Bella is a smart, precocious, yet quite clumsy seventeen-year-old girl who spent her life in Phoenix with her mother until recently. She moves to cold, rainy Forks to live with her father for the first time. Here she meets and falls in love with Edward Cullen, a teenage vampire. Some of her qualities, like being pale and claiming to be able to smell human blood, make her seem like a vampire herself, but her human mortality is a constant theme in her relationship with Edward.
Charlie is Bella’s father and the police chief of Forks. He shares Bella’s reticence and independence, and he loves to fish.
Phil is Renee’s new husband, a younger man and minor league ball player who has to travel a lot.
Renee is Bella’s mother and best friend. She left Bella’s father when Bella was a baby, feeling too trapped and unhappy in rainy Forks. She is loving, erratic, and harebrained. Bella often takes care of her mother more than vice versa. She has just married Phil, a younger ball player.
Edward is an inhumanely gorgeous student at Forks. Bella falls in love with him and then finds out he is a vampire. He has superhero strength and speed, but he worries that he does not have heroic virtue because of his innnate vampiric desire to kill humans. He was born in 1901 in Chicago and was the first of his vampire family to be turned by Carlisle when he was dying from Spanish influenza. He has the power to read minds, which is unique in his family. He is intensely concerned that his romantic desire for Bella should always outweigh his vampiric desire to kill her, and he gradually gains more and more self-control as their relationship matures.
Dr. Carlisle Cullen
Carlisle is a young, world-class surgeon. He is extremely handsome. He is the most humane of the vampires and the oldest. He was born in the 1630s to an intolerant Anglican pastor who put him in charge of hunting for vampires and witches. He did actually find a coven, and he was attacked by the vampire they were chasing. He knew his father would kill him, so he hid himself away, but once he realized what he had become, he tried to kill himself. He finally accepted his identity when he realized he could subsist on animal blood alone. He is incredibly compassionate and has trained himself over the centuries to be perfectly self-controlled around people and human blood.
Esme is Carlisle’s wife and Edward’s adopted mother. She loves passionately, and she mothers all of the vampires, probably because she lost her baby during her human life. She jumped off a cliff, but Carlisle saved her when she was brought to the hospital.
Alice is pixie-like, lithe and graceful, with dark, short hair. Like Edward, she has an extra power: she can “see” things that will probably happen, especially with regard to other vampires. She doesn’t remember her human life at all, and she awoke alone, but James later tells Bella that she was turned by a vampire who had fallen in love with her while she was in a mental institution due to her premonitions. She is dating Jasper.
Jasper is the most recently turned of the vampires. He was part of a more violent family first but became depressed, and he developed a conscience on his own. Alice found him wandering in the woods, and together they found the Carlisles. He is able to affect the emotions of those around him.
Emmett is the largest and strongest of the Forks vampires. He is dating Rosalie. As a human he was found by Rosalie while being attacked by a bear, and she brought him to Carlisle, who turned him.
Rosalie is tall and statuesque, with a perfect body and long, blond hair. Bella thinks she is the most stunning of the vampires. She was turned by Carlisle originally with the hope that she would be a companion to Edward, but instead she found and fell in love with Emmett. Her strongest characteristic is her tenacity, and she is the only vampire whose does not accept Bella.
Billy is Charlie’s good friend from La Push, the small Indian reservation on the coast. He, like Charlie, loves to fish. Because he has recently been confined to a wheelchair, he sells Charlie his old truck for Bella. He has very strong feelings about the Cullens and believes that they are vampires.
Jacob is Billy Black’s son, age 14 or 15, who first tells Bella about the legend of the Cullens. He is especially interested in cars. He also has a crush on Bella.
Mike is a cute, friendly, baby-faced boy with pale blond hair. He introduces himself to Bella in Biology and is the first person she really likes. He has a crush on Bella for a while, but he eventually dates Jessica. His father owns a sporting goods store.
Bella’s first female friend at Forks, Jess is tiny with wildly curly dark hair. She loves to gossip and has a big crush on Mike.
Angela is Bella’s favorite of the girls in school because she is shy and does not ask too many questions, which makes her easy to be around.
Tyler almost kills Bella when his van slips on the ice and loses control. He cannot stop apologizing afterward, and he develops a crush on Bella. Somehow he believes she agreed to let him take her to the prom.
The first Forks student to introduce himself to Bella, Eric is gangly with black hair and skin problems, with an early crush on Bella.
Lauren is a standoffish girl who always ignores Bella at lunch, and Bella later finds out it is because she likes Tyler.
Lee is a student in Bella’s biology class who gets woozy from having his finger pricked.
James is the leader of the coven that comes to Forks. Laurent says he is the most lethal vampire he has ever met. He is a tracker. Once he decides to hunt someone--the more challenging the better--he never gives up.
Laurent seems to be the leader of the new coven that comes to Forks, but he is not. He has a slight French accent and is three hundred years old. He does not like James’s behavior regarding Bella, but he also does not have the courage to go against him.
Victoria is a member of James’s coven, with wild red hair and constantly moving eyes. She helps James hunt Bella.
Dr. Snow is another doctor at the hospital where Carlisle Cullen works. One day he calls in sick, which is why Carlisle cannot stay at home and chat with Bella.
Mr. Mason is Bella’s English teacher at Forks High School.
Bella’s trigonometry teacher in Forks, Mr. Varner is the only teacher who makes her introduce herself to the class.
Ms. Cope is the red-headed receptionist in the front office of Forks High School.
Mr. Banner is Edward's and Bella's teacher in Biology II. Perhaps his name is a reference to Bruce Banner, the physics genius who is also the Hulk of comic book and television fame. (His name was changed in the film version of Twilight to Mr. Molina, which perhaps is a reference to actor Alfred Molina, who played Doctor Octopus in Spider-Man 2 in 2004.)
Twilight Questions and Answers
The Question and Answer section for Twilight is a great
resource to ask questions, find answers, and discuss the novel.
Though Jasper did serve in the Conferderate Army, he is never portrayed as a racist character. He was simply a southern boy, who participated in the war in the South.... where he lived. The novel is not about the Civil War, nor is Jasper's part in...