The Gospel According to Twilight- Elaine A. Heath
If any of my readers were around last year, you will remember my obsession with the Twilight series. I read each book multiple times. I really pondered over and over what exactly so delighted and intrigued me about the series. I know there were many critics decrying them as foolish or even downright evil. But, there was a draw for me. It wasn't the whole vampire/werewolf dimension. In fact, I usually avoid dark things. But, I love a good romance. And, for me, that is exactly what Twilight was - a really, really good romance. The fact that the main characters were the undead wasn't really the point.
To say I was excited to see The Gospel According to Twilight may be an understatement. I think there is much to learn about God and ourselves through popular culture. And, of course, there are those, oh so dreamy vampires.
Elaine A. Heath examines the themes of the popular series- the good and the bad -for Christians in general and for women in particular. There were many conclusions that Heath made that I really found to be quite interesting and accurate. I must admit to a few ah ha moments as I read. There were a few negative things that I thought she exaggerated- such as the stalker/batterer personality of Edward. I've heard others state this but never really heard an explanation. After Heath's explanation, I do understand the concerns much more- even though I'm still not quite in agreement.
Heath spends some time in each topic comparing the mainstream Christian view with Mormon doctrine. (Stephenie Meyer, the author of the series, is a Mormon.) I found this look especially fascinating because there were things I didn't "get" as a Christian which made much more sense when I understood the Mormon doctrine.
So, I really enjoyed the book. Did I agree with all the conclusions? No. But, it was thought-provoking and interesting. I would definitely recommend it- both for the naysayers who see no redemptive value in the series and for the Twi-hards who are totally obsessed.
My rating would be a strong 5 stars for this informative and interesting read. I'd consider it a PG rating because there are references to some of the material in the book series that is not appropriate for all readers.
I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley for review purposes. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.