsoever because of things that are incredibly contradictory and make no sense and plot convenience, and Jamie lives and everyone is happy except Ian who hates that Wanderer has newfound freedom.

Wanderer starts helping the people on raids, which are now simplified to ‘go to a grocery store, walk in, walk back out’, and everyone complains that they’re bored because fuck living comfortably, risking your lives and the future of your species as a whole is so much more fun! Wanderer gets racist some more despite more claims of not being racist while totally being racist, Seeker invades their home and kills one of the humans and injures another. Wanderer talks to her and decides she (Wanderer, not Seeker, though her too) needs to give up her human host and die. For absolutely no goddamn reason whatsoever.

Wanderer uses this decision to finally reveal the tantalizing secret she’s been keeping through the whole book (oooooh, can’t you tell I was riveted?!) and it’s what I called from the beginning, she knows how to take the aliens out of their host bodies. Which, you know, we kind of could have guessed since Meyers says right in the fucking epilogue that ANYONE can remove the fucking things if they have to.

She teaches the people how to do it but makes them promise to not kill the aliens they remove, but instead send them out into space to planets so far away that they’ll not get there for a few centuries. Absolutely no one figures out she plans to remove herself except Jared. When it finally gets out, Ian physically attacks her while everyone just stands around and lets him. Eventually he consents to let her decide what to do with her own goddamn body, despite trying to convince her that Melanie doesn’t need it anymore. And Melanie clearly has stockholme syndrome because she too tries to convince Wanderer that she’s more valuable to them than Melanie is.

Eventually she goes through with it, but instead of killing her like she made them promise, they found a new body to put her in. A child’s body. Not joking. Technically mid-teens, but still. It’s really creepy and there’s some minor pedophilia vibes coming off the ending of the book, and not so subtle hints that Ian gets him some jailbait tail. Like I said, creepy.

The book ends with an epilogue of them finding another band of surviving humans who have connections with other bands of surviving humans, and their own ‘gone native’ alien. And everyone lives happily ever after. The fucking end.

Somehow that takes damn near 20 chapters. 20 chapters of rage and anger. I hate this book. I have never hated a book as much as I hate this book, and I have already read the first 50 Shades book. Which I will be covering by the way. But first things first! I will do a write up on the god awful movie for this stupid book because I fucking watched that thing you are going to have to hear about it goddammit.

As for Twilight, which was the next planned book after this one, The Llama has already read the entire series and said that the entire first book can pretty much be summed up by ‘and the stupid whiney teenager bitches about the weather. And then bitches about the weather some more. And then bitches about the weather some more.’ So there’s really just not enough to talk about. We will both do up reviews for each book as a whole and then it’s accompanying movie. After that we’ll move on to 50 Shades, which at least actually does have things to talk about in every chapter, even if they are almost as rage inducing as the crap in this book, at least it’s different.

So, yeah, sorry about this, I really did want to finish it, and maybe someday I will, but for now I just want to try and get back into writing SOMETHING again, and I can’t do it as long as that book is hanging over my head. And as you can see all you missed was me going ‘WHY WON’T THEY ALL DIE?!’ over and over again while nothing at all happened. Even the parts that sounded like something interesting may have been happening, I assure you nothing interesting happened. The bit where Seeker kills someone happens 100% off screen and all of the characters respect Wanderer too much to even seek revenge, because that’s TOTALLY how that would work. There’s almost an entire chapter with them just watching alien TV and complaining about how boring it is. This book is just so fucking much nothing. And yet I could talk about a problem with damn near every goddamn word choice. It’s fucking ridiculous.

If you do like this book, I’m sorry, but I have no idea how. I can’t imagine how anyone could actually enjoy it. It’s shallow, it’s stupid, the relationships are abusive, the characters are unlikeable, the science makes no sense at all, the plot is paced so slow a snail would look fast by comparison… I just do not get it.

Oh, in case you were curious, the one that dies is the guy we were supposed to feel happy got hooked up with the girl we didn’t know. That’s another big problem with this book, none of the characters outside the main that we were supposed to remember and care about in some way were at all memorable. I had to remind myself who they were on a regular basis and I was doing in depth analysis on this fucking book. How the hell did anyone know who the fuck they were talking about when they WEREN’T analyzing every fucking sentence?! Wess? Was that his name? I think it was Wess. I looked it up because I didn’t want to reread that chapter AGAIN to try and remember, but even the Wikipedia entry didn’t care enough to mention him by name.

Whatever, the book is terrible. I hate it. And I wish I had a physical copy to set on fire like Llama did. I also wish she had recorded it burn to post online.

See you Tuesday with a write up on the worst movie I’ve actually sat through. And not the fun kind of bad, just the bad kind of bad. It’s just terrible. Really really terrible.

Till next time!

The Host Review: Vanished (Ch 41)

Hey look I’m still alive!  It’s a miracle!

Stephen-colbert-celebration-gifAnd now I have to get back to The Host…

Well that took the air out of my... duck.

Well that took the air out of my… duck.

This chapter starts with Wanderer describing how long Ian sits there in silence with her.  Apparently they sit there for 3 days, with Ian only getting up to get food and water that Wanderer never touches.  After Ian finally clues in that she’s not eating on purpose, he joins her little hunger strike.  I have issues with this.

She does state that when he would leave she would ‘relieve herself’ in the sulphur pools, but she doesn’t state that she drinks the water.  Three days is the exact length of time it takes for you to literally die of dehydration.  By day 2 she would have been so thirsty she would drink her own urine if she had to.  Especially since it’s been displayed that Wanderer has practically no self-control.  Mourning would not make her not die from refusing to drink the water.

She goes on about how when she needs to sleep she purposefully makes herself uncomfortable.  This goes back to what I was talking about many chapters ago, how Wanderer seems to display a desire for self-flagellation.  This, as I have said many times in the past, is ridiculous and not something you should strive to emulate.  You cannot punish yourself for the actions of others, and you shouldn’t seek out punishment for your thoughts and feelings (she appears to be punishing herself for having to feel human emotions).  It’s a sign of a deeply ill person (or one who happens to be into kinky sex, no judgement if that’s your thing, I’m talking about the ones who don’t get sexual gratification from being told they’re naughty).

The first night, because Ian is a horrible human being that doesn’t AT ALL understand how Wanderer thinks or feels, she wakes up cradled in his lap and she freaks the fuck out for good reason.  Apparently her reaction was so harsh that he actually DID get the message.  Good for her.

On day three, he begs her to eat, and touches her again, to which she again flinches violently.  Ian does not fucking learn.  I’ve known guys like this.  They think ‘don’t touch me’ just means ‘try harder’.  This is not what it means.  I have never met a girl who says ‘don’t touch me’ when they mean ‘please give me a hug’.  Ever.  And if you have, that still doesn’t mean that that’s what EVERY girl (or even most) means when she says that.  Golly gee, women are people too, with unique personalities and thoughts of their very own!  And when they make it violently clear that they don’t want to be touched, IT USUALLY MEANS THEY DON’T WANT TO BE TOUCHED!

Kindly fuck off

“Please don’t hate me. I’m so sorry. If I’d known… I would have stopped them. I won’t let it happen again.”

Except you DID know.  I know you knew because you tried to stop her from going down there instead of going down there yourself and telling them they’re awful.  You weren’t concerned with the moral implications, you were only concerned with what Wanderer might think if she saw it.  If you cared about the morals you would have gone down there and told them to stop.  You would have told them to go fuck themselves for being insensitive pricks.  You’d have called Doc out on the Hippocratic oath (First do no harm).  You’d have called Jared out on risking Melanie’s life by potentially getting Wanderer to hate them and find a way to turn them all in.  But no, you just used it as an excuse to stay close to Wanderer, because that’s all you give a shit about you selfish douchebag.

He would never stop them. He was just one among many. And, as Jared had said, he’d had no objections before. I was the enemy. Even in the most compassionate, humankind’s limited scope of mercy was reserved for their own.

