Sunday, November 30, 2008

Guest Blogger: Michelle Rowen

The winner of Michelle's book is: Blakey Girl! Congrats! Send me your snail mail info and I'll pass it along to Michelle. Thanks to everyone for participating.

My name is Michelle and I'm a Twi-hard Fanpire

I love vampires. I love watching TV shows and movies about them, reading books about them, and writing books about them. A year ago I bought Twilight by Stephenie Meyer and it sat on my shelf for months. I'd tried reading the first few pages but it didn't connect with me. But since it seemed to be popular I decided to force myself since I want to write young adult novels as well as those for adults (actually, my first YA is out next October! Woot!). Plus, since I'd bought it in hardcover, I would have kicked myself if I didn't at least try.

So I tried. And I finished it. And then I went out and bought the rest of the series which I devoured in matter of a couple of weeks. There was something timeless and classic about this modern, vampiric retelling of Romeo & Juliet that connected with me. And this is from a Team Jacob member's point of view. Maybe I'm Team Switzerland. If you've read the books you know what that means. ;)

I couldn't wait for the movie. While I did consider myself a fan of the books, I stayed away from the fan sites, mostly due to lack of time. I'd been disappointed by movies I'd really looked forward to before, so I decided to go see Twilight with lowered expectations. I hoped for the best, but expected the worst.

I was pleasantly surprised by just how much I enjoyed the movie. In fact, I've seen it twice. While it's not perfect -- the effects are a bit cheesy and the acting isn't solid across the board -- it lived up to the image I had in my head. It was a satisfying love story, perhaps aided by my love and knowledge of the books. I'm not sure if someone who hadn't read the books would understand the "unspoken" bond that Bella and Edward feel toward each other. That magical connection that makes them soul mates.

The books are in first person from Bella's very internal world. The girl thinks A LOT, but doesn't speak very much. That might make it a bit difficult to connect with her quiet, awkward onscreen persona. But I actually preferred movie-Bella to book-Bella because I found that overwhelming thought dump in the books a bit too much. Kristen Stewart's a good actress and I think Robert Pattinson is a fabulous Edward. His self-hating, manic-depressive take on the character is spot-on. You'll find this especially the case if you've read the "Midnight Sun" partial available on Stephenie Meyer's website -- which is Twilight retold from Edward's point of view.

I know that many fans were disappointed by this movie. I can only imagine it has a lot to do with viewer expectation. If one imagines exactly how something will be for a year and it doesn't end up hitting every note right, then the fan will be disappointed. I count myself very lucky that I enjoyed both the books and the movie. In fact, I'd happily see it again while it's at the theaters. And I'll be counting down the months until New Moon is released in 2010.

Have you seen the movie? Did you love it, hate it, or feel meh about it?

Leave a comment and be in the draw for an ARC of my April '09 vampire release, STAKES & STILETTOS.
Happy reading!
Michelle Rowen is the bestselling and award-winning author of the Immortality Bites vampire series among other romantic paranormal romps.
The winner's name will be posted here when Michelle selects one! Good luck.


Blogger Margay Leah Justice said...

I absolutely loved the book and the movie. I think they did a great job of adapting the book to the movie. And let's not forget, they made this movie for only $35 million, so the effects might not be up to the usual standards (I still think they did an amazing job). I can't wait to see what they do with the next one because I'm sure the budget is going to be bigger.

By the way, I love the name of your book!

8:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've seen the movie twice too. The ticket taker looked at me like, uh, didn't I just see you here yesterday. LOL

Have you ever ask yourself or do you analyze the Twilight book to try to understand why her book was so successful in comparison to other books. As a wannabe published author, I've been thinking about it a lot. Don't we all have hot looking vampires in our books? Don't we all have a kick-as plot? You know what I'm mean? I love the book but what makes it so special, extra special? I have some guesses of my own, but I was wandering what other writers say.

10:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm probably one of the only Twilight fans on the planet who hasn't seen the movie yet. I am going this week even if I have to go it alone, lol.

I try not to expect movies that are based on novels to be exactly the same, that way, I'm not usually dissapointed. It is what it is and everybody's vision of it will differ.

I'm dying to get in there and see it already though. :) I'm also really looking forward to Stakes And Stilettos!

3:23 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I both read and audio'd the book and loved the movie. Here's hopng the make the next one too!


6:15 AM  
Blogger Michelle Rowen said...

Tabitha... as a matter of fact, I am trying to analyze what makes Twilight work so well.

To me it comes down to wish-fulfillment. Bella is the representation of pretty much every girl (woman) out there. She's flawed and awkward and extremely normal. The book is from her POV therefore the reader is seeing the story unfold as if they were Bella.

