Rochester, New York, 1933, 18 year old Rosalie Hale's fiancé and his friends leave her for dead in the street. Walking home alone from the nearby hospital doctor Cullen catches the scent of freshly spilt blood in the air, hurrying to the source he discovers Rosalie half dead in the gutter. He makes a split second decision to turn her; he bites her and carries her quickly home to the house he shares with his wife Esme and her brother (Edward).

Edward is not happy with his father's choice in a forth family member but agrees to coexist happily with her for all their sakes.

Several days pass and Rosalie wakes from her transformation, she is astounded at what they tell her but agrees to live with them on one condition; she is allowed to seek revenge on those who left her to die.

After this she and the others left Rochester to move around before settling in Hoquiam, Washington.