Home > Uncategorized > The Truth (New Moon Ch. 23)

The Truth (New Moon Ch. 23)

So this one is again a week late, and I don’t have the excuse of having lost the book either. No, this to week’s post (actually last week’s) is hard to write. It’s hard because in writing these posts I try and say something interesting each update. Whether the section was extremely good or extremely bad, it doesn’t matter that actually makes the posts easier. The worse, for me to read, usually means the better for me to write. And there are two kinds of bad: there is the bad that is bad writing (choppy dialogue, sentence fragments, etc.) and there’s bad story telling (plot holes, contradictions, unbelievable events, etc.). This section is almost exclusively dialogue, which is promising when you consider that Meyer hasn’t shown any adeptness at writing dialogue. Sure, the nerds will all claim that she is horrible at everything but I have one thing to say to them:

Fuck you. I’ve read these damn books, and I know you’re wrong.

Meyer has what I call, “the Lucas/Whedon Conundrum.” This is when a person is pretty decent at setting up a big picture type story but then when it comes to populating it with characters who have to talk to each other things begin to fall apart. At least Michael Bay doesn’t think he’s creating art, unlike Lucas and Whedon. I guess I should prove this conundrum. Lucas is responsible for the universe of Star Wars and yet seems the need to throw in a muppet every once in awhile. He can wrangle incredible actors and then give them shit characters. Whedon gave us Alien: Resurrection. Bitch all you want and tell me that the final creature wasn’t his idea and I still won’t care, because that movie is a shot by shot remake of the Poseidon Adventure set in space with monsters. Nothing new or original in it.

Meyer’s got the same problem. Sure her universe isn’t as interesting as Lucas’ epic space battle, or Whedon’s hellmouths, but she’s got some potential here. It’s when the characters have to live in this world that becomes the problem, especially when it is essentially our world only with fantasy creatures. Bella’s reactions aren’t realistic for discovering and fraternizing with vampires and werewolves. What’s worse is that she isn’t even realistic as a normal person. And all of that is painfully realized in this chapter. That’s not even mentioning the return of Edward.

This chapter is titled the Truth, as if there were going to be some big reveal. Some fact that we don’t already know, or a twist that would explain everything. Let’s say Edward explains that he’s been working with Jacob all along to trap Victoria, it would be corny but it would at least be honest. Yet nothing in this chapter is anything like a reveal. All we are told is that Eddie left because he wanted Bella to live a normal happy human life. While he was gone he was learning to become a tracker (more on that in a little bit) but he sucked at it, so he left. Then the thing happened with Alice’s prophecy and we’re caught up. We also learn that Edward is going to committ suicide when Bella dies of old age in the future.Then the chapter ends with Bella and Edward confessing their love and that Bella wants to be a vampire.

Does any of that, aside from the suicide thing, sound like–ahem–SHIT WE ALREADY DIDN’T KNOW? No? That’s because the entire chapter is a recap of the fucking book. Remember three chapters ago when Bella rescued Edward (even though Alice would have been the smarter decision given her speed), and he didn’t believe it? Yeah, when Bella wakes up from sleeping they have the exact same conversation where one of them doesn’t believe they are alive. They even make the comment about how death isn’t so bad if the other one is there. The only difference is that the roles are reversed. I can’t tell if this is supposed to be clever or we are just at the point where shit needs to get wrapped up. It sucks in either case.

As I said earlier there are only two points of interest here and lets go with the suicide thing first. Edward claims that he won’t live in a world without Bella. Yeah that’s the type of boyfriend the young girls ought to pine for, the emotionally manipulative ones. He flat out tells her that he’ll stick around until she dies of old age and then he’ll kill himself shortly after. She views this as romantic, but I don’t. It’s bullshit. Why? For two reasons and both are plot based. One is that the Volturri are going to come for Bella. They said so, Alice predicted it (even though her powers shouldn’t work on Bella), Bella isn’t dying of old age. Secondly, Edward comments that the Italians count the years like days, so what stops him from doing so. Yeah seventy years is a lot to Bella, but to Edward it’s nothing. And after she goes, he’s free to move on to another high school girl.

Secondly is Edward’s chosen other profession–that of Tracker. If we remember from last novel, James was a Tracker. This meant that he was able to hunt down and find Bella’s mother’s house with little to no knowledge of her beforehand. In fact, the Cullens were scared of her, and going back to that book there Edward yells at Alice, “he’s a tracker Alice, did you see that? he’s a tracker!”

Alright being a tracker is something you can see, but Edward is just going to do it? Is there a medal or something on his chest, a patch? Edward, as it turns out is pretty bad at it. Which is actually the highlight of the chapter, because finally there is something that this paragon of virtue and ability can’t do. It’s almost like character development. Almost. Because he is bad at it.

This is hard for me to write, but this is the one thing he should excel at. He has all of the senses of Wolverine, the speed of Quicksilver (I am not, nor ever was a DC guy), and the telepathy of Professor X. Yet in following Victorie he somehow ends up in Brazil. Victoria it should be noted has been travelling on foot and has spent a significant amount of time in this book in and around Forks. If he ever caught her scent, it should be impossible for him to lose it unless one of two things happened: either he didn’t care enough, or she was bitten by James Madrox of X-Factor. Given the latter’s impossibility only the former is left. Seriously, he ended up in Brazil. Of course if he wanted to protect Bella so badly he might have stuck around to deal with Laurent, but he let those shiftless werewolves do that didn’t he.

No, this chapter makes no sense. And like someone who is going to argue that the moon landing was faked, reason and coherency have no place. It would have been better if “The Truth” was in the asking of the question, “so why didn’t you just call me?” It really wouldn’t matter who asked the question or who answered it, as long as it was out there.

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