(Posted by Kaleb Nation )

Reading New Moon: Chapter 20 (Volterra)

September 25th, 2008 at 12:05 am by Kaleb Nation

The song for this chapter is Far Away by Nickelback

[audio:https://twilightguy.com/wp-content/uploads/2008/09/faraway.mp3]

When I picked up New Moon to read the next chapter, I got an AIM message that went something like this:

-AIM window flashes-

Me: I’m reading New Moon. Shoo.

Rachul: Are you reading THE chapter?

Me: I dunno. Is Chapter 20 THE chapter?

Rachul: Um, yeah. Big chapter. Edward comes back.

Me: AGHALGRLGLAOGLA YOUBLOODYROTTENSPOILER!

I finally calmed myself, but began to turn the pages a little faster as a result of her injudicious choice of words. Bella and Alice begin to enter the city of Volterra: this place I have heard so much about and finally get to see. I’m imagining it being very old, especially with the cobblestone streets, the darkly colored buildings and the popularity of going about by foot, brought about by a place that was built at a time when there were no cars. The guards at the gate are of hardly any use, given the fact that the Cullens have endless supplies of centuries-saved cash:

While reading this chapter, I was distracted when I remembered watching a certain video of Stephenie on Youtube, months and months before I even dreamed of reading Twilight. I remembered her going through this old city, and saying that it had something to do with her books (long time readers of me know I was a Stephenie fan long before I read anything by her, and dug through Youtube for videos of her all the time). Suddenly, I put the two together, and realized that Stephenie had been showing Volterra in the video. A quick Youtube search uncovered the very clip I had seen so long ago:



As Bella is pushing her way through Volterra, trying to find Edward, I’m picturing her in the setting that is in this video, trying to get through the crowds that just keep knocking her out of the way.

After all these months of Edward being gone, there is a strange feeling the moment he appears: for some reason, it seems so natural, like he hasn’t actually been gone for all this time, but instead has simply been invisible to Bella alone. I say this because when he sees her, there is hardly any surprise; though what happens is revelatory in what I have been predicting since Edward left, many many months ago.

Because when Bella actually sees Edward, there is hardly any reaction more than a scream, and that is more from her wanting to save his life. But in the instant that Bella touches against him, she immediately knows he is no longer just a figment of her imagination. After all the hallucinations of his voice and the visions of him in her dreams, Edward is real and there before her. As Bella puts it:

[…] in that instant, I felt well. Whole.

Since chapter 3, in September, Edward has been gone. He took with him a piece of Bella: the missing piece of her soul that has been calling her and torturing her to find again. The moment they are together, it is as if Bella is made whole.

Both Bella and Edward hold pieces of each other that can never be returned, nor cut off, nor broken free. It is because of this when they are apart, there is an almost constant pain within Bella to be with Edward again. The separation of the two pieces is what has been causing her so much pain.

In the same way, if Bella was dead, then she had taken with her a piece of Edward as well, a piece so strongly connected to him that he could never cut it from his soul. Edward is a vampire– he would go on living forever, suffering through each day with a piece of himself gone. And thus if Bella is dead, then enough of Edward is dead as well, so that he might end the remaining piece of himself to be with her again, and make himself whole once more.

Death, that hath sucked the honey of thy breath, hath had no powers upon they beauty.

If Bella is dead, then Edward feels he must die also — and this time, have no barriers between them for eternity.

But as with Bella, the moment that Edward sees her, it is as if he is whole again: expecting that his death had been so swift, he had hardly noticed, and that Bella is by his side just as he had been wishing. But suddenly Bella tells him the truth, and just like in the video of Stephenie at Volterra, the moment Edward realizes what is actually happening, he immediately changes into defensive mode. In one swift motion, he swings Bella behind him, and crouches ready to defend her from the approaching Volturi.

It was at that moment I fully realized, yes, Edward Cullen is back in town. And he’s not letting anyone come near Bella.

