Goth boys are hot

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For the past several weeks many people I know have been gushing about some vampire book. They do it purposefully; they are hooked on the series and I'm sure there is some euphemism about how junkies love company but I can't remember it (i.e., I have infected Tracey with my obsession. Mwa ha). My brain isn't functioning all so great because I've been up until the crack of dawn reading the first two stupid books in that Twilight series.

I purposefully avoided it for several of reasons:

1. After watching a campy documentary about "real" vampires and realizing that the people claiming to be such were really just unattractive, delusional, video store employees I resolutely swore off any vampire books.

2. The series is classified as Young Adult. It didn't stop me with Harry Potter, but my reasoning was all "Well, that was a phenomenon, society can overlook one YA series on my bookshelves. I am in my late twenties and am ignoring my birthday next month; I don't need a book for the Miley Cyrus generation to remind me that I am, we all are, literally rotting as I type and will one day die. Yeay!

3. Everyone was reading it. I am one of those people that will go against the grain if for nothing than to prove to myself that I am not easily swayed. It's a sickness. For example: If I am walking and music is playing and I catch myself walking to the beat I will purposefully shuffle my stride so as to walk out of sync with the beat. (Also because it reminds me too much of Johnny Depp in that scene from "Blow" where he walks through the airport in time with Ram Jam's "Black Betty.")

So there were all these reasons for me not to read it, even though reading is the one thing I love to do more than anything else. I am very picky about my books, to paraphrase Anton Ego, if the book isn't good I don't go beyond the first paragraph. If it is, I have to devour it whole. Bookmarks are almost irrelevant to me. I can't read a bit and put it down; the unresolved plot drives me mad throughout the day and I literally go through the motions of living until the sky is dark and I can curl up in the chair by the window and read more.

But because all these people wouldn't shut up about it, and because I know they have impeccable tastes, I drank the Kool Aid. AND LO, THE KOOL AID WAS DIVINE.

I walked into Target, bought some laundry detergent, tampons, Twilight, and Chef Boyardee ravioli for the boys. While in the checkout I turned the book on its face and put the tampon box on top just so the checker or people in line wouldn't be all "Look at that woman buying a kids' book. She's going to read about unrequited vampire love and reminisce about her fleeting youth." Not really, but I'm dramatic and neurotic and in my head they said that.

I got home and hid the book on the uppermost bookshelf until after the boys were in bed. Then I cracked it open and instantly loved the conflict in the first sentence. I hate talking about a book unless I like it of my own will and please, dear God, don't let this be an invitation for publicists to send me a frillion more emails requesting me to look at their clients' books. I like Stephanie Meyer's frankness in writing and she was expedient and wasted no sentence on anything other than developing essential character traits and progressing the plot. Loves it. And I read and I read and Chris was all annoyed because DUDE, he had Tivo'd some UFC and it's just not as entertaining if I'm mentally away, not rolling my eyes every five minutes. I finished it early yesterday morning. I was ashamed, but I feel no need to hide my love any longer.

Then I texted him like mad and demanded that he stop at Target and pick up the next in the series on his way home.

"why can't u do it?" he texted back. (Sidenote: I can't stand "u" in lieu of "you." I will always take the extra two minutes to locate those letters on my Centro's tiny little keypad because I care.)

"Because they know I was there yesterday buying it and it will be too sad." I wrote back.

"u are weird," was his reply.

I finished it sometime after midnight.

I know why the series is so successful: because there is nothing better in life than love in its infancy. Everyone can identify with it. And because the leading male character in the story is a pale goth boy, it reminded me so much of Chris, who was, and still is, a pale goth boy. My favorite couple in the history of ever (the Darcys excluded) has always been Gomez and Morticia Adams. Basically, I am perpetually 13 years-old.

