Every Time Twilight's Edward Cullen Is Described as Beautiful

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twilight book coverI recently read Twilight by Stephanie Meyer, at the recommendation of a friend who liked it despite how many descriptions there were of how beautiful Edward Cullen, the vampire love interest, is. 

I've found that people's claims of this kind are usually exaggerated. If someone says that you use a particular expression and you ask them to cite specific times you have, they'll probably only be able to name two. But in this case, my friend was bang on.


So I've copied out every passage in the novel in which protagonist Bella describes Edward as beautiful. There's a couple in there from her friend, and one from her mother. Note how often the word "beautiful" is used, too. And how it's most often applied to his face. "Angel" comes up a fair bit too.


Here we go:


I stared because their faces, so different, so similar, were all devastatingly, inhumanly beautiful. They were faces you never expected to see except perhaps on the airbrushed pages of a fashion magazine. Or painted by an old master as the face of an angel. It was hard to decide who was the most beautiful - maybe the perfect blond girl, or the bronze-haired boy. - pg 19  [that bronze-haired boy turns out to be Edward, just to let you know]


I glanced sideways at the beautiful boy, who was looking at his tray now, picking a bagel to pieces with long, pale fingers. - pg 20


Edward Cullen, handsome vampire"Which one is the boy with the reddish brown hair?" I asked.

"That's Edward. He's gorgeous, of course, but don't waste your time. He doesn't date. Apparently none of the girls here are good looking enough for him.  - pg 22


But Edward Cullen's back stiffened, and he turned slowly to glare at me - his face was absurdly handsome - with piercing, hate-filled eyes. - 27


I looked up, stunned that he was speaking to me. He was sitting as far away from me as the desk allowed, but his chair was angled toward me. His hair was dripping wet, disheveled - even so, he looked like he'd just finished shooting a commercial for hair gel. His dazzling face was friendly, open, a slight smile on his flawless lips. - pg 43


I looked up to see him smiling a crooked smile so beautiful that I could only stare at him like an idiot. - pg 44


His face was such a distraction that I tried not to look at it any more than courtesy absolutely demanded. - pg 48


I was in disbelief that I'd just explained my dreary life to this bizarre, beautiful boy who may or may not despise me. - pg 50


I was still frightened of the hostility I sometimes felt emanating from him, and I was still tongue-tied whenever I pictured his perfect face. - pg 54


Edward Cullen, good looking vampireEdward was standing at the foot of my bed, smirking. I glared at him. It wasn't easy - it would have been more natural to ogle. - pg 61


I was in danger of being distracted by his livid, glorious face. It was like trying to stare down a destroying age. - pg 65


He paused, and for a brief moment his stunning face was unexpectedly vulnerable. - pg 65


I turned slowly, unwillingly. I didn't want to feel what I knew I would feel when I looked at his too-perfect face. - pg 74


I wasn't interesting. And he was. Interesting… and brilliant… and mysterious… and perfect… and beautiful… and possibly able to lift full-sized vans with one hand. - pg 79


His eyes were gloriously intense as he uttered that last sentence, his voice smouldering. I couldn't remember how to breathe. - pg 84


He was still smiling. It was hard to believe that someone so beautiful could be real. I was afraid that he might disappear in a sudden puff of smoke, and I would wake up. - pg 87


The breathtaking smile reappeared. - pg 88


I listed again in my head the things I'd observed myself: the impossible speed and strength, the eye color shifting from black to gold and back again, the inhuman beauty, the pale, frigid skin. - pg 137


Edward Cullen - boy is he a handsome vampireI turned and he was leaning toward me, his pale, glorious face just inches from mine. My heart stopped beating. - pg 193


I noticed that he wore no jacket himself, just a light gray knit V-neck shirt with long sleeves. Again, the fabric clung to his perfectly muscled chest. It was a colossal tribute to his face that it kept my eyes away from his body. - pg 197


"Oh well. He is unbelievably gorgeous." Jessica shrugged as if this excused any flaws. - pg 204


"I can't explain it right… but he's even more unbelievable behind the face." - pg 204


But outside the door to our Spanish class, leaning against the wall - looking more like a Greek god than anyone had a right to - Edward was waiting for me. - pg 206


I stared back, struggling to think clearly in spite of his face, to find some way to explain. - pg 209


"I'm absolutely ordinary - well, except for bad things like all the near-death experiences and being so clumsy that I'm almost disabled. And look at you." I waved my hand toward him and all his bewildering perfection. - pg 210


A crazy impulse to reach over and touch, to stroke his perfect face just once in the darkness, nearly overwhelmed me. - pg 219


Edward Cullen - handsome!His face startled me - his expression was torn, almost pained, and so fiercely beautiful that the ache to touch him flared as strong as before. My goodbye stuck in my throat. - pg 220


