What this chapter should be called: All this for nothing?!?
Bella like-o-meter: 2
New update schedule – there was once a time when I could easily bang out two chapter’s worth of reviews a week. Unfortunately, those times have passed. From now on, I shall update every Wednesday.
I’m going to start this review off a little differently. All I do is talk smack about how awful Twilight is, so I’ve been trolling fansites and forums lately, trying to find out why on earth people find these books so damn compelling. I found out that the average Twilight fan’s most common defense is, “At least it gets people to read!” to which I reply, “Bullshit.”
See, it may get people to read, but it doesn’t matter if they’re not reading the right stuff. Let me put it this way. It’s kind of like saying, “Oh, you don’t like tomatoes? Well, here’s a Bloody Mary! You’re an alcoholic now, but at least you like tomatoes!” See what I’m saying? You can’t call yourself a reader and expect anyone to take you seriously if all you read is the softcore porn novellas they sell at the airport. It’s the same deal with Twilight. Go pick up The Hobbit or something.
Also, I think now would be a pretty good time to mention that when I woke up this morning, my sinuses went, “JK LOL GO FUCK YOURSELF” and I’m currently shot up on two full cups (the little plastic ones on top of the bottle) of Nyquil. I apologize in advance if my writing jumps around a little.
So they go through the door in the sewer into a… generic office hallway. Okay. That’s a new one. Bella is immediately relieved that she doesn’t have to walk in the scary dark anymore.
“Edward didn’t seem to agree with my assessment. He glowered darkly down the long hallway, toward the slight, black shrouded figure at the end, standing by an elevator.”
I wish I knew how to glower darkly. All I can do is glower lightly. (+1 Thesaurus Rape)
“Jane waited by the elevator, one hand holding the doors open for us. Her expression was apathetic.”
Jane herself was thrilled as a kid in a candy store, her expression just suddenly became sentient to express its distaste. (+1 Stupidity)
Meyer’s wording is just unnatural. A general rule of thumb is, “even if it looks good on paper, read it out loud. If it sounds funny, change it.” How many times have you guys gone, “oh, her expression is sad” or whatnot? Once again, it’s not technically wrong, but people just don’t talk like that! It’s almost like Meyer thinks if she uses enough big enough words we’ll be distracted from the glaring stupidity.
Everyone seems to be scared silly of Jane. Since’s she’s the Littlest Vampire, I suppose she’ll probably have the Most Powerful Power. Maybe she beams the entirety of the Twilight Saga into someone’s head. I think that would incapacitate a freakin’ Navy Seal.
They get into an elevator. Yup, just a blood burrito and five vampires. Nothing to see here, guys. The Volturi vamps take of their hoods, and are described. I notice Felix the Cat and the other guy, Demetri, aren’t described in any way as “beautiful,” nor are they described in the same glowing detail that is used on the Cullens, so I’m thinking Meyer is going to play the beauty equals goodness trope straight up.
“Under the shrouds, their clothes were modern, pale, and nondescript. I cowered in the corner, cringing against Edward. His hand still rubbed against my arm. He never took his eyes off Jane.”
Bella is nearly pissing herself at this point. What a silly, weak woman. (+1 Stupidity) Also, due to the level of description, the Volturi could be wearing their Batman footie pajamas under their cloaks. (+1 Stupidity) Note: for a cheap Halloween costume, put on “modern” clothes and call yourself a Volturi vampire. The same thing would also work if you want to be a mannequin or Kevin Costner.
They step off the elevator into some sort of posh reception area. There’s a human woman sitting at the front desk who doesn’t seem to be bothered by the fact that five vampires have just walked in. Huh. Is she a pet or something? If not, it’s nice to know that Volturi Inc. is an equal opportunity employer.
They go through another set of doors and meet a teen boy vampire named Alec.
“They send you out for one and you come back with two… and a half,” he noted, looking at me. “Nice work.”
Alec looks at Bella, who’s practically fused to Edward’s side, and asks if “this is the cause of all the trouble?” Felix the Cat calls dibs (off page, Demetri calls sloppy seconds) and Sparklepeen gets all pissy and growls. Ooh, he’s just sooo protective of her you guise. This makes Jane laugh.
“She laughed—the sound sparkled with delight like a baby’s cooing.”
Most baby “coos” are gurgly, wet, and disgusting. Not really a sound that you would associate with delight, y’know? (+1 Stupidity)
They get led through this plain wood door, which Edward literally “pulls” Bella through. Is she not capable of walking anywhere? (+1 Red Flag)
They end up in this circular stone room with a drain set in a slight depression smack dab in the middle. Either it’s for easy disposal of bodies, or this is where the Volturi washes their cars and dogs.
