Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking those links, I will receive a small commission from the sale at no extra cost to you.Midnight Sun (Twilight, #5) by Stephenie Meyer
Published by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers on August 4, 2020
Genres: Young Adult Fiction, Paranormal, Romance
Format: Hardcover (675 pages)
Purchase: Amazon • IndieBound
Add Book: Goodreads • Bookhype
When Edward Cullen and Bella Swan met in Twilight, an iconic love story was born. But until now, fans have heard only Bella's side of the story. At last, readers can experience Edward's version in the long-awaited companion novel, Midnight Sun.
This unforgettable tale as told through Edward's eyes takes on a new and decidedly dark twist. Meeting Bella is both the most unnerving and intriguing event he has experienced in all his years as a vampire. As we learn more fascinating details about Edward's past and the complexity of his inner thoughts, we understand why this is the defining struggle of his life. How can he justify following his heart if it means leading Bella into danger?
In Midnight Sun, Stephenie Meyer transports us back to a world that has captivated millions of readers and brings us an epic novel about the profound pleasures and devastating consequences of immortal love.
Proceed with Caution:
This book contains blood and violence, discussions of death, self harm, rape, and murder.
In case you weren’t aware, this is Twilight from Edward’s perspective. He is infinitely more interesting than Bella, and much more verbose.
The setting is still Forks, Washington, where the Cullens have resided for a couple of years, and where Bella has just arrived to live with her father. The whole town is abuzz with her arrival except for the Cullens. At least until Edward smells her for the first time. Clearly this is a literary masterpiece.
I have been waiting for Midnight Sun for what feels like my entire life. When in reality, it’s more like twelve years, which feels like an eternity. It did not disappoint. You may be confused by that because I gave it a middling three-star rating. I did not expect this book to be awesome. I just wanted to get into Edward’s head and see all of his creepy thoughts. I got that, so mission accomplished.
The first few chapters of Midnight Sun do feel very disjointed. It honestly did feel like Stephenie Meyer simply took Twilight‘s chapters and then wrote what Edward was doing and thinking at the time. It did not start out feeling like a cohesive story that could stand on its own. You’d have to have read Twilight to really understand and appreciate it. Needless to say, it took me a bit to settle into Edward’s narrative because it didn’t read like this was his story. I did like that he killed Bella multiple times before even meeting her.
Midnight Sun‘s strongest attribute, for me, was that it gave Bella goals and interests! This girl had nothing outside of wanting to be with Edward forever in Twilight. Understandable, but really? Here, we get much more of their conversations. Edward pays such close attention to every word that comes out of Bella’s mouth and he asks her such mundane questions. I mean, we learn her favorite books, movies, music, her college and post-college plans. You wouldn’t think she had any of these things from reading her own narrative; she was just so obsessed with Edward and the rest of the Cullens. I suppose it was a good thing that Edward was equally obsessed.
And speaking of obsession, Edward is incredibly self-aware of his problematic behavior. He mentions it a few times, and I really appreciate that. He knows that stalking her is wrong, but he doesn’t want to be right. Emmett also believes that Edward is off his rocker.
I was left with one lingering question at the end of Midnight Sun: can Edward actually “see” through people’s eyes? This was a repeated occurrence and made his “talent” more confusing. We all know that he can hear the thoughts of those around him, but he constantly mentioned how he could see Bella through the eyes of her classmates. Are thoughts actually clear enough to make pictures? Even if they are, how can he see, when his ability seems to be auditory? I was just confused.
Read Midnight Sun or don’t. You’re not really missing much if you skip it. But I had fun reading it. Team Alice!
Quotes from Midnight Sun:
Like a stalker. An obsessed stalker. An obsessed vampire stalker. (pg 80)
“It’s twilight,” I said. The time when vampires came out to play–when we never had to fear that a shifting cloud might cause us trouble–when we could enjoy the last remnants of light in the sky without worrying that we would be exposed. (pg 290)
“Twilight again,” I mused. “Another ending. No matter how perfect the day is, it always has to end.” (pg 667)