He was smiling, relaxed - and, as usual, perfect and beautiful to an excruciating degree. - pg 227


He grinned his crooked smile at me, stopping my breath and my heart. I couldn't imagine how an angel could be any more glorious. There was nothing about him that could be improved upon. - pg 241


I peeked quickly behind me at his family. They sat staring off in different directions, exactly the same as the first time I'd seen them. Only now they were four; their beautiful, bronze-haired brother sat across from me, his golden eyes troubled. - pg 244


I laughed with him, hiding a secret twinge of regret - why did he have to look like a runway model when I couldn't? - pg 253


He turned then, with a mocking smile, and I stifled a gasp. His white shirt was sleeveless, and he wore it unbuttoned, so that the smooth white skin of his throat flowed uninterrupted over the marble contours of his chest, his perfect musculature no longer merely hinted at behind concealing clothes. He was too perfect, I realized with a piercing stab of despair. There was no way this godlike creature could be meant for me. - pg 256


Edward Cullen is so handsome he sparklesI tried to keep my eyes away from his perfection as much as possible, but I slipped often. Each time, his beauty pierced me through with sadness. - pg 257


Edward in the sunlight was shocking. I couldn't get used to it, though I'd been staring at him all afternoon. His skin, white despite the faint flush from yesterday's hunting trip, literally sparkled, like thousands of tiny diamonds were embedded in the surface. He lay perfectly still in the grass, his shirt open over his sculpted, incandescent chest, his scintillating bare arms. His glistening, pale lavender  lids were shut, though of course he didn't sleep. A perfect statue, carved in some unknown stone, smooth like marble, glittering like crest. - pg 260


The meadow, so spectacular to me at first, pale next to his magnificence. - pg 261


Hesitantly, always afraid, even now, that he would disappear like a mirage, too beautiful to be real… hesitantly, I reached out one finger and stroked the back of his shimmering hand, where it lay within my reach. I marvelled again at the perfect texture, satin smooth, cool as stone. When I looked up again, his eyes were open, watching me. Butterscotch today, lighter, warmer after hunting. His quick smile turned up the corners of his flawless lips. - pg 261


I lightly trailed my hand over the perfect muscles of his arm, followed the faint pattern of blues veins inside the crass at his elbow. - pg 261


Edward Cullen, looking good on lined paperHis angel's face was only a few inches from mine. - pg 262


I'd never seen him so completely freed of that carefully cultivated facade. He'd never been less human… or more beautiful. - pg 264


I looked at his smooth, cold hand, and then at his eyes. They were soft, repentant. I looked back at his hand, and then deliberately returned to tracing the lines in his hand with my fingertip. I looked up and smiled timidly. His answering smile was dazzling. - pg 265


He lifted his glorious, agonized eyes to mine. - pg 273


I caressed his cheek, delicately stroked his eyelid, the purple shadow in the hollow under his eye. I traced the shape of his perfect nose, and then, so carefully, his flawless lips. - pg 277


How lighthearted, how human he seemed as he laughed now, his seraphic face untroubled. - pg 283


I couldn't picture it, this godlike creature sitting in my father's shabby kitchen chair. -pg 292


In the darkness he looked much more normal. Still pale, still dreamlike in his beauty, but no longer the fantastic sparkling creature of our sunlit afternoon. - pg 292


Edward in black and white - still handsome!Edward hadn't moved a fraction of an inch, a carving of Adonis perched on my faded quilt. I smiled, and his lips twitched, the statue coming to life. - pg 299


He stood in the middle of the kitchen, the statue of Adonis again, staring abstractedly out the back windows. - pg 317


When he turned back to me, a gentle angel's smile lit his expression. - pg 341


And Edward, Edward as he hunted, terrible and glorious as a young god, unstoppable. - pg 343


He growled, a low sound in the back of his throat; his lips curled back over his perfect teeth. - pg 345


"Edward is the youngest, the one with the reddish brown hair" The beautiful one, the godlike one… - pg 357


Edward stood in the halo of the porch light, looking like a male model in an advertisement for raincoats. - pg 358


[If you're paying attention to the page numbers, this hundred page gap doesn't indicate that Bella takes a break from describing Edward as beautiful, but that he's not in this part of the book.]


Edward Cullen - so handsome, I don't even want to have sex with him"Edward?" I turned my head slightly, and his exquisite face was just inches from mine, his chin resting on the edge of my pillow. - pg 459


"Well, he seems nice, and, my goodness, he's incredibly good-looking, but you're so young, Bella…" - pg 468


He threw a mocking smile in my direction, and my breath caught in my throat. Would I never get used to his perfection? - pg 481


I'd never seen him dressing black before, and, with the contrast against his pale skin, his beauty was absolutely surreal. That much I couldn't deny, even if the fact that he was wearing a tuxedo made me very nervous. - pg 482

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