Over the past two days, I finally read Twilight.  After months of seeing Flair and other Facebook tributes, as well as – more recently – trailers for the upcoming film, my name finally came to the top of the library’s waiting list.  Honestly, what really intrigued me was the continual comparison of the Twilight series with the Harry Potter series.  So much comparison, in fact, that it’s rumored that the sixth Harry Potter film’s release was postponed until next year for the sole reason of not having to compete with Twilight’s theatrical release.  Plus, I enjoy well-done teen lit.

The verdict?  It’s like comparing Apples and Owls.

On one hand, you have the apple.  It’s shiny and beautiful, and underneath the skin is the crisp flesh.  It’s either sweet or tart, and the juice drips down your chin as you bite into it.  The seeds inside can be planted and can lead to more fruit.  It’s a complex, living thing, and the world would be much more boring without tasty treats like apples.

On the other hand, you have the owl.  It also has flesh, but imbedded in that flesh are layers of feathers of varying, shimmering colors and a soft, irresistable texture.  Under the flesh is bone and muscle, and a circulatory system, and a nervous system, and a digestive system, and more.  The owl has five senses, and it can swoop and fly, and awe us with its majesty.

The apple is a fabulous snack.  I could eat one every day and be happy, especially if it dazzles me and shines in the sunlight.  The owl, however, can be enjoyed on a deeper level, and its higher complexity and living, breathing being-ness is more intriguing to me.  It has a voice I can listen to over and over.

I do love a good apple.  I quite enjoyed Twilight, and I can’t wait to read the rest of the series.  At the same time, I can’t see why anyone would put it and Harry Potter in the same sentence, much less start a teeny-bopper rivalry over the two.  Different subjects, different target audiences, different depth of plot and character, totally different voices.

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