Review: Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined

Life and Death: Twilight ReimaginedLife and Death: Twilight Reimagined by Stephenie Meyer
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Celebrate the tenth anniversary of Twilight! This special double-feature book includes the classic novel, Twilight, and a bold and surprising reimagining, Life and Death, by Stephenie Meyer.

Look, the Twilight series will always have a special place in my heart for introducing me to young-adult literature (Harry Potter started as an MG, okay?) and when I heard that it was getting a retelling, in a way, I was excited. A lot of people think Bella was a doormat heroine but dude, she was a teen – cut her some slack. In this genderbent version of the story, Meyer wanted to show how her character being usually unliked was because she was female, not because of how she was (or something like that, as is mentioned in the preface) and so we have Beaufort – like Bella, but not. Edward becomes Edythe, and the rest – well, you catch the drift.

Because this was only a single book, the ending was also changed (to be honest, the whole of Breaking Dawn becomes moot when you have a vampire groom, rather than a bride so I see why it would be much simpler to just alter one crucial aspect of the story). In a way, this was a better ending, since New Moon thankfully gets out of the picture (that is my least favorite in the series). At the end of the day, though, it is basically just the same story repackaged with gender changes – like besides the ending, there are no major changes. So, and let me be very blunt here – why am I paying twice the amount for a story that is basically the same I just read? This was an anniversary edition – a chance to celebrate with fans, but I feel oddly cheated that we are getting a copy that is the same story copied all over again? I feel it doesn’t justify this whole edition being released specifically.

Now, if it was Midnight Sun, I could have felt like it would be worth it – a story from a different perspective becomes a different story. But we earlier had Bella and then we have Beaufort, who are nearly the same people (this is deliberate as part of her ‘experiment’) and so the story is mostly the same. Even as a loyal fan, I honestly cannot abide with this edition being like this – perhaps those who like to collect books and different editions might like to get this one, but I, for one, felt I should have waited for the single story edition than this exorbitant double-copy version.

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