Oh please, tell that to my cat.  Or the fish I made my parents help me build a coffin for and bury in the yard instead of flushing him down the toilet.  Or the dog my dad was so attached to he spent thousands of dollars in vet bills and took her to a doggy dermatologist when all else failed to try and find out what was wrong with her instead of just putting her down.  Or the police dog in the city I live in that got stabbed in the line of duty and people were calling for the assailant to be tried for full blown murder over the dog’s death.  Tell the people who go out and risk their lives attacking whaling boats that they only care about other human beings (I neither endorse nor support the attacking of whaling boats.  The fact that they’re horrible doesn’t mean they aren’t a good example of empathy and compassion for non-humans).

The average person would lose their shit if someone hurt this baby sloth.

The average person would lose their shit if someone hurt this baby sloth.

I can think of millions of examples of people caring more about pets and wild animals than their fellow man.  The fact is, in this books universe, Wanderer’s species attacked and for all intents and purposes, brutally murdered almost the entirety of mankind.  Sorry if I don’t have a lot of sympathy for the fact that a few of them get killed trying to find a way to save mankind.  And Wanderer can go fuck herself for thinking that means humans lack compassion for anything non-human.  They simply lack compassion for the species that committed genocide against them.

I knew Doc could never intentionally inflict pain on another person. I doubted he would even be capable of watching such a thing, tender as his feelings were. But a worm, a centipede? Why would he care about the agony of a strange alien creature? Why would it bother him to murder a baby–slowly, slicing it apart piece by piece–if it had no human mouth to scream with?

Pretty sure I established that Doc was crying over what was done.  Pretty sure that means he DID care, and it DID bother him.  Though not sure how she expects them to be able to tell what the hell the difference between a baby and an adult is when they can’t see them until they’re extracted and they all act relatively similarly.

“I should have told you,” Ian whispered.

Would it have mattered if I’d simply been told rather than having seen the tortured remains for myself? Would the pain be less strong?

Anyone that genuinely believes there’s no difference between finding out someone died and being there to see it themselves, has clearly never witnessed a death.  There is a massive difference.  Especially when the death is violent as it was in this case.  The pain would still be immense, but it would in no way be comparable.

Ian got up and walked quietly away.

I could make no sense of my emotions. In that moment, I hated the body I was bound to. How did it make sense that his going depressed me? Why should it pain me to have the solitude I craved? I wanted the monster back, and that was plainly wrong.

It’s been several days since the event, he’s been there the whole time without hurting you.  You have had time to absorb the event and the shock is wearing off.  It is in no way unreasonable to not want to be alone when mourning a death, even if you feel like you should be, or that since you’re not talking, it shouldn’t matter.  Humans are a social species, and we long for groups.  Even if we hate the people around us, most people would rather not be alone.  It’s not wrong.  Especially since everything implied about the aliens, they’re a social species as well.  So it would be odd for her to genuinely prefer loneliness to sympathetic company.  She just comes off as a petty child the way she put that.

petty-and-tiny

Shortly after Ian disappears, Jeb comes sauntering in with a lamp that he flashes in her face.  This amuses me because I hate Wanderer and I enjoy seeing her suffer for her stupidity.  He sits down beside her hole in the wall and asks if she plans to starve herself in a non-chalant, almost cheery way.

I glared at the stone floor.

If I was being honest with myself, I knew that my mourning was over. I had grieved. I hadn’t known the child or the other soul in the cave of horrors. I could not grieve for strangers forever. No, now I was angry.

Yes, we gathered that with all your petty comments about monsters.

“You wanna die, there are easier and faster ways.”

As if I wasn’t aware of that.

“So give me to Doc, then,” I croaked.

Jeb wasn’t surprised to hear me speak. He nodded to himself, as if this was exactly what he’d known would come out of my mouth.

Yes, I too expected a childish response that completely ignores their justification for what they did and the knowledge she should reasonably have that he would never do the same to her and why that would be.  It’s pretty easy to tell how a simple person will react to something too complicated for them to understand.

It is surprisingly difficult to not be a condescending dick to Wanderer at this point in the book.

It is surprisingly difficult to not be a condescending dick to Wanderer at this point in the book.

“Did you expect us to just give up, Wanderer?” Jeb’s voice was stern and more serious than I had ever heard it before. “We have a stronger survival instinct than that. Of course we want to find a way to get our minds back. It could be any one of us someday. So many people we love are already lost.

“It isn’t easy. It nearly kills Doc each time he fails–you’ve seen that. But this is our reality, Wanda. This is our world. We’ve lost a war. We are about to be extinct. We’re trying to find ways to save ourselves.”

She may have seen the effect on Doc, but she doesn’t seem to give a shit, so I wouldn’t bother mentioning it.  God forbid you kill the things that killed your kind.  How dare you retaliate and try and get your home back!  How dare you try and find a way to free the people trapped inside their own bodies!  You evil evil people!

For the first time, Jeb spoke to me as if I were a soul and not a human. I had a sense that the distinction had always been clear to him, though. He was just a courteous monster.

Oh for fucks sake, GET A THESAURUS ALREADY!  And go fuck yourself while you’re at it!

I couldn’t deny the truth of what he was saying, or the sense of it. The shock had worn off, and I was myself again. It was in my nature to be fair.

Tom Laughing

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA, good one!  Yeah, you were SOOOO fair to Doc earlier, and calling Jeb a monster for essentially doing to your people what they did to his, while believing that your people have a right to have done so, that’s completely fair.  And your behaviour towards the Seeker earlier in the book, that was totally fair right?  And Kathy?  And quitting your job with no notice because you wanted to kill Melanie, that was fair too right?  And constantly not listening to Melanie simply because you didn’t like her, totally fair.  Cutting your hair short to piss her off, telling Seeker about Jamie, all just spectacularly fair.  Reverting to thinking of the humans as awful the chapter after Walt’s death where you admitted your species was wrong, that was justified.  Yup, you’re just so fair!

Some few of these humans could see my side of things; Ian, at least. Then I, too, could consider their perspective. They were monsters, but maybe monsters who were justified in what they were doing.

‘Some few’?  I can’t tell if that’s a grammatical error or just one of those ‘it’s technically right, but…’ situations.  Also, Ian DOESN’T see your side of things, he just doesn’t want you to hate him.  Don’t get sucked in!  It’s too late for that though, isn’t it?  And calling them monsters for doing something you think is justifiable is kind of backhanded and stupid, so you should probably just piss off and accept that maybe you were WRONG.

Of course they would think violence was the answer. They wouldn’t be able to imagine any other solution. Could I blame them that their genetic programming restricted their problem-solving abilities in this way?

EXCUSE me?!  What?!  What the hell else did you expect them to do?!  Open up peace negotiations?!  Your species kills or implants them on sight!  They kill themselves AND their host the second they see a human if they don’t have a means of defense!  HOW EXACTLY DO YOU WANT THEM TO RESPOND!?  Surgery ISN’T violent by nature!  They drugged them and attempted to extract the aliens inside!  You make it sound like they bashed these people over the head, ripped the aliens out and then beat them against the wall!  That is NOT WHAT HAPPENED!

I cleared my throat, but my voice was still hoarse with disuse. “Hacking up babies won’t save anyone, Jeb. Now they’re all dead.”

He was quiet for a moment. “We can’t tell your young from your old.”

“No, I know that.”

What pineapple express

Then why did you make it sound like that makes them so much worse when they had no way of knowing, and you KNOW they have no way of knowing?

“Your kind don’t spare our babies.”

“We don’t torture them, though. We never intentionally cause anyone pain.”

“You do worse than that. You erase them.”

“You do both.”

Really?  You don’t think what you did to Melanie was torture?  I beg to differ.  But if you say you don’t intentionally cause pain, then you should acknowledge that they didn’t either.  They were trying to extract the aliens, not kill anyone.  They failed.  Failure is obviously not intentional.  If you’ll make the distinction for your species you should make it for the humans too.  Otherwise you’re still a massive hypocrite.  Not that I expected anything different.

