Reviews provided by Syndetics
Library Journal Review
Covering roughly half the first novel of Meyer's megahit paranormal romance, this first volume of the manga-ish version topped sales charts, and, yes, the sequel is coming. When her divorced mom wants to travel with husband No. 2, pretty Bella Swan retreats in a huff to the boonies of Forks, WA, to live with her father. As she eases into her new high school, she falls into an odd love-hate relationship with Edward Cullen, one of the mysterious-and gorgeous-Cullen kids. Romantic interest from other cute guys makes things more complicated, and one fellow knows a bit too much about the Cullens and the local vampire-werewolf turf wars. What's a girl to do? With a superhero vibe enhancing the romantic vampire mystique, the Meyer novel holds all the high seriousness and roiling emotional appeal of 19th-century gothic melodrama while incorporating plenty of action. VERDICT Kim's excellent art elevates a considerably simplified and rather jerky adaptation into a truly pleasurable visual experience: attractive page design, swoonworthy characters, and judicious use of color for special impact. Recommended for public and high school libraries.-M.C. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Publishers Weekly Review
Isabella Swan, 17, narrates this riveting first novel, propelled by suspense and romance in equal parts. The story opens with a cryptic scene of the heroine "facing death," then flashes back to Bella's departure from Phoenix, where her mother lives with her new husband, as the teen heads off to live with her father, the police chief in Forks, Wash. From the first day at her new high school, she finds herself magnetically drawn to Edward Cullen, whose behavior towards her is erratic ("I'd just explained my dreary life to this bizarre, beautiful boy who may or may not despise me"). Then she finds out why his interest in her runs hot and cold: he is a vampire-but of an unusual variety. Edward, his siblings and their adoptive parents have disciplined themselves to feed on animals rather than humans; and Edward is obsessed with Bella. Other elements factor into the plot, including a rival group of vampires who are not as disciplined as the Cullens. This plot twist (which includes a subplot about one of the Cullens' past life) contributes to a rushed denouement (much of it takes place offstage) that is perhaps the novel's only weakness. The main draw here is Bella's infatuation with outsider Edward, the sense of danger inherent in their love, and Edward's inner struggle-a perfect metaphor for the sexual tension that accompanies adolescence. These will be familiar to nearly every teen, and will keep readers madly flipping the pages of Meyer's tantalizing debut. Ages 12-up. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
School Library Journal Review
Gr 9 Up-When Bella Swan moves from sunny Phoenix to Forks, Washington, a damp and dreary town known for the most rainfall in the United States, to live with her dad, she isn't expecting to like it. But the level of hostility displayed by her standoffish high school biology lab partner, Edward Cullen, surprises her. After several strange interactions, his preternatural beauty, strength, and speed have her intrigued. Edward is just as fascinated with Bella, and their attraction to one another grows. As Bella discovers more about Edward's nature and his family, she is thrown headlong into a dangerous adventure that has her making a desperate sacrifice to save her one true love. One of the more original vampire constructs around, this recording of Stephenie Meyer's debut novel (Megan Tingley Books, 2005) is narrated with great style by Ilyana Kadushin, who makes the infinitely romantic tale of star-crossed lovers resonate with a bittersweet edge. Although Edward and Bella's romance and subsequent danger develops slowly, the pacing is appropriate for teens who want learn all the details in this suspenseful tale. An excellent purchase for both school and public libraries.-Charli Osborne, Oxford Public Library, MI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Gr. 9-12. In the tradition of Anne Rice and YA titles such as Annette Curtis Klause's The0 Silver Kiss 0 (1999) comes this heady romance that intertwines Bella Swan's life with that of Edward, an alluring and tormented vampire. Bella's life changes when she moves to perpetually rain-soaked Forks, Washington. She is instantly drawn to a fellow student, Edward Cullen, beautiful beyond belief and angrily aloof. Bella senses there is more behind Edward's hostility, and in a plot that slowly and frighteningly unfolds, she learns that Edward and his family are vampires--though they do not hunt humans. Yet Edward cannot promise that his powerful attraction to Bella won't put in her in danger, or worse. Recklessly in love, Bella wants only to be with Edward, but when a vicious, blood-lusting predator complicates her world, Bella's peril is brutally revealed. This is a book of the senses: Edward is first attracted by Bella's scent; ironically, Bella is repelled when she sees blood. Their love is palpable, heightened by their touches, and teens will respond viscerally. There are some flaws here--a plot that could have been tightened, an overreliance on adjectives and adverbs to bolster dialogue--but this dark romance seeps into the soul. --Ilene Cooper Copyright 2005 Booklist
Horn Book Review
Isabella, just moved from sunny, warm Phoenix to dismal Forks, Washington, meets the mysterious, aloof Edward Cullen. Drawn by his irresistible good looks and animal magnetism, Bella finds herself falling in love with Edward and determines to unveil the true person behind the impenetrable facade. For older teens, this is a predictable love story laced with adventure and vampirism. (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted. All rights reserved.
Kirkus Book Review
Sun-loving Bella meets her demon lover in a vampire tale strongly reminiscent of Robin McKinley's Sunshine. When Bella moves to rainy Forks, Wash., to live with her father, she just wants to fit in without drawing any attention. Unfortunately, she's drawn the eye of aloof, gorgeous and wealthy classmate Edward. His behavior toward Bella wavers wildly between apparent distaste and seductive flirtation. Bella learns Edward's appalling (and appealing) secret: He and his family are vampires. Though Edward nobly warns Bella away, she ignores the human boys who court her and chooses her vampiric suitor. An all-vampire baseball game in a late-night thunderstorm--an amusing gothic take on American family togetherness that balances some of the tale's romantic excesses--draws Bella and her loved ones into terrible danger. This is far from perfect: Edward's portrayal as monstrous tragic hero is overly Byronic, and Bella's appeal is based on magic rather than character. Nonetheless, the portrayal of dangerous lovers hits the spot; fans of dark romance will find it hard to resist. (Fantasy. YA) Copyright ©Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.