“The stone antechamber was not large. It opened quickly into a brighter, cavernous room, perfectly round like a huge castle turret… which was probably exactly what it was.”
Bella is apparently a mathematician, because she just knows that the room is “perfectly” round. Did she measure the radius of the room and then compare it to the circumference the minute she walked in? That would be pretty awkward. (+1 Stupidity)
“A handful of people were convened in seemingly relaxed conversation. The murmur of low, smooth voices was a gentle hum in the air. As I watched, a pair of pale women in summer dresses paused in a patch of light, and, like prisms, their skin threw the light in rainbow sparkles against the sienna walls.”
Note to self: must add “rainbow sparkles” to the list of words and phrases that automatically get their own point. (+1 Thesaurus Rape)
All these beautiful sophisticated vampires are just lounging around in here, like there’s some sort of Camarilla meeting going on. I mean, there isn’t, of course, because Stephenie stayed away from anything vampire while writing these books, since research is the Devil or something.
And then we meet the head honcho of the Volturi.
“Jane, dear one, you’ve returned!” he cried in evident delight. His voice was just a soft sighing. He drifted forward, and the movement flowed with such surreal grace that I gawked, my mouth hanging open. Even Alice, whose every motion looked like dancing, could not compare.”
Why am I not at all surprised that the supposedly powerful and deadly leader of the Volturi turns out to be a completely nonthreatening pansy in some goth clothes? (+1 Stupidity)
And how do you “cry in delight” and have it sound like soft sighing? For the 8 bajillionth time, I am so freaking confused. (+1 Stupidity)
Aro is just gay as a jaybird to see Alice and Bella. (Off topic, don’t you think that Aro’s name kinda sounds like a dog trying to say hello?) Ugh, if you think Aro is bad, wait until we meet Marcus.
Aro walks around and sighs a lot. Aro may be one of the most powerful Volturi, but he seems kind of…flamboyant.
“I love a happy ending.” Aro sighed. “They are so rare. But I want the whole story. How did this happen? Alice?” He turned to gaze at Alice with curious, misty eyes. “Your brother seemed to think you infallible, but apparently there was some mistake.” “Oh, I’m far from infallible.” She flashed a dazzling smile. She looked perfectly at ease, except that her hands were balled into tight little fists.”
As we all know, Alice’s powers are only watertight when the plot requires it. (+1 Stupidity) Both Alice and Edward are pretty scared of this guy, but I honestly don’t think there’s anything to fear unless you have a crippling phobia of showtunes.
Aro is exceedingly familiar with our heroes, because his power is to know every thought you’ve ever had.
“You see, I share some of your brother’s talent, only I am limited in a way that he is not.” Aro shook his head; his tone was envious. “And also exponentially more powerful,” Edward added dryly. He looked at Alice as he swiftly explained. “Aro needs physical contact to hear your thoughts, but he hears much more than I do. You know I can only hear what’s passing through your head in the moment. Aro hears every thought your mind has ever had.”
Hmm. Can Aro also hear thoughts that a person forgot? If so, I’d high-five him, then ask where I left my earbuds.
I guess that’s sort of a handy power. So all he had to do was, ah, “touch” Edward to know what was going on.
Wait, that means he had the entirety of Twilight beamed directly into his brain. Maybe that’s why he’s so unhinged.
The other two main Volturi show up to the party. Aro tries to share his excitement.
“Marcus, Caius, look!” Aro crooned. “Bella is alive after all, and Alice is here with her! Isn’t that wonderful?” Neither of the other two looked as if wonderful would be their first choice of words. The dark-haired man seemed utterly bored, like he’d seen too many millennia of Aro’s enthusiasm. The other’s face was sour under the snowy hair.
Aro: OMG U GUYS LOOK LOLOLOLOL THIS IS SOOOOOO GR8 !!!1!11!
Marcus: Yeah sure.
Aro doesn’t let their sourpuss attitudes ruin his sparkling day. Marcus floats over to Aro and touches his hand to provide a mental infodump.
“Marcus sees relationships. He’s surprised by the intensity of ours.” Aro smiled. “So convenient,”
I’ll say. This guy’s entire purpose in life is just to tell us how much Bella and Edward luv each other. Wow. (+1 Stupidity)
Good Lord, I can’t stop thinking about this! Can someone PLEASE tell me a time, place, or universe where being able to “see relationships” comes in handy?
Screaming Woman: OH MY GOD MY BABY’S TRAPPED ON THE 37TH FLOOR OF THIS BURNING APARTMENT BUILDING!
Marcus: Ma’am, calm down. I can see that you love your baby very much.
Screaming Woman: Uhh…how does that help?
