Is Bella a reliable narrator for the story? If not, then how should we as the reader read what Bella tells us throughout the saga?
"Bella's is a lack of self-knowledge; If Bella had understood herself better, she could have saved everyone a lot of heartbreak. Sometimes that happens when you try to do the right thing."
"The questions were stupid, because I knew the answer: I'd been lying to myself."
-- If Bella has been lying to herself, then she has also been lying to us the reader. Given this knowledge, how do you think we should read what Bella says?
-- If she is lying (and she says that she was) how do we know what is real?
-- When did Bella begin lying to herself? Is that something that we can see in the text? Or a question that only Meyers can answer on Bella's behalf?
1. I knew Bella was deluding herself about Jacob, herself, friends, Edward.... but I do not think she was lying to us readers. How we should have read what she says is between the lines and how she reacts. I also knew she was destined to be with Edward because of how she felt with him. Hard to explain. :)
2. She only lied to herself, because she was in denial. She only thought that she was in a platonic friendship with Jacob but it turns out she did love him. However she did not love him ENOUGH to be with him. She loved Edward MORE and she ended up marrying him. :)
3. I think Bella began lying to herself during in between of New Moon and Eclipse. She did mention that Jacob did fill half of pain in her heart, not completely, but some. In Eclipse, when Jake kissed her she realized she did in fact love him and realized she was lying to herself. Only because she knew she would end up with Edward however anything panned out. She knew she and Edward were fated to be together forever. I also think she hated the fact that she was hurting her love and her best friend with 'lies' of love. I think there are at least two kinds of love.
Forever in love (which Edward and Bella have) and love (which Jacob and Bella have). Love is not a forever type, but loved enough to imagine a future with Jacob, however Bella could see forever with Edward. Hope this is informative for you. :)
Thank you Toni and HI!!
1) If she is deluding herself about Jacob, then would there be other things that she is deluding herself about as well?
2) As the narrator, how does the lie to herself without also lying to us readers?
Good question! Hello JJ :) and you're very welcome.
1. I don't necessarily think she was deluding overly as much as herself. She knew she didn't fit in human world with her clumsiness and such. Kind of hard to explain myself LOL....
2. I don't think she was lying to readers because it was her personal choice and her mind. She never told us anything that we didn't know ourselves! (Does that make sense??)
Elita, that is basically what I meant LOL... but your sounds much better than mine! ;)
1) Um... not really making sense... What?
2) And I do agree that Bella does not intentionally lie or try to deceive anyone (herself and us included) however a lie is deception whether it was intentional or not. So yes, she told us the readers everything that SHE knew at the time that she knew it. But does that mean it was not a lie?.
Good point! I guess it depends on a reader? :) I do not think she was necessarily lying to any of readers, but some might think she was. Hmmm...
I am confusing myself on number 1 LMAO.... my apology! I will have to figure out how to make more sense ;)
Well, here is the definition:
To lie is to deliver a false statement to another person which the speaking person knows is not the whole truth, intentionally.
So... Bella is not liar.
So what would you call something that is untrue, but the person thought it was true at the time? A mistake?
I would think so? Maybe so. Elita might be able to enlighten us :) She sure has a way with words ;) (Elita, you are one brilliant person!)
Okay. That still leads back to the original question. If Bella is "mistaken" about something that she says over and over. She isn't lying, but what she says is not the truth.
Is she a reliable narrator?
Actually, I believe she is a reliable narrator. She tells us what she feels and thinks at the moment, and we see how she grows.
The truth? We still argue was she in love with Jacob or not. She felt she was but her actions did not prove that. Was there lie? No, because she believed she did love Jacob, too. But in the Breaking Dawn Jacob explained that their attraction was so strong because of Renesmee, so we should understand it was not love.
Beautifully said, Elita! See, you are a brilliant person ;) I so can see her point, JJ :)
"She tells us what she feels and thinks at the moment, and we see how she grows."
-- Yes, but if what she feels isn't true, then is it reliable?
-- Breaking Dawn gives us the reason (or possible reason) that Jacob and Bella found attracted to each other. However it does not discredit that their love was romantic (and not only friend/family love).
Bella claims that Jacob is her friend and she cares about him like a brother. THEN Bella claims that she was lying to herself and that it wasn't true, that she is "in love" (exclusively used for romantic love) with Jacob. She is either lying now intentionally or she was lying unintentionally (or made a mistake if that is not a lie) before. It is one or the other.
(And Toni, I do agree that Elita is a brilliant person :D )