I am so happy that someone else recognizes Jacob's flaws as well as Edward's.Bkwrm wrote:Jake is another supernatural creature.
Jake is as dangerous as Edward; he could accidentally maim or kill her.
Jake could very well imprint on another woman in a few days, weeks, months, or years and leave Bella.
Jake is not human. He is a werewolf. The life Bella would have with Jacob would not be normal. It would only be marginally safer, assuming Jake never loses control, but equally unhealthy in the fact that Bella could be with Jake for fifteen years and have three kids when he unexpectedly imprints and will leave her without looking back. Quite the alternative, I must say.
I agree with December that SM has taken every available and heart wrenching method to expose the core of Bella feelings and the choice she has made. It is deeper and far more painful than a simple moral dilemma.
Where I disagree is that Bella's alternative life with Jake is not fate and therefore already at a severe disadvantage. In theory and in Bella's imaginings a relationship with Jake seems nice because if Edward had died in 1918 then she and a very human Jake would have progressed naturally the way all teens do. But if there were no Edward then Bella would have died at 17 courtesy of Tyler's van, before meeting Jacob.
A future with Jacob was never a true option for Bella because it was not fated. And the theme of fate is played upon in the Twilight Saga at all the right moments. In certain crucial scenes, for example Jacob telling Edward Charlie is at the funeral, it is the deciding factor that propels the story forward.
So while Jacob represents Bella's proverbial 'road not taken' for insightful purposes, the end result was inevitable. We have known from the very first book that Bella and Edward's connection was something stronger than even a soulmate. Thus why the supporting characters are usually surprised by the depth to them.
Perhaps if the story was different and Bella's contrary feelings for Mike were a rival for Edward then I could see where Bella's life could take a normal turn. But life with werewolf Jacob would be difficult for Bella. She would still be living a double life, one that she will be forced to lie to Charlie and Renee about.
The way I perceived Eclipse, especially the last few chapters, was the heartache for Jacob's sake rather than Bella's. Not once did Bella waver in her choice because even as she acknowledged her love for Jacob she was trying to find the least painful way to say goodbye.
Cleverly SM goes to every possible length to reaffirm Bella's choice. And yet there never really was a choice at all. I love the poetic irony in that. Because even when Bella panicked over becoming a vampire not once did she entertain the idea of a different future even though she was well aware of her alternatives. It's that sense of impending metaphorical death combined with the note of inescapability that makes Bella's fate significantly bittersweet.