As many of you know I am a little claustrophobic (my worst nightmare was the scene in How The Grinch Stole Christmas, when His Grinchiness squeezes through the chimney and gets stuck…. I still shudder). Thus when Bella plunges down into the darkened depths and then weaves through the cave-like halls, I can’t help but feel a little boxed-in on her behalf. But when they step through the metal grate, and hear it clang shut behind them, it is almost like they have been locked inside an underground prison.

A synonym for ‘underground prison’ is ‘dungeon’. I suppose that Bella’s wave of fear has a solid foundation, as they go to face the Volturi.

——NOTES——

– Today is the last day to submit videos to the Support Stephenie Meyer Youtube project. I will be compiling all the clips and some of the text comments into a video soon, and will post it here when it is ready!

– ADDED: Bailey (Nomoremarbles) and I will be doing another live BlogTV broadcast SATURDAY at 10PM CST (8PM PST / 11PM EST) on her channel! THERE IS A WAITING ROOM WHEN WE PASS 150 VIEWERS. People who arrive early get first in the main room with us, and we have no control over who is rotated in and who is not. Questions to us should be sent BEFORE THE SHOW to [email protected] .


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68 Responses

  1. Ariana

    I’m really claustrophobic too. It’s weird, but “How the Grinch Stole Christmas” has always freaked me out for the same reason.

    Love the review, as always. I’ve been secretly stalking this site for a while now and you are in probably what’s my favorite part in the whole series. Read on my friend!

  2. Erin

    Dude. You’re here. This isn’t my favorite chapter, but still. The next one is way cooler. You’re gonna love the Volturi.
    And, that Grinch part was seriously funny.
    Sorry about the meanie who told you about Angela. That was supposed to be a surprise…
    And sorry bout the spoiler person. But, seriously. We all knew Eddy was coming back…
    And you described all of this really well. It made me happy. 🙂
    Happy reading!

  3. Ms. Paranoia

    I’m so happy to see that you’ve made it to chapter the twentieth Kaleb, way to go~!

    Thsi chapter was such a relief to me and many Twilight fans, because I believe that all of us felt like we were missing pieces of ourselves for a long time. As we are shown those long months without Edward, I felt as if I could almost feel exactly what Bella was feeling – not 100% the same, but I could relate. It was almost an uncomfortable, uneasy and definately not pleasant feeling. But once she was reunited with Edward, everything felt right again, at place, where it should be.

    Anyways, I hope you enjoy the rest of New Moon, cause soon you’ll have to move onto Eclipse =D!

  4. dsolo

    Kaleb, you are so insightful when it comes to Bella and Edward. Are you really only 20? You must be an old soul, like Bella. I,on the other hand, am just old. Jamie, I have you beat by more than a decade and I’m suffering from OCD – Obsessive Cullen Disease.

  5. Shatha

    Haha, it’s such an amazing chapter that it needs to be recognised as “THE chapter.”

    Wow. Amazingly insightful post.
    You understand Bella and Edward’s relationship extremely well, I don’t know anyone who understands them more. (Besides SM of course).

    I hadn’t seen that video before, it wasn’t how I imagined Volterra, but it’s still amazing.

    I think I said amazing about a hundred times in this comment.
    I need to visit theasaurus.com.

  6. Aubrey

    I really love Nickleback, not to mention the song “Far Away”, but for some reason I don’t think that there is any song out there that can explain the complete desperation, relief, and the beautiful reunion between Edward and Bella. That’s why, whenever I read this chapter (or even think about it for that matter) I always listen to the song ‘Your Hands Are Cold’ on the “Pride and Prejudice” soundtrack (Kiera Knightley version). It has a very supenseful begginning as well as a breathtaking, sweet ending. In a word, it’s perfect for Bella’s race through Volterra.(I also imagine the song ‘Darcy’s Letter’ for Edward’s perspective of Twilight when he races to save Bella from James in the ballet studio)

  7. savannah

    dont think bella knows edward loves her. he’s just being a good guy and not letting her die right there. read on!

