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12% more plot


At any given time, I have four books going. There's my non-fiction book (currently the Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael Pollan). And the fiction book I'm reading (currently The Gun Seller, by Hugh Laurie, but previously the Septimus Heap series). And the iPod book I'm listening to (currently, Altered Carbon by Richard K. Morgan). And finally, the books on CD that I listen to in the car.

Yeah, those.

I just finished reading Eclipse, by Stephenie Meyer, the third book in the Twilight Saga, which focuses around Bella Swan, a worthless, clumsy, awkward, ugly teenager (her own words) who has caught the eye of the perfect, gorgeous, perfect, good smelling, perfect (except for the (spoiler alert) vampire part) guy in her new school. Did I mention the perfect part? The perfect hair. The perfect teeth. The perfect skin. The perfect smile. The perfect smell. Annoyed yet? Yeah, me, too.

There are currently four books in the series, with my having read the first three. I enjoyed the first part of the first book where Bella and that perfect guy Edward (the vampire natch) actually start the falling in love process. Yeah, that part where he brushes the hair from her face, where he rests his hand on the back of her neck and leans in close for the first touch of his lips on hers, okay, yeah, when an author gets that part right, oh, I can forgive a lot of other crap in a book.

Which is pretty much what these books are. 95% crap with 5% plot. The plots of these books could be very good, if only there actually WAS a plot. Most of the books made me want to find the fast forward button, wondering how much I could skip of the "He's so perfect, I'm so worthless" crap that filled most of the book.

That was the first book. Very much the second book.

There might have been more of a plot on the third book, if only I could have gotten over the "long second" and "quick moment" and "short pause" and "infinite second" and "minute that dragged on" and other impossible time dialation phrases. Every third sentence included some time reference that just droned on and on and on. I was incredibly inspired to get Who Writes This Crap? up and going just so that I could list all of the time references in the single track (that's 4 minutes of listening pleasure) I was listening to.


The end of the third book switched perspective, from a purely Bella Swan first person perspective to a Bella Swan first person and Jacob Black first person perspective. I find the switch disengenious mid-series, and think of Meyer as a lesser author for the need. Not that I particularly thought of her as any sort of good author to begin with.

Kris has listened to the fourth book, though mostly out of desperation for listening material rather than any sincere desire to complete the books. After this third book, I couldn't believe I had tortured him so much. He said that, since I've read the first three, I might as well read the fourth book. It does, he said, have 12% more plot than the previous book.

Great. 6% plot and only 94% crap. Such an improvement.