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Themes

Stephenie Meyer explores themes of love, choice, loyalty, and isolation in New Moon.

Love is the driving theme throughout the novel. Love in New Moonencompasses lost love, unrequited love, self-sacrifice, and friendship. Edward leaves Bella because he loves her and wants to protect her. Bella suffers because she loves Edward, yet she forces herself to go on for her father because she loves him. Jacob falls in love with Bella, and although it is unrequited, he does not give up. All three suffer in the name of love. As Bella comes to realize, “(l)ove is irrational....the more you loved someone, the less sense anything made." Although Jacob can offer Bella a real and devoted love, she cannot bring herself to forsake her own feelings for Edward, even though she believes he is gone forever. She considers what it would be like to be with Jacob several times, yet cannot quite give in. She feels like it would be a betrayal to her heart. She chooses to follow her heart, even though it is terribly painful. Edward, on the other hand, does not follow his heart, and leaves Bella, even though he wants to be with her. He is self-sacrificing, believing that by leaving he will ultimately save her. Instead, it has the opposite effect, leading her down a path of self-destruction and deep depression. When they are finally reunited, Edward must admit that telling Bella he no longer loved her was the “very blackest kind of blasphemy."

The theme of choice is very prevalent in New Moon. In all of the Twilightbooks, the Cullens make an ethical choice not to kill people. They deny their very nature in order to remain moral. In Edward’s case, he must choose between being with his true love (thus endangering her) and protecting her by leaving. Bella is also saddled with many choices: should she stay true to her heart and love Edward even after he leaves her, or should she try to find some sort of happiness with Jacob? She also chooses what she wants from life; she would rather become a vampire to be with the one she loves and lose out on having an education, children, and a normal life. Jacob is also presented with some tough choices. He falls in love with Bella, but it is unrequited. He chooses to remain her friend, hoping that she will change her mind. In each case, the characters choose love over temptation, conventionality, and personal gain.

Loyalty comes into play often in the novel. Bella is a very trustworthy and loyal person. She keeps the Cullens' secret, even after they have left her. Bella knows she has “a secret that wasn’t mine to tell, yet a secret I felt bound to protect." When Jacob tells her that he knows that they are vampires, she remains silent, refusing to acknowledge anything he says, unwilling to break their...

(The entire section is 739 words.)