She goes on about how the threads of the aliens shred the humans’ brains as soon as they try and remove them.  Jeb confirms, and says it’s hard to watch.  Thus showing her that violence is as unpalatable to humans as it is to her, they only do it because they HAVE to.  But of course she doesn’t acknowledge that, and just goes on about how stupid they are for having tried it at all, saying it’s all so simple they should have known.  But how the hell would they know that?  They were trying to save the lives of the humans from the alien species that enslaved them the only way they could possibly have known how, and experimenting in an attempt to get closer to the answer that would solve the riddle. That’s what humans do. That’s what ALL intelligent species do.  Humans, apes, birds, dolphins… This is the process of learning.

We don’t all have the luxury of just getting to steal knowledge from other species that have already gone through all these learning processes. But if I recall correctly, she stated earlier in the book that in order to get medications that cured all ills they abducted humans and experimented on them.  That’s somehow NOT torture?  They never had ONE ‘patient’ that died in that process?  No one ever got so scared they killed themselves to escape the giant spider aliens that were experimenting on them?  Oh, but Wanderer wasn’t there for that!  So while if she actually stopped to think about it for 5 whole seconds she would realize her species is no better, she’s never actually HAD to stop and think about it for 5 whole seconds so it never occurred to her!

the finger

“Jeb, we are relatively tiny creatures, utterly dependent on unwilling hosts. We wouldn’t have lasted very long if we didn’t have some defenses.”

‘Unwilling’ is the important word there.

“I’m not denying that your kind have a right to those defenses. I’m just telling you that we’re gonna keep fighting back, however we can. We don’t mean to cause anyone pain. We’re makin’ this up as we go. But we will keep fighting.”

We looked at each other.

“Then maybe you should have Doc slice me up. What else am I good for?”

“Now, now. Don’t be silly, Wanda. We humans aren’t so logical as all that. We have a greater range of good and bad in us than you do. Well, maybe mostly the bad.”

I nodded at that, but he kept going, ignoring me.

Oh for fucks sake Jeb!  It’s not ‘mostly the bad’!  The bad is NOT the default!  Kyle is bad.  Ian is bad (though no one in the book will EVER admit that) other than that everyone is just doing what they think is RIGHT.  YOU JUST SAID YOURSELF that you didn’t INTEND to hurt the aliens!  You just wanted those people to have their bodies back!  That’s NOT *bad*!  And Wanderer is a massive bitch for agreeing that they’re evil!

Jeb rambles on about how people put those they know above those they don’t as though that’s some kind of human flaw.  This irritates me.  We do that because you can’t trust someone that’s going to abandon you because you mean no more to them than anyone else.  You can’t build a society in a world where no one values the people around them strongly.  If you can just up and walk away from your family because you decide to give being a part of a different family a try, then bonds can’t be built and societies can’t function.  It’s feeling a strong desire to be with and protect your loved ones that builds communities.  It is a biological imperative to encourage people to raise their kids, and help raise the next generation.  There’s nothing at all inherently illogical about it!  If you’re looking at it from a strictly mathematical view, then yeah, one life is worth one life.  But the system is SO MUCH more complicated than that.

Let me put it this way.  Octopi are incredibly intelligent animals.  They can solve complex puzzles, they can learn from one another, and they can use tools, like humans.  So why haven’t octopi taken over the world?  Because they have no social bonds.  They have to learn everything from scratch, they don’t teach the new generation everything they know like we do, so the next generation can’t expand on the species base knowledge.  They’re capable of learning from one another, experiments have proved that.  But after they hatch out of the eggs, the mother dies and the father doesn’t give a shit about their existence.  So away they go, to learn everything their parents already figured out, starting from scratch.  That’s why bonds matter, from an evolutionary perspective.

He is just one loving parent away from world domination.

He is just one loving parent away from world domination.

Wanderer does actually bring up the only valid point she makes in the entire conversation; that it’s unreasonable of them to expect her to just sit back while they murder her kind.  And since she knows they can’t let her leave, and she can’t sit around while they do that, she says they might as well just kill her and get it over with.

Jeb agrees that her point is valid, but says rather than kill her they’ll just make sure not to do that anymore while she’s around.  He says Doc can’t handle doing it anymore anyway as it upsets him too much.  This of course means nothing to Wanderer as she basically hates Doc now despite what she said about how they have a special connection after Walt’s death and the fact that it wasn’t Doc’s idea, and Doc was by far the most upset by it, but Ian, Jared, Jeb and Kyle she’s fine with, it’s just Doc who gets the stigma attached to him.  Because that makes total sense right?

I took a deep breath, trying to think. I wasn’t sure if we’d come to an accommodation or not. Nothing made sense in this body. I liked the people here too much. They were friends. Monstrous friends that I couldn’t see in the proper light while sunk in emotion.

I hate Wanderer so much.

Jeb finally gets her drinking some water and then Ian comes in, and she complains about feeling guilty for having caused Ian so much pain by ‘hurting herself’.  Because she’s so noble and caring right?  She just has no empathy at all so she can’t understand anyone’s perspective but her own, including the perspective of the person living inside her head whose memories she shares.  She didn’t care he was in pain when she was mad at him, and now he’s still a ‘monster’ but she feels guilty about making him suffer because if she didn’t then the reader might realize she’s not actually selfless and caring at all, she’s actually a self centered bitch.

“Sorry,” I whispered.

He turned his hand up to hold mine. “Don’t apologize to me.”

“I should have known. Jeb’s right. Of course you fight back. How can I blame you for that?”

“It’s different with you here. It should have stopped.”

But my being here had only made it that much more important to solve the problem. How to rip me out and keep Melanie here. How to erase me to bring her back.

“All’s fair in war,” I murmured, trying to smile.

He grinned weakly back. “And love. You forgot that part.”

I find so much wrong with this exchange I’m not even sure I can talk about it…  I’m hoping by now the part of her reaction doesn’t need me to explain why it’s awful, but, that last line?  I think that deserves to be talked about.

Lets get down to business

In this context, he’s implying that it’s fair for him to use her trauma to get her to like him.  It’s fair for him to use this as an opportunity to make himself look better compared to Jared so she will love him instead.  That is what he is saying there.  ‘It’s different with you here, it should have stopped’, followed by ‘all’s fair in love’, he’s literally saying that she should interpret Jared as her enemy and him as her knight in shining armour.  Because he is a selfish dick who just wants to look good to her so he can fuck her.  He does not care AT ALL about her species, only her.  He’s not saying it should have stopped because it was wrong, or they should have realized it wouldn’t work, he is ONLY saying it shouldn’t happen because of her presence.

“Okay, break it up,” Jeb mumbled. “I’m not done here.”

Jeb doesn’t like the way Ian treats her either.

I looked at him curiously. What more was there?

“Now.” He took a deep breath. “Try not to freak out again, okay?” he asked, looking at me. I froze, gripping Ian’s hand tighter. Ian threw an anxious glance at Jeb.

“You’re going to tell her?” Ian asked.

“What now?” I gasped. “What is it now?

Jeb had his poker face on. “It’s Jamie.”

Those two words turned the world upside down again.

For three long days, I’d been Wanderer, a soul among humans. I was suddenly Wanda again, a very confused soul with human emotions that were too powerful to control.

So Ian knew that something was wrong with Jamie this whole time, but intentionally kept it from her.  And doesn’t want her to know, because he only just got her talking to him again and god forbid something distract her from him.  I’m sure his justification would be that she’s still so upset she can’t handle more bad news at the moment, but I’m pretty sure being upset doesn’t make all other bad things in the world stop happening and the average person would feel like shit if they didn’t know their loved one was seriously injured/sick/dying while they were off moping.  There is no justification for keeping it from her, and he’s a massive dick for doing so.

Also, again, go fuck yourself Wanderer.  You have never stopped being Wanderer, a soul among humans.  You have never stopped viewing them with distain, and you have never considered yourself one of them.  You have expressed numerous times how annoyed you are by having to suffer out their emotions and how frustrating it is that you care for them.  You aren’t confused, you’re annoyed.  Big difference.

This big

She freaks out and jumps up but gets woozy as her blood pressure would be quite low at the moment and jumping up suddenly would cause all the blood to rush from her head.  She doesn’t seem to have the other symptoms this would cause like losing the ability to see temporarily and falling into the wall because you can’t stand up straight under your own power, but whatever.

