Thursday, October 09, 2008

should've known better


I have this idea that I'm self-disciplined. I can eat just one or two squares of chocolate (insanely delicious Belgian chocolate, at that) a day. I do work out regularly three times a week. I take all my medications when I'm supposed to, and I make and keep all my doctor appointments. All my kids' appointments, too. And I make sure everyone (else) eats right and gets plenty of rest...

Anyway, that carefully maintained facade crumbles when I start reading. Hand me a 400-plus page novel and I'll be up until 2 or 3AM, bleary-eyed but awake until I read it straight through till the end.

I thought I could be more disciplined this time, but the kids are on break and there isn't anything compelling I have to do, so... 900 pages of the first two Twilight books gulped down like a gin-and-tonic on a hot day. About as intoxicating, too.

I'd never heard of them until I got back to work in August, and the kindergarten teachers were talking about them in the break room. My ears perked up: vampires? I've been a vampire-story junkie since I read Interview with a Vampire as a 15-year-old babysitter, alone (with sleeping kids) in a creaky house surrounded by woods. Probably not the best choice of reading materials, but I was getting paid to stay awake, and I did. I know I've written about this before -- wasn't I one of the half-dozen people who watched the short-lived Blade television series? It wasn't horrible, but it didn't come close to the campy glory that was Kindred:The Embraced, with its mafia-like vampire families.

I idly picked up Twilight, the first book in the series, a couple of weeks ago at Borders, and read the first few chapters while the kids were exploring their own selections. Then I read the next few chapters the next time we went back, and so on; I'd read up to chapter 10, piecemeal, and I seemed to be doing just fine, doling it out in small doses like that. But then we went to Bookman's and traded in a bunch of stuff and I decided to use some the trade credit for myself for once, and got both Twilight and New Moon. (I was gratified to find out that Jacob really is a werewolf, as was hinted at in Twilight.)

I was just over on IMdb to look up something completely trivial, and noticed the link for the Twilight teaser trailer. I clicked. I squee'd with positive and inexplicable joy: the casting looks perfect (Cedric Diggory as Edward!), and the teaser, anyway, gets the tone exactly right. Of course teasers are edited to entice and trailers often show the best parts, but the snippets I saw in these two teasers were just so spot on, I'm psyched.

I should know better (there it is again) than to get my hopes up; how well I remember being sucked in by the look of that Eragon poster. But Twilight is a much simpler story, really, and it should be pretty easy to hang a film on its slight frame. It has love, beauty, and danger, but I'm most interested to see how Hardwicke & co deal with Edward and Bella's chaste relationship. It runs completely counter to the message that teens get everywhere else (sex!), and it's central to the novels. I hope they don't screw it up.

(And now I'm up past 2AM for the third night in a row.)

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