My rating: ★★
Two stars, I know. Can I really complain about Twilight parodies when I jump into one published in 2009? I feel like I’ve just about seen the best of them, but: do Twilight parodies ever get old? I wonder.
Why yes, my fifteen-year-old self did indeed venture into the wasteland of grammatical errors and bland writing found in Twilight (and, to my shame, New Moon). I don’t recall much in general, because nothing but the hilarity of Edward’s diamond-esque skin made a lasting impression. Of course, it is my opinion–one shared by many, many people–that the Twilight series is an all-around good example of poor writing, so I rather enjoy all the mockery. (No offense intended.) So how does this parody stand up to others and the original story?
My Twilight copy is long-gone, but I recently acquired The Host. My aunt nearly bulged her eyes out of their sockets raving about it last month. “IT IS SOOOOO GOOD,” she says. I am a cautious being, but I said to myself, You’re non pre-judgmental. Don’t be a snotface even though you kind of are. Test it out; appease your aunt. So once again, my brain shriveled as I trudged through an entire two pages (whoa, my god) of The Host. It was painful, and I don’t say that lightly. To elaborate:
Pity swelled in his heart as he remembered the condition her poor, broken body had been in when the Seekers had brought her to the Healing facility. Such pain she’d endured. . . .
Fords was surprised to hear the sharp edge marring his normally soothing voice.
And then there is this gem of a sentence…
Fords gave Darren a look that could only be described as a glare.
Egh. I feel Twilight dread all over again. (Honestly, I question my aunt’s literary taste, and for that I pray she never finds me on GR.) This isn’t a review for The Host, and I will try to limit my Smeyer bashing to a minimum, but this book is the only one I have in possession for a comparison. As per its nature as a parody, Nightlight magnifies Meyer’s writing style and reflects just how ridiculous it is. Belle Goose is the hyperbole of Bella Swan, only I give Belle some credit for asserting her needs:
“Please come with me to my car, Belle,” he offered gently, limping towards me. “I mean, only if you want to.”
“Uh-uh. Not with that attitude.”
I shook my head disappointedly. “What’s the magic verb form?”
“Belle,” he groaned. “We don’t have time for this. Plus I hate when you make me do this.”
“Imperative, Edwart. The magic verb form is imperative. You don’t have to hide your natural inclination to boss me around. I want you to feel comfortable with me, Edwart. To the point of domination.”
“Okay, okay.” He took a deep breath and pointed at me. “You,” he said stiffly, the words flowing straight from some primordial, bossy wordbank. “Come to the place where you want to go, which, hopefully, is my car, where I will be, God willing.”
While Nightlight takes the original plot and twists it around some, my care to read on and finish it wavered. I would smile through a few paragraphs and then lose interest. What I thought would make for an entertaining way to pass time turned into several days of trekking through jokes that could have been funny. Unfortunately, the jokes drag out.
“You’ve grown so big–I didn’t recognize you without the umbilical cord, I suppose.”
Ha ha, right? But it carries on:
Had it really been that long? Had I really not seen my dad since I was thirteen and going through my pet umbilical cord phase?
Humor is, to me, a highly subjective genre and hence a difficult one to write. We all find different things funny, and it’s a distinction that varies across culture and regions. Regardless, Nightlight has its moments. The gaudy and awkward style subtly reflects (though takes a strong jab at) the horror of Meyer literature. In the same light, I wish the humor had not been overly exaggerated and left alone once the punchline was delivered. There are a great number of other parodies to choose from, and while I don’t think I’ll ever read Twilight a second time, I believe that is capable of earning more laughs than this.
(It is all right. Meyer was simply published under the wrong genre.
Okay, okay–I’ve had my snooty fill for the day.)