To celebrate the 10 year anniversary of the publication of Twilight (2005), Stephenie Meyer is releasing a re-telling of the first novel entitled Love and Death: Twilight Reimagined later this month. This version re-imagines Bella as Beau (short for Beaufort) and Edward as Edythe.
It is reported that one of Meyer’s aims to counteract the claims that the series was anti-feminist. She is also hoping to correct some grammar. Which I think we can all empathise with – re-drafting is the bane of academic life.
The questions on everyone’s lips, however, must be: “Why Edythe? No, seriously like why make the spelling different. Why not just Edith? Like Edith Wharton? Or Emmanuelle? Or Elizabeth? Or Estella (especially given the already brilliant literary allusions that name has)? Or Eleonora? Or any of the other excellent names beginning with ‘E’?”
I imagine this has nothing to do with the success of Grey. Hey, at least she’s doing the work of flipping the genders, although she’ll have to keep flipping if she wants to keep it an entirely heterosexual world. Hopefully she’ll do New Moon, too, and she’ll have an all-female group of werewolves. Too much to hope for, and yet hope springs eternal.
I think it’s less cashing in on the success as reacting to the reviews of Grey as sexist. Meyer has continually maintained that her text is not sexist and I think this is an effort to prove this. As far as I am aware she flips all the characters’ genders including Jacob Black – though of course he doesn’t have a huge part in the first novel. The ending is dissimilar enough that if she continues to ‘New Moon’ she would have to adapt the narrative considerably perhaps making it worth her while. So, fingers crossed for a all-female group of werewolves and, fingers and toes crossed for a non-het character.
I think this is really clever. She has always had her finger on the heart of middle America and this olde worlde rewrite with gender inversions is bonkers and brilliant at the same time. She has me hooked!! I guess the names are being gothicised and made to seem remote or archaic in a kind of antique prequal…classic!!
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