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'Twilight': What does the 'Breaking Dawn' backlash bode for the movie?

Twilight1 The word is out on "Breaking Dawn," the final book in Stephenie Meyer's "Twilight" saga. And it’s not all good.

Of the 1,237 reviews on Amazon.com this morning, 364 give it one star, and another 145 give it just two. That suggests about 42% of "Twilight's" audience was ultimately disappointed in the series ender, which gave Bella and Edward –- spoilers ahead –- their happy ending.

The majority of Amazon users labeled the following one-star critique from a reviewer named Eventide as "helpful." (It’s listed first on the book’s page):

I loved the first three books. I have always been a fan of Bella and Edward, but I liked how Meyer introduced the Jacob/Bella dynamic to show the complexity of relationships, and that love means SACRIFICE and making a CHOICE…Now I don’t know what message the author wanted to say or what she was thinking.

The second and third most "helpful" reviews also give the book one star. The latter, written by Sonja Scheffer "scrapprincess," went so far as to say:

It did not feel like Stephenie Meyer was writing the story…I honestly would have stopped reading this book except I was curious to see how much more bizarre it could get.

Here on the Los Angeles Times' Entertainment News & Buzz blog, where the comments are about 50-50 good and bad, Dawn wrote: "This was a horrible ending to a wonderful series. As I do every Monday, I took the garbage out and returned my book!" Marrisa followed up: "It really was like a crappy movie ending."

How this fan backlash might affect the upcoming movie, due out Dec. 12, is anyone’s guess. The reception at last month's Comic-Con was insane, and “Breaking Dawn” sold a big 1.3 million copies on Saturday alone, according to USA Today. The first three books also have already sold 7.5 million copies in the United States alone.

But even "Twilight" devotees are taking issue. The predominant thinking seems to be that the love story triangle of Bella, Edward and Jacob is wrapped up too early, the succeeding plotline –- about the child of Edward and Bella -– isn’t satisfying, and everything is tied up a little too neatly. (Even Bella’s lonely father is paired with a lady friend in a throwaway line near the end). 

In one of the Twilight Lexicon discussions forums -- the biggest of the "Twilight" fan sites and one endorsed by Meyer herself -- more than a third of the comments are lukewarm. A fifth are flat-out negative. "I felt like I was reading a poorly written fan-fiction," commenter takemybreathaway wrote.

Another, identified as Raccontareunabellastoria was even more dramatically affected: "My world has imploded. I'm probably being dramatic, but really. I invested my heart and soul into these books. I feel tremendously betrayed."

Thoughts? Will you still see the movie? (For the record, I'm still going to see the movie.)

-- Denise Martin

Photo: Summit Entertainment

Comments () | Archives (158)

Ok. I personally LOVED Breaking Dawn! It was one of my favorite books out of the four. I think that she did a very good job with the ending of the "Twilight" series. People shouldn't judge so harshly on Breaking Dawn because it was the BOMB!...

Okay, so I loved the Twilight saga, just like everyone else in existence.
But apparently I'm one of the few who actually liked how Breaking Dawn turned out!
I thought it was really, really good and I was highly disappointed when it ended, because that meant I had to find something else to consume my time with. I read all the books within a weeks time and just finished reading the Midnight Sun draft on Stephenie's website. It, as well, was amazing.

The only critique I could make about Breaking Dawn was that it seemed a little rushed... Like everything just started happening at once. I think it could have been drawn out a bit more, and maybe into another book. But all in all it was very, very good and I'm not going to dwell on something that cannot be changed.

I do wish she would find it in her to finish Midnight Sun, because it is very insightful and helps a lot to understand Edward's character better. I also think it would be nice to, maybe sometime in the future, to see another book all together. One that shows what later life is like for Renesmee and Jacob, what happens with Charlie, and if Bella ever gets to see her mother again. I do wish the series would continue, but I also see why she did not. Midnight Sun was to be a private manuscript until it was ready to be published and I can understand her anger, resentment, and whatever else she is currently feeling.

I wish her the best of luck with her writing, and hope to see her name on the Best Sellers' list again.

