Twilight, Stephanie Meyer; Little, Brown and Company, 2005, 498 pp
This Young Adult novel is the #1 favorite of my boss's 12 year old daughter. She got all her friends to read it and they talk about it incessantly. These young girls are quite innocent and somewhat protected by their parents as to what they read. I don't think my boss who is the owner of the bookstore where I work has read Twilight.
So here is the deal. Seventeen year old Bella goes from Phoenix, where she has been living with her long-divorced mom, to live with her father in a tiny town in Washington state. She is a smart, self-sufficient girl but she was not a social success in Phoenix. Bella is extremely accident prone, has never had a boyfriend and has a rock bottom self image.
All the boys at her new high school are after her but she falls for the weirdest, though best looking, guy who turns out to be a vampire. Edward the vampire is equally stricken but must control his urge to do what vampires do. Very unusual twist on the whole vampire thing.
What I took away from the story is an unmistakable theme of sexual tension, except there is no sex beyond touching and kissing. The sexual urge has been transmuted into the vampire thing and Edward is a "good" boy because he controls himself and doesn't suck her blood.
If I were anywhere from 12 to 17, I would be so turned on by this book. Do their mothers know? I won't be the one to tell them.