1. The negative reviews- I was surprised to find that Twilight wasn't written, in fact, in crayon. I'm not suggesting that Twilight should have gotten a Pulitzer, but Meyer does have her B.A. in English; she is capable of stringing sentences together. True, sometimes Meyer seems to try too hard to show her education, trying to make Bella bookish, into the classics, but when Meyer isn't trying too hard to turn Twilight into something it's not (a literary masterpiece), she has written an entertaining book.
2. Fifty Shades of Grey- I haven't read enough fan fiction yet to make a sweeping generalization, but I'm starting to suspect that if you want to appreciate an original book, you should read the fan fiction first. I recently read someone knock Twilight's Bella for being too swoony over Edward. Fair enough, but good lord, at least she's not Anastasia Steele. Not to knock all teenage girls, but Bella is a teenager after all. Teenagers swoon. And unlike Christian Grey, Edward is a vampire and as such, he practically excretes pheromones— that's one of the things supposed to make vampires such perfectly irresistible predators.
So, perhaps the secret to enjoying Twilight is to not go into it with high expectations. I won't be reading the following up books, but for a diversion, it wasn't half bad.
As a side note, I seemed to surprise a lot of my reader's last week when I "reviewed" Fifty Shades of Grey. This, despite the fact, that I had it listed in the sidebar for some time as a book I planned to read. Last year I made a list of popular novels that had escaped me or that I've managed to avoid. But I'm not a complete snob and I don't intentionally shun bestsellers. I've always felt that I can't judge an author's work unless I've read at least something by them, even if the respected critics warn me to stay away. Plus I like being well rounded. The popular books nicely balance out my Obscure Challenge blog. Anyway, here's the list of the books that the general populace has read, but I haven't. Actually, since completing the list last year, I have managed to cross off a few:
GLARING OMISSIONS! (Populist edition)
3. Confessions of a Shopaholic- Sophie Kinsella
4. the Sisters Brothers- Patrick deWitt
5. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo- Stiegg Larsson
7. Outlander- Gil Adamson
8. Flashforward- Robert J. Sawyer
9. Fear the Worst- Linwood Barclay
11. A Fatal Grace- Louise Penny
12. Room- Emma Donoghue
13. Bitten- Kelley Armstrong
14. The Book of Awesome- Neil Pasricha
16. The Lightning Thief- Rick Riordan
18. Water For Elephants- Sara Gruen
19. Book Thief- Markus Zusak
20. The Kite Runner- Khaled Hosseini
Which of these have you read?