I'm a fan of the Twilight series and allthough I initially found the vampire baby scenario apalling and disturbing, I felt it made more and more sense to the story as I read on. I personally love the way the story was developed, and am pleased that Edward and Bella found their hapiness. I would love to see the saga continue, even with Jacob and Renesmee but maybe I'm getting carried away... I have to say, I was tremendously dissappointed with the Twilight movie. As with any good series the book will always be better than the movie but in this case the movie did a terrible injustice to the series. I believe it would've taken a much more experienced team to make it work in terms of directors, producers, and special effects team. It could've been beautiful, but it was very poorly excecuted. Still, I hope they finish the other movies, and I hope they're better than the first, allthough I will see them regardless. There, now that's off my chest :)

I personally tohught the book was really good although I wish they actually fought the Volturi and won because that would have been more exciting and thrilling rather than them just walking away and saying we'll check up in afew..... :)

I think Breaking Dawn was an awesome book and I see nothing wrong with it. All my freinds agree (were Twilight fanatics) that it was an awesome book. Though I find the series doesn't reallly seem to end. Though I think that what Stephenie meyer intended with "and they carried on with there little piece of forever" at the end of the book, So it doesn't seem there is a THE END. I disagree with the fact that there is no cullen love, if so my friend Olivia would have been able to read the book (: (strict parents). Also I felt Bella and Edwards connection threw the whole book. Like when they had to fight for Renesmee. I also reallly like how she said Edward was like a "burning man" when bella was pregnant. Speaking of that I never expected bella being pregnant, so glad my friends aren't spoilers. I do agree that Bella wasn't exactly the same old Bella but I still liked her. Overal I loved the whole series and read all the books in 2 weeks (: Now I miss Edward and Bella :(

I too loved BD and completely agree with Jennifer and her take on the unfolding of the story. Bella the outcast found her calling so to speak with the Cullen clan. She ,along with the Cullens just didn't fit into society, therefore once she and Edward 'found' each other her purpose grew along with her strength as a character. Jacob found his soul mate in Renesmee, which contrary to some beliefs, can be a parent, sibling, child, friend, or mate. In any case it is a universal love that draws them, not a physical one. Stephanie did explain this concept through Jacob's friend in Book 3? -4?
I loved this series because there are so many metaphores to real life. Edward's character is a gentleman of the 1800's with his chivalry while Jacob is a typical teenager of (somewhat)modern day. Bella is a kid who just doesn't fit and is an old soul at heart (her draw to Edward?) but lives in modern times. She learns to be true to herself (doesn't get rid of a friend because the other wants her to. i.e. Jacob=Edward.
I also liked the fact that the Volturi backed down without a battle. For one it sets up perfectly for the saga to continue and secondly, the Cullens are true to their word and are nonviolent when not attacked. They were of course attacked by the Volturi but the attack wasn't enough to overtake them. Carlilse's belief in protecting those that cannot defend themselves extended to their enemies too. Great Job Stephanie! In this day of so much violence, it's great to see this message spread in a such a suspenseful and exciting format. I was completely surprised that I loved these books as much as I did and it was due to the deeper meaning of the characters and events.

I really liked this book. Yeah so what, it didn't have a fight scene. It almost did. New Moon didn't have a fight scene, they just walked away from the Volturi after they explained everything. That is what the book is all about, suspense. Twilight and Eclipse had a fight scene because she wrote in the characters that caused the fights. James and Victoria.

For the people who thought Bella wasn't herself after she was changed, that is the way it always is. She was changed completely. She was re-born. That's why new vampires are called newborns.

For those people who thought that Edward wasn't himself, here is why. He is scared. He is nervous. He is worried. He is scared about Bella dying when she is pregnant. He is scared he will hurt her when they have sex. He is worried about changing her and killing her in the process. He is worried about the Volturi killing their daughter. He is nervous about the wedding. There are so many things going on, it's hard to be himself.

And about Jacob imprinting on Nessie, Stephenie Myer needed him to imprint on him She talks about imprinting through New Moon and Eclipse, it would be disapointing if Jacob didn't imprint. If he imprints on some random girl, it would be weird. But what Myer does is add a character that is connected and have him imprint on her.

Now for the scene about the Volturi. Everybody who reads these books know that the Cullens have no chance when come to fighting the Volturi. Even with the extra help, they will loose. So, shes didn't have a fight. But the way she ended to conflict was the right way. When Alic and Jasper leave they leave for a reason and they bring back the solution. Myer creates suspense with the talking back and forth.

I do think that they should stick to the book when they make New Moon into a movie. The whole point of the movies is getting more people into the series and talking about it. If they take the story of New Moon and twist around, the movie would suck. Yeah I know there is no action in the book but like in Braking Dawn, it's all about the suspense.

I am glad she didn't end with Eclipse. The would be too many unanswered questions.

And about the book being to unrealalistic, IT IS NOT REAL!!!!! THIS NEVER HAPPENED AND IT CAN'T HAPPEN!!!!!

I think the reason why people hated it was because it wasn't what they wanted. Well let me tell you something, you can't always get what you want. Life is like that. This is the way Myer wanted it to end. This is her story, not yours. So DEAL WITH IT!!!

