12 years ago a furious Stephanie Meyer took to social media. A controversy had broken out in the publishing world. In the midst of Twilight Saga pandemonium, a draft of a new addition to the series had leaked. The illegal upload revealed a whopping 12 unpublished chapters of Midnight Sun. The new instalment was set to partner the first of the series. But from the perspective of the brooding anti-hero, Edward Cullen.
Back in 2008, Meyer wrote: “I did not want my readers to experience Midnight Sun before completion. What happened was a huge violation of my rights as an author.” In her anger, she vowed to change the ending but later decided to scrap the draft altogether.
Though, Stephanie Meyer wasn’t ready to leave the story behind for good. Over a decade later she announced its 2020 release. Publish day was set to be big, with stores flocking to stock up.
But how has the new YA book faired with Twihard fans who have grown out of adolescence? Has it lived up to expectations? Or did we learn everything we needed to about the brooding Cullen from the original series? I have mixed feelings when it comes to Midnight Sun by Stephanie Meyer, and here’s why in our review.
SPOILERS: Caution there are spoilers ahead.
The same storyline
Midnight Sun doesn’t provide a new subplot to the Twilight series. In fact, it’s more of a companion alongside the very first novel. The plot is the same. The same romance. Original complications and near-death experiences have not changed. The only difference is that we are viewing the story from Edward Cullen’s perspective.
In hindsight, there are positives of replicating a storyline from a different viewpoint. Although the base-plot remains, new perspectives from well-known scenes clear up the narrative. For example, Edward and Bella’s first interaction in biology class. In the first novel, Edward’s reaction is hostile. In Midnight Sun we see that Edward is battling with his inner “monster“. He desperately tries to suppress himself from killing the whole class.
Meyer’s writing has improved
No author, no matter how famous, exists without criticism. Unfortunately for Meyer, alongside her colossal following there was plenty of criticism. Especially when it came to her writing style.
Stephen King was among the harshest of critics when discussing Meyer’s writing abilities. In an interview recorded in 2009, he compared J.K Rowling and Stephanie Meyer. According to King, both authors speak to younger audiences. Though, he stated: “The real difference is Jo Rowling is a terrific writer. Stephanie Meyer can’t write worth a darn.”
Midnight Sun showcases Stephanie Meyer’s much-improved writing technique. Yet, there still lies the occasional odd line, such as “Her scent hit me like a battering ram.” On the whole, the style seems more put-together.
It’s difficult to avoid comparisons to the first book when discussing Edward Cullen. But the latest addition to the saga shines another light on the brooding vampire.
The traits that form Edward’s character have been inscribed in historic romance fiction. He is distant, brooding, composed, formal and elusive. All characteristics which add to the anti-hero appeal.
Though, by providing Edward’s perspective his character seems to have altered. He appears more vulnerable, anxious, and less composed.
Meyer has confirmed that this was her strategy. Edward’s life before Bella was monotonous. As soon as he met her he fought every instinct to kill her, feed from her but also protect her from harm. A heavy mixture of emotions bound to cause anxieties.
Meyer also discussed the hardship of writing this novel. Her own anxieties often collided with Edward’s which caused the author many headaches. This being the main reason why she will not be completing the whole saga from Edward’s view.
An insight into Edward’s world
It’s disappointing that we don’t see much of Edward Cullen’s immortal world. The book offers no new insights into the Twilight world from a vampire’s perspective. Though, it is intriguing to witness more interaction between the five siblings. On occasion it is more intriguing to read about Alice and Jasper than Edward himself.
On the whole? Midnight Sun isn’t a complete disaster. But I can’t see it quenching the thirst of a beloved Twihard or Twilighter. The same who have dreamed of a new addition to their favourite saga for over a decade. It has its positives, but it also has its negatives. For this reason, I found myself on the fence.
CULTURE CROSSING SCORE 2/10
Thanks for reading our review of Midnight Sun by Stephanie Meyer. Do you agree or disagree with our points or have anything to add? If so, leave us a comment below.
Read more of our literature articles HERE.
Read IMDB information about The Twilight Saga HERE.
Harry Potter: The Questions You Keep Asking, Answered
It’s been over 24 years since the first instalment of the Harry Potter series was published. But regardless of the length of time passed, many questions are still left unanswered. Fansites still tear apart page upon page looking for the key to unlock J. K. Rowling’s extraordinary mind. Interviewers have fired question after question at the infamous author. Yet, when one question is answered, it seems to open the flood gates for many more.
J. K. Rowling has now moved onto crime fiction. But she still finds the odd spare moment to grace Potter fans with her virtual presence. Using Twitter to answer some of the endless questions’ fans have conjured.
Let’s take a look at some of the most valid Harry Potter questions asked on Twitter and how J.K. Rowling answered them.
