9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
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(3.5 stars actually.)
Where Twlight left off, New Moon picks up--of course.
In case you aren't already aware of Twilight, it's the story of a 17 year old girl named Bella Swan who moved up to Forks, Washington and found herself in love with a vampire named Edward Cullen. After some misadventures which nearly claimed Bella's life, she began thinking more seriously (and I use that term loosely) about becoming a vampire herself so Edward no longer needs to worry about her safety and they can stay together forever.
New Moon begins rather bleakly when Edward decides to break off the relationship. This sends Bella spiraling into depression for a few months, until she notices that Edward's voice comes back to her when adrenaline is pumping. This prompts her to start walking on the wild side. Part of this wild side included riding a motorcycle, of which she knew nothing. She enlisted the aid of Jacob Black to fix up the motorcycle and teach her how to ride. Over the course of fixing the motorcycles, Bella and Jacob, though almost two years her junior, form a deep bond.
Where Twilight focused on getting to know Edward Cullen, New Moon focused on getting to know Jacob Black. We, as the readers, got to see how their indiviual relationships with Bella differed. Jacob actually contrasts Edward in almost every way. Jacob is bigger, less graceful, and not as disarmingly handsome as Edward. In fact, Jacob is a werewolf--natural enemy of the vampire.
One would think the climax of the book would somehow entail a bout between Jacob and Edward for the love of Bella, but it doesn't--at least, not overtly. The climax occurs when Bella must fly to Italy to save the life of her beloved Edward, thus saying a tortured good-bye to Jacob. That's the moment she realizes she's torn between the werewolf and the vampire. She wants the friendship of the werewolf, but craves the love of the vampire. But she knows ne'er the twain shall meet.
Since I don't want to fill this review with too many spoilers, I'll just jump to my notes on the book itself.
Again, Meyer's prose still left much to be desired, but it did improve since Twilight. Unfortunately, the same cannot be said about the editing. However, she hasn't gotten over latching on to a particular word and using it ad nauseum. In Twilight, the word was incredulous; in New Moon, it's glower. At any given moment, someone or something is glowering at someone or something else--or grimacing or growling.
The characters, with the noted exception of Jacob, are still rather shallow. Jacob is warm, unconventionally charming, intelligent, and funny. In fact, he seemed quite real.
One thing I didn't appreciate about his character, however, was his willingness to let Bella use him. More than once, she's made it clear that Jacob would be her second choice since Edward would always and forever be her first, yet Jacob stands idly by and accepts it. (In other words, Edward is Bella's Romeo while Jacob is her Paris.)
Rather than overcoming the absence of Edward and growing as an individual, Bella becomes a reckless teenager. Rebellion is to be expected, but going from a girl who can barely walk without tripping to someone who flings herself off a cliff just to hear the voice of her long gone sweetheart? I guess unhealthy obsession can make you do crazy things.
Edward didn't have much time to show us how he'd changed in the many months spent away from Bella since he was absent for much of the novel, so I'm reserving comment. (He still seems rather arrogant and smug, though.)
One truly positive thing I can say about New Moon is that it's much more fast-paced and contains more physical action than Twilight. There is an electric energy that permeates the book which wasn't there with Twilight and I believe that it comes from the introduction of Jacob's character.
At the end of the day, this book was still an enjoyable read and Meyer is still an excellent storyteller. Despite the flaws of prose and illogical reasoning for many of the emotions, it was easy to become lost in the fantasy. As I said in my review of Twilight, it's very much like watching a reality TV show featuring a clumsy teenage girl and, rather than a thoroughly confused vampire this time around, a charming teenage werewolf.
And also, like with Twilight, don't read this with too serious an eye. This is a fluff piece to be read on rainy days when you just want to escape from it all.
25 of 30 people found the following review helpful
on October 20, 2006
Ok, I adore Edward, and I love the way the Stephenie Meyer wrote the first book, but Bella is so slow on the uptake in New Moon. I know that both plots are predictable, but Ms. Meyer writes in such a way that that's usually ok because it answers the reader's prayers(like, "please let him struggle with his love for her some more," etc.) but in the second book, Bella's slowness takes away from that connection to her readers. And I honestly spent most of the book missing Edward. When he finally came back, the lack of drama and closure was rather anticlimactic - I just thought that Edward was more complex than that. Oh well, I hope the third is better.
