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Dear Ms. Meyer,

I’ve been reading the first few chapters of Eclipse, and there are some things I feel that I need to say.

1. When you introduce someone as “my best friend (and werewolf)”, you imply that this person is also your best werewolf. If you want to say that he is your best friend and also happens to be a werewolf, you could say “my best friend (a werewolf)” or “my best friend (who is also a werewolf)”. Or you could stop treating your sentences like clown cars and write the information in totally separate phrases.

2. By the end of the first chapter, I noticed that Bella had another incident of forgetting to breathe. She really is the dimmest protagonist I have ever had the misfortune to encounter.

3. I’m confused.

Bella is up in her room when she smells “the unmistakeable scent of a smoking burner rising from the kitchen”. Now, leaving aside any discussion of the smell of levitating oven elements, it is revealed in the next paragraph that the smell comes from noodles in a pan (a pan?) that were not stirred and have now congealed into a “mushy hunk that was scalded to the bottom.”

It seems like the problem must have been more an issue of boiling dry than stirring, but both are bad, so ok.

While I try to suspend my disbelief to the point where I could accept that a grown man who batched it for 16 years doesn’t know how to boil pasta, I continue reading and see this: “the pasta lump bobbed in the boiling water as I poked it.”

So, wait, it is in water?

It’s in water, but it burned enough to make smoke? Has this ever happened to you?

Please explain. I may need this information for personal reasons.

4. Your readers think independently of your protagonist, so you can’t create a mystery just by making Bella confused. When Bella fails to put two and two together, your readers are not equally mystified. Instead of thinking “OMG double twos, what does it mean??”, your readers are thinking: “four. Four. Four. FOUR, YOU EVERLASTING MORON.”

So when Jacob calls Bella and tells her he desperately needs to talk to her about something, and then asks her if she’s going to be at school tomorrow, there really is no mystery created. Bella may spend the next two pages thinking deeply, desperately trying to figure out how Jacob’s need to speak with her could possibly be related to her attendance at school… but your readers have already figured it out. You aren’t creating mystery or suspense. You’re just showcasing Bella’s idiocy, especially since she never does figure it out.

Now, I haven’t read the next chapter, but let me guess: Jacob’s going to show up at school and try to talk to her alone, right? And Bella will be super surprised?

Thanks for your time,

Carol

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