Girls*Heart* Books: New Moon by Stephenie Meyer: Group Book to Movie Review

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

New Moon by Stephenie Meyer: Group Book to Movie Review

For Bella Swan, there is one thing more important than life itself: Edward Cullen. But being in love with a vampire is even more dangerous than Bella could ever have imagined. Edward has already rescued Bella from the clutches of one evil vampire, but now, as their daring relationship threatens all that is near and dear to them, they realize their troubles may be just beginning...  (from Goodreads)

Now that you guys know how we feel about Twilight, it's time to move along to book number two in the saga, New Moon.  There are mixed reactions to this book wherever you look. We, of course, are no different. Without further ado, I give you our New Moon book to movie reviews! 

Taylor Lautner as Jacob Black and Kristen Stewart as Bella Swan

Well, readers, where do I start with my New Moon book review? Well, I guess the beginning works. New Moon is the second book in the Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer and it picks up the fall after Twilight ends. Bella is turning 18 and that should be a happy occasion, right? Wrong. Disaster strikes and leaves Bella heartbroken. I sobbed through about 60% of this book, I think, but I really loved every word.  Bella's world has been shattered with the loss of her love and Meyer brings that pain home in beautiful fashion.  

If you've ever had your heart broken or suffered the loss of a loved one then you know how Bella was feeling. It wasn't just that Edward was gone, it was that whole future she thought they'd have and his family, too. Alice is her best friend, after all, and the other Cullens, with the exception of Rosalie, have welcomed her into their family. It was like half of her being had been ripped out and was just gone leaving a dark abyss in its place.  Meyer's word-craft has you feeling that pain, her storytelling is simply masterful. 

In my opinion, though, this book is really more Jacob's story than it is Bella's. Jacob is learning about his true heritage and what it really means to be a 'Black'. Jacob is one of my very favorite characters from the series and I loved getting to know him better in this book.  He's good, kind, funny and sweet and honestly, if there was NO Edward Cullen, then Bella and him getting together would have been a foregone conclusion.  The ongoing banter between Jake and Bella was a high point for me, you can very easily see he is in love with her. I really think that even if he only wanted her as a friend, he still would have been there for her the same way. That's just who he is. If Edward tears Bella's world apart, Jacob pieces it back together. And in doing so he sews  himself into that world and becomes necessary for Bella to be truly happy. 

I've heard a LOT of people berate Bella for her actions in New Moon. Whether it's because of her deep depression or her treatment of Jacob; they've called her weak and some other not so nice things. I really don't see things that way, honestly. Do I love the way things turn out for Jacob at the end of New Moon? Hell no, not at all, he deserves better, frankly,BUT Bella was totally honest with him.  I think Bella was at a very low point but she bounced back, she learned how to live without a part of herself.  Not easy to do, guys. And she proved to herself how strong she really is. 

There was so much to love about this book; too much to list here, honestly. So I'll give you the shortish list; the movie outing with Mike & Jacob is one of my favorites, finding out about the wolves and their easy acceptance of Bella into their family is fantastic and of course once Alice comes back onto the scene, the book just turns from fantastic to AMAZING. And I loved that Bella went to save Edward instead of him needing to save her again. All in all I adored this book  just as much as the first one and it left me needing, (not just wanting) to know what would happen next. 

My Rating: 
Now for the movie. Let me begin by saying that New Moon was way better than Twilight. I thought the change in director made a huge difference. That said, I have to admit that this wasn't  my favorite of the movies. I loved Chris Weitz's vision for New Moon; the colors were amazing and he definitely had a better handle on the book than his predecessor did in my opinion. 

I loved the way the wolves were portrayed in wolf form..their human counterparts, not so much. What part of huge hulking boys did the casting people not understand? I mean, Sam ok he's a little tall..but the rest of them are SHORT! That bothered me so much and I know some of you are going to laugh at me for that and it's totally ok, I know I'm insane, but it just made me feel like they didn't try to get the look right at all. 

I loved how they showed the passage of time as Bella pines for Edward and his family. The music was amazing, it really brought the tone of the book to life, in my opinion.  And once again I must sing the praises of Billy Burke. He stole every scene he was in. He was simply perfect. Again. I really enjoyed the Bella/Jacob friendship fun scenes but I felt they lacked the depth they had in the book. You don't get that feeling like Jacob is Bella's sun. 