Get ready to gag: Reading this book made me think about those early days of my and Chris's courtship. He was older (is seven years older); his hair is jet black, his eyes are black and very intense. He has an intimidating persona and I was immediately drawn to that when I first met him. The way he would wrap his arm protectively around my waist if we were in a club; the way he would drive us through the hills in his sports car on the way back to my parents' house; it was seductive. I remember one time at a blues festival in Memphis, as we walked through a muddy field on makeshift sidewalks made of wood planks, I excused myself as I tried to cut through a group of guys so as to avoid walking through the ankle-deep mud all around me. One of them spit an obscenity in my face and then suddenly the guy flew off the plank and landed in the mud three feet away. I saw Chris's arms extended by my side and he stood there and glowered at the guy as the guy's friends helped him up.

"GET THE HELL OUT OF HER WAY," Chris snarled. A sane person would've been nervous but all I could think was "GAWD THAT'S SO HOT."

And just like that I was in love. While the feeling is always there, it's sometimes buried underneath daily routines, making dinner, bed head, paying bills, morning breath, yard work, et al. Words such as Meyer's pierce into those earlier memories and pull them to the forefront of my mind.

So in many respects, if could be called a silly YA series, if a critic wanted to be obtuse and elitist. And thus ends the weirdest unprovoked (as in, no one asked) book review-slash-courtship-post I've ever written.

72 Comments

Now, you're sucking ME in! Despite the fact that all my mom friends are reading this book, I've held back. I'm going to have to read it now!

I'm such a book junkie that I would have gone back to Target, shame or not. Luckily, I can borrow it from someone. Thanks goodness I didn't make fun of them for reading it first!

If you or Chris stop by Subterranean to pick up numbers 3 and 4, you will get no judgy looks. And if you'd like to just stay anonymous, we have the whole series stacked up right next to the door--no one need even see you.

This is weird at least that is what I thought as I read your post. I had a guy tell me not too long ago that I should read this series. I was telling him of my almost embarrassing obsession with Harry Potter. And he was all like "if you like Harry Potter you should really read this series." No kidding! I hadn’t given it thought till I read your post. How crazy is that?

i am in possession of the book. am done for. HALP!

(won't be able to start reading until -- at the earliest -- late tonight, however. but you'll be the first to know when i do :))

I am a vampire fiction ADDICT, but, like you, the YA label scared me off (even though I also read the Harry Potter series and LOVED it). However, now that a huge number of (what I like to call) my online posse has given it their seal of approval, I'll be drinking the Kool-Aid, too.

I hit a guy for my wife once. She offered to sue me for him.

My wife and daughter are hooked on the series. My oldest daughter read the latest book twice IN A ROW.

Now, my wife is telling me "Really, you must read it...you'll love it!"

And the first hit is free.

BTW, I love Harry Potter, too.

Oh My God - I love this series for the same reason you do. They make me think of my husband back when we started dating. The brooding bad guy who was really a good guy.

I've resisted the kool-aid for a while but I think I'm finally weakening. I was also waiting, because I have a tendency to read fast so I try to wait until several books are out so I'm not impatiently waiting the next installment. Now that there are four books, I'll be hitting Border's this weekend.

Oh, about the blues festival? I totally get it. I've had guys fight with me but I've never had one fight for me, until now. And that's way sexy.

They're amazing, right? I started reading it under the excuse that I'm teaching high school and need to know what the hype is. The hype is that it's just.so.good. I'll be dying to know what you think of the last book because....wow. I didn't see a lot of it coming. It's bizarre because I get excited now when somebody starts reading it for the first time. I'm just dying (ha!) to know what they think. Okay, off my soapbox. It's just good. Really good.

Um, hi, you should not be ashamed of love for young adult books. I totally use the teacher excuse to read them all the time and I love them. I'm reading one right now, among other things. Seriously, some of the best books are in the YA section. Case in point: The Book Thief by Marcus Zusak.

Although vampire books are lame. I kid!

Ah haha I picked it up at Target too. On a whim while I was shopping for diapers and snacks.

I actually enjoy a lot of YA stuff but the whole plot in general sounded really retarded to me. Then I read all three of them in like, four days.

Now that the initial high has worn off I'm more annoyed by a lot of the aspects of the series than I was at first, but I still think it's great fun. And I am continually amused at how many of my favorite ladybloggers are reading it.