Jeb tells her to calm down, Jamie’s just upset and wants to know where she is and that she’s alright, and no one would let him check on her.  Because everyone in this cave apparently thinks keeping everything from him is the best way to go despite how that has not worked out at all.  He says that the wound on his leg is infected, but that he’ll be okay, and she should get something to eat and get cleaned up before she goes to see him.  Tells her that she’ll just upset him even more if she goes to him in the condition she’s in now, and obviously that’s not a good idea.

Jeb says he was here because Jared was getting impatient, ready to go in and forcibly remove Wanderer from her wallowing because Jamie’s health is more important than Wanderer’s mourning, and stress DOES affect your health, but Jeb wanted to try and get her to come along willingly before dragging her out.  Personally I wouldn’t grant her the kindness, but that’s only because I have to read all of her horrible, horrible thoughts.

“What’s being done?”

Jeb shrugged. “Nothin’ to do. Kid’s strong; he’ll fight it off.”

“Nothing to do? What do you mean?”

“It’s a bacterial infection,” Ian said. “We don’t have antibiotics anymore.”

“Because they don’t work–the bacteria are smarter than your medicines. There has to be something better, something else.”

Fuck Science

‘Don’t work’?!  Tell that to my abscessed tooth from after a filling fell out!  I was 24 hours from death (not exaggerating) by the time I got to a hospital (which was only 18 hours after I knew I was sick) and they put me on the strongest antibiotics available.  Within 24 more hours the infection was nearly gone and I went from high fever, nausea, vomiting, the inability to stand, barely able to breath, and barely able to move, to feeling practically back to normal.  Antibiotics work fucking miracles and you can go fuck yourself for suggesting otherwise.

And of course she’s soooo upset that she gets in ‘a daze’ and wanders off ‘mechanically’.  Because she didn’t just spend the last 3 days calling the whole human race, including Jamie, monsters who she wanted to escape from.  Yeah, yeah, shock wore off, blah blah blah.  She never admitted they weren’t monsters, just that she understood their flawed logic.  She still thinks they’re all awful.  She’s basically just tolerating them because she logically doesn’t have a choice.  She basically admitted she hates them, and only has emotions for them because of the body she’s trapped in.  But if she wasn’t upset over Jamie’s illness (which Jeb has made sound pretty damn minor) she would come off as heartless and the readers wouldn’t like her anymore, and she wouldn’t seem so selfless and perfect.  I hate this book.

“Knew she was gonna overreact,” Jeb grumbled.

“So why did you tell her?” Ian asked, frustrated.

Jeb didn’t answer. I wondered why he didn’t. Was this worse even than I imagined?

I would assume he didn’t answer because that’s a really stupid question.  Just because someone takes bad news badly doesn’t mean you can protect them from it.  As I stated earlier, Wanderer’s feelings matter a LOT less than Jamie’s HEALTH.  But again, Ian is only thinking about Wanderer.  No one else matters at all to him.  But he’s not even thinking about her long term feelings.  How would the supposedly selfless and caring Wanderer react to finding out that Jamie had been sick the whole time she was moping and she hadn’t been there to help?  After she got out of that funk she would probably take that pretty goddamn badly.  And you have no right to keep it from her.  It should have been her decision whether or not that was important enough to stop her mourning process to be with him, not theirs.  If my ward was seriously ill while I was mourning the death of a distant family member, I WOULD WANT TO KNOW!  What the FUCK is wrong with Ian that he thinks anything different?!

what-the-hell-is-wrong-with-you

Wanderer heads straight to Jamie’s room instead of the cafeteria to eat like Jeb suggested.  Remember, he suggested she get something to eat and get cleaned up so when she saw Jamie she wouldn’t stress him out and make him worse.  Jeb wanted Jamie to think Wanderer was okay so he wouldn’t panic.  Wanderer ignored that advice because SHE was so upset she HAD to see him for her OWN sanity.  Again, stress DOES affect recovery from illness, and Wanderer is ignoring Jamie’s mental and physical well-being to attend to her OWN needs, YET AGAIN.  I will also remind you that she KNEW he was injured BEFORE she holed up for THREE DAYS.  She didn’t ask how he was, she didn’t even WONDER.  No, she was too absorbed in her own emotions.  And now she’s doing the same thing again.  Her own feelings are the only ones that truly matter.  Everything is about her.

Wanderer has displayed EVERY SINGLE ONE of these behaviours in this chapter.

Wanderer has displayed EVERY SINGLE ONE of these behaviours in this chapter.

Apparently there’s a bunch of people in Jamie’s room crowding around him, which makes no sense to me at all.  Unless they legitimately think he’s dying I can’t understand why they would all be there.  And even if they DO believe he’s dying, they STILL shouldn’t all be there.  As far as I can tell from the description, the room isn’t that big and they do still have to work.  Not to mention the fact that while Jamie does seem to be well liked, it’s kind of weird for a bunch of unrelated adults to all crowd into a room with a dying boy, rather than letting his family and closest friends have a little privacy with him.

I was vaguely aware of Jared, leaning against the far wall with his hands clasped behind him–a posture he assumed only when he was really worried. Doc knelt beside the big bed where Jamie lay, just where I had left him.

Why had I left him?

Because you’re a self centered bitch that doesn’t understand that true empathy requires caring about other people even when you’re upset?

She sees that Jamie is looking sickly and the wound is red, Jamie’s face is red, and he’s not breathing well.

“Jamie, baby, how are you?”

“Stupid,” he said, grinning. “Just plain stupid. Can you believe this?” He gestured to his leg. “Of all the luck.”

Is it just me or does he sound like an old man there?  I don’t know any kids of ANY age that would word the situation like that.  The sentence structure comes off as ‘old man’ but the choice of the word ‘stupid’ seems childish, so maybe he’s just trying to sound older…

After she talks to Jamie a bit and takes back calling him a monster (words I will make her eat later in the book) he asks how Melanie is, hoping she’s not too worried about him.  She says of course Melanie is worried, but this is yet another of the many lies this supposedly terrible liar has successfully told.  She hasn’t spoken to Melanie in 3 days since she yelled at her.

She finally clues into that fact after she says that and realizes she said it by instinct rather than actually hearing it from Melanie.  Which means she actually lied instinctually.  The character who ‘can’t lie’ lies so proficiently that she doesn’t even have to think about it, it just happens.  Yup, she’s just the most perfect, nicest character ever in the history of fiction!

Best Liar Award

She panics over Melanie’s disappearance, and Jamie notices.  He gets worried that she doesn’t look healthy, saying she looks pale and weak, getting worried about her condition.  Just as Jeb warned her would happen.  AGAIN she lies through her teeth (without even having to make up some excuse to herself like she normally does when she lies) telling him that it’s just that she’s tired and hasn’t gotten clean in a while.  He tells her to eat, and she obviously doesn’t want to leave him, so Ian offers to go bring her and Jamie back some food.  She asks Ian to stay though, which justifiably throws him off since the last chapter she was basically telling him to fuck off with her body language.  But he agrees to stay and sends Wes off instead.

She asks Jamie if it’s okay if she goes and gets clean, and he of course assures her that it is.  She gets up and drags Ian off with her.  Everyone watches her, knowing she was up to something but confused as to what the hell it is, including Ian.

When they finally stop, Ian asks what the hell is up, and she asks if he’ll help her with something.  Of course he says he’ll do anything she wants, and she asks him to kiss her.  And that’s how the chapter ends.

I have nothing to say about this for now, because I’m going to save my rage about that for the next chapter.

See you then!

Check out The Llama’s reviews too!

The Host Review: Horrified (Ch 40)

Oh god I am not looking forward to having to actually think about this chapter…  It hurts me just considering considering it.  So much more just awfulness.  This chapter is everything I’ve yelled about in previous chapters all jammed together in one boring, bigoted, personal space invading, emotionally abusive biologically inaccurate and PAINFULLY BORING mess of a plot conflict.  That all but gets COMPLETELY FORGOTTEN by the end of the fucking chapter.  You could cut this chapter and the next one out completely and it would not change ANYTHING.  One line of bridging context to chapter 42 and bam, the book moves along, two chapters shorter.