Marcus: Well, really, that’s all I can do. Have a nice life. Oh, and you think that the mailman’s cute, in a dorky sort of way.
Even if Marcus’s power has no real useful applications, why isn’t Marcus making a fortune on TMZ? Or running for a seat in the senate? I bet he’d be a great politician. Nope, he’s stuck in a moldy old castle, playing second banana to Aro. What a waste. (+1 Stupidity)
Ugh! I thought the Volturi were supposed to be dangerous!Marcus isn’t dangerous at all. Good Lord, we could give Bella the serrated edge of a box of aluminum foil and she would automatically be more dangerous than Marcus. (+1 Stupidity)
Aro decides to go on and on about how awesome Edward is for being able to resist Bella, because we haven’t gotten to hear anything about how wonderful Edward is for the last 400ish pages.
“It’s just so difficult to understand, even now,” Aro mused, staring at Edward’s arm wrapped around me. It was hard for me to follow Aro’s chaotic train of thought. I struggled to keep up. “How can you stand so close to her like that?” “It’s not without effort,” Edward answered calmly… “I wouldn’t have believed the call of anyone’s blood could be so strong. I’ve never felt anything like it myself. Most of us would trade much for such a gift, and yet you…” ”Waste it,” Edward finished, his voice sarcastic now.”
Edward is perfect, Bella is special, blah blah blah. Edward doesn’t seem to realize that Aro is coming on to him. Aro wants to test his powers on Bella, to see if she’s immune to him, too.
“Aro’s face altered as I watched. The confidence wavered and became first doubt, then incredulity before he calmed it into a friendly mask. “So very interesting,” he said as he released my hand and drifted back.”
Whaddaya know, Bella must be immune to ALL THE POWERS, as Aro concludes. (+1 Stupidity)
Aro decides, just out of curiosity, to see if Bella is immune to Jane, too. Oh, and when he asks, Jane calls him “master” which gives off a really creepy, s-and-m-ish vibe that probably shouldn’t be coming from a character in an YA novel. A character who looks about 13, too. I imagine that mental image just purged you of all desire that was even vaguely sexual. (+1 Stupidity)
Everyone is gung-ho for the idea of siccing Jane on Bella. Except for Edward. Nobody can handle the entirety of the Twilight Saga jammed into their head, not even Bella!
“Before I could react, before anyone could jump between them, before Aro’s bodyguards could tense, Edward was on the ground. No one had touched him, but he was on the stone floor writhing in obvious agony, while I stared in horror.”
Hey, I was right! Edward rolls around on the ground for a while, and Jane turns her eyes to Bella, and…
I’m imagining is that scene from “Being John Malkovich,” where Malkovich entered his own head. What would happen if you made Bella read her own stupid novels?
“ Jane hissed in frustration, leaning forward like she was preparing to spring. “Don’t be put out, dear one,” Aro said in a comforting tone, placing a powder-light hand on her shoulder. “She confounds us all.”
Jane is pissed that Bella is immune to her too. Are we seriously supposed to believe that Bella is immune to ALL THE POWERS? Alice can obviously see Bella in her visions, and Jasper can influence her emotions, and Marcus can see her relationships. Was I just supposed to forget this because it was convenient to the plot? Whoops. (+1 Stupidity) Too bad I can’t forget what a terrible writer Meyer is.
“Ha, ha, ha,” Aro chortled again.”
Does Meyer just want to clarify that Aro doesn’t laugh like HOO hee ppCHA! …or maybe she’s just the worst writer ever?
BUT, I KID YOU NOT, that line reappears in this chapter at least two more times. How did this get published? (+1 Stupidity)
“So what do we do with you now?” Aro sighed.”
Aro extends his offer to join the Volturi –
“Edward and Alice stiffened. This was the part they’d been waiting for.”
Oh God whyohwhyohwhy? (+1 Thesaurus Rape)
I think I know why Aro is so unbalanced. Can you imagine just how messed up he has to be inside? Hearing every thought that anyone he touches has ever had– being unable to censor the thoughts you hear or ‘tune them out’ as Edward does is supposed to be able to drive you insane. Let’s not forget that he also has to relive the agonizing transformation of every vampire he’s ever touched– just because they don’t remember the process now doesn’t mean they weren’t thinking about it at the time. Add to that the stigma of being gay (come on, you know I’m right) in whatever society he was born in, which might not necessarily have been as open-minded as we are today.
Personally I’m thinking that he’s at once the strongest and weakest of the Voturi– he knows the other two’s every weakness and shortcoming, and can use it to manipulate them into obedience, which is mainly to avoid as much suffering as possible, just so he doesn’t have to endure it himself whenever he touches his lunch.
