Study Guide

New Moon Strength and Skill

By Stephenie Meyer

Strength and Skill

Jasper slammed into Edward, and the sound was like the crash of boulders in a rock slide. (1.242)

Bella compares the force of two marble-hard vampire bodies colliding to a natural disaster. It’s to give us a graspable idea of the supernatural forces in the world of the story.

I was distracted by the over grace of his movement. Jacob had been nearly as klutzy as me… (11.137)

Bella is surprised and maybe a bit jealous that Jacob has lost his clumsiness, leaving her alone with her inadequacies.

His fist slammed against the tree… the trunk gave away and snapped off loudly… (11.201)

It appears Jacob doesn’t mean to rip out the tree. He doesn’t seem to be able to control his new werewolf strength just yet.

[Bella:] "How did you kill him?"…[Jacob:] "It’s what we were made for, Bella." (13.121)

A pack of werewolves can match one vampire. But can one werewolf match one vampire?

[Jacob to Bella:] "See when we’re wolves, we can… hear each other." (13.197)

Werewolves have "mental gifts" similar to the ones some vampires possess in the story. Do these gifts also have a downside?

[Jacob to Bella:] "[Sam’s] the leader of the pack, you know. He’s the Alpha. When he tells us to do something… we can’t just ignore him." (13.218)

The natural workings of a wolf pack seem to apply to werewolf packs as well. Do they also apply to human gang behavior? If you were a werewolf, would you want to be leader or follower of the pack?

With stunning speed, Jacob yanked a can opener… and launched it at Jared’s head. Jared’s hand flicked up faster than I would have thought possible. (14.148)

Werewolves possess supernaturally fast reflexes. How might they compare to vampire reflexes?

[Bella to Jacob:] "And you all heal fast – that’s a werewolf thing too?" (15.20)

Werewolves heal quickly, but their skin is more vulnerable than vampire skin.

[Alice to Bella:] "You smell awful," she said. (17.54)

Alice can smell Jacob’s scent on Bella. How might "werewolf" smell to her?

[Jacob to Bella:] "…you smell like them. Blech. Too sweet – sickly sweet. And… icy. It burns my nose." (18.74)

Jacob can smell Alice’s vampire scent on Bella. While Bella adores vampire smell, it must only be good in small doses – it seems to be exponentially magnified for Jacob’s sensitive sense of smell.