A guy reads Twilight by Stephenie Meyer (2009-2011)

Reading Eclipse: Chapter 5 (Imprint)

The song for this chapter is Vindicated by Dashboard Confessional


If ever you have an urge to see a group of weird and unusual people, try sitting at a bus stop in Dallas after dark on Halloween night. Or rather, just come to my campus on such a day, and you might get to see similarly strange individuals such as this fellow or this fellow. Being an honorary stick-in-the-mud, I spent my Halloween getting a haircut, in class, and voting… but at least made up for it with a good Tim Burton film after midnight (the only real movies that should be watched on October 31st).

There is a key word I have heard many times in Twilight circles, and that word is imprint. Until this chapter, I didn’t have much of a clue of what it mean, except knowing it is important since many questions Stephenie has been asked at bookstores have to do with Jacob imprinting on whoozit and whatsitsname. For some reason, I was under the impression, due to my semi-spoilered state, that to imprint on someone, a werewolf would whack someone on the forehead, and after recovering from unconsciousness the person would forever be mentally imprinted as the wolf’s mate (seriously, I am not joking). Don’t ask how I got that idea, because it makes absolutely no sense to me either.

However, the imprinting throws another problem into this story, and I don’t know if perhaps I am lost on something or if this is a question raised by others as well. Jacob appears to have told Bella that he has never imprinted on anyone:

“Did it happen to you?” I finally asked […]

“No,” he answered briskly.

So if Jacob has not imprinted on anyone, and it is something that a werewolf knows almost instantly, how is it that he is so sure he is made for Bella? Because the best type of a relationship for him would be with the person he imprints on, and if he hasn’t imprinted on Bella, doesn’t that make his love for her simply an infatuation — something he will leave behind in an instant when his real soulmate appears?

My thoughts on this only deepen when I find out more of the story behind Sam and Emily — who, I was surprised to find, have a lot of amazing similarities to Bella, Edward and Jacob. Back in the day, Sam, Emily and Leah seemed to have had a little triangle of their own: Sam loved Leah, but was meant for Emily.

In turn, I applied this to the current triangle — maybe to use the past to predict the future in a way. The unfortunate thing is, though Sam is very happy with Emily now, it took a lot of pain and heartache to get to that point. He had to leave the first girl he loved for another who he was meant to be with. Is the same going to end up happening for Bella? Will she have to leave Jacob behind, hurt and heartbroken, so that she can be with Edward?

It is interesting, too, how both Edward and Jacob have mind-reading capabilities, and how Jacob uses Edward’s power to his own advantage. It is true that when Edward left, Bella was a mess. I know Edward must regret everything that he did, trying to detach himself from her: and it was Jacob who was there for her. I know they both remember that, and it does not make Edward feel any better.

I also find it so interesting that both of them can read minds to certain extents, and yet can’t break into Bella’s…

“Yeah.” the smugness faded. “It probably means there’s something wrong with my brain,” I admitted.

Question for the comments: since the majority of you have already read the books, how do you think the story would be different if Jacob was imprinted on Bella?


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117 Responses

  1. I would love to give a nice, detailed answer to your question. However, it would be spoiler central. I will say… at that exact point in reading the saga for the first time myself, I had the same thought. How could he think he’s meant for her if he didn’t imprint on her? The only reason I can agree with him on this is that it’s supposed to be a very RARE thing, so he assumes that he will never imprint on anyone and this is the best it will get for him, making his own choice in the matter.

  2. I know I’m reading this late, but I just stumbled across your site and have read since the beginning in two days time now, so I think I’m doing pretty well!

    Next, I have to say that while in comparing the Bella/Edward/Jacob triangle to Sam/Emily/Leah you do get a lot of insight, you also have to realize that Sam and Leah were together and in love before Sam ever met Emily. In the case of Bella, she was in love with Edward (who would be her “Emily”) FIRST before she developed any kind of real feelings for Jacob. So in that regard, Jacob already knew that she was in deep love and that she was looking for a friend, and not a relationship in him. She reminded him quite frequently of that, too, if I remember correctly.

    Next, to answer your question, if Jacob HAD imprinted on Bella, it would have been the very first time he saw her after the transformation into a werewolf. In this case, I think that the first person who commented was dead on – he would have been a friend to her, and not been so pushy towards a relationship. He would have been what she needed at the time, because that’s what you do when you imprint on someone. Although I do think the outcome of the books would have been different, I’m actually curious how Bella would have handled it. I would HOPE her love for Edward would be strong enough still (as you can see, I’m clearly Team Edward) for her to stay with him, since he is so selfless and in love with her. This might be a good question for Stephenie though – what would a werewolf do if he imprinted on someone but they were already in love?

    Anyway, great post! I’m looking forward to reading the rest, and for you to get to book 4! So many exciting things happen in the future of the two books, I can’t wait to see what you will think! 🙂 Happy reading!


  3. wow. this is really great sir.i really enjoyed reading EVERYTHING.

    everyone has a point. however, i've got to say that the obvious effect of these “WHAT IFs” [for me, at least] would be setting down the book. the whole twilight saga is about bella and edward's story – their love, their life, their existence – it is mainly but not purely about them. i have nothing too against jacob. however, you are right- he would leave bella when his imprintee comes along. maybe what's keeping him beside bella is the fact that she would be the key to meet his imprintee. ms. stephenie meyer is a good writer. i remember somewhere in the novel where he sort of stares intently to bella. i just want to ask: was he forcing [in a way] the imprinting? was he trying to see if bella was his imprintee? he could have figured that out. the wolf pack can read each other's mind- they could have seen how it happened to everyone else.

    i didn't know how to call it before but maybe you're term would apply- the vampire imprinting thing or shall i say TRUE LOVE. the love edward and bella share is not a one-way love story. both of them love each other more than what we could expect. they can't live without each other in a non-gooey way. love is such a broad topic, how much more is true love? well, as one have said others will understand edward a little bit more at least in midnight sun.

    my apologies for the long answer. thank you very much everyone. everyone made this thing 'alive'. keep the fire burning!

  4. on page 173 he's talking about something I really cant remember but he's staring at her and it never really tells you what he's doing but I read something by Stephanie some where saying he was trying to imprint on bella… hmmmmm sounds plausible

  5. I can't wrap my head around that question… to me, it seems as though Edward has some type of claim on her himself… kinda like a vam-print or something. Bella even refers to how the looks between Sam and Emily remind her of how Edward looks at her and even further into the series if you take notice you will find many things to suggest this…

  6. I think Bella wouldn´t care because she´s kinda “imprinted” with Edward, but the thing is that if Jacob was imprinted on her, when Renesmee is born he would tryed to kill her because he is imprinted with Bella.

  7. I think Bella wouldn´t care because she´s kinda “imprinted” with Edward, but the thing is that if Jacob was imprinted on her, when Renesmee is born he would tryed to kill her because he is imprinted with Bella.

  8. I think that it would be awkward because Edward would obviously be in love with Bella. But Bella and Jacob would end up together because they're soulmates.

  9. I wouldnt even go there. Imprinting is both ways, as i understand it. The recipient has to be in it as well…she clearly is not. So there…ask another question… I am old enough to be your mum.

  10. If Jacob was imprinted on Bella, Edward wouldn't be in the picture at all. Bella would be in love with Jacob and Jacob would be in love with Bella. Victoria would,nt be after her and her life would be semi normal.

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