The Twilight Frenzy, Or Has The World Gone Vampire Mad?
More than 120 million books sold and still counting. Translated into 38 languages. On The New York Times list of bestsellers for 235 weeks (Children's Series Books). A hugely successful movie franchise. What makes the Twilight series, Stephenie Meyer's vampire romances, such a hot seller?
The Times praised Twilight for depicting "perfectly the teenage feeling of sexual tension and alienation." The New York Times called it "a literary phenomenon".
Twilight has also attracted comparisons with the Harry Potter series, whose sales incidentally, it has eclipsed. Great literature it ain't, but undeniably, Twilight succeeded in striking a chord worldwide among young teens, especially girls.
About the author
tephenie Meyer lives in Arizona, USA. The first-time author and mother of three began writing a draft in 2003, based on her dream about a vampire's love for a young girl. The draft evolved into a full-fledged novel in three months and Stephenie's sister persuaded her to mail the manuscript to several literary agencies. By late 2003, Stephenie had a three-book publishing deal. The first novel, Twilight, hit the shelves in 2005. As the saying goes, the rest is history.
The four books in the romantic-fantasy genre are Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn. The plots revolve around teenager Bella Swan who moves to her father's home in Forks, Washington. She is inexplicably drawn to the handsome Edward Cullen who she later learns is a 104-year-old member of a vampire family that subsists on animal, and not human, blood. The subsequent books deal with a love triangle, the couple's turbulent romance, their marriage and birth of a half-human, half-vampire child.
To date, The Twilight Saga has had four record-breaking releases since 2008, Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn (I). The Twilight DVD sold 3 million-plus units on its release in March 2009. Needless to add, the franchise's youthful cast, headed by Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson, became overnight stars.
For Twilight's teen following, a host of goodies are on offer:
Mattel's Barbie collectibles: A brown-haired, brown-eyed Barbie Twilight Bella doll, a melancholy Edward and Jacob Black, werewolf and Bella's close friend.
Twilight jewellery sets featuring the Cullen crest and individual pieces like Alice Cullen's choker necklace, Bella's charm bracelet and the Twilight Forever Stretch Bracelet.
Free online Twilight games: Twilight Quiz, Twilight Dress Up, Twilight Makeovers, Twilight Colouring, Twilight jigsaw puzzles, Vampire Maker and Twilight Kissing.
Twilight apparel: Tees/hoodies in black/white/grey featuring movie characters; movie replica clothes (e.g. Bella's party dress, blue jacket and denim leggings) and for the truly besotted, Twilight gold contact lenses!
Will the Twilight frenzy continue to the last movie? No prizes for guessing!