Can I just, do that?  Can I just make up a bridging line between the end of the last chapter and the start of chapter 42 and just, not go over this chapter or 41?  No?  Dammit.

Sad Batman

The chapter starts off with her hearing voices in the distance.  She doesn’t know what they’re talking about yet.  But there’s one important thing she overhears:

“Doc didn’t want to. It was Jared’s idea this time.”

That comes up later.  I will reference it.  Probably multiple times.  Because Wanderer is a fucking moron and Meyer is a terrible writer.

The characters with names I don’t recall ever reading before here but apparently we’re supposed to remember keep talking about how disgusting something is and Jared’s motivation for doing it.  It’s clear to ME that they’re talking about trying to get the aliens out of people’s brains, but Wanderer hasn’t clued in that the people she’s listening to are implying Jared is trying to figure out how to free Melanie from Wanderer.

I moved cautiously now, putting each foot down with silent care. It was very quiet. For a moment, I wondered if I was wrong and there was no one here at all. Then, as the uneven entrance came into view, throwing a block of white sunlight against the opposite wall, I could hear the sound of quiet sobbing.

The sobbing is relevant to the Doc quote above.  It’ll come up later.

If you read my review for chapter 39 you may recall me just kind of skipping over most of the second half of that chapter because despite that it was actually plot relevant as opposed to the parts I did focus on, it was just a whole lot of words to talk about something that could have just as easily been communicated in only a line or two.  This chapter again, there’s plot relevant information going on, but I’m already a page and a half into it and there is absolutely nothing worth talking about except pointing out quotes that give me fuel to yell at Wanderer for later on.  So far it’s been her describing the sounds of footsteps and people’s voices and her walking pace.  The pointless descriptions of the scenery around her I assume is meant to set the tone but it just bores me to tears.

scott-pilgrim-bored-party

“There, there.” It was Jeb’s voice, thick with some emotion. “’S okay. ‘S okay, Doc. Don’t take it so hard.”

Hushed footsteps, more than one set, were moving around the room. Fabric rustling. A brushing sound. It reminded me of the sounds of cleaning.

Take this for example.  She just heard Jeb say that Doc was crying and clearly upset about something, and instead of wondering what was wrong with Doc that made him cry, she is talking about how the brushing sound sounds like cleaning.  What the fuck does cleaning sound like?  Meyer is trying to establish that the humans are trying to clean up the blood of the dead bodies they’ve got in there, and build tension.  But to do so she has to take her supposedly selfless character and have her not even ACKNOWLEDGE the upset of someone she, in previous chapters, declared an undying respect for due to his strength of character and compassion.  She has been declared as compassionate multiple times, thinking of the needs and feelings of those around her.  She instead thinks about the random sound that reminds her of cleaning.

No, seriously, describe to me the sound of ‘cleaning’.  What kind of cleaning exactly?  Scrubbing right?  That’s what she’s saying it sounds like.  But that’s not what CLEANING sounds like.  That’s what SCRUBBING sounds like.  Cleaning can mean scrubbing, sweeping, dusting, tidying up, organizing, washing dishes…  Meyer just had Wanderer make that association so when the time came you would understand that she had overheard them scrubbing the blood.

Scrubbing blood

There was a smell that didn’t belong here. Strange… not quite metallic, but not quite anything else, either. The smell was not familiar–I was sure I had never smelled it before–and yet I had an odd feeling that it should be familiar to me.

Alien blood.  She’s describing alien blood.  But also, you know, human blood.  She’s trying to express that she’s smelling alien blood but that also describes human blood, so I don’t know why Meyer did that.  It’s CLEAR to me that it’s supposed to be the aliens she’s smelling because why else would she phrase it like that?  But more importantly, she says at the start of this book that she’s never had a sense of smell before (because that always made sense) and now she’s saying she feels like she should have smelled it before.  How would she have smelled it before?  She’s smelled human blood before though, so she should recognize that a kind of metallic quality but not is blood at least.  She’s just trying to explain that Wanderer somehow has some innate instinct regarding the smell of her own blood.  THAT MAKES NO SENSE.

She finally walks into the room and sees Doc sitting with his head on his knees sobbing.  Jared and Kyle are standing over some dead bodies she doesn’t recognize as dead bodies because they’re covered by blankets.  She describes in detail the colours of everything and the shapes of everything and then goes on and on about the ripped up pieces of alien carcass strewn about by the bodies heads.

They finally realize she’s there and she has something resembling a weird panic attack.  I think she’s describing vertigo, but it’s all pretty weirdly put so I’m not sure.

robert_downey_jrs_not_sure_if-40577

“What did she see?”

“Nothing–nothing. The bodies were covered!”

That was a lie! The bodies were hideously uncovered, strewn in obscene contortions across the glittering table. Mutilated, dismembered, tortured bodies, ripped into grotesque shreds…

This is just another one of those things to bring up later.  Just remember, the only bodies she cares about are the alien ones.  Not the dead humans.  It will be important.

I had clearly seen the vestigial feelers still attached to the truncated anterior section of a child. Just a child! A baby! A baby thrown haphazardly in maimed pieces across the table smeared with its own blood…

I’m not entirely certain why her species would have vestigial anything, let alone feelers.  I also think she doesn’t know what ‘vestigial’ means if she’s implying they come off when the babies grow up.  Vestigial appendages are permanent fixtures, not temporary ones.  They’re useless, and outdated at the creature’s evolutionary point, but they aren’t something that the creature grows out of.  But since her species clone themselves to reproduce, they shouldn’t develop vestigial appendages to begin with.

She spends half a page describing everyone panic around her as she throws up the bile in her stomach.  Once she has ‘cleared her throat’ as she puts it, she yells at everyone to get the hell away from her, calling them monsters and torturers.

You're a monster

They restrain her, refer to her as being hysterical and SLAP her to bring her around.  Word of advice, that is the single worst thing you can possibly to do someone who is freaking the fuck out.  Especially if she’s freaking out thinking you’re vicious monsters.

My ears were ringing, but not from the slap. It was the smell–the smell of the silver blood dripping down the walls–the smell of the blood of souls.

No no Wanderer, your ears were ringing because of the slap.  Your head was probably spinning from the smell, but that’s not how anatomy works.  Your ears literally cannot ring because of a smell unless you have synesthesia and we would have known about that by now if you did.

The room writhed around me as though it were alive. The light twisted into strange patterns, curved into the shapes of monsters from my past. A Vulture unfurled its wings… a claw beast swung its heavy pincers toward my face… Doc smiled and reached for me with silver trickling from his fingertips…

This reaction feels unrealistic to me.  I’ve seen things that made me so horrified I nearly threw up, I’ve suffered traumatic over reactions to seemingly harmless things that just so happened to trigger horrible memories of past experiences that overwhelmed me and caused me to freak the fuck out, and I’ve had panic attacks.  None of them were anything like what she’s describing.  This sounds more like a bad acid trip.  I suppose it’s possible that someone could react this way, but I think it’s more likely that Meyer just wanted to over dramatize this and then connect the depressed, sobbing Doc, that, as I pointed out earlier she overheard didn’t even want to be involved with this, to the most horrible memories she can dredge up.

Freak Out

So far Doc is the single most consistent character in this entire book.  That consistency he has displayed is compassion, sympathy, empathy, and basically everything Wanderer is SUPPOSED to be.  And Wanderer is making the association of him being the absolute most heinous person in the caves.  Even though it was JARED’S idea (which I pointed out earlier for this very purpose) and Doc is clearly upset over it, where Jared doesn’t seem to care about even the dead humans, let alone the dead aliens.  But he can’t be the one she’s mad at because that wouldn’t be plot convenient.  He also can’t have objected to this because he was the one that brought them back.

Wanderer passes out, but apparently only for a few seconds.  This also seems incredibly unrealistic and plot convenient.  Apparently Ian is carrying her now.  Apparently this is something he did a LOT while she was healing.  This aggravates me.  See previous reviews for why, because I just do not at all feel like going over that again.

