Monday, August 19, 2013

If Stephenie's making it, I'm buying it *sigh*

It's no secret, I love the Twilight Saga. Twi-hard, Twilighters, Twi-mom, ... whatever; I'm all in on the books and ESPECIALLY the movies. So when Stephenie Meyer came out with a book, not part of the Twilight saga, called The Host, I was skeptical. Why is she wasting her time writing different stories. Give me more Cullens, more Wolfpack, more Volturi. Midnight sun, anyone?

I didn't read the book.

When I saw they were making a movie out of the book, I wasn't surprised. The billion-dollar Twilight franchise was ending. Why should the gravy train end?

I didn't go see the movie.

No one else did, either. The movie didn't do well at US box offices, although international sales helped it exceed its budget, which is more than a lot of movies can claim. Still, to say its box office performance was a disappointment is an understatement.

A couple of weeks ago I was sidelined with the flu. I don't get sick often, but when I do, it's bad. Bad enough that my family leaves me alone, which means they only burst into the room once every couple of hours. I was in bed, unable to sleep, but bored with the over 300 cable channels at my disposal. (I know, first world problems ;-) ) On a whim, I rented The Host.

I loved it.

It's the story of an Earth that's been invaded by an alien race, literally. These alien creatures invade human bodies and take them over, a la Invasion of the Body Snatchers. The essence/soul of the human usually cede to the alien, but some souls are strong. Stubborn. They refuse to go away. That's what happened to Melanie Stryder and as the two essences share the same body, it's the journey of the human side's fight to reclaim her body and get back to the people she loves.

If you love sci-fi, you'll love that part of the story and the look the director envisioned. The alien side of the world has a clean, modern, sleek feel completely at odds with the earthy, neutral tones of the human side of the world.

I'm conflicted about the love story. It's another triangle, and it was clear, to me, that one couple was the "meant to be" couple, but I thought the heroine had way more chemistry with the other guy. Of course, I've been reading a lot of menage romance lately, so I was hoping the movie would take an interesting twist in the end, but, alas...

Still, I really enjoyed this movie and am bummed that there won't be a sequel, although the movie ended in a way where that may have been possible. I'm even going to get the book, because I love comparing and contrasting the two mediums.

If you're in the mood for a good sci-fi movie, with a bit of teenage angst, give it a try.

Tracey Livesay's debut novel, The Billionaire's Socialite Bride, will be published by Entangled Publishing in January 2014.  She blogs here on the third Monday of every month. If you like the flavor she's bringing, you can check out her blog, Mimosas at Midnight or Like her Facebook page.

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  1. Do you think Stephanie Myers fans felt betrayed she abandoned her earlier style? And in doing so, abandoned them? JK Rowling avoided this by using a pen name, but of course, her pen name was leaked (by her publisher? her?)
    We humans always have such interesting dynamics.
    I hope you are feeling more human now, and the virus that invaded your body, replicated your dna, (creepy when you think about it)is now eradicated!

    1. Ha! That's funny. Yes, I'm feeling much better now.

      I don't know if fans felt abandoned by her, but I definitely think it was a hard adjustment for them to read anything new by her that wasn't in the Twilight universe. I'm sure JK Rowling felt the same way. She took a little bit of a heat for Casual Vacancy, so I could see why that would lead to her writing with a pen name.

      Stephenie has produced the movie Austenland, another book I've read and loved. I've been listening to her make the rounds on my screenwriting podcasts and the questions are flying about what new projects she's working on. She's only talking about movies she's producing. She's talked a little about her writing process on the Twilight series and the Host and, just between you and me, I think she's scared to write something else.

      She didn't start out as a writer; in none of the interviews or stories I've read about her did she always want to write. But she had this strange dream that she had to write about. Imagine the first thing you wrote was a huge success? I'd be afraid to write something new, too.

      Just a thought.

  2. Drat! Now I guess I'm going to have to read it! And just after I've cultivated such a delicious taste in my mouth, having re-read Twilight not too long ago. But it does sound yummy. Yes, I'll take some dessert with my dessert - vampires, with a heap of aliens pretty please.

    1. Sofie, as I live and breathe! I didn't know you were a Twi-hard! LOL Guess I just added to your TBR pile. :-)

  3. Oh, and I absolutely LOVED the battle scene in the last Twilight movie!!! The audience was practically foaming at the mouth they were so outraged - and then floored!

    1. I know! It was great.

      SPOILER ALERT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Before each movie, I'd go back and read the book and when I re-read the second half of Breaking Dawn, I was so confused, because there is no battle in the book. They do all this preparation and then they don't have to fight. So I'm watching the previews with Edward flying through the air getting ready to punch someone and I'm thinking, what is this about? Of course, by the time this point came in the movie, I was all in and when that thing happened, OMG, the entire audience gasped out loud. It was fantastic. :-)

  4. Well, I have a confession. I haven't read any of the Twilight books, and I haven't seen any of the movies. My sister told me the books were too full of "teen angst" (as you mentioned, Tracey) for her, so I decided to pass. Plus, I've had enough vampires for now. "The Host" sounds like a great concept though. Think I'll put it on my "to watch" list.

    1. If you get around to watching it, Leah, let me know what you think. :-)

      The books were told from the 1st person POV of a teenage girl; being in her mind was exhausting, but the world was great. I can understand, especially now, how you're OD'ing on vampires. But this was years ago, and her vampires were a little something different.