I like the ending because it sums everything up and leaves us with very little questions. Great book 5/5 stars.

i loved all four and ive finished reading the last book or wat wqas part of midnight sun and i still loved it! ive seen the movie three times already adn im going to see it more! i dont see wat those criticts are saying but i do think it shouldnt have =ended but im just selfish like that. lol=].
i love how bella did her forcefield over them and just thinking of janes face made me crack up! lol=]
i cried all through the seiris! and i dont want them to end... i could reread them forever!!<3 u should read them u would tottaly like them! and i cant wait for midnight sun to come out in iowa... and yes i live in small town iowa.!.!lol=P<3 hit me up on mmypace my urls up there...=p

ever since I started reading the books i knew i had to end some time but the way stephine ended it was Amazzzzzzzing. along with the rest of the books. i had to read the last sentence 3 times before it sunk in that they were safe. REALLY SAFE. that ever thing was going to work out.

I also Wish that people weren't as mean as they are.

For all those TRUE TWILIGHT FANS the talk of the books in Edwards veiw is true. OR at least was. Stephine has put it on the 'back burner' because some jerk has posted the rough draft on the internet and now we may never get to hear it. I know, i'm disapointed too.

Taylor is nicer and cuter than rob and should stay for the rest of the sequals!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I loved it. End of story.

Wha i love Twilight it made me feel like i had to keep on reading and the movie omg but the book was way better thanks to Stephanie she made books better!!!!!!!!!!

Hmm i was surfing the web and this just brought my attention...I really did like Breaking Dawn but i feel like Stephanie could have done better!No Affencence to anyone really...But after she turned to a vampire i got all excited but when Aro and all the other charaters came i felt like it took too long ..and i dont know it was just kinda disappointed but Im happy about the book It was GOOD but could have been better!...It was better then Nothing!

breaking dawn was great, just most of its fans are too young to understand the concept of growing up/ having kids

Are you kidding me?! This one is my favorite book! Think about how hard it is thought, having millions of fans waiting for you to write a 750 page book that has to end the Twilight series! Stephenie Meyer was put under a lot of pressure and even with that i think she did an excellent job of wrapping it up. I mostly enjoyed the wedding, Renesmee, Bella and Emmett arm wrestling, and Bella getting turned into a vampire. Think about it, if none of those things wouldn't have happened no one would have liked the book.

Ok, so this was my favorite book, but i do admit that i hated jacobs point of view. i cannot stand jacob black and wish it either would have stayed n Bella's point of view, or switched to Edward's point of view. i hate reading jacob and his "pack" talk to each other through their minds.

But, overall, the book was great. on a scale of 1 to 10 i would gavie it a 9.5, which is pretty good cosidering how picky with books i can be.

Please, no one feel offended by any of this, i am just trying to state my own opinions and i respect all of your opinion.

Actually i think a great proportion of the negative reviews are from older readers. I am a grown woman, and i really enjoyed the first 3 books in the saga, but am one of the fans who really felt some of the plot lines in BD were shockingly under-developed and not even remotely plausible.

I have no issue with Bella and Edwards characters evolving or being different by the end of the saga, but in saying that, a good writer should at the very least be able to keep consistency in general personality traits. SM fails to legitimise changes in the way characters think by using language to add depth and colour to their emotions. The one emotion she is able to portray powerfully is lust, and that one emotion which was the centrifugal force throughout the whole series, was almost entirely disintegrated in Breaking Dawn. There was no real window into the aching and the pain and the sacrifice from either Bella or Edwards perspective throughout any of the book. Bella thought her love for Edward was the only thing that mattered in the world through the first three books, and all she wanted was to be a vampire and be with him for eternity. Yet by the time she is on her honeymoon, all she cares about is sex. That was never what it was all about, and yet SM created this dimension just so that she would be able to throw Renesmee into the mix (speaking of which, i hated that she changed all the rules about vampires not being able to procreate and gave no plausible explaination).

Edward on the other hand, started out as being intense to the point of controlling, and so protective and unwaning in his love for Bella that it bordelined on possessive. You could overlook those things because of the fantastical element to the story, and the fact that this was the first person he’d ever loved in his century of living. Then in Breaking Dawn, he is suddenly soft, unquestioning, and almost a pushover. SM should have had him bent over Bella everyday she was pregnant crying and aching at the thought of losing her and yet unable to get past the awe of this miracle of a baby growing inside her. She should have painted a picture of his unimaginable agony that she might be sacrificing her life for a child that could turn out to be a ‘spawn of the devil’. Yet she painted a picture of someone who was willing to let Bella’s best friend who he knew full well was in love with her try to push her into aborting her baby and sleep with her to give her normal babies. That is NOT evolution of a character, that is just going against all that Edward was about. Not to mention how he suddenly started calling Bella ‘love’ every five seconds in BD, despite the fact that he is forever seventeen, not one hundred.

