When it’s the same old story, just changed.
By now, everyone has heard the “big” new from the Twilight world, right?
Stephenie Meyer has chosen a somewhat odd way to celebrate the 10th anniversary of Twilight‘s publication: A rewritten version of the story, supposedly exactly the same as the original, but with all the genders swapped. So Bella becomes Beau, and Edward becomes Edythe… and I think supposedly she’s trying to prove everyone wrong who talked about Bella being a weak female?
According to Goodreads:
Celebrate the tenth anniversary of Twilight! This special double-feature book includes the classic novel, Twilight, and a bold and surprising reimagining, Life and Death, by Stephenie Meyer.
Packaged as an oversize, jacketed hardcover “flip book,” this edition features nearly 400 pages of new content as well as exquisite new back cover art. Readers will relish experiencing the deeply romantic and extraordinarily suspenseful love story of Bella and Edward through fresh eyes.
And from an article on PopSugar:
Part of the reason for the gender swap is that Meyer wants to prove that the character of Bella isn’t a “damsel in distress,” which is a commonly criticized element from the first book. She has also corrected some grammatical issues and word choices and altered some of the mythology for consistency.
I guess the “new” human character, Beau, will be sleep-stalked by Edythe and will find himself the weak, fragile one surrounded by a surreally beautifully undead family of vegetarian vampires. Yay, progress? Or something. (And maybe those grammatical issues and word choices could have been fixed without making fans buy an entirely new book?)
The book is 752 pages (!!!), and contains BOTH the original Twilight novel and the “new” version… and retails for $21.99 (Amazon lists it at $13.53). As of this moment, Life and Death is listed as the #1 bestselling book on Amazon.
Can anyone say “money grab”? Doesn’t Stephenie Meyer already have all the money?
I don’t know. This concept strikes me as utterly ridiculous, but then again, I’m not a die-hard fan of the original. (Yes, I read them all… and waited for the midnight release of the 4th book — but time passes and gives us the breathing space to reassess whether what we binge-read was actually, you know, good.)
I loved this piece on io9, which is mostly snarky but brings up some more serious points too. A snippet of snark:
Meyer says that writing this version was “fun, but also really fast and easy.” She totally used search and replace for the names, didn’t she?
News about this “reimagining” is all over the interwebs. Here are a few to check out:
- NPR: http://www.npr.org/2015/10/06/446351732/after-10-years-of-bella-and-edward-twilight-reimagined-brings-a-twist
- Entertainment Weekly (with a round-up of Twitter reactions to the news): http://www.ew.com/article/2015/10/06/twitter-reactions-twilight-reimagined
- Vulture: http://www.vulture.com/2015/10/meyer-rewrote-twilight-with-different-genders.html#
This Tweet pretty much sums up my initial reaction to the Twilight news:
“Author Really Enjoys Money, Dislikes Work” feels like a more appropriate headline for this ‘Twilight’ news
— Jordan Rabinowitz (@JordanRab) October 6, 2015
Does anyone actually plan on reading this? I don’t… although now that I’ve put together this post, maybe I should check it out. You know, for research purposes.
What do you think? Do you find the idea of a gender-swapped Twilight interesting — or is this a lame attempt to further cash in on a craze that we just wish would die already?