Young Adult

Review: Midnight Sun – Stephenie Meyer (Twilight #5)

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

The Blurb
When Edward Cullen and Bella Swan met in Twilight, an iconic love story was born. But until now, fans have heard only Bella’s side of the story. At last, readers can experience Edward’s version in the long-awaited companion novel, Midnight Sun.

This unforgettable tale as told through Edward’s eyes takes on a new and decidedly dark twist. Meeting Bella is both the most unnerving and intriguing event he has experienced in all his years as a vampire. As we learn more fascinating details about Edward’s past and the complexity of his inner thoughts, we understand why this is the defining struggle of his life. How can he justify following his heart if it means leading Bella into danger?

My Review
I think we can all agree that most people in the world have either read the Twilight series, watched the films or at least heard Twilight being discussed by others so I won’t rehash the main points – it’s Bella and Edward, folks, but this time it’s Edward’s point of view of the first book, Twilight.

As a total ‘twihard’ in my teens, I remember the controversy and craziness of the fandom when the partial draft of Midnight Sun was leaked and the complete devastation I felt when it was announced Midnight Sun would be put on hold indefinitely. Like so many others, I loved this series and wanted more. I first read the series right after Eclipse’s release but well before Breaking Dawn… and the wait for that finale sucked. To get my fix for more, I spent many school nights evading homework and instead reading twilight fanfiction (aka ‘twific’). To be honest, I’ve always prefers books over people and I’m going to show my inner geek here by saying this was probably the highlight of my school years.

On a side note: I read so many amazing twifics over those years and several went on to become published books/authors. Some examples include: Lingus by Mariana Zapata, Transcendence by Shay Savage, Wallbanger by Alice Clayton, Boycotts and Barflies by Victoria Michaels, 50 Shades of Grey by EL James, Beautiful Bastard by Christina Lauren, etc.

Anyway back to the actual review, to say that I felt nostalgic reading Midnight Sun is an understatement. I felt like I had been transported back to my teen self. There were many scenes and quotes that I fondly remembered and I was left thinking that I really want to go back and read the series again soon. The Cullen family dynamic will forever be one of my all time favourites and reading Midnight Sun felt, in a sense, almost like coming home.

However, there were also several scenes that I felt were unnecessary.

Midnight Sun is a quite a large book and I’m usually a fairly fast reader but I really struggled to finish this one. Given that Edward doesn’t sleep and can hear everyone’s thoughts, I did expect it to go into more detail for some scenes but sections like Rosalie’s dislike for Bella felt a little too repetitive. There was also Edward’s (and Rosalie’s) constant insistence on Bella not turning into a vampire. It was brought up several times and maybe it’s because I’m older now but I just kind of wanted to shout “let her make up her own mind!” Conversely, seeing Edward’s point of view and love for Bella had me feeling irritation at Bella too. He is clearly in love with her in the forever truly means forever way, so Bella’s back and forth between him and Jacob in Eclipse (even if unintentional and was a result from his disappearance in New Moon) made me sympathize with Edward a lot. I may change my mind again after rereading the series but from this book that’s how I was left feeling.

Overall, I would say I still enjoyed this story. It was good to finally read Edward’s thoughts on meeting Bella and the change this would make to his life. However, I have mixed feelings on whether I think this book added anything new to the story. I think the Twilight series could have very easily stood as is without this addition, but it is still nice to hear from Edward regardless. Listening to Jacob’s thoughts via Edward’s mindreading solidified my stance on being Team Edward though! Sorry Jacob fans.

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