I've secretly been looking at this book every time I go to Target. I think you may have just convinced me to get it.
I've gone beyond being embarrassed by my book selection...I just read Tori Spelling's book for pete's sake!

Caved in to the HP series and LOVED it. SWORE I would NOT do the same with this series. But, now the kool aid is becoming more and more enticing. HALP! I may have to break down and read. Thanks, Dana. NOT. You are TOO persuasive!

I have always loved vampire stories, I will have to look into this series. But once you are finished you have to check out another YA series, the first book is The Golden Compass and there are 3 books...absolutely amazing! I couldn't put them down (I work two jobs and had all three books finished inside a week!)

Omg, I'm so glad I'm not the only one. I mean, obviously I'm not the *only* one, I have all those shrieking 13-year-old girls for company, but... Well, you know what I mean -- basically, ditto to everything you said. I just started book 4 last night -- heaven help the rest of my life until I finish it.

And you're right, having that protective guy fighting for you -- way sexy.

I'm with ya. I picked Twilight up at Target myself about 5 months ago. However, I had no idea it was a YA book. It was totally in the adult section and the cover did not exactly clue me in. So I would never have picked it up had I know. But now that I've gobbled up the whole series and am anxiously awaiting the movie release??? Yeah, I've been bitten.

I've been hearing about this series since forever and I still haven't read any of them. I've so many books coming out my ass that I don't know when I'll get to them. Someday, I suppose.

I hated the first half of the first book. Bella was just so whiny, and I felt like they just kept having the same conversation over and over again.
Edward: "I'm too dangerous for you."
Bella: "But I don't care!"
Edward: "It's no good, I'm just too dangerous."
Bella: "I don't care, I looooove you."
ugh.
But after the middle of the book, it really picked up and I too was hooked. I just finished the fourth, Breaking Dawn, and couldn't put it down all day.
You should also try Stephenie Meyers other book, The Host. This one is about aliens...sort of.

I just started reading this on Tuesday during lunch, and sat up until 12:30 that night because I just needed "one more chapter", "one more chapter". You know, the "one more" litany of the addict.

I am deliberately drawing it out to extend the glorious agony as long as I can, but plan to finish it tonight, in the quiet darkness of my living room after everyone else is in bed.

I know exactly what you mean about it taking you back. I've had the butterflies and rapid heart flutters the whole time I've been reading it.

I read it because my good friend was loaned the book at her lunch hour by a co-worker who borrowed it from her 14-year-old niece. My friend rolled her eyes at the YA book, but was desperate for something to do that didn't involve a computer. She was almost an hour late returning from lunch that day. Nuff said.

Twilight is the new crack, for real.

It took my friend Sam a long time to convince me to read it, and once I finally broke down, I was hooked by the 5th chapter. Oh my gosh. We even went to a midnight release party for the last book eariler this month.

And I'm way too excited for the movie.

Yeah...I'm a nerd. Whatever.

ALSO! I got to meet Stephenie Meyer in Chicago on 8/5, and that was pretty freakin sweet. She signed my Breaking Dawn book. I was really, really excited about that.

{Oh yeah, and I'm totally a HP nerd. A hardcore, went to a HP con, nerd. And I'm 27. It's all good.}

OH!

And while we are on the general subject of YA novels, I have two words for you (and everyone else)

John Green

Seriously.

My mom saw the books on my bookshelves and asked to borrow the first one. I literally told her no. Tooweirdtooweirdtooweird.

Just like you I avoided Harry Potter for YEARS until my reading buddy was like.. "it's OK..just try it"..and I did and blew through the series.. This one..I was like OK: Bought book one at Target...next day..6 hours later I was JONESING for the 2nd one. I wanted to wait a week. Went BACK to Target and picked up the 2nd. Hubby has Olypics on the DVR and is thinking I should put the book down.. put the book down? DUDE..WTF do I ask you to turn off the xbox?
I don't want Edward as much as I want to be Bella.. I want to KNOW vampires..