27 of 33 people found the following review helpful
I just finished New Moon and I have to say it was a disappointment. Maybe it's because I loved Twilight so much, but I feel like Stephenie Meyer just threw Bella to the wolves in this novel, literally. When the Cullens leave town, Bella becomes a broken shell of herself and has no idea how she can possibly go on living without Edward. Slowly she begins hanging out with Jacob Black in La Push and trying to put Edward's memory behind her. But she does so for about 300 pages. Alright already. I get that she loves him. That was part of what I loved so much about the first book. But I could do without 300 pages of her whining about the hole in her heart and how she'll never love again, but might have to settle for one of the other men who keep falling at her feet (and for what I have no idea, since she offers little in the way of emotion besides depressed and unhappy throughout this novel). It's pathetic, and I would never have expected that I would be so disappointed after loving Twilight so much. Quite frankly Bella is nothing without Edward, and his absence for most of this book is part of the reason I disliked it so much. Also, as another reviewer mentioned, I'm going to need Bella to either become a vampire in the next book or for it to be about someone else I would care about like one of the other Cullens or Jacob Black. It's stringing us along to keep this relationship moving at a snail's pace and I can't really forgive Stephenie Meyer for that right now.
** Amended to add - Okay, I feel better about this the next day and I must clarify my review by saying that New Moon is still well-written and worth the read for those who loved Twilight, but be prepared to be frustrated. **
11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on August 11, 2008
In an effort to keep Bella "safe" the Cullen's leave Forks, Washington. Heart broken, Bella attempts to go on with her life. In an effort to move on she begins challenging herself by getting into dangerous situations with the help of her friend Jacob Black. But, just as we've come to expect from Bella, she's got herself in some more trouble as she learns that vampires aren't the only creatures that go bump in the night.
I have to confess that I knew nothing about this series when I began reading Twilight so I was surprised that there really weren't many vampires in the second installment. However, that didn't detract from the fact that the characters are really well written.
As with Twilight, I found myself hating Bella. She's a weak and sad character and I find myself having no pity for her the plights that she gets herself into. In fact, I hate her even more because Jacob Black, someone with some real depth, likes her. However, because I find Edward to be just as awful as a character, I feel that they belong together. Both too weak to live without the other.
The first two-thirds of the book is just about her relationship with Jacob Black and how she digs herself out of the dark hole that is her life without Edward. It isn't until the end that real action happens. As with the first book, a whole bunch of nothing occurs throughout most of the book and yet I'm compelled to keep reading. The characters, though annoying, are written so well that I can't help but sometimes imagine them as real people, even if I hate them. And I hate myself even more for liking these books so much that I can't put them down.
I can definately say that these books are not for everyone but I can already see why they also appeal to such a large crowd.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
It's not as good as the first book in the series, which is a cause of disappointment for me. I had been waiting quite eagerly for this book and Eclipse to arrive at the library. I am disappointed since I really enjoyed Twilight. This book dragged on for the first 100-200 plus pages. This author really needs a serious editor to condense her books down ... it wasn't that noticable in the first book, but this time, it really does grate on my nerves. I mean, just how many times can I read about the great black hole that used to be her heart as Bella grieves for Edward? Even when I was a teenager, I never moped that much!
When Bella became friends with Jacob, who is a young werewolve in training, the book did pick up. I found it to be interesting and intriguing. There weren't enough details to satisfy me though. I realize that the intended audience for this series is much younger than me, but still ... I expect the writing to be a bit more of a challenge, a maturation if you will. I am find the luster of Bella's charms starting to fade with her one-track aspiration to become a vampire. In this book, I am actually feeling sorry for Edward who wants her to remain human so her soul would remain untouched. There is also a bit more self-pity and despair with Bella this time around and it's starting to drag.
