Friday, January 25, 2013

The Host--Chapter Two

Time to meet our main character.

And I have to say it. Trust me. I don't like saying it. S. Meyer does a good job showing the "soul" adapt to her new body. The as-yet-unnamed soul slowly aquires memory and sensory imput from the body she is now inhabiting, and it is VERY well done.

Of course, this wouldn't be a Stephenie Meyer novel without a significant amount of self hate and a bias towards white America, and since Souls are oh, so perfect this translates into that anti-humanity stuff I was talking about last post:

The language I found myself using was odd, but it made sense. Choppy, boxy, blind, and linear. Impossibly crippled in comparison to many I’d used, yet still it managed to find fluidity and expression.
Also, you've got a fucking wonderful example of S. Meyer's bias. This is English, folks, but it's never identified and the existance of other languages is NEVER brought up. The existence of any continent other than the grand old US of A is never brought up either. So either Meyer forgot that anything other than American English Speaking People exist, the aliens have canceled world travel, or the host body never heard another language spoken. Because the souls are heavily influienced by the body they are in.

As in they basically become the person that owned the body before they got their shiny little tenticles on it.

The woman the soul now inhabits was a member of the human resistance. She was caught, she failed, she fought back--and violence is a totally alien concept to these things--and then she decided that since she'd rather die than have her body stolen from her, the girl threw herself out a window.

This is the peaceful, perfect soul's first experiance of humanity: battle and suicide.

On one hand, I find that to be a particularly offensive judgement on the part of S. Meyer, and I'm pretty sure she did it on purpose. On the other hand, I fucking love this unnamed human girl, because folks, I'd be right behind her. It's a powerful introduction to a character that is going to be very influiental in what is to come. This girl says, basically, "I would rather die and deny you monsters victory than surrender and be something worse than your slave."

But given S. Meyer's worship of self-sacrifice, liking it makes me feel more than a little dirty.

This is also the first time an e-book has been an improvement over the hard copy. In the paperback version I have, the human memories are indicated by a change in font--from a nice, readable serif font to a slightly larger, slightly smoother sans-serif font that reads like a migrane. In the e-book, they just change the size and shrink the paragraphs. Yay!

The elevator shaft the girl threw herself down wasn't high enough, and the Seekers were able to save her life and patch her back up. The soul--still no name for either soul or body yet--starts screaming at the memory, and the body explains what's going on. Which freaks the soul out further because the body isn't supposed to talk. The body doesn't say anything else and the remembering continues.

And now it's time to have the other defining trait of a S. Meyer novel: life revolves around guys. Specifically, one guy. The soul sees the face, the body says mine, and there is much waxing poetic about how pretty this remembered guy is. And I know that I am not one to talk, given that my main character in my primary novel series cannot get over her ex-husband, but folks? Guys define Stephenie Meyer's females.

And then voices interrupt the soul's new thoughts. And we don't get to find out if it is nurses, doctors, or the main character's body's schizophrenia, because the chapter ends.

Next Chapter: Raise your hand if you remember that fucking tent scene from Eclipse, because we're about to get a replay.

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