My biggest complaints with this movie are 1-Bella seeing Edward as opposed to hearing him when she's in a dangerous situation. Why? Because the movie people didn't think the teeny bopper girls would come and see it if they knew Robert Pattinson wasn't in the whole thing. Ridiculous and completely against canon. It bothered me A LOT.  The next is in the same vein; the fight in Italy. Why? It certainly didn't happen in the book, and there was no reason for it except they wanted to try and draw the guys in. Pathetic. When you're taking a beloved book and turning it into a movie, don't take away fantastic scenes like Bella & Carlisle's talk at her birthday party and put in crap that DID NOT HAPPEN IN THE BOOK. It bothers the fans. Or at least some of us. 
My Rating:

All right, everyone is caught up, right? You all saw our Twilight reviews? Good. Time to move on to the favorite book (for me, anyway, and that’s saying something because I really loved Breaking Dawn- we’ll get to that later).

In New Moon, we get to see how Bella reacts when Edward completely abandons her like a used tissue. I read New Moon three times before the movie came out, and I have to say, I was crying like a baby (and I’m Team Jacob!) even though I was grumbling afterwards about how evil he is, every single read through. So, considering I simply cannot stand stories where the girl is wrapped up in a giant d-bag and he simply leaves her (I don’t care what his reasons were I didn’t know at the time!), I have to applaud Stephenie Meyer for this lovely work. Bella’s misery was so striking, and so palpable, I always felt a little sick when I was reading it (that’s a good thing).

But enough on that. The whole book is not just “Cry-Cry-Cry-Poor-Me”. There is some glorious chemistry on the other side of this triangle. Oh, all the Jacob/Bella feels… Ahem. I fully believe if Edward hadn’t have come back, those two would’ve been together. Jacob is Bella’s best friend, and looking at her other friends during that time (who were either totally weirded out or hitting on her…honest WTF moment for me), he was the absolute best thing for her and I will stand by that. I loved their on-going argument about who was older and who was more impressionable, and how he brought her out of this bordering-on obsessive funk she was in. It was the most adorable and most enjoyable part of the entire series for me. L. O. V. E.

Then there was the Volturi.. Such a creepy lot of vampires. Yet so wonderful, because they seemed like the classing fairytale vampires you’d find with Anne Rice; scary, uncaring, nasty evil vampires! Who doesn’t love a good bad guy? I got chills reading about them. Gah.

I do believe New Moon is my favorite of this entire series. It’s scary, sad and funny, and adorable all at the same time! Perfection.

My rating:

As for the movie review. I really only have a few complaints, actually. And one of them is not about the actual movie. What bothered me mostly was the make-up here. What the ever loving…? It was almost painful to look at the Cullen’s. I think Bella looked her prettiest in this movie, as did Jessica and Angela, but everyone else looked so…bizarre. Which kind of ruined the affect on me.

For the rest? I think it was beautiful. They somehow managed to work in Jacob and Bella spending so much time together and Bella constantly emailing (or attempting to email) Alice. Though I would’ve liked to see more of their (being Jacob and Bella) banter, I think it was excellent!

And I must give props to the casting directors for Jane. I’ll be honest, when I first heard it was Dakota Fanning, I wanted to cry, because I had imagined some little girl with dark hair who looked innocent and sweet until you looked her full on. And I got Dakota, who looks innocent and sweet no matter what you do. But as I watched, I was blown away! The entire Volturi was absolutely perfect, and they gave me those chills again. Ahh. Loved them!

Kristen showed her best acting in New Moon too, I believe. She managed the heartbroken girl wonderfully, and for me, who cannot stand THAT casting choice (or many others, really), that is a big ‘props’.

All in all, I do believe this movie measured up to the book. Even without Jacob/Bella (I cannot be the only one who ships this…), Alice, Charlie, Carlisle and Emmett all made it up for me! Very enjoyable.