What happened to Fluffy the three-headed dog?
Poor Fluffy wasn’t mentioned again after being set free in the Forbidden Forest. Never fear! Rowling is here to tell us of Fluffy’s fate.
Back in February 2015, Rowling replied to the question on Twitter. stating that ‘He was repatriated to Greece. Dumbledore liked to put Hagrid’s more foolish acquisitions back where they belong.’
Beyond the happily ever after
A snapshot of Harry, Ron and Hermione’s Happily Ever After is presented at the end of the final book. The three (and Ginny) complete the circle by walking their own children to the Hogwarts train.
But, their lives developed much more than having children. As Rowling revealed back in 2007. Hermione began her career within the Ministry of Magic. She worked in the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures. Here, she became instrumental in the improvements for the treatment of house-elves. After this, she moved to the Dept. of Magical Law Enforcement, where she ensured the eradication of pro-pureblood laws.
Harry and Ron took different paths. Harry became an aura, a highly trained law enforcement officer. Ron went into the family business, helping his brother run Weasley’s Wizarding Wheels.
Did Harry, Ron and Hermione return to their schooling?
There’s a huge gap at the end of The Deathly Hallows. The pages seem to jump from the defeat of Voldemort to 19 years later. So did the famous trio return to school?
Rowling stated that Hermione returned to Hogwarts to complete her NEWT’s. But Harry and Ron did not, instead, they followed their career paths straight away. Although, I’m pretty sure defeating the source of all evil scores big points on a C.V.
Harry’s scar shape is important, right?
Well, no. Unfortunately, Rowling just thought ‘it looked cool’.
Potter super-fans have other ideas, though. One Tweet back in 2019 revealed that the scar could symbolise much more. @TodayYearsOld Tweeted:
‘Did you know Harry Potter’s scar isn’t a lightning bolt, but the hand motion to cast Avada Kedavra.’
Avada Kedavra is a killing curse used within the Dark Arts. The hand movement looks like a lightning bolt, but much softer. Not surprisingly, the Tweet went viral and caused shock waves through the Potter community.
What does Hufflepuff’s common room look like?
We are taken on a trip to Slytherin and Ravenclaw’s common room, and we spend a lot of time in Gryffindor’s. So, when fans asked Rowling for a description, she was only too happy to oblige.
‘The Hufflepuff common room is accessed through a portrait near the kitchens, as I am sure you have deduced. Sorry – I should say ‘painting’ rather than portrait because it is a still-life. It is a very cosy and welcoming place, as dissimilar as possible from Snape’s dungeon. Lots of yellow hangings, fat armchairs, and underground tunnels leading to the dormitories. All of which have perfectly round doors, like barrel tops.’
Is there more than one Wizarding school?
If you are one of those people who watch the films before the books. You’ll have probably asked ‘Is Hogwarts the only school for wizards?’. In this instance, it’s the books that hold the key, and if you take notes in ‘The Goblet of Fire.’ Students from other schools arrive at Hogwarts to attend the Tri-Wizard Tournament.
The books reveal more about a couple of schools, such as the Palace of Beauxbatons. Beauxbatons is a beautiful chateau situated in the Pyrenees mountains of Southern France. Durmstrang is another, and one of the three largest in Europe. Durmstrang is situated in the northmost regions of Norway or Sweden and is known for its Dark Arts.
Rowling has since revealed more schools, including Castelobruxo, Mahoutokoro, Uagadou and Ilverymorny.
Neville Longbottom and Luna Lovegood end up together?
It’s a no, which has disappointed fans. But the two remained close friends as Luna followed a career in Wizarding Naturalism. She became famous for tracking rare creatures before marrying Rolf Scamander.
Neville married fellow Hogwarts student Hannah Abbot. Surprisingly, Neville became an aura before returning to Hogwarts as a Herbology Professor.
Did Draco Malfoy get his just desserts?
This is a big one for Potter fans who wished to see Draco pay for everything he subjugated Harry to. But, as The Deathly Hallows hints, it appears he went through a huge transformation.
Draco was a complex character, not only a member of Slytherin, but he was also a bully. But much of his behaviour came from his upbringing.
Draco tried to prove himself to the Dark Lord, only to be rescued by the three he often tormented. This caused him and his mother to neglect Voldemort once it was believed Harry was dead. The two avoided Azkaban, and he went into a very dark place, emotionally. But he emerged a changed man. He had a wife and a son, and a simple nod to the trio 29 years on seemed to solidify that he had changed.
Thanks for reading our article on unanswered Harry Potter questions now answered. Did you already know these? Did we miss any big ones? Let us know in the comments below.
Check out 5 Hidden Messages In Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows That You Missed HERE.
Read IMDB information on Harry Potter HERE.
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