One thing SM did reasonably well, was develop Jake into a character that was three dimensional enough that you loved him, got irritated by him, laughed at him, and felt heartbroken a long with. She made his love for Bella seem real and relatable, but then she destroyed it in one fell swoop with the whole imprinting on Bella’s baby concept and trying to pass it off as him having only felt that way because of his need to be there for Nessie. He was totally in love with Bella long before “Ness” was even thought of, and it could not, even for a werewolf, just simply disappear upon the arrival of his one true love’s offspring. I know SM tried to justify what some felt had paedophile undertones, but for me, it is a totally ridiculous idea that anyone could look at a child and know that their interest was going to BECOME romantic someday. If they did know that, then it actually WOULD be paedophilia for me, even if others choose to overlook it. And considering SM wrote this series for young teens, I think it is totally inappropriate for her to have even broached the controversial gray area that it is.

Her most major failure with this book is her lack of continuity with the tension, and suspense and thrill of the first three books. Why could she not have had Edward "change" her right near the end? Let her make the ultimate sacrifice at the 11th hour and leave the rest to our imaginations? Some of the younger readers claim that happy endings are great, and no-one wants loved characters to die, or horrible things to happen to them.....but the moment all those things are gone, there is no story left to tell. Why not have Jacob sacrifice himself to the Vulturi in the name of his forever unreciprocated love for Bella? In fact SM could have made Bella slip up with Jacob and the baby could have been his, thus creating unparalleled tension between himself, Bella and Jacob, and his sacrifice to the vulturi could have been the ultimate sacrifice to his daughter and true love. Anyway, for me the point of this whole series is Bella knowing that she was going to have to make sacrifices, that she was living on the edge, and the whole passion, danger and intensity was what was intoxicating about it in the first place. There’s nothing dangerous, passionate, intense, or thrilling about someone getting everything they want without any real hardship or sacrifice.

Steph Meyer obviously rushed this book and did not carefully plan out what was going to happen in excruciating detail. She should have held off and got more assistance with it instead of cashing in like she has. She admits she sees herself as more a storyteller than a writer, and this should be something her publisher and editor considers better next time she writes a book. She has a captivating imagination and a compelling writing style, but she needs to learn more about her craft, because Breaking Dawn was nothing short of an epic disaster.

I LOVED Breaking Dawn. Twilight has become part of my life - the books captivate me and draw me in. And I loved the ending to the series. The only part that bothers me was the fact that it had to end! I don't understand how people can't see the happy ending and enjoy the way it ends - I thought it was fabulous.

I will MOST DEFINITELY be going to see the movie - I thought Breaking Dawn was AMAZING.

I think it was the perfect ending! I absolutely loved the book and the series. I admire Stephanie Myer's work!!!

I think Stephanie Meyer did great job on the Breaking Dawn book. I think it was supposed to keep you wondering if Jacob was ever gonna be with Bella or just be damned and then to find out that Nessie is who he is supposed to be with is very re leaving. I feel like everyone has there other half and this was the way things should have been all along. Bella was supposed with Edward. Kudos to Stephanie and I think it was the perfect conclusion to this wonderful saga. Good job!

All four books were great and I was hoping that it would continue and that Emmett would show up more

Honestly I loved the book. These books are obviously not "childrens" books so the intamacy not a bother. Plus it wasnt like she gave a play by play of what they were doing. you get more details from watching cable tv. I think that it ended a bit short of what I wanted but she has stated that she is thinking about writing more using Renesme and Edwards point of view. In addition to some of your comments the reason she used Jacobs point of view is because the book would of been pretty boring if it was edward since all he was doing was watching bella detirate before his eyes. Stephanies methods of showing the conflict with his "pack" and the conflicts between him and the cullens were perfectly written I loved this book and deff want to see it in movie form.

je trouve que la fin est géniale et je suis super heureuse que Bella soit avec Edward. j'ai adorée les quatre livre et je les ai lu et relu plusieur fois. Moi je dis bravo a l'auteure et aussi au réalisateur et au commédien c'est vraiment super

I loved the last book despite what everyone is saying.. i didnt think it should be the ending .. and i didnt really like that jacob took up a lot of the book talking (even though it helped clear some things up) but i just wanted to see edward and bella get their happy ending forever like they deserve for so much that they gave up... i do think more needs to be resolved- jacob and nessie, bellas parents, the vampire "law" another book is in order to sum this all up instead of leaving loose strings

I Love Breaking dawn, its the best back in her saga, how could it get any better! It was amazing, loved it alll.. Me and My friends are Obsessed! WE LOVE TWILIGHT, and we all agree that breaking dawn is the best book out of the 4! New moon was good, but i can barely read it again because edward leaves her.! But i love breaking dawn and Stephenie Meyer could of done nothing more to make it any better. Its GREAT!!!

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