The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner (Stephenie Meyer)

I was loathe to read the Twilight saga but, like every other warm-blooded woman in the Western world, I stayed up many a late night to get my Edward fix. I haven’t read any of JK Rowling’s spin offs, but figured that Meyer’s novella would be the perfect length and suspense level for beach reading. I was right!

In her introduction, Stephenie Meyer discussed how the saga had been supremely Bella-centric, and how she rarely took the time to sincerely focus on the back stories of less consequential characters. For example, who even remembers who Bree Tanner was? Wasn’t that the girl from Full House? I thought so, too. But actually, Bree was the last newborn vampire ‘dealt with’ in Eclipse. Meyer uses this novella to relax on the Bella-Edward emo love and consider how to successfully raise a coven of newborn vampires.

I’ll tell you now: there is love in this book but if you’re expecting it to be as consuming as Bella and Edward’s, don’t get your hopes up; it’s a novella for godsakes! A novella is the opposite of a saga – short and sweet but no cavities. That being said, the character development was still up to the Meyer Standard. Whenever I saw press pictures of the New Moon and Eclipse premieres, I wondered why certain actors were getting such attention: who even had a second thought about certain minor characters who got a short time in the book and an even shorter time in the movie? That’s how I felt about Riley, until I read this book. Meyer took greater pains to develop his character and I’m looking forward to watching the movie again, this time from his perspective!

Hmmm… I don’t think I can say any more than that without providing unnecessary spoilers, so just go out and buy it! The beauty about Twilight fame – you don’t have to get on the mile-long request queues at your local library. Instead, you can get these books for super cheap at your local drug store.

Question of the day: Literary spin offs. How do you feel about them?

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