Enter paranormally hot Edward who not only loves her at first sniff, but is totally obsessed with her and fights his own nature to be with her and protect her. He "sees" the perfect woman who is hidden from the rest of the world. As he says in the book (and the movie?) "You are my life now." That's potent heroin for any woman -- even if we don't want to admit it! LOL. The conflict of him wanting to kill her but being in love with her so much that he fights his natural instinct, his family's opinion, and others of his kind is so perfect to me.

And I absolutely agree, that anything this successful is doing something very right. The haters can say whatever they want but I am going to both love and dissect this and any other popular book that comes along!

7:27 AM  
Blogger Patricia Altner said...

I read the book almost a year ago and was captivated from word one. As yet I haven't seen the movie. Not sure that I will because the characters are so well defined in my mind.

7:35 AM  
Blogger Ruth Schaller said...

I fell in love with the series, including the last one that I had read so many bad reviews about!

Now for the movie - I loved it! I know people who didn't and I told them to go read the books then they would!

8:01 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I haven't seen the movie.

8:04 AM  
Blogger Morrigan_Childs said...

I love the book and the movie. But, like most movie adaptations I found it lacking in some areas. Like yourself I walked into the movie theatre on opening weekend and had low expectations, after all, nothing is ever as vivid as my own imagination. I was very pleased with it. The soundtrack is great, I'm listening to it now. I'm also amongst the hoards of people in search of the piano score for Bella's Lullaby. Although the acting was a little laugh worthy at points I feel they did an incredible job of depicting a very internal story. I am definitely counting down until 2010 now!

8:13 AM  
Blogger Morrigan_Childs said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

8:13 AM  
Blogger Lori Ann said...

I have to admit that I haven't read the books yet or seen the movie. Everywhere I go, people are buzzing about this series, so I think I am going to make myself read it. I love vampires, so it should be perfect for me. I have held off because I have never really read many YA books, but it sounds so good I will have to make an exception.

8:25 AM  
Blogger Lynda Hilburn said...

Hi, Michelle! Thanks so much for blogging today at Paranormality. It's great to have you. I'm a major fan of the Twilight books.

8:45 AM  
Blogger Christina said...

Hey Michelle! I haven't read the books or seen the movie, I just have been scared away by the hype I guess. I bought my oldest daughter the first 2 books after hearing that they were great for the kids. She read them and was like "meh" so I just haven't been able to bring myself to waste the time reading them. I may brave the movie anyway, LOL.

Can't wait to read your latest, hope I win!!

9:48 AM  
Blogger Tyava said...

I own the book but have purposely avoided reading since I heard the movie was coming out. I didn't want to ruin the movie experience by reading the book. I decided to wait until after I saw the movie because watching a movie NEVER ruins the book experience.

So I went with some girlfriends to see the movie this past Saturday and had a great time. I did have some questions, since I haven't read the book yet, but one of my friends had read it and clarified things (for instance I thought the declaration of love in the movie came way to soon ... they hadn't even hardly touched each other yet let alone kissed ... but previously mentioned friend explained that the book really develops their relationship in the high school setting and they become really great friends which the movie seemed to skip ... so I can live with that).

All of that being said I really liked the movie and the book is on the top of my TBR pile ... although I don't think I will be able to wait for every movie before I read the next books in the series. I have a feeling once I start I won't be able to stop!

9:49 AM  
Blogger Cari Quinn said...

Hi Michelle!

I really enjoyed Twilight the movie, and this is without having read the books. I didn't put a lot of expectations on it, even though I've heard a lot about the series, so I was pleasantly surprised. My best friend, however, who has read Twilight, wasn't happy. I still intend to read the books, and actually look forward to them MORE because I've seen the movie. I liked movie Bella a lot, and you can't fault Edward. I mean, c'mon. And the smokin' kisses...ahem.

Oh, and whoever wins the ARC of Stakes & Stilettos is in for a treat! (Because, shh...Thierry is *my* Edward Cullen. LOL)

9:53 AM  
Blogger Wendy said...

I've read the first three books but haven't read Breaking Dawn or watched the movie. Mostly because I really didn't like the third book and decided to not even bothered anymore.

Honestly, I would only go see the movie because of the curiosity but I'm not interested in seeing.

It's sad because I LOVED the first two books. Totally did, can't tell you how many times I read them. But I don't know what happened with the third that left me with such a bad feeling.

10:29 AM  
Blogger Wendy said...

And oh, it's not that I was for Jacob, I had always been for Edward but the way Meyers went about in the third one was just.. ugh! It was a bad soup opera, I swear. LOL.

I just didn't like it.

