The Twilight of “Twilight”

April 14, 2009 at 4:19 pm | Posted in Book Blather | 2 Comments

You want to know something weird?

Remember back over the holidays, when Sweetie Junior was reading the Twilight series?  We had a bit of a tizzy because my man Rocket Scientist, who doesn’t care for the horror or occult genres anyway, didn’t want her reading the fourth volume.  She was over halfway through the third one.  We had a rather intense discussion about who decides what a teenager can and can’t read, how to define ‘appropriate,’ etc.  SJ tearfully proclaimed that nobody could make her stop reading a series before the end; it Just Wasn’t Fair.

Later RS and I discussed it, realizing that there truly is no way to police what a kid reads, and decided that the best we could do was to try to expose her to higher quality material.  (If she were 16 instead of 14-and-a-week we wouldn’t have cared, really – it’s just an awfully big leap from A Series of Unfortunate Events to an adult sexual relationship, however fictional).  “I’m not going to tell her what to read,” he pronounced.

Well, anyway.  It’s been over four months, and… She never finished the third book!  The fourth one, Breaking Dawn, hasn’t even been in the house.  This despite rather intense pressure from SJ’s friend, who wants her to finish it because evidently they read all the same books together.

I have no idea what spurred this.  The only other thing I know she’s been reading is Across Five Aprils.  I just thought it was fascinating that we may have the only teenage girl in the land who was caught up in Twilight fever and then… recovered.

Now I’m going to be a stepmom, and I’m hoping to bring our tradition of Reading Road Trips into the living room.  I’m already planning what to start reading together, starting with Jostein Gaarder’s Sophie’s World.  The poor kid isn’t going to know what hit her…



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  1. You give me hope.

    My 12 y.o. son has been making noises about reading the series (or at least, first book) because ‘everyone’ else in his class had. He asked my permission and I said he was old enough to decide, but I wanted him to think about why he wanted to read it (or any other novel), what exactly attracted him to it. I haven’t read the books myself, but from the buzz I’ve heard I get the sense that it may not be appropriate for a 12 y.o.

  2. I agree. The main attraction of the “Twilight” series is the sizzling sexual tension between Bella and Edward. Personally I’d rather not see anyone younger than 16 reading them, though the first three books don’t have any graphic scenes.

    I was reading the other day that kids read for networking purposes more than for the actual content of the book. The main reason they will read a book is so they can be part of the ongoing discussion with their friends, like with Harry Potter. Finishing each volume is like collecting another Pokemon or something. It’s pretty interesting, and it suggests a growth in book groups and blogging when these kids grow up.

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