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Best of the decade -- the Stephenie Meyer decade

In the coming weeks, we'll review some of the decade's biggest books and trends, beginning with this pronouncement: I hereby declare 2000-09 to be the Stephenie Meyer decade. (That sound you just heard was Nancy hitting the floor.) Meyer's novel "Twilight," released in October of 2005, hit the top of the best seller lists and has hardly budged since -- while being joined by others in the series. Just look at the latest list: Sarah Palin's on top, but Meyer has the #2, #3, #4 and #7 spots with "New Moon," "Eclipse," "Twilight" and "Breaking Dawn." What could she have done if she hadn't waited until the decade was half-over to start her series?

Her tales of teen love and angst, set in a world of vampires and werewolves, have sold by the jillions and have spawned hugely successful movies -- not to mention a "Team Edward" t-shirt empire. Her writing style has been skewered by accomplished

, but her fans defend her with a fervor worthy of a werewolf. And though some think her fan base consists solely of teen-age girls,

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, too.

Is there any doubt that she's the successor to J.K. Rowling?

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