My rating:

MikeWelch, Kristen Stewart & Taylor Lautner as Mike, Bella & Jacob
Bella’s grief over the loss of Edward is gut wrenching, I really got close to putting this book down it was that realistic (Kudos Stephanie!). She withdraws from everything and everyone and Meyers perfectly placed us all in that world so that we were able to experience Bella’s downward spiral while coming to terms with losing the love of her life. Bella grows emotionally so much in this book and, to be quite honest, I don’t think it would have happened without Jacob. He steps right up and brings her back to life, helping her through her depression and showing her that life goes on. I love that Bella gets to blossom in this book and interact with other characters outside of the Cullen family. Yet, we get to know more about some of the Cullen family members as well in New Moon (a short, quick peek into my wonderful Rose’s mind!) as, for the brief time they are in the book, Bella’s relationship with them is solidified! Oh and let’s not forget our introduction to The Volturi; I firmly believe that their “chamber” in Italy is the gateway to HELL!! And the twins, Jane and Alec, are the spawns of Satan himself! A truly good book is not good without giving you someone to hate though, right? Well New Moon gives you about a dozen. Has everyone seen the side story that wasn’t included in the book about Aro and his sister Didyme? I think it should have been left in, it explains so much more about the true evil of this character. New Moon (the book and the movie) try to make him look or seem indifferent, kiss my ass! He is evil incarnate!

This book is utterly unpredictable, thrilling, gut wrenchingly beautiful; Meyer wonderfully exposes us to the dark world that now surrounds our heroine as well as the light at the end of the tunnel. Twilight is all about Edward and the Cullens, New Moon is all about Jacob and the wolfpack.

 My Rating:

New Moon the Movie.. where do I start? Loved it! Hmmmm; this movie really drops the bomb about Bella’s dreams actually being more of a premonition as well as her “hallucinations” of Edward; brilliant. I loved the way the director captured these parts and the way he changed the tones and colors of the movie ever so slightly from Twilight; just like with the books there was a slight progression in Bella’s world with the change in tones and colors; the movie captured this perfectly!

Bella’s birthday party and Jasper trying to eat her – Edward leaving and Bella damn near dying of a broken heart right there on the spot, coupled with her sudden inability to breath – Charlie’s “pep talk” one night after a nightmare (perpetual ladies man. LMAO!) – The motorcycles – Cliff Diving- “You’re sort of beautiful.” – The movie theater with Mike and Jake sitting with their hands ready to be held (hahahahaaaa) – “I guess the wolf’s out of the bag” – “You can’t really run with vampires, they’re fast.” “Yeah? Well, guess what, we’re faster!” - Harry Clearwater L - The Volturi (so much, so good, loved it, I could go on all night! So, I will narrow it down and discuss my absolute favorite part of New Moon)

The family meeting, at the end! Laughter through tears is my favorite emotion… this scene brings that to life. Jasper “I vote yes. It would be nice not to want to kill you all the time.” The entire family; as this scene plays out, you finally realize beyond a shadow of a doubt that they accept Bella into their family and into their lives and it is Fantastic! Ahhh, my Beautiful Bitch on wheels Rose has one of the best lines in any move EVER and it speaks volumes about her and why she is the way she is “I’m sorry for the way I’ve treated you and I’m grateful that you saved my brother but, this is not a life I would have chosen for myself. And I wish there had been someone there to vote No for me.. so, no.” FanF*ckingTastic!!!!

As if Carlisle could be any more likeable you love him even more as he tells Edward “You’ve chosen not to live without her, that leaves me no choice, I won’t lose my son.” And Bella to Edward: “Shuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuut up!” This brief part of the movie has to be my favorite, although I love the entire movie and could gush about it for hours.

My Rating:

But, of course, that’s just my two cents!

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  1. Oh Bella, Bella! Yes! She did take advantage of Jacob, but I don't think she realized the transition when she wasn't doing it anymore and she actually cared for him. Not to say she didn't care right from the beginning but she used his emotions to her advantage, but he wasn't complaining so I guess I can't either. Jacob knew what he was getting himself into. But in the end I love the way their friendship evolved. I do have to say though for me both the book and movie New Moon was my least favorite of all :/

  2. Yes she did she knew how he felt for her but she led him on

  3. She totally took advantage of the situation. I think had Edward not come back things could have continued for them but she just dropped him like a bad habit. I'm sorry... I hate Bella. New Moon was my favorite of the series and I'm Team Jacob all the way! Thanks for this amazing giveaway!!!

