‘Life and Death’ isn’t black and white

Stephenie Meyer publishes new book based upon her Twilight Saga.


Claire Lawrence

“Life and Death” is written by the famous author, Stephenie Meyers. Meyers is known for her “Twlight” series.

Camille Schweppe, Staff Reporter

“Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined” is an entrancing rewrite of Stephenie Meyer’s “Twilight” novel, published in honor of the original’s 10th anniversary in 2015. Set parallel to “Twilight,” the infamous tale stays untouched but the genders of the characters do not. Instead of Bella Swan and Edward Cullen – the awkward human female and the graceful male vampire – the story switches to Beau Swan and Edythe Cullen  – the average human male and the flawless female vampire who fall in love. 

In the foreword, Meyer explains she experimented with “Twilight” to create a rework where the characters’ genders are reversed. Often, readers critique Bella because she is a typical awkward girl who always needs a man, or in this case, a vampire to save her. Yet Meyer’s theme of first love being a dangerous and dependent obsession no one can escape, stays unchanged. 

As a die-hard fan of the “Twilight Saga,” I have always disliked Bella for no reason other than she is easily hatable and frustrating. I was hesitant to see how Meyer would approach Beau and his character, and I was surprised. I loved Beau. He changed the whole story just by being slightly different from Bella. He was less frothy in his thoughts, stronger in his opinions, honest in his desires and more confident, yet not overbearingly awkward. He made the story much more enjoyable. 

Edythe Cullen was mysterious and graciously calmer than Edward. She wasn’t weak but rather more forgiving and open with Beau and their relationship, which made it an equilibrium of power between the couple rather than an inequality of power. 

Despite reading “Twilight” multiple times, it felt like the very first time with Beau and Edythe. I wanted more of their story when I was finished which I hated but loved. As an avid reader, being left on cliffhangers is frustrating but marvelous because it allows for imagination on the reader’s end. Because of how this book is structured against the original work, I recommend a thousand times over that you read the “Twilight Saga before Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined.” I feel through this alternative dynamic, you’re able to truly see the impact that this rework holds over the story. 

I could tell many events, conversations, and character spotlights were altered. This seemingly shortened the novel and strengthened the dynamic of their relationship. The relationship development of how Beau and Edythe fell in love, becoming healthily consumed with each other, was focused on more than their counterparts, Bella and Edward. I liked how that changed the relationship development smoothly, carefully and meaningfully. I believe these changes were made due to the fact that “Twilight” is a part of a whole series while this novel stands alone and for that, I can understand. 

The imagery of the alternate supernatural universe was as beautiful as always and it genuinely completed the novel. It helped stand out against other vampire novels I have read. Overall, I unquestionably enjoyed “Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined” more than the “Twilight Saga” as a whole and I would highly recommend it to anyone with the desire or curiosity to read a remarkable fantasy romance novel.