Eclipse, by Stephanie Meyer and Ilyana Kadushin (Narrator)
Being a teenager in love is hard enough without having to cope with decisions about choosing immortality and disturbing the natural order of the universe because of the choices you might make. Isabella Swan, know as Bella to her friends and family, is in love with a vampire, Edward Cullen, and is best friends with a werewolf, Jason Black. Werewolves and vampires are sworn enemies but have agreed to coexist peacefully in tiny Forks, Washington, as long as boundaries are maintained and treaties respected. With Bella moving freely between the worlds of her boyfriend and best friend, those limits become strained. As graduation approaches and Bella nears the age when she and Edward can live together forever as vampires, Bella begins to question whether she is ready to give up her human life and Jason.
This is the third book in Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series. Although it would have been enlightening to have read the first two books for background information, Eclipse stands on its own. The characters recount events and conversations adequately to educate the new listener. Ilyana Kadushin is Bella as she narrates the romantic thriller which Meyer has written in the first person. She is able to give distinctive voices to the other characters, but she does it in such a way that the listener never strays from Bella's viewpoint. This serves to personalize the adventure, making the danger more terrifying and the romantic yearnings more wistful and poignant.
Eclipse is a masterpiece of teen fiction,
full of supernatural beings who slip in and out of human existence
as they deal with murder, romance, tradition, friendship,
devotion and loyalty. Meyer has created an adolescent book
that deals with adult themes but that maintains PG-rated standards
of behavior for the young lovers. Even without explicit language,
the listener is able to feel the intensity of Bella's sexual
urges. As an added bonus, Meyer includes werewolf and vampire
creation myths which may or may not be legitimate, but which
might inspire listeners to do independent research. This audio
book is highly recommended as one that will be devoured by
teenagers, but can be enjoyed by the whole family.