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Twilighters Anonymous


Post-Event Report: Before Dawn - A Book Discussion for “Twilight” by Stephenie Meyer

Report by: Meann Ortiz (Twilight Coven Philippines)
Photos by: Daene Luna and Casey Copengco (Twilight Coven Philippines)

When “Twilighters” get together, two things usually happen: One, there is much “squeeing” over Edward Cullen; and Two, there is an exchange of tales about how they got hooked into “Twilight” and what they love about it. “Before Dawn”, the book discussion for “Twilight” held last June 14 at Fully Booked Bonifacio High Street, was no different.

It started out like an Alcoholics Anonymous session — “My name is _______ and I’m a Twilight fan, and I first heard about Twilight when….” Talking about the book almost seems like therapy for most fans, and something to make the wait for “Breaking Dawn” bearable. The stories were interesting: some were encouraged to read by their classmates and friends and loved ones, some were intrigued by the cover and bought the book, some traveled to Forks via the Hogwarts Express, some were encouraged to read when they heard about the upcoming movie.

No matter what led them to read the book and what they liked about it, I noticed something Twilighters have in common — everyone cares about the characters so much that people talk about them as if they were real. It was obvious that the discussion participants care about what happens to each of the characters, even the ones they loathe the most. This is probably one of the things that makes Stephenie Meyer’s books so addicting. Yes, the characters live in the realm of fiction, but when you read the book, they each seem to cross the boundary into the real world to keep you company and whisper their stories in your ear. Comments, both positive and negative, were also exchanged regarding Stephenie Meyer’s writing style, and how Bella Swan’s first-person narration made the story something more than just your average vampire tale.

Because characterization is one of the strong points of the novel, each major character was discussed in depth and their relationships were explored. This part of the discussion yielded yet another set of interesting answers from the participants: most people’s favorite vampire other than the hero Edward is Alice Cullen because of her bubbly personality, the ladies like Edward because of his old-fashioned gentlemanly demeanor and his protectiveness of Bella, everyone admires Carlisle’s compassion, readers like Bella because of her decisiveness. Of course, there is the question of Edward being every girl’s idea of the perfect man: the ladies think there is no one in the real world like Edward, but surprisingly, the guys think he could be somewhere out there.

Stephenie Meyer’s vampires defy the convention, so participants also discussed different vampire myths and vampires in literature. We also touched upon Filipino vampire myths, which Stephenie actually mentions in “Twilight”, specifically the legend of the “danag”.

Everyone was excited about the upcoming “Twilight” film starring Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart, and about the August release of “Breaking Dawn”, the last book in the series told from Bella’s point of view, and these topics were featured in the final part of the discussion proper.

Before adjourning, everyone played a game of Twilight A-Z and Twilight Trivia. The participants gamely put their Twilight knowledge to the test. The younger ones proved victorious, exhibiting genius-level memory of little details in the book.

We were surprised by the modest number of participants who attended and their varying ages (11-31 years old) and professions, proving that “Twilight” is not only for the Young Adult set, but also appeals to older readers. Beyond blurbs about a forbidden romance, the book brings readers to an ordinary place made special because it is where myths and fascinating characters come to life, and that is certainly something that everyone can appreciate.

As the participants went their separate ways that night, reminiscing about their experiences and most likely going back to re-reading the book, it wouldn’t take Edward Cullen’s mind-reading ability to find out what’s foremost on everyone’s mind: we are all excited and looking forward to “Breaking Dawn”.

More photos here and here.

Cross-posted to NewWorlds.ph and Fully Booked Online

2 comments:

  1. escitalopram said...
     

    Dang. I missed the event. Please announce future ones way ahead of time.Pretty please?

    Great job on the blog, guys. It's great to have a Pinoy feel of the Twilight universe. More power!

  2. Clair de Lune said...
     

    Oh, we announced this one early (May 30). :) We'll try to make the announcements more prominent on the site, though, so you guys can't miss it. :)

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