Anyway, I can't wait to read Stakes & Stilletos! Love that cover! :)

10:32 AM  
Blogger tetewa said...

I'm a fan of the books and saw and loved the movie. I'm looking forward to the next one as I'm for team Jacob! Congrats on your newst relaese!

11:23 AM  
Blogger Amanda Ashby said...

Boo - the movie hasn't come to NZ but I can't wait to see it. I read Twilight and liked it but didn't love it, but I have a feeling I'm going to love the movie version!

11:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with you, Michelle. I loved this movie. While I haven't seen it twice it is also on my netflix queue so I can sit and watch it with my daughters. I am debating whether I should let my 10 year old read the book first or watch the movie first. She says she wants to do both and I say if it gets kids to read it can't be all bad. My husband watched the movie with me and he thought it needed more action and less sucky acting. I actually enjoyed the acting, except for the hospital scene when Edward said he was gonna leave(a little too over the top) but overall a very good movie. I can't wait til New Moon.

12:49 PM  
Blogger Michelle Rowen said...

That end scene where Bella freaks out at the thought of Edward leaving her works better in the book -- if only because we know that desperate love for him is what's going on in her head. KS's delivery was on the money re: the book, but it didn't jive with her character's portrayal in the movie.

10 is pretty young. I got a reader letter from an 11 year old the other day and I think that's my youngest. My Rowen books (so far) are fairly PG, but I just hope she doesn't read my pen name's book. ;)

12:57 PM  
Blogger Carmen R said...

I loved the movies as well as the book. There were a few scenes in the movie that I thought could have been better but that is always the cause when a book is made into a movie. I can't wait until the next movie comes out.

1:27 PM  
Blogger Blakey Girl said...

i LOVE the books ( well actually i didn't like the last one but im not getting into THAT lol ) and i was planning on seeing the movie but didn't get a chance and after talking to some other fans, i'm scared to are so mixed... im sure ill end up seeing it 4 times and then buy the special edition dvd you KNOW they're gonna have :)

4:09 PM  
Blogger Michelle Rowen said...

I am all over the special edition DVD. ALL OVER IT.

4:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Michelle, you didn't think Bella, in the book, was too perfect? She's not like me, at all. -That's what bothered me about Book Bella. She's too perfect. I think your spot on about your analysis of Edward's character. If only a man would love me that much. I always say, I'll never find a man that loves me as much as my dog loves me. boo hoo. Hold Me.

Wendy, about the 3rd book...I was getting bored...When I bought the 4th book, I couldn't bring myself to read it after the first few pages but then, some months later, through some drama a the private school I work at and it being banned because of dramatic vampire baby scene...(thats it...thats all I'm going to say!. I picked up that book and boy can I read fast when I'm motivated.

ME WANT BOOK TOO *she says rolling and wailing on the floor*

5:00 PM  
Blogger Pam P said...

I haven't yet read the books or seen the movie, not reading much YA, but I'm thinking seeing all the buzz.

9:09 PM  
Blogger Michelle Rowen said...

She didn't think of herself as perfect. She was a uncoordinated klutz who thought she was über plain looking. Maybe she seemed perfect to other people and evolved to be perfect, but Twilight Bella was anything but, imho. If I was 15 I might have connected more with her character. I can see her being who teenaged girls might want to be (despite the rather annoying sexist bits -- did you notice in the movie she didn't cook all her father's meals like in the books?).

And a guy like Edward is perfect on paper, but I'm not sure I'd want somebody to watch me sleep all night or go into a overprotective rage if I want to hang out with the cute bare-chested dude down the road. ;)

I was really into the love triangle aspect of the books so they got better for me...until the last one. But I still liked that one despite the unsatisfactory elements. I shall say no more. :)

9:13 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I remember more and more everytime I read your post. I have forgotten a lot, but I did notice the cooking part in the movie. Tonight I re-reading Twilight for the second time. I'm reading it a lot slower this time. I mentioned how Book Bella was perfect and then when I just read the first few pages, I realized that I missed a lot of details.

The part about Edward watching her sleep...that is creepy, but at the same time, it's kinda sexy too. There is one scene in the movie where Bella is sleeping and she is slightly perspiring and I thought, oh no, where is this going? -It had a slight sexual edge too it that I never got from the book.

It's fun to compare the book with the movie. Then I compare the books I'm writing with her book, and I cring. There is something smooth and fluid about her books. It's very simple on the surface, but it has emotional depth too.

9:35 PM  
Blogger Caffey said...

