News Column

'Twilight' From A to Z

Nov. 12, 2012

Amanda Deprospero, The Dominion Post, Morgantown, W.Va.

A is for apple: A pair of pale, outstretched hands offering a deep red apple was, for many, the first glimpse of Twilight. It was the cover of the first book in the series and enraptured millions.

B is for Bella: The heroine of the saga, Bella is pale and clumsy, but she's also a fairly normal teenage girl until she falls in love with a notso-normal boy, who turns out to be a vampire. In later books, she also becomes enamored by a shapeshifting wolf boy.

C is for Cullens: The Cullens are a group of vegetarian vampires -- meaning they only drink animal blood. Led by Carlisle Cullen, this pseudo-family consists of Carlisle's wife Esme, couple Jasper and Alice, couple Emmett and Rosalie, and loner Edward.

D is for dreams: At many stages through the books, Bella has symbolic dreams about who might be trying to kill her and, later, about her own child.

E is for Edward: The brooding vampire has been the odd man out in his family for years, never finding true love like the rest of the Cullens. That is until he meets Bella. But, at the same time, he wants to kill her, as her blood calls to him like no other.

F is for forest: Deep in the Pacific Northwest, the Twilight saga is set in Forks, Wash., one of the rainiest locales in the United States that consists of dense vegetation and an abundance of animals. It's perfect for a group of vampires who live off animal blood and don't want too much sun to give away their sparkling skin.

G is for green: When Bella moves from sandy Arizona to the small town of Forks to live with her father, she describes her knew home as too green.

H is for heightened senses: Vampires have to deal with bloodlust, but they're also much faster and stronger than humans, and their senses of sight, sound and smell are also more sensitive.

I is for introverted: When Bella moves to Forks from Arizona, she's a typical introvert: Quiet, unassuming and a bit shy. She doesn't welcome her star status as the new girl at school and prefers to fly under the radar.

J is for Jacob: A family friend of Bella's dad Charly, Jacob is a member of the Quileute tribe and becomes a shapeshifter. He tries desperately to get Bella to admit that she has feelings for him in a couple of the books until he -- and she -- eventually realize she does love him. But she loves Edward more.

K is for killing: In a book about vampires, there's bound to be some killing. Enemies James, Victoria and Laurent do their fair share, but the Volturi, the vampire royalty, take the cake with their twisted way of ruling.

L is for love triangle: One of the most hotly contested love triangles in history, fans of the Twilight saga were forced to choose Team Edward or Team Jacob. Bella eventually sided with Team Edward, but that doesn't mean there wasn't a solution for Jacob. He eventually imprints on Edward and Bella's daughter, Renesmee.

M is for Meyer, Stephenie: The author of the Twilight series, Stephenie Meyer says she came up with the idea thanks to a dream she had about a vampire and a human girl sitting in a meadow.

N is for nomads: These wandering vampires are often known for their wild ways, and most of them aren't vegetarians. In the first book, the Cullens' and Bella's enemies are nomad vamps, James, Victoria and Laurent.

O is for oracle: Perhaps one of the most useful gifts that the Cullens have is Alice's ability to see the future. The tiny vampire receives premonitions about future events based on people's current decisions. It's quite an ability to possess when you have a lot of enemies.

P is for piano: Besides being a mind reader and super fast, Edward is also known for his piano-playing skills. He even composes a special song for his love, Bella.

Q is for Quileute: This Native American tribe lives on the La Push reservation near Forks, Wash. In the books, certain members of the tribe have the ability to shapeshift into large wolves, capable of killing vampires. The Quileutes have a treaty with the Cullen family, as the vampires have agreed to be vegetarian.

R is for Renesmee: Edward and Bella's daughter is born with the ability to impart her thoughts on others by just touching them. She grows rapidly, eats both food and blood, and is said to be quite beautiful.

S is for sparkling: The vampires in the Twilight universe don't burst into flames in the sunlight, they sparkle instead. It is not harmful to the vampire, but, if humans were to catch a glimpse of their sunlit skin, it would surely give away their supernatural tendencies.

T is for thirst: Thirst plays a role for any vampire, but in the Twilight universe, it's heightened. This is especially true when a vampire comes across his or her "singer," making it almost impossible to resist the pull of his/her blood.

U is for undercover: There is only one major rule in the vampire world: Their existence must be kept a secret from humans.

V is for Volterra: The city in which the Volturi reside and preside is known as Volterra. The Volturi are basically vampire royalty, doling out punishments as they see fit.

W is for wolf pack: The Quileute tribe members who are shapeshifters become part of a wolf pack. When they shift into wolf form, they can overhear each other's thoughts so that they can still communicate.

X is for X-ray: Remember how it was stated above that Bella was quite clumsy? Well, after she meets vampires and a pack of shapeshifters, it's obvious she's in for some Xrays, especially after a runin with James the nomad.

Y is for young adult: This young-adult series has sold millions of copies and spawned a huge following for its movie franchise. But it's also breathed new life into the young-adult genre. Since the "Twilight" series appeared on shelves, authors are writing more and more novels for the tween and teen sets.

Z is for zealous: If this franchise is known for one thing outside its sparkly vamps, it's the zealous fan base. With borderline-Beatles-level mania, fans line up outside movie theaters before each movie, wearing their Twilight apparel, determined to become the first of their friends to see the new film.

Source: (c)2012 The Dominion Post (Morgantown, W.Va.) Distributed by MCT Information Services

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