REVIEW: Was Midnight Sun by Stephenie Meyer Actually Any Good?
Hello Fellow Readerholics,
I’m finally getting back to a semi normal posting schedule, yay! Recently I was lucky enough to participate in a readalong for Midnight Sun with Hachette Australia and Tandem Collective Global. I had a really wonderful time answering all of the questions and hearing what everyone had to say! I’d like to give an especially big thank you to Hachette for sending me a hardcover copy of the book.
When Edward Cullen and Bella Swan met in Twilight, an iconic love story was born. But until now, fans have heard only Bella’s side of the story. At last, readers can experience Edward’s version in the long-awaited companion novel, Midnight Sun.
This unforgettable tale as told through Edward’s eyes takes on a new and decidedly dark twist. Meeting Bella is both the most unnerving and intriguing event he has experienced in all his years as a vampire. As we learn more fascinating details about Edward’s past and the complexity of his inner thoughts, we understand why this is the defining struggle of his life. How can he justify following his heart if it means leading Bella into danger?
I’ll be the first too say that despite its issues, the Twilight Saga isn’t inherently bad. As a series, it has a fairly interesting plot and while it wasn’t my favourite book/series, it was still a fun read (except for the last book, we don’t talk about that). So when I was asked to be a part of this read along I was genuinely excited! I’d always wanted to know about what Edward was thinking throughout the series and I was looking forward to this new insight.
So, to begin, Meyer’s writing has technically improved SO MUCH since the original books. We have thankfully moved past some of Meyer’s more awkward previous work and have gotten to a point where the prose is really quite good. It was probably one of my favourite things about the book.
As for the plot, it is literally identical to Twilight. This is not a new story so do not expect one. It’s a version of Twilight with more detail and we get more in sight into Edward’s life and interactions with others instead. I actually really appreciated how Meyer expanded on some of her previously vague points. The ‘vampire world’ was so much more developed here and I adored seeing how the Cullen’s interacted without Bella.
I was actually quite shocked as to how my perception of Bella changed as I read the book. In the original saga, I really hated Bella because she was just… bland. She really had no personality and the most unrealistic thing about the original books was probably Edward falling in love with her, and that’s including the vampirism! While she is still rather unoriginal (in my opinion) she does have a personality through Edward’s eyes. In the original novel, conversations that seemed trivial to Bella as they were about her interests meant everything to Edward in Midnight Sun so we actually got to learn about her!
There were things, however, that I really didn’t enjoy. I absolutely despise how Meyer portrays her female characters in the interest of making Bella appear ‘special’. There is one scene in which Edward is shocked that Bella looks up in the rain because most human girls wear makeup and Bella doesn’t. There are also multiple instances of Meyer portraying Jessica and Rosalie (who has valid reasons) as insufferable and jealous. I really hated it because in my opinion, if you have to bring down every other female character to make your protagonist look good, you don’t have a good protagonist. It was all very ‘she’s not like other girls’ and that infuriates me because it implies that ‘other girls’ are lesser when they’re not!
I will say, this was actually a very slow read for me. There were times where the book just felt unnecessarily long. It had absolutely no reason to be 658 pages long and it was made slower by Edward’s general depressive attitude throughout most of the book.
This book didn’t add all that much for me and it doesn’t even have the nostalgia that the other books hold. However, I do feel like the series can finally be complete. Midnight Sun was exactly what I expected it to be. To vaguely quote ‘Ten Things I Hate About You’, I was not over, nor underwhelmed, I was just whelmed.
Overall, this book was relatively enjoyable and it was just as I expected it to be. I’m rating it a 2.9/5.
Your Favourite Bookworm