Finally took the 'Twilight' plunge

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By Calen McKinney

It's really just a love story, and that's something we can all - adults and teens alike - enjoy reading.

It just so happens, however, that the love story is laced in between a lengthy series of good versus bad vampire battles, sagas of werewolves who fight with those vampires and fall in love with humans and some very bad vampires from far away who want to do lots and lots of harm to the good vampires.

I, like so many others, have gotten swept up in the "Twilight" fanfare.

I have read all of the books. Those who haven't finished the books shouldn't ask me to reveal what happens in "Breaking Dawn," however, because I won't.

My obsession with all things "Twilight" has me a little concerned.

I have an Edward and Bella bookmark. I have a keychain, ink pen and refrigerator magnets. I have the movie poster hung in my home office. I have read numerous newspaper and magazine articles detailing the ins and outs of "Twilight."

I have the soundtrack and the score. One of the songs on the soundtrack is even the ringtone you will hear when my best friend calls me. She's even more obsessed with the books than I am.

I know, it's all a bit overkill.

At first, I resisted even reading the "teen" books. I bought them all (hey, they were on sale) and they sat at home in my office for a good three months before I even picked them up.

Once I finally did, however, I found myself reading a page or two at every spare minute I had. I stayed up late to finish "just one more" chapter.

Before I fell victim to Bella and Edward's story, I couldn't understand or even believe the "Twilight" hype that I was hearing around me.

I just couldn't comprehend how people who didn't normally enjoy reading were suddenly extremely excited to read the adventures of Bella, Edward, Carlisle, Jacob, Alice and the like.

People kept telling me that they just couldn't put the books down. One friend told me she read a couple of the books in just one sitting.

Even after all of that, I was still resistant to become engrossed in the "teen" phenomenon. I am 26, I thought, and am past reading "teenager" books.

I didn't give in to reading the books until after I had seen the "Twilight" movie.

Wow. Now this I had to read.

I started reading. And reading. And reading. And going to the theater a total of four times to see the movie.

Months passed by and I finally finished reading the love story. Who knew vampires could be "vegetarians?"

When really amazed me about the "Twilight" craze was how these books got teens reading again. Sure, teens have to read books in school. But the "Twilight" books are different. I saw and heard about teenagers who "needed" to keep reading. Who would have thought?

I have always loved to read. Not everyone does, I know, so it was great to see how a book could create that kind of excitement in teenagers and the parents of those teenagers.

I'm glad I finally decided to read the books. I fell right in with those who said they couldn't put them down.

If you haven't read the books, you're way behind. Start reading. I dare you to say that you don't like the story of Edward and Bella. I also dare you to say the books are only for teenagers.

I know I'll be in line with all of the others fighting to get a seat in November when "New Moon" hits movie theaters.

Harry Potter, eat your heart out.