A submissive girl besotted with her hunky male love interest is something we’ve seen a thousand times over. And one story that really hits the nail on the head is the Twilight trilogy and the whirlwind romance between innocent Bella Swan and enigmatic vampire Edward Cullen. But now, in honour of the original novel’s 10th anniversary, author Stephanie Meyer has done something pretty amazing.
In a reimagined version of the book dubbed Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined, the author swaps the protagonist’s gender roles, meaning Bella becomes sultry teen boy Beau and the formidable Edward becomes inspirational Edythe. Of course, we can’t help but hope this marks a step away from clichéd female stereotypes and one towards gender equality.
Meyer seems to be on our level too. Speaking on Good Morning America earlier this week, the author said Bella’s damsel in distress qualities had “always bothered (her) a little bit”, while the book comes as a bid to disarm critics who had previously accused her books of being “sexist”.
She went on to explain that Life and Death tells the story of a moody teenage boy falling for a mysterious immortal woman. Oh, and unlike the original, Life and Death is told from his point of view, making way for endless monologues about whether or not the woman likes him or not (sound familiar?).
For all those avid Twilight fans, though, apparently the story isn’t all that different. During her Good Morning America appearance, Meyer added: “The further you get in, the more it changes because the personalities get a little bit different, but it starts out very similar and really, it really is the same story because it’s just a love story and it doesn’t matter who’s the boy and who’s the girl, it still works out.”
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Different or no different, the book is certainly a statement-maker – and it landed in stores yesterday!