I didn't read HP until a year before the last book came out. I read the first 6 books in 5 days with almost no sleep. I'm on amazon.com now.

I picked up Twilight because I had seen a preview for it before like "Indiana Jones..." or something. I had no clue what a phenomena it is!

Although I don't think Stephanie Meyer is the greatest writer in the world, the first book sucked me in. I have the biggest crush on Edward!! And I thought the scenes between him and Bella were SO INTENSE. I seriously have this school-girl crush. It's almost sad because I'm in my twenties and married. :oP

I haven't read the rest of the series yet, but I most likely will. Now that the new HP movie is being set back to July of next year, the "Twlight" movie is going to be my must-see of the fall.

I've resisted reading this series too. In fact just two days ago I finally gave in and signed up for Ravelry. I hope I can hold out a little longer on this series, it's so hot right now because of the movie and everyone here is all, "OMG, aren't you excited about the movie?"

Oh my goodness! You have just summed up my own experience with this series!

Initially, I resisted, thinking "Bah! Young adult vampire romance!" (even though I'd read and loved the Harry Potter series).

When I finally DID relent, I sort of snuck the book up to the cashier, all guilty and embarrassed like I was a teenager buying tampons or condoms for the first time (like "Please don't judge me!!"). I got the book home and LOVED IT! I think I went through the whole series in a week (although it would have been quicker if I hadn't had to put the book down to do things like, oh, take care of my child and feed the cats).

Thanks for the great post!

DITTO, DITTO, DITTO!!!
I started reading them Wednesday and just finished book four about 15 minutes ago. I was ridiculously addicted and I am not the least bit ashamed! It's all good!!!

Two young girls where I work told me about these great books that they were reading and that I HAD to read them. After researching them on Amazon I thought..."I am just too old for young adult books", but I logged on to iTunes later that evening and bought the first book......just thought I could listen if I wanted while making jewelry. Well, I AM NOW HOOKED! Young adult or not, this book will, in the words of my young co-workers, "will make you re-think your current marriage". LOVE THEM! Thank you for letting me know that I am not crazy or alone in this new obsession! Take care!

Warmly,
Leslie G.

I thought I was over here in the "I'm an adult reading books for teens" closet of shame all by myself. My friend brought over the first two books and I am so anti-Buffy anti-Vampire anti-Whitewolf anti-bullshit-emo-goth-vamp-wannabe that I thought I'd yawn my way through these.

Yeah, my shame is PALPABLE. My friend has the third book and was going to bring it over on Saturday but her brother had kidney failure and ended up in the hospital. I literally had to bite my tongue to not ask her if she could swing by in betwene shifts AT THE HOSPITAL to bring me book three.

I'm pathetic. I'm hooked. This better end well. LOL

This is so timely...I just told the ladies in book group (I am the youngest one at 34) about this series and called it "my guilty pleasure." I, too, picked up the first one about a week and a half before school started under the guise that my students were reading it, so I needed to know what they were talking about...finished the first book in a day and a half (while caring for a demanding 3 month old and three year old). After finishing Twilight in record time (holding book in one hand and baby in other)I trooped off to Target and bought the other three and proceeded to read them all in a week. I'm so thankful I waited - I would've cried from suspense if I would have had to wait for the next book....

He flew more like 6 feet, that's all i wanted to say.

My friends were all obsessed with this book. They sort of explained to me what it was about and I kinda laughed about it. Then one day my friend bought it for me..and it got buried in my 2nd bedroom of my husband and I's apartment. Well, I picked it up one day and decided to crack it open. I read over 100 pages in the first sitting! I loved it too!

I like your story about your Husband. I love thinking back to old memories too. Its sad how they get buried. But the butterflies come back when you think of the silliest of things. I love it.

I'm totally blaming you for my purchase of this book on Sunday.. and I totally tried to cover my tracks by buying a grown up chick lit book with it. I'm right there suffering with reason #3 with you and I really wonder sometimes just who am I punishing with my high and mighty rejection of all things fun... oh that would be me!

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