In spite of all of my objections of this book, I cannot completely write it off since I was engrossed enough to keep reading. I think the charm of this book is now the question of whether or not Edward or the Cullens will allow Bella to become a vampire. The added tidbits of the Werewolves are now adding to the charm of this book. If the editors would just seriously cut down the melodrama of Bella's broken heart (I get it, I really do, but come on, do I need to read it fifty times or more?), and get to the point a little bit sooner ... this would be an awesome book to read.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on July 15, 2008
So Twilight was good, and I enjoyed it, so I was extremely happy when New Moon arrived in the mail. After I finished the book I was currently reading at the time, I set upon the sequel to the acclaimed Twilight. Unfortunately, this book is not nearly as impressive as the first. You know that stereotype where the sequel is not as great as the first? I believe it is true in this instance. Don't get me wrong, I still enjoyed it and will get Eclipse neverless, I just felt a little let down my New Moon. It didn't fit my expectations.
Qualm 1- Bella is SO ANNOYING! Seriously, she is one of the worst heroines I have come upon in a long time. Her life falls apart after Edward leaves her, and she is unwilling to pick it up for the longest time. All she cares about is becoming a vampire, and does not think about anyone else in the process. Basically, there is a wrong message there. She should be able to pull through, even without Edward by her side. I know they are true loves for eachother, and I totally respect that, but she doesn't act like an adult (Edward is always reprimanding her, have you noticed?). And all those stupid things she did, to be reckless, were so plain stupid! Just because you are depressed doesn't mean you should go cliff-diving without the supervision of your best friend! I really hope to see some sense and growth knocked into Bella in Eclipse and Breaking Dawn because I am really getting fed up with her. But she IS enjoyable nothingless and the heroine of the story, so I am cheering for her to become a vampire (except when she is being annoying, then I side with Edward:)
Qualm 2- I really started to like Jacob as we went on in the book, and was extremely mad with him at the end of the book. And I did know he was going to become a werewolf last book, so that wasn't surprising. But I find it unrealistic that both Jacob and Edward are all falling over Bella (along with countless other boys in the town). What is so exciting about her????? I already told you how I feel about her, but how??? Are there not any other girls in town? Ok, I am better now.
Qualm 3- Again, like Twilight, there was no action until the end. The beginning was really boring. But I found the trip to Italy facinating, so it was worth waiting for.
1. I love Alice! She is my favorite character by far, with Edward second (Sorry Edward fans!) Although it would be all sentimental if Edward turned Bella into a vampire, Alice doing it would be nice too.
2. There were so many good things! Yeah, I had my complaints, but this book was wonderful and a piece of magic anyway. There is too much to list!
So read this book. I liked it even if it didn't live up to my expectations, and will be ready for Eclipse when it comes!
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on September 9, 2007
Okay first off, enjoy the books, very curious to read the third. Secondly, i agree with the bulk of negative reviews about Bella whining through a large percentage of the book. Thirdly, the thing that bugs me is that it is somewhat accurate to being a melodramatic teenager and her first love/break up. The thing that stops relating to being a teenager and starts signaling some pretty serious psychological problems is when bella won't get over it and shake it off. She is hearing his voice, she is acting erratic, she is risking her life, and worst of all she is totally using someone (Jacob) to deal with her loss. Bella is so selfish and self destructive in this book that it drives me nuts: the fear of getting older, the 'hole' inside of her that aches so much she can'e breath, the fact that she never gets mad at Edward. She blames herself in typical girl fashion: he is too perfect, she was too average blah blah. He is over 100 years old and still goes to high school everyday, what does that say about him? She will never have a mature sexual adult relationship with him, and she is so selfishly obsessed with Edward and being a vampire that she is putting her whole life on hold to oogle him (no college plans, no friends, not taking into account she has parents who love her etc)
And Jacob is a nice character. He is a far saner boyfriend for someone like Bella. A real person who actually listens to her and cares about her. They have a much more open dialogue in comparison. Bella and Edward are unhealthily enamorous of eachother and Romeo and Juliet (probably the most unhealthy love story for teenagers to base their affection on)
whew...I am off to read the third
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on August 27, 2007
The book wasn't ghastly...it just was so forced. (For example, the "Vote" chapter was quite democratic but still entirely ridiculous and unecessary.) The only part that seemed organic was the relationship between Jacob and Bella. Together, they seemed to have FUN and laugh. Needless to say, I was pretty disappointed when Edward inevitably returned to profess his love and regret...OVER AND OVER AGAIN.
Additionally, I really hope Eclipse addresses the Volterra incident in more detail--I can't be the only one who finds the murder of 15+ tourists rather disturbing, moreover the fact that Bella still wants to join the vampire club after witnessing such a routine atrocity? That's where well-deserved nightmares come from.
