I would recommend this book to most of my friends. I think it will be kind of a litmus test. But actually most of my friends have read it.
Immediatly absorbing for me. I loved Bella and how unassuming she was, completely unaware that Edward would like her. I think the magic of this book is how quickly we can relate to her. The excitement and anxiety of falling in love and not knowing if your love will be returned is so familiar to all of us. I've been saying it over and over, but I think Stephenie Meyer did a great job of describing the kind of passionate self-restraint that Mormons are all too familiar with. So many adolescent novels and movies lead up to the moment of complete abandon. I can't pinpoint what exactly I liked about her style of writing, but I felt very much a part of this book from the beginning. Knowing that he was a vampire from the beginning could have made her early discoveries annoying, but I didn't feel that way. It's been a long time since I've read a romance, and this was a good one.
How well the author captures the feelings of love, and lust.
The way that Bella's emotions physically overtake her body, and not in a cliched way.
The scary parts of course. But I appreciated that the gore was omitted.
The fact that Bella didn't tell Edward that his smell, even his breath was intoxicating.
That the cover and some other references I've read infer that she wanted Edward because he was forbidden. I didn't see it that way.
Next Two Books
I was excited to continue the story. I got into New Moon quickly, Eclipse took me a little bit longer. Part of it is just when you read a series and the author has to repeat the background stuff that you already know. That is always annoying. I think Stephenie Meyer did a good job of creating more of a story line, two sides, not necessarily good and evil. I hated the creepy Volturi parts, and the dialouge between Ella and Edward isn't as good I don't think. All that said, I think Twilight is the superior book, but I will definetly keep reading this series. I'm excited to see the movie interpretation when it comes out. I am fascinated that the author, who was at BYU when I was, who has three boys like me, was able to create such an intricate, and I think, original saga.