Ian is yelling at Jared about why Wanderer was so upset.  Jared thinks it’s because Wanderer is scared they’re going to do that to her, which is reasonable, but Ian thinks she’s upset about the bodies.  Ian is right, but I hate him, so I will point out that he makes a show of how barbaric the act was to do at all.  I will also point out that he has done this before himself, and even nearly strangled Wanderer to death upon her arrival.  He has no room to talk.

GlareQuinto

“The wrong bodies, Jared. Oh, I’m sure Wanda would be upset by a human corpse–she’s so gentle; violence and death aren’t a part of her normal world. But think what the things on that table must have meant to her.”

And this is where the quote about Wanderer’s reaction was for.  She didn’t give two shits about the human corpses Ian, you’re projecting what you THINK Wanderer is onto her.  She ONLY cared about the dead parasites.  She is NOT that ‘gentle’.

“Yes. If you or I had walked in on a human vivisection, with torn body parts, with blood splattered on everything, it wouldn’t have been as bad for us as it was for her. We’d have seen it all before–even before the invasion, in horror movies, at least. I’d bet she’s never been exposed to anything like that in all her lives.”

Vivisection?  The only other books I’ve ever read that in are HG Wells novels.  No normal person uses that word.

Wanderer finally lets them know she’s awake by insisting Ian let her go.  He refuses at first, so she starts kicking and shoving him.  She gets out of his arms and goes off running.  She couldn’t do these things to save her own life, but she can be violent now after being horrified by all the violence.  Sure.

dr-evil-right

“Let her go.”

“Don’t touch me! Wanda, come back!”

It sounded like they were wrestling behind me, but I didn’t slow. Of course they were fighting. They were humans. Violence was pleasure to them.

NO ONE in that room was happy.  Doc was actively CRYING.  The people walking away were talking about how horrible it was.  No one was ENJOYING it you fucking bitch.  I know you just saw something incredibly traumatizing, but throughout this entire book you have seen over and fucking over again how compassionate these people can be!  You didn’t even ask what the hell was going on!  You just assumed it was torture!  Maybe those people were already dead when they found them, or dying out in the desert.  Maybe the aliens attacked THEM first and they defended themselves then decided to try and learn something from the people they had to kill in self defense.  She makes a point of saying how one is a baby, but Seeker was a fresh soul, so maybe she was under one of those sheets.  Maybe she had seen them, got back up and tried to follow them back to the caves!

But no, Wanderer just automatically returns to assuming that every single human being is completely and utterly horrible and loves to fight.

She spends half a page going on at length in an incredibly drama queen esque way how horrible humans are some more as she heads to a hole in the wall of the game room.

I just really wanted to use this...

I just really wanted to use this…

It wasn’t what we thought. Doc wasn’t hurting anyone on purpose; he was just trying to save –

GET OUT OF MY HEAD! I shrieked.

She just banished Melanie.

I’m sorry so far this review is incredibly short and incredibly uninteresting.  This chapter is just so uninteresting…  Meyer spends so much time trying to set and maintain the mood that it’s just page after page of stupid melodramatic descriptions.  I might care more if I didn’t hate Wanderer so much.  If she hadn’t shown so many times that she’s still racist against humans before this even happened so it’s not even that drastic a change.  I might have cared if this wasn’t completely negating the best part of this ENTIRE book up to this point, the death of Walter.

The entire point of that section was how Wanderer finally changed and realized humans were compassionate.  Especially Doc.  She says there that she forms a bond with him over their shared pain.  That’s COMPLETELY gone now because of this.  And that’s not even an important plot point!  Nowhere in the entire rest of this book does it matter that she now hates Doc!  She just needed to blame someone other than Jared, the only logical character to blame, so it would make sense when she doesn’t still hate Jared later on!

I also might care about this, maybe, if I didn’t know already that it has no impact on the plot whatsoever.  The ONLY thing that actually makes a difference to how the plot progresses from here is her banishing Melanie, and I’m pretty sure if you cut out that little plot cul-de-sac it wouldn’t matter either!  So my claim that this and the next chapter are irrelevant isn’t even accurate, this chapter, the next one, AND the one after that DO NOT AT ALL AFFECT THE PLOT.  There is NO character growth from this.  It does NOT come up later in any way that couldn’t be cut out without even having to put anything in to make up for the cut text.  THIS BOOK COULD BE THREE WHOLE CHAPTERS SHORTER GODDAMMIT!

goddammit

It was only me now. Just me, and the pain and the horror that I would never escape. I would never not have that image in my head again. I would never be free of it. It was forever a part of me.

Until chapter 43 where it almost never comes up again.

She goes on about mourning, and how she’ll grieve in silence like that bats where she lost a friend to a fallen tree.  Except she said early in the book that she’d never had any friends.  So that’s just trying to make you feel bad for her.  I want to sympathize with her dealing with seeing something so horrible, but I have spent too much of this book absolutely hating her.  The descriptions come off as way too melodramatic, specifically designed to try and elicit my sympathy.  It just feels fake.  Obviously it is since it’s a book, but I just mean it feels more like how they would show someone being upset in a comedy, or just a really bad actress in a movie.  You just can’t get into it.

She says that her mourning is ‘stolen’ from her.  She says this before explaining that a few hours later, as she was still just sitting there in her silent mourning, that someone finally found her.  It’s rather jarring because it sounds like she’s just saying that she sits there in silence and that’s how her silent mourning is stolen from her.  It makes no sense the way it’s put and I had to read this section a few times to understand that the ‘stolen’ line is connected to the paragraph under it, not the ones above it.  YOU NEED TO LEARN HOW TO USE SECTION BREAKS MEYER!

As the people search the room, Wanderer calls them monsters over and over again.  Calls Jamie a monster twice, calls the people who find her monsters, calls Jared a monster when he shows up, calls Melanie a monster… GET A DAMN THESAURUS.  Do you see what I mean about it feeling like a bad actress in a B movie drama?

It's like watching Miley Cyrus pretend to be pitiable.

It’s like watching Miley Cyrus pretend to be pitiable.

He tries to apologize and she refuses to talk, pointing out to the reader that Jared was the one who’d ordered it, but still for some reason she hates Doc more than Jared and I don’t understand why.  She flinches when he touches her shoulder and he backs off, and tells her he respects that she wants to be alone and he’ll keep everyone away from her.

After Jared goes to watch the door, Ian shows up and does the exact opposite by fighting with Jared to be allowed to go talk to her!  He claims moral superiority, ignoring the fact that he knew about it or he wouldn’t have tried to keep her from the hospital, thus making him ‘party to it’ as he claims he wasn’t.

I huddled myself more tightly together, expecting him to touch me.

Say it with me now, I know you know what’s coming by this point: Ian’s a creep.

There was a quiet sigh, and then the sound of him sitting on the stone, not as close beside me as I would have expected.

With a click, the light disappeared.

I waited in the silence for a long time for him to speak, but he was just as silent as I was. Finally, I stopped waiting and returned to my mourning. Ian did not interrupt. I sat in the blackness of the big hole in the ground and grieved for lost souls with a human at my side.

This is how the chapter ends.  I think it’s supposed to come off as sweet and considerate.  But it comes immediately after her cringing because she KNEW he was going to touch her.  And he WAS going to touch her!  That’s why he sighs, because he understood what that reaction was for!  ‘Aww, isn’t it sweet that he invades her personal space so often she actively expects it, and that he ignored her desire to be alone yet again!  Isn’t it so considerate of him to not touch her after she flinched at even the IDEA of him touching her!  He’s so sweet!’  FUCK YOU.

82716-haha-fuck-you-gif-ken-jeong-ha-ZX5z

The actual plot events in this book are SO BORING!  The crappy filler chapters at least have bits worth talking about, even if that’s only because I would sooner stab myself in the eye than read more about Ian touching Wanderer and cow-spiders.  At least it’s SOMETHING!  Half my word count on this chapter is just me talking about how much nothing there is to talk about!

The next chapter isn’t much better unfortunately.  But I guess it does have one section that would have to be grafted onto the start of chapter 43 if the rest of this was cut out completely.

