"Breaking Dawn” by Stephenie Meyer (Little, Brown and Company, 754 pages, $22.99).
The heartbreakingly beautiful vampires, loyal werewolves and emotionally torn humans are back for one last round in Stephenie Meyer's "Breaking Dawn,” the fourth and last installment in the fanatically loved "Twilight Saga” series.
It's a book with some surprises. But the big event takes place near the tale's beginning, leaving the rest of the pages free to detail (and detail, and detail) the shockwaves.
Like the other books in the series, "Breaking Dawn” is a story of a community of vampires living relatively peacefully among humans. It examines what happens when a vampire and human fall in love, and the implications for their friendships, families, and life itself.
Fans will enjoy a satisfying exploration of the relationship of the vampire Edward, the human Bella and the werewolf Jacob — a relationship reeling from a real curveball.
The look at Bella and Edward takes the issues of freewill, sacrifice and self-interest to a new level.
Meanwhile the folks of Forks, Wash., where the vampires have located, have their own problems as the tenuous treaty between the vampires and werewolves is tested, stretched, and re-tested.
Series fans will find much here to love: engaging characters, great humor, a distracting obsession with beauty, focus on the minutiae of emotions.
But casual readers may be disappointed with a lot of build-up and little action.
— Sara Rose,
The Associated Press