Still, the book gets three stars because I am ultimately intrigued. I want to see Bella make ammends with Jacob. I want to see her become less of a simpering one-trick-pony and deserve all the attention that gets thrown at her.
19 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2007
It's Isabella Swan's 18th birthday, and unlike the rest of her high school classmates, she's been dreading this milestone for months. Once Bella turns 18, she'll officially be older than her beloved Edward Cullen, who is 17 and will remain so until the end of time. Dazzlingly handsome Edward, like the rest of his family, is undead, a vampire destined to remain young and beautiful forever...while mortals like Bella age and perish all around them.
Following a frightening encounter with some of Edward's siblings after she cuts her finger on wrapping paper (the Cullens pledge to hunt only wild animals, but the smell of human blood can send them into a frenzy), Edward grows increasingly distant with Bella. Finally, he drops a bombshell --- he is leaving Bella forever, finally embracing his vampire characteristics and no longer, as he tells her, "'pretending to be something I'm not.'" Disappearing suddenly into a dark and moonless wood, Edward leaves Bella utterly alone and despondent: "I hoped that I was fainting, but, to my disappointment, I didn't lose consciousness. The waves of pain that had only lapped at me before now reared high up and washed over my head, pulling me under."
Bella drowns in her pain for months, resurfacing only when her father threatens to send her to see a psychologist or to live with her mother. Desperate not to forget Edward, Bella rekindles a friendship with Jacob Black, a large, hard-edged boy with a tendency to live life recklessly. Jacob lives on the area's Indian reservation, whose inhabitants loathe the vampires for reasons that become increasingly clear as Bella's friendship with Jacob deepens. Bella's thrill-seeking adventures with Jake, though, attract attention, leading Bella back to Edward --- and to a new threat neither one of them ever anticipated.
Stephenie Meyer's first novel about Bella and Edward, TWILIGHT, offered readers an exciting new entry in the field of vampire fiction. With NEW MOON, the second part in a projected trilogy, Meyer deepens and enriches her mythology, introducing new families and races that complicate Bella and Edward's story. Bella reflects, "Could a world really exist where ancient legends went wandering around the borders of tiny, insignificant towns, facing down mythical monsters?...Was there anything sane or normal at all, or was everything just magic and ghost stories?"
If readers have any complaint about NEW MOON, it will be that the story, at least for the middle 400 pages, doesn't have enough magic. Edward vanishes in short order and only reappears shortly before the Gothic extravaganza near the book's end. In the middle, the story sometimes drags, and readers may long for the vampires' return. The events of NEW MOON, though, will leave Meyer's many fans breathless for the sequel, as Bella finally understands everything that will be at stake if she makes the ultimate choice to give up her humanity and live, like the vampires, forever.
--- Reviewed by Norah Piehl
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on March 14, 2010
Well, love it or hate it I have to say that New Moon is an improvement on Twilight.
(before I continue its probably best to say that I am not the target audience for this saga - adult male fan of earlier vampire stories)
In case you've been living under a rock, or perhaps are only generally familar with the plot of the Twilight saga, New Moon begins with the sundering of Edward and Bella, and follows Bella as she 'deals' with the break-up.
The intial section of the book isn't too bad. We see Jacob as he goes through the process of becoming a werewolf, and learn about the werewolf mythology of the story. Tension is created by the possibility that the werewolves are killing people, and the appearance of some evil vamps from Twilight.
Once Edward appears in the story things get a bit slow and stupid. (APOLOGIES FOR SPOILERS) Edward decides to commit suicide after a rather ridiculous misunderstanding were he asks where Bella's father is and assumes the funeral he is attending is Bella's. We are then greeting with far too many pages of Bella racing across the world in what feels like an entirely unauthentic Itality and a slightly campy confrontation with the suspense filled Volturi.
This is probably just me, but I also find Bella's negotiations with Edward towards becoming a vampire verging on the ridiculous, and Edwards emo gushing about suicide pathetic.
While New Moon isn't as cringe-worthy as Twilight, it still doesn't deserve the heavy handed and conceited associations with Romeo and Juilet. And the story does drag at 550+ pages.