Oh wait I just figured out why this happened… Meyer had them murder people so she could have Wanderer conveniently displaced so she could be shocked by what happens in the second half of the next chapter.  Hurray.  Fuck I hate this book.

Till next time!  Check out The Llama’s review!

The Host Review: Worried (Ch 39)

This chapter is not less rage inducing than the last one.  So let’s just get this over with shall we?

Perfect, I grumbled to myself. Just perfect.

Ian was coming to join me for lunch, a big smile glued into place on his face. Trying to cheer me up… again.

That’s the first two paragraphs of this chapter.  She’s pissed at Ian because Ian still won’t leave her alone.  We don’t know yet at this point how long it’s been since the end of that chapter, but we do know that Ian is still being a clingy douchebag and it’s actively pissing her off.

I'm pissed off

“Hey, Wanda,” Ian greeted me, hopping up onto the counter beside me. He had a bowl of tomato soup in one hand, still steaming. Mine was beside me, cooled and half full. I was toying with a piece of roll, ripping it into tiny pieces.

I didn’t answer him.

“Oh, come on.” He put his hand on my knee. Mel’s angry reaction was lethargic. She was too used to this kind of thing to really work up a good fit anymore. “They’ll be back today. Before sunset, without a doubt.”

He touches them in an intimate manner SO OFTEN that Melanie can’t even get worked up about it anymore.  She is just resigned to the fact that it’s happening.  That’s depressing, horrible, manipulative, abusive, etc.  Honestly even I’m kind of burnt out on getting worked up over this.

“You said that three days ago, and two days ago, and again yesterday,” I reminded him.

“I have a good feeling about today. Don’t sulk–it’s so human,” he teased.

“I’m not sulking.” I wasn’t. I was so worried I could barely think straight. It didn’t leave me energy to do anything else.

Except that every single thing she’s said and done so far in this chapter implies sulking is exactly what she’s doing.

Sulk:

to be angry or upset about something and to refuse to discuss it with other people

to be moodily silent

So yes, Wanderer, you are sulking like a child.

Sulk

Apparently Jamie and Jared went out on a raid and Wanderer is sulking because she’s worried that they aren’t back yet.  It was supposed to be a short raid, so she figured they’d be back by now.  She continues to be pissy towards Ian, which makes her come off as childish, but at the same time, I can totally understand why she would be pissy to Ian of all people, so I give her a pass on this one.

Ian turns towards his food when he realizes she’s not going to talk to him without biting his head off and she talks about how considerate he is.  Except that he’s not at all considerate, and she even basically says that when she adds at the end of that paragraph how since Jared and Jamie have been gone he’s been pushy and she’s getting pissed.  So he’s a dick.  But whatever.  She goes on at length about how it’s been a month since she moved in with Jared and Jamie and they’ve been gone a week now.  Jared and Wanderer were still awkward around each other when they left, but she had been getting used to it, so now without them there things felt weird again.

Ian speaks up again, because apparently he can’t leave her alone for five minutes.  He asks if she’s tired and she says she’s still not sleeping well without the noise of other people.  He offers to sleep with her.  Not jokingly.  Wanderer cringes and of course Ian assumes immediately that it was because of Melanie, not him.  The fact that he was right is less important than the fact that he has never once at any point we’ve been privy to checked to make sure it wasn’t Wanderer herself.  Wanderer even says he just always knows it was Melanie, not her.  And no, Wanderer, he doesn’t.  He’s presuming because he wants to believe that the only thing stopping him from getting in your pants is her, not that you might actually not like him.

He then tricks Wanderer into going off with him somewhere.  No, seriously, Wanderer even says he looks like he had been hoping she would respond to his leading questions the way she does.

He took my hand as he led me out of the kitchen. Again, this was so common that Melanie barely protested.

Just want to reiterate, Ian is a creep.

“Ian, I’m not in the mood.”

“You said you had plenty of energy.”

“To work. Not to play soccer.”

“But Lily and Wes will be really disappointed. I promised them a game of two-on-two. They worked so hard this morning to free up the afternoon…”

“Don’t try to make me feel guilty,” I said as we rounded the last curve. I could see the blue light of several lamps, shadows flitting in front of them.

“Isn’t it working?” he teased.

A MASSIVE creep.

Creep

 

 

I sighed. “Fine. Fine. Be that way.”

Ian hugged me with what Melanie thought was unnecessary enthusiasm. “You’re my very favorite person in the known universe.”

“Thanks,” I muttered dryly.

This reminds me of when my old roommate used to bug the shit out of me to drive him somewhere since I was the only one of us to have a car (or a license).  He’d wear me down till I was so annoyed with him I’d cave so he’d finally leave me alone, then he’d get this obnoxious overly happy grin on his face, declare me his best friend in the world and I’d just glare at him while I went to get my keys.  That’s not a positive comparison.

Holy crap this chapter is boring.  The next whole PAGE is just her stretching and them taunting and asking about the rules and Melanie talking about how she misses running.  There is so much nothing going on this may very well be my shortest review yet if this doesn’t pick up.  There is just nothing at all worth talking about.

Apparently Wanderer is a master at soccer.  I find this hard to believe.  Even if Melanie was amazing at it, her body has been healing from severe injuries and prior to that she had gotten out of shape.  She shouldn’t be physically capable of kicking the asses of two people that play for fun on a semi regular basis.  Sorry, that’s just not the way it works unless Wes and Lily (you may recall Wes has appeared in previous reviews as ‘the guy who I don’t know who he is but his name keeps appearing’.  Lily I think has been mentioned before?  Maybe?) are really REALLY bad at it.

you just suck

“No one ever said she couldn’t play.”

“No one ever said she was a pro, either.”

I liked that–it made me smile.

You know, last chapter she went on at length about how she didn’t want to be liked because of Melanie’s looks, and she wanted people to separate her and Melanie more than they do.  But here she’s getting complimented for MELANIE’S skill, and MELANIE’S knowledge of the sport.  She never played soccer before.  She never learned the strategies or worked her body.  That was ALL Melanie.  But apparently that only matters when it comes to appearance.  You can take credit for other people’s talent all you want.  Honestly though I think it’s for the same reason she brought up the appearance thing in the last chapter.  She wants people to think good things of HER.  Wes and Lily don’t know Melanie.  They don’t know that knowledge came from her.  They were complimenting WANDERER.  Ian was showing physical interest in her, and that indicated he only cared about Melanie’s body, not Wanderer’s mind, and she wants everyone to love HER and think good things of HER.  So as long as no one tells them that was Melanie, she can take credit for it all she wants and have people love her.

Lily and Wes start flirting and making out.  Apparently this is some shocking revelation to Ian and Wanderer.  Since I already mentioned earlier that I had no clue who they were other than I remember reading Wes’ name before, I kind of just assumed they were probably dating anyway, so I do not find this shocking.  Since the only way I could care less about those characters would be if they were Ian and Wanderer.

Wes goes off to try and get Kyle to help them win, and Lily tells Wanderer it was because Wes treated her well that made her like him.  I don’t remember Wes doing anything one way or another to Wanderer, so I can’t back that information up.  I don’t know why I’m supposed to care…  Meyer, just saying characters names as Wanderer walks past them does not give us tangible, memorable information about them and sure as shit doesn’t make us care about them.  Do not try and make it sound like we’re supposed to already have some kind of emotional connection to these characters who are in no way central to the plot.  They haven’t even been maguffins at any point.  They have served zero plot relevance.  ZERO!  I don’t care!

I don't care that I don't care

I spent more time writing that last paragraph than I have actually thinking about Wes and Lily in the entire book prior.

Anyway, eventually while they’re waiting Ian asks if Wanderer will play one on one with him.  Melanie is excited because she seems to genuinely love this sport and it’s kind of nice to see her actually get to do something fun for HER for a change.  But that gets completely and utterly ruined almost immediately because Ian and Wanderer are both incredibly horrible people.

