From the epic worldwide phenomenon that is the Twilight series, comes a novella called The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner. The story focuses on life through the eyes of newborn vamp, Bree, who we see mercilessly killed at the hands of the Volturi in the third installment, Eclipse. Who is Bree? What caused her to surrender to the Cullens in the first place? How could so many vampires be convinced to be in an army? These were all questions that used to torment the Twi-hard inside me. Fortunately for me, and millions of other “Team Edward” T-shirt wearing lunatics, Stephenie Meyer finally decided to release this lovely short read and silence all of our questions.
Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past two years, you probably know what Meyer’s bestselling Twilight saga is all about. Like it or not, vampire hysteria has swept the nation in virtually every aspect imaginable. From life size Edward and Jacob cutouts to a line of Twilight makeup and clothing at Nordstrom, you can’t go anywhere without seeing the effects these books have had on the world. When something can cause as much (maybe more) insanity as the Harry Potter series, you know it’s good. The Short Second Life of Bree Tanner is no exception.
The story starts in the outskirts of Seattle, where Bree and the other blood lusting newborn vampires have gone to hunt for the night. The book follows the gang and their ruthless leader, Riley, into the months leading up to the battle with the Cullens. Through straightforward yet vivid description, Meyer sends readers plunging into the life of a “real” vampire – the blood sucking monsters so opposite from how fans picture Edward Cullen. Yet through characters like Bree, Diego and Fred, I actually sympathized with this band of hoodlums.
The vamps in the gang were once kids that were troubled, starving, and often abused. They were the ones no one noticed were missing. Riley keeps his group in the dark, literally, about the true purpose of their creation and the reason why they need to defeat the “yellow eyes.” When looking at it that way, it’s quite easy to feel bad for them. Meyer explains everything in such a detailed way that I could almost feel the thirsty, burning sensation in my throat that the characters felt before attacking their victims. Readers will experience the thrill of the hunt, the curiosity of being young, and the unlikely circumstances that can bring friends together – if only for a while.
Honestly, the only thing I wasn’t thrilled with about the book was its title.
So if you’re looking for a quick read, find a comfy couch and take a bite out of this little adventure. Twilight fans are sure to be pleased with the latest add-on to the series. If you’ve never read Meyer’s books before, this 178 pager might be just the dose you need to turn you into a newborn Twi-hard.