  8. savannah

    and that was EXACTLY how i imagined volterra

  9. devz30

    I wouldn’t say he comes back on that chapter- as BELLA comes FOR him. But he appeared. I love this chapter, but I love the chapters after this so much more.
    I always knew Edward would come back. I mean, the story was meant to be about Bella and Edward from the start. But if I was spoilered like that I wouldn’t have handled it. I mean, you know that he’d come back, you just feel it, but still– it would somehow lack suspense- Not that you’ve been heavily spoilered to lose much of it.
    =) Keep reading. It WILL get better.

    And great insight from this chapter. As always.
    =D

  10. Shelby

    My best friend is going to Italy and Greece this summer with a People to People program, and GUESS WHERE THEY’RE STOPPING!

    Volterra.

    I know, I’m jealous too.

    Anyway, wow. I’m sorry you got spoilered like that. Turn your IM off while you’re reading the next two, particularly BD. That could potentially suck badly if it happened again with one of the next two books.

    I know you’ve probably gotten a lot of comments that say this, but: more boys should read Twilight. The world would be a happier place with longer-lasting relationships.

    Happy reading! (And good luck on your exams.)

  11. Laura

    haha i find it funny how you are trying to rationalise edward’s suicidal tendencies by saying its all for love. personally, i just find it manipulative and pathetic.

  12. Maddy

    I love how you see their connection. It’s just that simple. I have always felt that he was gone in New Moon, but I felt his presence alot. His disappearance was just hanging over the book. I don’t condone suicide, but this is not about personal opinion. Edward is a vampire. There really is no way out for him. He can’t go on for years waiting for his time to come. That would never happen. I can’t imagine him having to live through eternity alone. And that’s what he would do, without Bella. So I could definitely understand why he did it. This is the only way for him.

  13. Tianna

    I was so glad to see Edward back in Bella’s life. As you have stated, it was natural.. er, well, not natural, from another point of view.
    Anyway, I agree with you; Edward’s back, and he’s ready to kick some vampire butts to help save Bella.

  14. Lindsey Love Twilight

    I have to agree it was almost like edward was never gone. BUT! my heart almost popped out of my chest while the clock was ticking and bella was running to him. I guess he thought he was imagining her voice. And then when he saved him he thought he was in heaven? HOW CUTE!

  15. shannonlee

    i think that INXS never tear us apart would be a perfect song for this chapter. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jbOnYAG2HPI
    xoxo
    this is my favorite chapter in the book

  16. Dragonseye

    Hehehe, I watched the video, and as far as I know only the German in the red box has false grammatic. *grins* It just had to be the German one. *snickers* Of course I will never have that problem because I´m German myself, but it seems as though everyone else from other countries has it. *laughs* English isn´t really difficult to learn, my sister complains about French and the verbs, but I had to pick the most difficult language to learn. (we learn two in school) Latin is really hell. Ever heard of Reduplikationsperfect? And it´s not “sehen Volterra”, it´s “seht Volterra!”

    And now to the chapter, I don´t know if this comment to a long finished part of your blog will be read but I´ll say something on the chance that you read it. I absolutly love this scene, and I also like the second book very much, even if it depresses me. The part where Edward thinks he´s in Paradise is just so sweet! I also happen to like Alice. Though in the film Jacob and Caius are my favorites. (They both look gorgeous)

  17. Dragonseye

    Hehehe, I watched the video, and as far as I know only the German in the red box has false grammatic. *grins* It just had to be the German one. *snickers* Of course I will never have that problem because I´m German myself, but it seems as though everyone else from other countries has it. *laughs* English isn´t really difficult to learn, my sister complains about French and the verbs, but I had to pick the most difficult language to learn. (we learn two in school) Latin is really hell. Ever heard of Reduplikationsperfect? And it´s not “sehen Volterra”, it´s “seht Volterra!”

    And now to the chapter, I don´t know if this comment to a long finished part of your blog will be read but I´ll say something on the chance that you read it. I absolutly love this scene, and I also like the second book very much, even if it depresses me. The part where Edward thinks he´s in Paradise is just so sweet! I also happen to like Alice. Though in the film Jacob and Caius are my favorites. (They both look gorgeous)

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