Ian starts playing badly, so to try and convince him to play at his fullest instead of intentionally letting her win, Wanderer comes up with a plan.  And I want to make it very clear that Melanie objects to this plan, so it’s 100% Wanderer being a manipulative bitch using Ian’s crush on her to get what she wants.  She tells him that he can share her room until Jared and Jamie come back if he beats her.  And then Ian reinforces that he’s also a manipulative bitch by showing that he was clearly losing on purpose in the hopes that she would do just that, and then he kicks her ass.

“Tired?” he asked, the innocence in his tone a bit overdone. Being funny. He stretched. “I think I’m ready for bed myself.” He leered in a melodramatic way.

I winced.

“Aw, Mel, you know I’m joking. Be nice.”

Note here that she in no way indicates to the reader that her wince was due to Melanie in any way shape or form.  Her wince was genuinely her own.  She does not want to share a bedroom with this perverted creep.  His reaction is to just assume it was all Melanie, as usual.  Everything bad that happens seems to get blamed on Melanie in this book.  Melanie certainly isn’t the best character in the world, I’ve called her horrible a fair number of times, but she really seems to just be a punching bag more than an actual character, and despite that sometimes she’s a terrible person, I kind of feel bad for her.

Lily eyed us, mystified.

“Jared’s Melanie objects to me,” Ian told her, winking.

Again, not allowing for the possibility that the reaction was Wanderer, and Wanderer not defending Melanie at all.  But also; ‘Jared’s Melanie’.  Not ‘Wanderer’s host Melanie’, not ‘the body Wanderer is stealing so she can live, depriving Melanie of her own life’, she’s described solely by her relation to a character that has spent less time in the caves than she has considering 90% of this book he’s been out on various raids.

“You know,” he said, “it’s really unfair for Melanie to make you suffer when she’s angry at me.”

“Since when are humans fair?”

“Good point.”

Typewriter Rage

…Seriously?  GO FUCK YOURSELVES!  MELANIE is the one that’s being unfair?!  And, AGAIN I WILL FUCKING REMIND YOU, MELANIE IS NOT THE REASON WANDERER WINCED!  SHE IS LETTING MELANIE TAKE THE BLAME FOR SOMETHING SHE DIDN’T DO BECAUSE WANDERER WANTS IAN’S AFFECTION, EVEN AT THE COST OF HER PHYSICAL COMFORT BECAUSE SHE WANTS TO FEEL LOVED, AND ALL THE CHARACTERS THAT LOVE HER PLATONICALLY AREN’T GOOD ENOUGH BECAUSE THEY LOVE MELANIE TOO.  THAT IS HOW HORRIBLE THIS CHARACTER IS.

AND SERIOUSLY IAN, YOU SUCK FOR THAT JUST AS FUCKING HARD!  IT’S MELANIE’S FUCKING BODY AND SHE CAN’T CONTROL HER REACTIONS TO YOUR PERVERTED HORRIBLENESS!  YOU’RE THE ONE CONTINUOUSLY DOING THINGS THAT YOU *KNOW* WILL MAKE MELANIE REACT THAT WAY AND CAUSING THE PSYCHOLOGICAL SHRAPNEL TO HIT WANDERER.  *YOU* ARE THE ONE DOING THIS TO HER, NOT MELANIE, YOU FUCKING ASSHOLE!

*Ahem* sorry about that.  I lost my composure for a moment.

“Besides, she’d be glad to make you suffer, if I’d let her.”

He laughed.

‘Haha, the owner of the body I’m trying to fuck hates me so much she causes emotional and mental strain on the woman I love by imagining ways to hurt me!’  Fucking hilarious.

“That’s nice about Wes and Lily, don’t you think?” he said.

“Yes. They both seem very happy. I like that.”

“I like it, too. Wes finally got the girl. Gives me hope.” He winked at me. “Do you think Melanie would make you very uncomfortable if I were to kiss you right now?”

I’m not sure I will ever find the words to adequately express how much I hate Ian.

Punch you in the face

Note he didn’t ask whether Wanderer would be okay with him kissing her.

Wes comes charging down the hall to declare that Jared and Jamie are back.  Ian gets depressed and mumbles about how he doesn’t get to sleep with her now because he’s a selfish shithead.

She finds Jamie and everyone is acting all suspicious.  They assure her everyone is fine, but it’s made ludicrously obvious that there’s something up.  My level of fucks I give is just non-existent.  There is nothing this book could do at this point that would make me actually feel tense about the fates of any of these characters.  They could kill Jamie off and I’d be like ‘well, there’s one less annoying character, so we have to spend even more time with the other annoying characters.  Dammit.’  I didn’t realize it was possible for a book to inspire so much bitter rage in me while also BORING ME TO GODDAMN TEARS!  Ugh people.  Ugh.

mrhumphreys

Apparently Jamie managed to accidentally stab himself in the leg.  Because that’s a realistic injury right?  People usually hold knives with the blade facing down?  Pretty sure if you’re holding a knife properly and you trip and fall it’s much more likely to stab you in the upper body/head area.  But that wouldn’t allow him to have a seemingly minor injury that you wouldn’t worry over and a sympathetic limp.  Stabbing himself in the chest or face would be too significant a wound to allow for the scene to focus on the fact that they’re hiding something, the focus would be on Jamie, and Meyer doesn’t want that.

Wanderer asks why he walked all the way to the…foyer?  Whatever their big central gathering place is that’s rather vaguely possibly by the garden, instead of staying in the hospital.  He and Trudy (the female Wes as far as I’m concerned.  I recall seeing her name before, but I’ll be damned if I can tell you what she did that got her mentioned) get all sketchy and even the dumbest person on the planet would know they’re trying to hide something.  To bring my point home, Wanderer realizes they’re hiding something.

But not until after Ian comes over and laughs about Jamie’s gaping leg wound.  Because I needed more reasons to hate that character apparently.

Melanie guides her through the process of lying to figure out what’s going on since everyone is being really goddamn terrible at hiding that there’s something going on.  Seriously, they’re stuttering and making bullshit excuses that they pause part way through saying to choose their words.  It’s so painfully, unbelievably obvious.  It’s kind of irritating.  Couldn’t just have Melanie tell her she thinks they’re lying, Meyer has to make it super goddamn obvious.  Anyway, they take Jamie back to his room, Ian of course follows because of fucking course he does, but she gets him to get them food instead of sticking around.  He hesitates, clearly indicating he’s in on whatever they’re hiding from her and he’s trying to prevent her from finding out about it.  This will be relevant later, but not today.  Try and remember it in case I don’t.

Wanderer lies to Jamie saying she needs to tell Ian something and runs off.  She heads down to the hospital area since that seemed to be what they were trying to keep her from going to, but had they just been casual and said ‘Jamie was sent to go lay down because he didn’t want to sleep on those uncomfy cots, and he decided to try and find you instead of going straight to bed’, Wanderer never would have even thought to go to the hospital area because she hates it.  I thought of that excuse as I typed this.  They had the entire walk from when the boys arrived, taking Jamie to see Doc, and then walking back to the common area, which as far as I can tell is a significant walk.  And they could not come up with a lie they could tell without hesitating on how to word it.  Totally believable.

Suuuure

She describes the people she passes in the halls like she does EVERY SINGLE GODDAMN TIME SHE GOES FOR A WALK because apparently we’re supposed to know who these people are and give a shit about them or their reaction to her.  I will just point you to what I said earlier about Wes and Lily for how I feel about that.

The chapter ends with Wanderer and Melanie walking down the tunnel being mortified thinking someone’s dying again.  There’s an actual low level of tension here in the writing that I can detect, but I do not feel any personally.  Mostly because as I mentioned earlier, they could kill the kid and I wouldn’t care.  Jared could be in the hospital dying and I wouldn’t care.  Ian could be dying and I would shout for joy.  There is nothing this book can do at this point to make me care.

I didn’t talk much about the part of the chapter where something plot driving actually happens.  That’s because it was nothing but people going ‘ummm… obvious lie?  Yeah!  Obvious lie!’ over and over again.  There was nothing to discuss.

I feel nothing

Next time there will be more to discuss!  With probably more capslock fun on my part!

Till then!  Check out The Llama’s review of this chapter!