Hi Michelle! I haven't read the books yet, and since I'll need the closed captions for the deaf, I'll have to wait for it to come out in DVD before I can see it. So I am one who understands about having to avoid all the internet chat about movies, and sometimes a year for me before they come into DVD, so there is really no getting around it. I end up reading about it by mistake. But I find that I can put aside others takes on it and make my own. I've only saw a very few amount of books to movies, one of them being, which I thought was the best, OUTSIDER, based on Penelope Williamson's historical romance (an awesome read!) and Showtime put out a movie based on the book with Tim Daly and Naomi Watts and they got it just so close to the book, got the right things in and all. I really recommend this one. I usually read the book before I see the movies.

One I really want to see is the Pride & Prejudice movie with Colin Firth. I heard its the best (sadly its not closed captioned for me) but I've see one from the 1940's, I believe, with Sir Lawrence Oliver and that one was done nice!

Too love to be in the contest for the ARC. Can't wait for this release of yours!

10:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another Harry Potter sort of fanatics are getting hooked with the Twilight Series including me. Hope it would be such a hit as the Harry Potter Series.

3:55 AM  
Blogger Asylumgirl said...

Hi Michele! I love your books as well as the Twilight series. I haven't seen the movie yet as I'm waiting for a not packed house. I would like to actually enjoy it. LOL
Stephenie's Twilight series is just something absolutely magical. I fell in love with it from the very beginning. It's truly like she put a spell on it. LOL


6:57 AM  
Blogger CrystalGB said...

I haven't seen the movie or read the books but I want to.
I love your books. :)

8:58 AM  
Blogger Katie said...

Like a few people here, I haven't seen the movie or read any of the books. The books are on my TBR list, but the list is long. :-)

Thanks for the guest blog!

9:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

love your sense of humor, i really like your stlye, and wold loveeeeeeeeee to win the new book, and post about it

2:59 PM  
Blogger Terin said...

I saw Twilight at a friend's house. Her 15 yo daughter was reading it. I was intrigued because I have always loved the supernatural and vampires especially. I bought the paperback. I got half through it, logged onto Amazon and bought the first 3 in hardback and pre-ordered Breaking Dawn. Since then I have proceeded to drive everyone around me nuts with my obsession. I can't wait to see the movie again!

5:47 PM  
Blogger SciFiGuy said...

I think I am one of the few guys that has read the series as they came out, not after the fact in response to all the hype. Haven't seen the movie yet, still working up the courage to risk the crowds of Twilight moms.

10:29 AM  
Blogger donnas said...

Great post.

I totally agree with your review. I loved the book and was a little worried about the movie. I didnt go in expecting much and I was pleasantly surprised when it wasnt as bad as I feared. There were some problems with the special effects, acting and makeup but I will gladly see it again.

I love your books and cant wait for Stakes And Stilettos!


11:12 AM  
Blogger Murielle said...

I liked the movie. They kept to the story but what I had a problem with was how "choppy" it was. There wasn't a real flow to it. I am glad that they kept Edward and Bella the same. I mean the feeling between them was crystal clear and just the humor in it all. All in all it was pretty good and I will be buying it when it comes out on DVD

4:30 PM  

I am with you Michelle I went all fan girl on these books. I really loved them. And yes even the last one.
I did go see the movie and I Tried to watch it thru fresh eyes. Trying to keep my brain from going that is not how it was supposed to happen. I did catch myself doing it esp during the meadow scene... But all in all I liked the movie and am planning to see it again.

8:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i know my comment is a little late (having just discovered this blog).

like you i didn't want to go and see twilight. i lived in my little world of Anne Rice and did not believe anyone could touch the master.

then i found a book in a $2 bin - Sunshine by Robin McKinley. changed my entire prespective. it seems as though there was an entirely new generation of Vampiric Creators who had stolen her crown and i didn't even notice.

i found the Vampire Shrink in an Opshop and have read it so many times the cover has fallen off.

my mate finally dragged me out to see twilight. i was captivated from the first moment. i'd never read the books, i didn't even know who the author was and that there was even a series until we were leaving the theater. we left at 8pm, i found a late night bookstore, started reading them by 10pm that friday night and finished the series in time for sunday lunch.

it's captivating. these 3 new authors have turned my mind from a dark mysteries level of what a Vampire should be, to an exciting new world of possibilities. one that has me ordering overpriced copies of books from overseas because they're just not released in australia yet.

these 3 authors have taken a this world to a new level. i can't wait for dark harvest to arrive, i beg for a sequel to sunshine and please dear god let Stephanie tell it from Edwards point of view (and then maybe jacob's!)

9:50 PM  
Anonymous free horoscope said...

Thanks for sharing blog here Michelle! I have already bookmarked this blog... thanks again :)

11:47 PM  

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