by Stephenie Meyer Book 1 of the Twilight Saga

It begins like any good romance: new girl in town meets irresistibly handsome boy... read more

It begins like any good romance: new girl in town meets irresistibly handsome boy and the chemistry between them sizzles. But this is no conventional high school love story. When Bella first meets Edward Cullen in Biology class, there is definitely electricity between them—but it is negatively charged. Edward seems unfriendly and angry. Unable to understand his hostile behavior, Bella is hurt, but also intrigued. The more she learns about Edward and his family—all beautiful, graceful, and detached from the other students—the more she finds herself unable to think of anything else. Eventually Bella uncovers the mystery surrounding the Cullens: they are vampires, a secret they’ve managed to keep hidden. They possess supernatural powers of strength, speed, agility, and of course, immortality. The Cullens fight their bloodlust daily, and they are able to refrain from feeding on the humans in their small town of Forks, Washington. In truth, Edward doesn’t despise Bella. He is intensely attracted to her—and she toward him—a combination Edward knows could be dangerous for them both. The author’s handling of this attraction skillfully demonstrates how less can be more with powerfully sensual scenes that refrain from explicit physical descriptions. The implications of their romance are serious: Edward will forever be eighteen, just as he was when he died in 1918, but Bella will age normally, unless both of them can agree to do the one thing could conceivably keep them together forever. If that’s not pressure enough, a new family of vampires blows through Forks and Edward must concern himself with controlling more than just his own instincts when one of the visitors shows far too much interest in Bella. Meyer’s fresh and breathtaking novel is deeply satisfying both as a love story and a vampire tale. (Ages 14–18)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2006

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