Tuesday, December 6, 2011


I have recently started my books on tape/movie project with Twilight. I do not find the writing to be as compelling as Harry Potter and didn’t love the first book. However, I am enjoying the storyline and intrigued by the world. I also enjoyed the movies and think the baseball scene is one of my favorite scenes I have seen in a movie in awhile.
I notice that it has many of the same themes as Harry Potter: love, self-sacrifice, and bravery. However, I do not feel compelled by them. I don’t cheer on the characters as they put themselves in danger as I did with the Potter series. Here are the reasons I am not as enthralled with Twilight
1. I am increasingly annoyed by the notion that men must protect and control women. While Bella is certainly a strong woman, she is constantly physically and mentally dominated by the men in the book. The notion that she must be “protected” by forcing her to do things either by not telling her something, physically restraining her or rejecting her is not a value that I want my daughter to internalize. For awhile it seemed that Jacob was not going to fall into the role but then he did it too!
2. I just don’t buy that the love is anything but lust (at least for the first book). Bella is drawn to Edward because of his vampire powers (his magnetism) and he is drawn to her because he lusts after her blood. They claim it is other things and as they spend time together one could argue they are learning about each other, but their desires to be with each other are based on the foundation of lust.

These two things really bother me. As I continue to explore the second part of the saga and the future books, perhaps these issues will be resolved. Until then I will continue to enjoy the works but won’t put them on the list of books I want to enjoy with Ella.

Harry Potter

I am a distracted driver. I text while I drive. In an attempt to stop this behavior, I have started listening to books on tape. After I finish the book, I get the movie from the library and then watch it with my husband. It is great and I am currently recovering from my texting issue. My first book was a silly mystery followed by a period piece about a strong, disabled woman and her frontier life. It was a lot of fun to listen to until her baby was eaten by a dog and another main character had a late-term miscarriage. I arrived at work in tears and realized I needed books that would be “safe”. I am a book snob and had rejected Harry Potter simply because it was popular. I decided to give it a try and fell in love! If there were more Harry Potter books, I might very well line up at midnight to wait for them!
Reasons I loved Harry Potter:
1. The writing was vivid, entertaining, and uplifting.
2. The themes of love, bravery, self-sacrifice, and justice are values that I believe in.
3. The characters were lovable and layered.
4. The experiences of youth were universal. I loved reading about their romances and disagreements.
I enjoyed the movies as well but was annoyed that the duel at the end of the last movie was so different than it was in the book.
I am so excited to read these books with Ella in a few years.