Tuesday 12 December 2017

Review: The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella by Stephenie Meyer

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Before I start, I'll hold my hands up. I am 39, a seasoned businesswoman, and I am a 'Twihard'. In fact, I'll go so far as to declare that I'm a fully paid-up member of Team Edward. And proud of it. There. I've said it.

Even so, I'll freely admit that I approached Stephenie Meyer's latest offering, The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner: An Eclipse Novella, with some degree of trepidation.

The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner is the story of Bree Tanner, a vampire who first made a fleeting appearance in Eclipse, the third book in Stephenie Meyer's global phenomenon, the Twilight saga.

The novella tells the story of Bree's short life as a newborn vampire in Seattle, as she struggles to survive in the volatile and often deadly world of the newborn vampire army. Despite her wariness, she develops friendships with Diego and 'Freaky Fred', a vampire possessing the special, if not attractive, ability of making himself seem repulsive when anyone comes near. The book culminates with the army's attack on the Cullen family, which was chronicled in Eclipse.

Many Twihards were surprised to see that the author had chosen to focus on such a seemingly insignificant character from the series; particularly as readers were already aware of her fate.

But the results are pleasantly surprising. The Short Second Life not only provides some interesting insights into the world of the newborn vampire, but also offers a different perspective on a pivotal part of the Twilight story, something which fans will undoubtedly enjoy.

Most of all, she introduces a trio of intriguing and engaging characters. The relationships Bree develops with both Diego and Fred are surprisingly endearing.

While it would seem hard to sympathise with a creature whose overwhelming desire is to quench her insatiable thirst with a steady stream of disposable humans, Meyer manages to create an empathy with Bree, and leaves the reader rooting for her, even though her fate was long since decided.

The Short Second Life is definitely only going to appeal to fans of the Twilight saga, but is well worth a read by us Twihards.

Irish Independent

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