    1. FINALLY! I thought I was alone on the Team Jacob ship there for a moment. Haha I agree. Bella isn't THAT stupid to not notice Jacob has feelings for her. She could've nipped that in the bud like *snap* that, but noooo. *huffs* I hate Bella too, don't worry, Mandee. haha :3

  4. I really do think she took advantage of poor Jacob. She knew he had feelings for her and would do anything for her and feed off of that. I think the way she reacted when the cullens left was a little over the top but thats just my opinion.

  5. yes i think she took advantage of him. she knew how he felt about her. although Jacob let her use him and didn't do a thing about it.

  6. Well I love both the book and the film. Having said that, out of the series they were my least favorite! I love the scene in the movie that captures Bella's descent into sorrow! i know what she was going through! This is the hottest Jacob gets in the movies, when he has his long hair and muscles. After he cut his hair, he did nothing for me really lol! I love the development of friendship with Jacob; however I think it needs to be understood that Jacob and Bella would have never ended up together, even if Edward had stayed gone! They would have tried it only to find that despite some sexual attraction, Jacob was more like her brother and had crossed into the "friend zone" of which there is almost never escape! Bella said it best her self "I'm not like a car that you can fix up, i am never going to run right"! Jacob comes to know his true self in this film, his heritage, his identity; and i love the way that was portrayed and wish they could have shown more of that! Bella though has always known herself, though she comes to know herself more deeply! In New Moon it is her true destiny and desire for that destiny that she comes to know! It stops mattering to her whether she is worthy of Edward or not, and she decides that she wants him and their future together more than anything, even her own life! She decides to put her life at risk to save the person she loves, and to become worthy of that love through self sacrifice! In my religion it is taught that to lay your life down for another is the greatest love or expression of love! Bella achieves this! I loved the first movie, perhaps more than all of the others; however in New Moon the colors are so fantastic I can't help but love the way this movie looks! I love watching Charlie grow as a father in the book and the film! I love the insight into Alice and Bella's sisterhood! The Fight Scene in the film was totally necessary and awesome to behold! If the film didn't have this it would not have worked! I only wish the book would have contained it as well! We as an audience needed to see the power of The Volturi! The Book was a different experience altogether! I know it was all necessary set up and information we had to have, but I found a lot of it tedious to be honest! I loved watching the FRIENDSHIP between Bella and Jacob form, as well as her strange and strained relationship with the other wolf shifters! I guess my favorite part of the book would also be her depression! The Greatest thing about this book to me was the total realism and honesty that many of us have felt about the loss of love, being captured and described so authentically! It is a truth that needs to be voiced and so often is not mentioned, or when it is mentioned is glossed over! This is what I love about the book and film and what I will always be grateful to Stephenie and the movie makers for rendering and expressing so brilliantly, and Gracefully! It was simply put, Exquisite!

  7. oops again I just saw the full question posed lol! Bella was totally honest with Jacob and never Lied to him! He knew the way things were and just did not want to accept them! Jacob needed to have his heart broken to grow up! So I can not in good conscience say that Bella took advantage of him, though I do think some of her actions were callous and not well thought out!

  8. By required, do you mean the twitter thing? Because I guess I will never win anything then lol, I do not have a twitter account and never will! I hate twitter with a passion lol!

  9. Bella went a little crazy and I totally saw myself in her when the one I loved left. I didn't go to her extreme but it felt like I lost a part of me. And yes, she did use Jacob but I don't think she did it on purpose. Being with him helped her forget about Edward. It kept her mind clear of him UNTIL her first reckless act. I can see why she did it but she wasn't doing it just to use him. He filled up that voice that Edward took when he left. Maybe I am just like Bella haha.

  10. I really enjoyed New Moon more than Twilight. I thought it stuck as close to the book as it could. The scene when Edward left was really well done and I dont think she took advantage of him. We all need someone when we are hurting and she called Jacob her sun and wanted to be near him so he could make her feel better. Everyone does it and he loved spending time with her too :)

  11. I loved New Moon, she slightly took advantage of him and practically stopped talking to him as soon as Edward came back.. I guess we all do crazy things for love though!

  12. She did take advantage of him and led him on majorly. I love this book!

  13. I feel like she was dealing with her pain the best way she could and Jacob was the only person she felt comfortable with. I don't believe she ever really took advantage of him he was there for her because thats what good friends do.


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