But did Meyer focus on this incredible character that could have been? Nope. He gets two entire chapters of being little more than interesting wallpaper. (+1 Stupidity)
Bella is quaking in her boots while Aro asks Alice and Edward to join the Volturi, which they decline because, let’s face it, the Volturi are hella lame creepy. Aro then asks if they can turn Bella, since she’s obviously going to be super powerful as a vampire. Edward says no way (ignoring the fact that it’s not really his decision) (+1 Red Flag), which makes Bella assume she is ugly and hateful and Edward doesn’t want her.
Aro does some more stuff. Really, Aro and Marcus are both pretty lame and don’t quite live up to the hype. How about combining them to get a vampire who is gayer than a Chihuahua in pink shades, yet still the head of a vampire court, because he manipulates those in power by being able to sense who they’re affectionate/screwing around with. That would totally rule.
A whole confrontation arises from the fact that Bella knows too much and could possibly expose the whole vampire mafia the Volturi have going on.
“I wouldn’t—,” I began, still whispering. Caius silenced me with an icy look. “Nor do you intend to make her one of us,” Caius continued. “Therefore, she is a vulnerability. Though it is true, for this, only her life is forfeit. You may leave if you wish.”
Oooh, I’m just aflutter with excitement over here. What could possibly happen next?
“And if I do?” Aro smiled, happy again. “Why, then you would be free to go home and give my regards to my friend Carlisle.” His expression turned more hesitant. “But I’m afraid you would have to mean it.” Aro raised his hand in front of him. Caius, who had begun to scowl furiously, relaxed. Edward’s lips tightened into a fierce line. He stared into my eyes, and I stared back. “Mean it,” I whispered. “Please.”
THAT’S IT? That’s seriously all they have to do? Just promise, that at some point in the future, Bella will become a vampire? Really? Why is Edward even thinking about this? God, they’re all such idiots. (+1 Stupidity)
Ugh, trying to understand all the nonsense in this book is like trying to fit a full sized ocean liner in a glass Sobe bottle.
It’s just… I know that the vampires in Meyer’s stupid, stupid little world are ridiculous, but somehow seeing the famed and feared Volturi like this in all their flaming glory really puts the nail in the coffin. What the hell is WRONG with this woman? The power to sense relationships? “You can go if you turn the insipid heroine into a sparklepire?” The fact that any of these vampires give a flying fuck about Bella, Edward and their boring relationship? Really?
Hell, if I ever go to Volterra, remind me to commit as much crime as possible once I’m there, since my only punishment will be that, at some point in the future, I’ll have to apologize.
Luckily for all of us, Alice takes charge and touches Aro’s hand, showing him the vision she once had of Bella getting all vamped up. This makes everything okay and the Volturi lets them go. Man, that was scary, you guys, I wasn’t really certain if they would see the Power and Strength of Their True Love and let them go. (+1 Stupidity) Bella whines in her head about how Edward finds her repulsive and doesn’t want her to be an “immortal annoyance” (haha!), which I’m just delighted to have to read more of. (+1 Stupidity)
The gang starts to beat a hasty retreat down the hall, but doesn’t avoid the large group of tourists being led down the hall by a vamp named Heidi, who’s dressed, well, like a hooker.
“A large crowd was coming through the little door, filling the smaller stone chamber. Demetri motioned for us to make room. We pressed back against the cold wall to let them pass.”
Oh, look, feeding time at the zoo! The gang starts running, but they barely reach the door at the end of the hallway when the screaming starts.
Okay, I have a question. Forty-odd tourists go missing, no trace, nothing. I think it looks something like vampires have to eat once a month to stay fit, which comes out to 480-ish people going missing every year. Nobody noticed? Nobody thought “Well gee, there are all these people that go to Volterra and never come back”? Seriously? (+1 Stupidity)
Honestly, aside from the hundreds of tourists constantly going missing, how did the Heidi the hooker even get them to come into the castle in the first place? I mean, there’s only so much “alluring” vampire quality that can convince these people (especially that little countrified Italian woman) to come on a random side trip, right? It’s a good thing the scary Volturi can convince the police and international authorities that they have no idea where all the tourists disappear to. (+1 Stupidity) Maybe Marcus can sense the relationships of the authorities and blackmail them?
Also, Bella doesn’t even pause to think about the fact that 40 people were just brutally slaughtered. She’s just thrilled to be reunited with her one twu wuv. (+1 Bitch)
I think the climax of this book was possibly more disappointing than the last.
Thesaurus Rape: +3
Red Flag: +2
Thesaurus Rape: +41
Eye Rape: +1
Cream Count: +6
Red Flag: Sparklepeen- +16 Wolfballs- +2